In preparation for my presentation, Express Yourself in Writing and Transform Your Life, I’ve been asking some writer friends how writing has transformed their lives.
Robin Kall has kept a journal since third grade. She says that she first thought that if she didn’t write every day she should just give up on the whole thing.
Once she let go of that pressure, she let herself do it her own way, sometimes just jotting down a few notes–a handful memories of an event, for instance.
When Robin found she had something to say to someone but didn’t feel safe enough to talk with them about it, writing helped her find resolution without having to confront the person. As a result, she was able to transform a difficult situation independently, even as a youngster.
She adds, “Being able to read exactly where I was or what I thought at the moment is one of the greatest gifts I’ve given to myself.” Robin enjoys seeing how she viewed something in the past, and how her perspective had transformed over time.
Robin’s daughter has picked up on the journaling habit and keeps her own journal, a joy that mother and daughter share. “Finding a tucked away journal from the past is a true treasure. I can read about a forgotten part of my past and relive it.”
Robin also takes notes everywhere she goes, jotting down an idea or dialog. “This is a really important piece of who I am,” she shares. “I don’t remember the last day I’ve gone through where I haven’t said, at some point, “Better write that down.”
Receiving her copy of Chicken Soup for the Soul: Power Moms last month was a defining moment for Robin. Her first story in print! But before that, she’d apply her passion for writing to jotting down notes for the show–and she saves all that writing, as well, thinking she’ll use that somewhere…
“Each week, I’d jot down notes for the show, for the past six years. In the beginning I had it really scripted, worrying that I’d run out of things to say (imagine that!). Even just the short notes I write now provide the much needed creative outlet, which I’ve come to realize is something I deeply crave.”
I think Robin’s last sentence sums it up well. Often, we write for our lives. Writing is a deep craving of the soul, because, as we write, we move from the known to the unknown. We discover new insights. We transform.
I jumped out of bed at 5 something this morning to get to Providence for a 7:00 AM interview with Robin Kall and the other Power Moms: editor of the book, Wendy Walker, and contributors Erin Barette Goodman and Kimberly Beauchamp, as well as two board members from Families First Rhode Island–Sarah Sinclair and Lisa Kirshenbaum, the organization that will benefit from today’s book sales. Well worth it for the fun and laughter in the studio and learning about a great organization.
Families First RI is a non-profit organization that pairs moms of infants with highly trained volunteer mentor moms.
If you live in RI, stop by the North Kingstown Free Library today around 2:00 and share your experiences of being a mom (or dad) and making your work and family choices work for your family. We’ll be reading from the book, Chicken Soup for the Soul: Power Moms and sharing in a lively discussion about stay-at-home and work-from-home parenting–how to make decisions that work for you and your family. And we will have refreshments. And it’s not a beach day! (just look at that cloudy sky).