Writing with a Purpose
We all have things that we turn to in order to cope with the stresses of the world. It’s no wonder, with all of the noise in our lives and all of the things that can knock us down, that we need ways to heal ourselves and healthy ways to release the stress.
For me, I know exercise has always been very helpful at coping with high levels of stress. I enjoy taking out my aggression on my treadmill or weight bench; moreover, I find regular use of these things actually keeps the stress level from piling up in the first place.
But what I use to heal myself is writing. I have always loved to write. Even when the odds have seemed against me that I was any good at it. Back in college when I was 18 and seeking a Professional Writing degree, I had a professor who thought I was a total dunce. Looking at me now with my 3.9GPA it is a funny thing to wonder how I got a D in one of his writing classes. It didn’t deter me, though. I kept writing, kept pushing.
My father passed away, and of course, in the aftermath, I was left in a sort of a daze. While his death was not unexpected, the absence of him was startling. Following his death, I felt a perpetual sense of distraction. I worked and went to school and went through the motions, but my short term memory was terrible. My boss would ask me to do something and by the time I got back to my desk I had completely forgotten and started on something else. I thought I was losing my mind.
I started back to school in 2012 to complete my bachelor’s degree, and immediately after graduation launched into my master’s degree program. Because of this, I have been a student steadily for almost 6 full years now, and in that time I had done almost no creative writing. I can write academically to beat the band, churning out tens of thousands of words each year in support of the new things I have learned. However, this hasn’t proven to be very therapeutic.
I sat down and wrote a poem on June 4th of this year, the first I had written since 2013. It wasn’t about my dad at all, but it was about purpose and about faith, and in those short lines, I found some healing. In the two months since I have written almost fifty poems and a short story! I started writing and felt such a sense of relief. Despite working through grief, most of them are upbeat, hopeful and happy. I reflect at times, not only on my dad but on both of my parents, who have been wonderful role models to me, and I feel relief. I write about my husband, my passions, my siblings and my friends, my faith in God and the hope we have in Him. And in every line and verse, I find healing, not only from my grief but from the burden I feel when I don’t write. I simply must write these things, it is who I am.
I write this blog and see readers from across the world viewing my pages and I am so encouraged! I write because I must, but I want to write with a purpose. I want to connect with others, uplift them or inspire them, or maybe encourage them to write for themselves! I am thankful that people read this, that they return to read more, and that something in what I say resonates with them. It is an incredibly humbling feeling.