Well, here it is Monday, January 21, 2013.  I began the work of sorting and organizing, and then transcribing into digital form all of my mother’s papers in 2005.  I just finished.  This current work I completed today includes the final organization of the family collection of photographs which also arrived in my hands undated and in a shambles.  Tomorrow I will ship the hard copies of the pictures to my son in Seattle who is most generously going to scan and size them as he inserts them into their spot within the text of 7 books of my mother’s writings.

This is a small example of the kind of information he will be working with.  This comes from the ‘picture insert info’ document for voume 4 of the Mildred’s Mountain series, The Up Down Mountain Waltz.


4 3 051859DadKidsSideRoad   …. (3) – 5/18/1959 – great pic dad and kids on side of road – end parag — KEY:  up the mountain he trudged

4 4 051859AlderForest   …. (4) – 5/18/1959 – alder forest – after parag —  KEY:  which is so witchy

4 5 051859MudRoadKids   …. (5) – 5/18/1959 – SLIDE – mud on road with kids (I think me in there) – needs darkening/contrast – end parag —  KEY:  twisted alder tree forest all swampy

4 6 051859RoadScene   …. (6) – 5/18/1959 – one of my all-time favorite pictures – scenery showing road – at end of parag — KEYsuddenly you come to the high land

4 7 051859WalkRoadDadKids   ….   4 8 051859WalkRoadDadKids   ….   4 9 051859WalkRoadDadKids   ……..   4 10 051859WalkRoadDadKids   …. (7 – 10) – 5/18/1959 – FOUR PICTURES – walking the road, kids and dad – I love these pics – so hope they can be repaired – use what you want but I hope all of them, crop if absolutely necessary – after parag — KEY:  steep area we can look below us

4 11 051859CaAltadenaFam1953    …. (11) – 5/18/1959 – mil bill kids 1953 in front of the Altadena house on Calavaras st outside of LA – end of letter, KEY:  We got papers from lawyer on

4 12 051859PileDirtSnow    …. (12) – 5/18/1959 – pile of dirt with snow in the middle we used for our water – after parag — KEY:  in back of the hut are several


The underlined parts are the file names he will copy and then paste into the file for each picture he creates.  The keys are the phrases that he can use to find exactly where in the text of 500,000 words each picture gets inserted.  There are probably around 400 images he will be working with.  I thank him for his help on this task with all my heart.

All of this needs to be done before I can go through each book to see what pictures next need captions.  From there the entire body will go to my professional editing daughter for that task — which it turns out she will have no time to tackle until June at the earliest.

Now, with my disappointment at the overall slowness of this process locked away somewhere, I will begin the next stage of my writing.

I seem to be finding that it is my particular passion to discover how healing one’s family story and one’s own story can help heal insecure attachment disorders.  Because insecure attachments BREAK people’s stories, my guess is that healing the story itself must have some positive influence on healing families — individuals — and eventually as a planet, healing the story of all of us together might help heal us all.

In order to move forward with my next writing efforts I will be studying all that Dr. Paul Renn has collected in his book about the workings of human memory — as those workings are directly affected by insecure attachment trauma from the beginning of life — or not, for the lucky people.

I will be taking a very critical look at a concept that gets thrown around a lot:  Dissociation.  My current guess is that dissociation itself changes the way memory processes operate in human beings (thus of course changing how we remember our own self in the story of our life).  When dissociation begins very early in an infant’s life through neglect, abuse and trauma, it is my guess that dissociation itself becomes the key factor that influences how memory operates in many important ways.

Well — time will tell.  All I know right now is that I have finished the bulk of work on an eight-year project that directly has improved my own ability to remember myself in my abusive childhood.  Our family story has been at least partly retrieved from chaos.  That the words of Mother only tell the half of the story (or less) that her mental illness allowed her to tell leaves me with my next-self assigned task of finding a way to tell the other half of the story.


Please click here to read or to Leave a Comment »


Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s