lisa fierer

Why Writing a Book is the Worst and Best Decision I Ever Made

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images-4The truth is, I love books.

I know that, in this day and age, actual books made with paper and glue are becoming somewhat obsolete, nudged out by Kindles, iBooks, audio books, etc but none of them seduce me in the same way as a real book. Holding a thick paperback in my hands, letting the black print of the words gaze softly into=my eyes is a magical feeling.

But despite my lifelong book love affair, I never dreamed of actually being an author. That was reserved for those, well, inspirational folk.

See, It’s all yoga’s fault.

I never would have taken on the monumental task of bringing a book to life if it wasn’t for that damn pigeon pose. The pigeon is a painstaking hip opener for those of us who aren’t as nimble as 5 yr. old children. And after the first few years of practicing it (and wondering why the heck it was called pigeon; they can’t do this with their little bird legs, can they?) I began to have an odd sensation. The stories I needed to tell about my life literally began coming out of my hips.

I know, I know, I too thought I was losing my mind.

But then one of my favorite yoga teachers, Trista Hollerback, told me,  “Our hips are our emotional storage centers.” and that made sense.

So here I am. Attempting to put my hip-y stories on the page. Chewing on my fingernails when my mind spaces out (which it still does often) and the words just wont come. Working as a writer often creates knots in my guts that force me to continue my yoga practice in order to unwind. But even though I often work myself into a tizzy, there is a funny thing that happens when I write.

A sensation in my chest.

It the yoga-world it’s referred to as Heart Opening, Like that thing that happened to the Grinch, who previously had a heart, “two sizes too small” and then had it grow three sizes in a single day.

That’s what writing does, it gives me a way to grow beyond my limited perspective of misery into a connection with myself, the universe and all the Who’s down in Whoville. It has taught me that we all have our own source of warmth and light which cannot be taken away. My memoir, “Thirst”, is my story of pushing against and embracing the hydrating warmth and light that exists in each and every one of us. So the stories keep coming, through my pigeon hips and through my pen, out into the light.