[fullness posts summary] the process of writing as a point of healing

What is important … must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood. -Audre Lorde, The Cancer Journals

For the past two week I have been reading pages of Writing as a Way of Healing each morning upon waking; I am in the midst of a “depression self-study” via my writing practice as a scheduled container of time and intention along with making my ICAD art.

Reading was followed by writing and posting excerpts from this book here each morning since the full moon. This is the final entry.

As I reread content first read at a time in my life when everything felt paused or lost forever, now — in a time when everything feels like a beginning — it is phenomenally energizing! (This book was given to me by my oncology psychologist during treatment for ovarian cancer.)

In her epilogue, DeSalvo discusses sharing our stories with empathic witnesses:

From Silence to Testimony

Sharing our work removes us from a solitary brooding on our personal hurts as we listen to other people’s struggles, learn of other people’s triumphs. For those of us who find intimacy difficult, sharing work becomes a bridge to sharing ourselves.

In life, we have evolved social rituals for comforting and supporting a mourner through the necessary process of grieving a loss. As we come together to mourn, we reassert our need for community, for having others recognize the magnitude of what we’ve experienced, the emotional journey we’ve traversed. The most significant stage, then, of grieving is public recognition that we have sustained a loss and public recognition that we ought to be deeply feeling our loss. Making our work public can become this kind of ceremonial sharing, this kind of public recognition of our private experience. And it can be as healing as writing the work itself, though initially sharing might not be easy.

-Louise DeSalvo, Writing as a Way of Healing

Fullness, Series One posts:

  • [link] introduction to this series
  • [link] work is not what you get paid for
  • [link] tipping points, writing & the work of {you}
  • [link] the healing power of your story
  • [link] containers of time, color & space

Fullness, Series Two posts:

  • [link] promises to ourselves
  • [link] time and space for creative processing
  • [link] night without black
  • [link] card-carrying misfits
  • [link] finding your shadow as a succession of little things
  • [link] writing as a practice

It has been a pleasure to receive messages from so many of you regarding this series! I am delighted to know this book resonates. What a joy to know connections are being made for healing progress!


[fullness] promises to ourselves

Current ICAD work station. ♥ Grateful that my hand-me-down desk from my Mimi has a separate pull out work-space. Having everything I need together in one place facilitates honoring my promise to myself to create one card a day through July. [The color wheel was in an envelope of photographs … but I have no idea why it was in there. Perhaps from a stash and dash in the past??]

Unless commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes; but no plans. -Peter F. Drucker

Commitment is doing the work after we promise ourselves to try; doing our best to honor our intention, and facilitate our actions, even as we stumble through our doing.

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[fullness] night without black

The Café Terrace on the Place du Forum, by Vincent van Gogh

It’s quite true that I may take a blue for a green in the dark, a blue lilac for a pink lilac, since you can’t make out the nature of the tone clearly. But it’s the only way of getting away from the conventional black night … -Vincent van Gogh in a letter to his sister

In exploring Fullness I was originally inspired by the moon’s radiant light on the darkness of the a night sky; allowing fullness to include darkness [feelings unseen, unexpressed; sadness and melancholy].

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[fullness] card-carrying misfits

You have a soul in you of rare quality, an artist’s nature; never let it starve for lack of what it needs. -Marcel Proust

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