February 7, 2014

Writing is a gift

I'm out of the practice of writing.  I can barely squeeze this out in 5 minutes.  But if I know one thing.  To be a better writer, just write. Write.  And write some more.  Keep coming back.  And that in itself is rewarding.

Writing has been a part of my life nearly as long as I could form letters and put them in order.  I remember as a 3rd and 4th grader, making books out of blank computer paper and creating story after story.  I started my first diary in 5th grade, and the habit never ended.  I have book after book after book filled with memories, raw emotions, questions, doubts, and answered prayers.  

I had mostly thought of writing as a selfish thing.  Not in a bad, fleshly way, but more as a habit that I do for myself and kept to myself.  I wrote an online journal before I ever read another person's blog.  It was still just for me.  All that changed when blogs entered my life.  I realized that reading others stories was encouraging and healing.  Their vulnerability encouraged me to be vulnerable and bold in my own writing.  

Last week, while visiting my sister and brother-in-law in Jamaica, I had the rare opportunity to start, and finish, a book.  So very rare in this stage of my life.  But I just devoured Anne Lammott's Bird by Bird.  She is hilarious, sarcastic, and so insightful into what it is to reap the rewards as a writer.  One chapter specifically, put a totally new spin on my perspective of writing.

She said, writing is a gift.

She told the story of how she kept record in words of the journey of her father's illness.  A book that he was able to read prior to his death.  She was able to do the same for a friend suffering through cancer.  A published book of their life together honoring her friendship and journey.  She, too, was able to read prior to her death.

I don't know why I never realized it before.  That my words, my stories and memories, could possibly be the most precious gift to my loved ones.

For me to record my journey as a mother, as a wife, as a follower of Christ.  To remember and honor God's goodness throughout my life and pass it along to my family, my kids, and anyone else whose life I may have the blessing of touching.  This is a gift that never fades, goes out of style, or is irrelevant.  What an inspiration!

I am beginning to see this as one of the greatest gifts I could ever give my kids.  And that is motivating.

Five Minute Friday