Hello and Welcome Friends, Readers, and New Visitors,
I got used to Mama waking me up every night when she came reeling in from the bar where she worked. My small hands held the bucket for her sick stomach until there was no more sick to come up. Then we laid back in bed, and I listened to her unload her stories of better times and cry her tears for deep wounds that could never heal. She talked about the orphanage, her brother’s tragic death, happy years with my father until we lost everything in the Depression, and the urine smell in the county hospital where he died.
I heard her stories in detail. She missed my father. I tried to comfort her. But how could I help? My empty heart missed him too. I was a child alone with silent screams that no one heard. And I didn’t know what to do with my own hurt. I stuffed it down and pretended it wasn’t there. But it hurt too much. So I learned to release it on paper. I discovered my voice. Poems I wrote in my teens during dark times when I wondered if I would survive–others in my 30s when survival meant searching to find my way in a dim future–old diaries and short stories–my memoir, Silent Echoes. And finally a world I now see with clearer vision. I find my voice, my Self, in my writing, and I know I’m not alone. My life has meaning.
If you ask me what I came here to do, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud. Emile Zola
Your voice, when expressed, reveals the essence of who you are, and validates your connection to the world. And your life has meaning. Your voice can be expressed as a talent, like artwork, music, sewing, cooking, or simply acts of kindness in everyday living. My niece is wheelchair bound with multiple sclerosis. She smiles and waves to everyone. This is her voice, her true Self, that brings joy to others. I knew a man who repaired bicycles for neighborhood children. In the Depression years people shared food. And I know people today who simply answer the call to purpose in whatever way they’re moved to express. For me, its in my writing.
Challenges are what make life interesting, and overcoming them is what makes life meaningful. Anne Nwakama.
You may feel there’s no meaning in suffering. But the way we deal with it determines its meaning. I used to curse my depression, but it led me to many happy years working as a Psychotherapist. I had a patient with chronic pain who saw no meaning in his life until he discovered, through therapy, he could lie on the ground, dig with one hand, and grow a beautiful garden. He was happy when he brought me a lily plant he’d grown and told me of sharing his plants with others. His suffering led him to his true Self, and so in itself was meaningful.
What is your voice expressing in your life? It may go unnoticed, expressed in un-awareness. But you can find it. Pay attention to your words and actions, and notice the pattern. Then experience the joy of meaningful expression. Your life matters.
I wish you joy in discovery and fulfillment in expression.
Happiness & Blessings,