Writing Song of the Day: “Wake Me Up When September Ends” by Greenday
**Disclaimer: You may want to have Kleenex on hand …**
We were debating whether or not we should do a post directly relating to yesterday’s ten year anniversary of September 11th. It took us quite a few hours to decide if we would or if we’d just allow the numerous other blog posts (all very beautiful, thought provoking, and touching) to stand on their own and we’d take another approach. We’d like to discuss how writing can be a form of therapy when dealing with grief.
As writers, we all are guilty of putting ourselves in our material. Whether it be a character who loves cookie dough ice cream or hates football as much as we do. And me and Pam believe that as writers we also use our craft as a form of therapy.
When I was writing short stories to get into the MFA program at Fairleigh Dickinson University, I wrote an entire story based on a young girl who was losing her father to cancer. I wrote this story a little while after my own dad lost his battle with cancer. Writing it helped me to get out the things I couldn’t say, like: “I’m sorry for not always being there when you needed me, Dad.” All I can hope is that he was reading over my shoulder.
When Pam lost her grandmother she wrote an essay in high school that helped her to express how she felt. She never talked about her grandmother’s death and this essay let out all her sadness and the guilt that she kept bottled inside.
The point is: writing is GREAT for getting out pint up emotion, anxiety, and even anger. And when you feel like no one will listen, will care or will understand what you have to say–write it down! OR you can also READ.
Writing takes on a new form of therapy for those who read. Think about Peter Negron. The thirteen year old read the poem “Stars” by children’s writer Deborah Chandra two years after his father was killed in the 9/11 attacks. That poem helped the teen to relay how he was feeling after losing his father. It offered a form of release, of understanding that two years earlier, Peter did not possess.
What about you all? Does writing and/or reading serve as a form of therapy for you?