My memoir begins and ends with a sonnet written to my younger self. In the first sonnet, I encourage her and let her know it’s safe to tell her story. There are a total of four sonnets strategically placed throughout the story. The final piece is a combination of phrases from earlier works. As I close out my story, I leave the reader with words of encouragement, hope and the promise of redemption I found at the end of my journey.

Writing the sonnets helped me put a lifetime into a few lines of poetry and laid the foundation for writing my memoir. As I near the end of the first revision of my draft and prepare to send copies to beta readers, I decided to repost the last sonnet of the sequence because it expresses the hope I want my readers to experience when they read my story.

“Sonnet V-At Last I Stand Approved” illustrates my acceptance of my true worth.

As I write my memoir I experience grief for the child that never knew love. While the grief I feel for my younger self is different than the grief I felt when John died, the pain is the same. The emptiness I felt after John’s death reminds me of the emptiness I felt as a child. Reviewing this post from several years ago reminds of the solution to the emptiness. I thought it might help others who struggle with the loss of a loved one or who struggle with the loss of innocence through abuse.

This short essay was originally posted in December 2018. Since then, I began writing my memoir. Last week I wrote a chapter about the experience in the epigram. Doing so reminded me of this piece. As I write my memoir I am even more convinced that God can turn what seems to be senseless evil into a powerful testimony of redemption and hope. 

Writing the first few chapters of my memoir, What Kind of Love is This?-Finding God in the Darkness, was hard, much harder than I anticipated. I am exhausted physically, spiritually, and emotionally. While the memoir focuses more on hope, redemption, and faith rather than detailed descriptions of the abuse that I endured, it sometimes left me raw.