Thunder roared through the meadow a few minutes ago. A drenching downpour followed.
I don’t know if there is a connection but somehow
SOMETHING WONDROUS JUST HAPPENED.
I breathed in the cool, rain-drenched air. I stared at the
blazing red BEEBALM
and the dazzling purple CONEFLOWER.
I breathed in again. I decided to hold THAT breath
for four or five moments.
Then I breathed out.
And with no warning, no preparation
Something rather monumental shifted inside me.
I went to the handsome oak desk that used to be my Mom’s.
I sat down on the beautifully embroidered chair seat and I opened this laptop.
AND THEN I OPENED MY PURPLE DECOMPOSITION NOTEBOOK AND
BEGAN TRANSCRIBING ALL KINDS OF CRAZY THINGS THAT I’VE WRITTEN INSIDE.
It was the entire month of June that I confined myself to journaling. I actually filled the whole damn purple journal and then spilled into a new one.
(My body can tell that I’ve been away from the computer. KEY difference. That is, my fingers are actually having some trouble locating which keys are where. )
The computer. So much a part of my writing life. But it’s a cold and mechanical thing when you’re hurting as badly as I was last month. I spent weeks wracked with anxiety. I filled a journal with sentences like this one:
“Dear God, Dear Mary, I am pleading with you for relief from this pain. Please help me figure this stuff out because it’s killing me.”
At one point last month, I was suffering so badly and writing so much that I came up with what feels to me like a new kind of writing. At least it’s new to me.
I’m calling it “GOD IN MY BODY WRITING.” I’ll explain and then give you a sample.
OK, so you all know what freewriting is, right?
That’s when you just sit down and write anything at all that comes into your head but the rule is you just keep writing you don’t lift up your pen and you don’t stop.
Well so MY NEW WRITING is like that, except I’ve prescribed another rule:
THE GOAL IS TO WRITE DOWN IN PRECISE AND SOMETIMES GORY DETAIL EXACTLY WHAT IS GOING ON IN MY BREATHING ACHING SUFFERING EXHAUSTED BODY AS I AM WRITING.
Here is a bit of what I wrote on the Fourth of July. In a way, what I wrote was about finding A KIND OF INDEPENDENCE. I’m searching for a way to soothe and nurture myself.
9:17 a.m. “Flesh in my breasts, I’m a baby again only this time my mother bares her nipples and I have one hand on top of her silky white skin and the other I am patting her bulging shape. I begin. My tender lips latch onto the dark nub of her, she is nursing me that bluish white milk you can see through I am calmly drinking NO THINKING NO THINKING JUST THIS A WHISPER OF “I LOVE YOU you little precious girl!” And when you are two you will grow pipecurls with golden rings.”
A little crazy wouldn’t you say? But the key thing is
Writing is therapeutic. So many experts agree on that.
For example CHECK OUT MY BLOG POST ON DR. JAMES PENNEBAKER’S WORK; he found that students who wrote in journals about what was bothering three times a week ended up at the college health center far less often.
I have a whole shelf load of books about writing and healing.
Writing drains feelings out of my brain heart mind fingers gut breasts toes knees and makes me feel
As I said, I am calling it GOD IN MY BODY WRITING and I think it’s part of the book that I thought was finished. This is the book I call “Angels Keep Whispering in My Ears.”
When I write in this new way – letting my body steer -- the words are full of sweat and mud and pink flesh and bluish white breast milk.
I am enmeshed in the sensations that I am creating in my own words.
Of course, it isn’t just the writing that has helped me get to this point. I am extremely blessed to have an incredible therapist who has been with me every step of the way as I opened the door onto PTSD that I had never before explored. More on that extraordinary journey another time.
Meanwhile, I feel so much better than I have in weeks and weeks. I am grateful to Mary and the Universe for helping me reach this point in my healing.
Writing can save your soul. I’ve always known that, but not as much as I do now.
I’ll say it again.
Writing can save your soul.
I like the sound of that sentence, It’s bold. It’s calm. It offers promise!
The important thing is that I am starting to see how, once again, writing – ART – is helping me feel whole again.