Friday, 3 October 2014

The Magic of Stories

When it comes down to it, our lives are simply full of stories. The stories we share with our loved ones, our friends and family and of course the stories we tell ourselves. We all have our own stories, the experiences and moments that shaped us into who we are today. The hurts and losses, the happinesses and laughter.

Just think how many times we weave our stories into conversations with other people. Everyday work issues can become an elaborate drama. Relationships become a mini-series where we wait with anticipation for the next instalment.

Even complete strangers it seems will tell you their story, often (in my case anyway) in a very short period of meeting. It seems that the one life-altering moment cannot be held in - it leaks out either gently or spontaneously sometimes in such heartbreaking detail that upon hearing it you could sit down and sob.

I grew up in a childhood of stories. I lived alone with my mum from the age of seven, after my dad left. My mum worked long and unusual hours and we had little money although I didn't realise it at the time. It was only at school that I realised most people had a car, a home telephone and new clothes. The thing we did have though was stories. Mum made walks in the woods with neighbouring children an adventure when we all became musketeers. I being the youngest child was always allowed to be D'Artagne- my favourite. There was always someone chasing us, a threatened King or the Queen of Hearts, wanting to chop off our heads and we would run screaming through the woods with twigs as make-shift swords. Walks home from my nan's house were filled with word games and quizzes no doubt to take our minds off the fact that we were walking and not driving, but which in fact to me just seemed to be fun and entertaining.

And during times when mum was not able to be around because of work, books filled her absence. Enid Blyton was my favourite childhood author. I loved the thought of being able to find my own Magic Faraway Tree and be spirited away to new places by Moonface and friends. With a book in my hands, I always had company and didn't feel alone.

These childhood stories and experiences have helped form me into who I am today. My mum's love of books, poetry and writing have helped develop my interests in these subjects. I have always loved reading but more recently in the last five years have also come to love writing. I also believe that the imagination can take us to magical places and I wouldn't want to ever lose that pleasure.

Thank you mum for sharing these precious gifts with me as a child. We may not have had very much in material terms, but we were rich with the magic of stories.

12 comments:

  1. Your mum sounds freaking cool! No wonder you grew up to be a writer!

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    1. She was Ros :-) She used to write herself, mostly poetry. I have a file of work of hers that I managed to keep after she passed. She also had a couple of pieces published in anthologies.

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  2. Very nice post. How lucky you are to have a mother give you something so priceless as the magic of stories. You really nailed it with "relationships become a mini-series" - I thought of myself, years past, and laughed (sort of). And, those Unwelcome Guests you wrote about… they show up at my house much too often!

    Have a great day. Linda.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by Linda and taking the time to comment. Nice to see you here. Yes, I feel very lucky in many ways. She was a great mum. Sorry to hear that you get those unwelcome guests staying at your house too. Give them a friendly shove, otherwise they can really outstay their welcome :-)

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  3. I really enjoyed this post. You write beautifully and even magically. The value of books, writing, poetry, and stories instilled by your mother is priceless. I would be so happy to teach my own boys the magic of story-telling and to know they love reading and imagination and creativity. Thanks for sharing your stories! Looking forward to reading more. Greetings from California, USA :)

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    1. Thank you for your kind words and for stopping by. I believe there is magic in story-telling - to be able to enthrall another with a tale, to be able to escape deep into a story. In my opinion these are magical experiences and I loved them as a child and continue to love them as an adult. I'm sure you'll be able to pass these things onto your sons too. How's the weather in California by the way? Has it cooled a little yet. Very Autumnal now here in the North West of England. Take care.

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  4. Hello there.
    I've always been an avid reader since childhood. Nowadays, my favourite book to read is the Bible...I never thought it could be so thrilling! Thanks for sharing. Just making a short pit stop from the A-Z Road Trip!

    Entrepreneurial Goddess

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    1. Thanks for dropping by Entrepreneurial Goddess. It was nice to see you here and apologies for my late response to you. Things have been a little hectic and I've not had chance to visit the Blog so often recently. Wishing you well.

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  5. Hi Angela
    Your post so brought back memories. The Magic Faraway Tree - yeah! I remember reading the Mallory Towers series and was so disappointed when I finished reading them and because I couldn't find any more books like these, I wrote my own series!

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    1. How great that you wrote your own series of books. I stand in awe especially as someone who keeps procrastinating about writing.

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    2. How great that you wrote your own series of books. I stand in awe especially as someone who keeps procrastinating about writing.

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