The day before Thanksgiving. Time to think of things to be thankful for.
I wrote on the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention’s wall that I am thankful that I chose to live and survive after Paul died. Otherwise I could never have had the joy of seeing Ben get married last August. Of course that was my reasoning for staying alive. I couldn’t leave Ben and Bob. I didn’t want to miss out on what was going to happen in Ben’s life.
And as it turned out, I have a lot to be thankful in how my own life turned out. In learning how to live again, I discovered that I had the gift of leadership, the gift of love from family and friends, the gift of strength that only surviving the death of a child can bring, and the gift of a creative life.
About fifteen years ago I finally said now or never, and I started taking classes and workshops to hone my writing skills that had laid dormant since my high school and college days. Although at first I didn’t think I could transfer my technical writing and editing skills into creative writing, it came easy for me. And I learned that I loved it. I haven’t looked back.
Even when I went back to work I didn’t stop writing. I couldn’t. I had to write. If I didn’t write I couldn’t live. And as I’ve said many times before, writing saved my life after Paul died.
Writing or any artistic outlet is a way to heal. It’s a way to help. And it’s a way to record the memories – both good and bad. I am so thankful that I have writing in my life. And, hopefully my writing will help others to discover the gifts they have to offer the world.