Today I am lost and afraid. Swinging between outright panic and wracking sobs. So I set a box of tissues beside me to catch the tsunami of tears and picked up my pen. I’ve been struggling for weeks, months really, and a workshop I led this weekend really helped me find my way. I led my small cadre of writers through a writing journey designed just to help me — and it did. Here is the path we took:
- Poetry Slam (inspired by Unsaid): to find our tipping or breaking point
- I Wish You Knew: to give our rage a target
- This I Believe (inspired by Be Cool to the Pizza Dude): to finding meaning in our struggle
- One Little Word (inspired by Mark Manson’s “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck”): to give us a positive focus
So while all hope was lost after an election where hate won, I hoped to find it again in the pages of the journal. I believe in the power of words to heal or to at least lance the boil so that healing can come later.
So I poured it out in an angry torrent on the page…taking occasional breaks to wipe my tears and blow my nose. I did feel a little better for the release, but I just couldn’t move on to the next stage. There were many people I wish knew my despair, but I don’t believe they care and I don’t believe they want to listen.
So I broke from the plan and wrote a poem (see Hate Won). Sometimes poetry can help me find solace as I shape and corral the words and feelings. Poetry helped a little, but it took only one Facebook post to send me spiraling back into despair.
Maybe I’ll try again tomorrow. But first another box of tissues. Have you tried to write your way out of despair?