Brave Soul, Writing as Healing

Your words are powerful + {I hope you dance.}

I have a note from my dad taped up on my bedroom wall. It is a note he tucked into a package he mailed to me while I was in college. It contained very precious cargo — a dress I wanted to wear to an upcoming school salsa dance.

I kept the note because it made me smile.

Written in his signature-style handwriting and on his new (at the time) OHSU Foundation letterhead, it reads:

 

Caitlin–

Have a terrific

time at the dance!

Love,

Dad

 

I pulled the note out again a couple years ago, and having lost my dad several years prior, I burst into tears.

But not for the reason you might expect.

I burst into tears because it felt like a message for the moment —

To live my life.

To enjoy my life.

To enjoy the dance

that is life.

The great cosmic dance and play of being human.

(Extra fitting given his love of the mantra “Carpe Diem.”)

Have a terrific time at the dance all of a sudden had new meaning and I couldn’t get over it — crying and crying at what a magnificent miracle it seemed to be. It felt like a Divinely timed message just for me, in some way, from the great beyond.

And I cried with the perfection of it all. The grief. The loss. The glory. The grace.

Crying not because I was happy. Crying not because I was sad.

But crying because I was so moved by the power of it all. The epiphany, the grace, the metaphor, the love…

The perfection.

It felt absolutely perfect.

And in that moment, I realized the true power our words hold.

Whether you write a letter, a text message, a bestselling novel, or an entry in your personal journal…

They all matter.

Those words — your words — have the power to transform lives long after you’re gone.

Let alone the healing they can bring to your own life while you’re here on earth.

So if you’re at all curious to do a little writing of your own — to take a closer look and explore some of the stories you have about a loved one you may have lost, I’d love to have you join me for The Heart-Mending Wordsmith this spring.

The course came about because of a writing class I took one summer while I was teaching first grade.

The writing I did held such potent healing power that once I found myself in life coach training years later, I knew it was a process that could help others too.

It includes 8 weeks of live coaching calls and writing exercises that all fit together to help you create a narrative about your loved one — a treasured story that you can bring to life on the page and hold in your heart forever.

Allowing some of your most treasured memories and experiences to be brought into the light of day through writing is one of the most priceless gifts there is.

Say yes to yourself. And yes to your memories.

YES to the power of your words.

I’d love to have you join me. The course begins on this coming Thursday, April 25th and registration is now open! You can sign up here.

 

In the spirit of flowing forward with this metaphor of dancing, I’d like to share an old blog post with you called: I hope you dance. (Which you’ll find below.)

I’ll also include some journal prompts for you to play with this week if you’d like.

I hope you enjoy!

Journal prompts…

What would it look like for me to show up and dance in my life this week?

If I could do anything — if I had unlimited resources to do whatever I wanted to do this week, what would I do? Who would I spend time with? And who would I be?

I hope you dance

I hope you dance.

(Original post from March 9, 2015) — happy to say that I am physically dancing again now, too! 🙂

I love to dance.

And for a year and a half now, I have not been able to.

So Lee Ann Womack’s song that goes, “And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance, I hope you dance,” even as just a metaphor for life, somewhat breaks my heart.  That’s because physically, I’ve been doing a lot more sitting than I’ve ever done before or ever thought I would do–especially at 28 years old.

Literally sitting, not dancing.

But by sitting, I’m playing my part right now; stepping up to do what my body and soul have asked.  Which means that what I’ve been doing IS dancing.  That’s right, I am dancing even though I physically can’t dance.  How cool is that!?

Dancing is living with courage. 

Life is calling us to take a leap in every moment; each one unique in its shape, size, manner, and purpose.  But having the courage to show up, THAT’S dancing.

Sometimes that might be going for a run along the river, when at other times it means staying still and curling up in your favorite chair.

Sometimes it might mean opening up a flower shop because it’s always been your dream or it might be appreciating the beauty of a single flower sitting on your coffee table.

Sometimes it might be speaking up and sharing your message with a group of people, and sometimes it might mean quietly acknowledging and accepting your own truth.

Each of us has the power to recognize which kind of leap we’re being called to next.  And when we feel that pull, we have a decision to make.

Did you notice that in the song she doesn’t say IF you get the choice, but WHEN you get the choice?

That’s because we always have a choice.

We choose.  We decide whether to walk toward life or turn away from it.

I choose courage.  And I choose stepping out onto the dance floor of life, whatever form it takes.

So let’s dance.

May you dance in exactly the way life is calling to you right this very minute.

***And if that means signing up to join us for The Heart-Mending Wordsmith, then I’d LOVE to dance with you!***

Love,
Caitlin

Did you enjoy this post? Would you like to receive future blog posts, along with fun surprises & other beautiful things by email each week? You can sign up here.

And to follow along with daily love notes & journal prompts, and other inspired goodness~ you can Like the Caitlin Sanders Facebook Page Here.

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