Do you know The Moth? It’s not just a site for stories, although their mission is “to promote the art and craft of storytelling and to honor and celebrate the diversity and commonality of human experience.” It’s more.
I attended a local Moth pop-up as part of my Cancerversary celebration. I thought I’d miss my chance to participate because October had been so busy. And I wondered what story I would share.
And then I was decided that I needed to share a cancer-related story. Because someone in the middle of treatment, or facing another surgery, or hearing the news “you have breast cancer” for the first time needs to hear a story from me, a 25-year survivor. And I NEEDED to share my story, because I was that “someone” 25 years ago.
I approached the booth, signed up, and was coached by Jennifer Birmingham. Kismet, huh? We talked, she guided me, created a path for my words, and the story flowed out of me. Jennifer created a document called a “story map”, a perfect conductor for my phrases. It prompted dusty memories and forgotten joys as well as those familiar feelings of pain and terror. We talked longer than I expected and she coached a few more stories from me.
I am utterly grateful to Jennifer for helping me dig deeper and wider. I’m thankful that The Moth exists because EVERYONE has a story to tell and to share. I’m proud of myself, that I was brave enough to share one of my many “cancer stories.”
Y’all, having cancer sucks all the way down, up, sideways, and around. It was terrible. But it was also sometimes so funny. And sometimes I struggled to see what was funny, and sometimes it was literally right in front of me. I’ll share that story as soon as it’s posted on The Moth. The Moth and Jennifer provided the tool to tell my funny cancer story in a better way. And I hope it will reach all of the people who need to hear it.
In the meantime, subscribe to The Moth, listen to the stories, and consider sharing one of your own. You words matter. Your truth matters. And we need your stories.
Have you shared your story? Do so here.