Write about memories —even when you’ve lost the rose-colored glasses.
No one expects your life to be all raindrops and roses.
They just want to know you better.
Writing is Therapeutic*Writing can be therapeutic for anyone. (See Write about Memories: It’s Therapeutic! for reasons why writing is healing.)
*For those traveling a difficult road, it can be doubly therapeutic to write about memories.
*The Cancer Supportive Care Program at Stanford Cancer Institute explains: “Through the process of writing about our experiences, we can find healing as we explore the impacts of cancer on our lives.”
Healing from writing isn't only emotional and spiritual, but also physical:
In , Maia Szalavitz reports that a University of Auckland (New Zealand) study “showed that the calming effect of writing can cut physical wound healing time nearly in half.”
You Don’t have to Write a Memoir to Write about MemoriesYou don’t have to want to, or have the energy to, write your life story to share your memories:
* Think episodes
*You can share whatever comes to mind
*Use ideas from my site www.TreasureChestofMemories.com
*Adapt any program you choose.
*There’s no right or wrong way to write about memories.
*Add narratives to scrapbooks,
*Or rant onto paper or screen —and decide later if you want to share it or edit it.
*Use a voice recorder and talk about your memories
*Have a friend or relative interview you on video tape.
Writing connects you to your loved onesWhen you write about memories, you build connections with your current and future readers. You’ll also create springboards for conversations.
This is my favorite soapbox because I’ve been on the receiving end of a gift of shared memories. As my grandmother faced the end stages of her breast cancer, she revealed her gift to us--a spiral notebook filled with a lifetime of her writings. Her Treasure Chest of Memories included humorous anecdotes, memories of relatives, and personal reflections.
A treasure it is! Grandma died the year I graduated from college, so I was never able to enjoy a woman-to-woman relationship with her in life. However, through her memories, I connect with her, repeatedly, throughout the differing phases of my life.
When you write about your memories, you can write about your cancerI’m not going to pretend to know what it’s like to cope with cancer. I don’t. I don’t want to know. I’ve gained insight, however, from Karin Diamond, whom I met at a Writers Conference. Karin is living with/trying to survive lymphoma and finds meaning and comfort from blogging about her battles. Through her blog, Karin connects not only with her loved ones, but also with all who read her posts.
When you write about your memories, you can also share your needs with loved ones. Do you want them to call? Leave you in peace? Would you rather they not ask, "How are you?" unless they really want to know? Let them know how they can support you on your journey without smothering you.
You don’t have to write about your cancerThe same Karin Diamond wrote a beautiful article for The Huffington Post: “Cancer Is Not All I Have.”
It’s not all you have either. Your disease--your pain--isn't what defines you; it's the setting of
your current chapter.
You have memories, stories, and anecdotes that you can tell.
You've had other struggles.
You've experienced adventures and joys.
However you want to share them, your memories are a treasure.
© Laura Hedgecock 2013
Laura Hedgecock blogs resources and content of her upcoming book Treasure Chest of Memories: How to Capture and Share the Stories of Your Life at her website www.TreasureChestofMemories.com. She’d love you to visit her site and explore more ideas about writing your memories.
Her memory-sharing pinterest board, http://pinterest.com/lauralhedgecock/sharing-memories/, includes many other non-writing ideas, as well.
You can also connect with Laura at: