Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Over the last month life has not been easy in my home, I have alluded to this numerous times in earlier posts. My youngest daughter, 21, is bi-polar and has made choices in her life that have caused chaos to enter our family. It is amazing how our decisions not only affect us personally they affect those around us, if only we could realize the impact while we are making daily choices.
I have noticed recently several of my blogger friends have written about how the negative words of our mouth and heart have a huge impact on our life. My daughter’s self-talk can be such a downer, for herself and our family.
In the book of Psalm and Proverbs the words of our mouth and the meditations of our hearts are a central theme. God knows how he wired us!
What I have experienced is how the negative talk has affected every aspect of my own life. What I am learning to do is rise above the chaos and negativity by journaling about everything, getting it out of my heart, mind, and soul onto paper. Sharing my journey verbally with others at times can be helpful, but when it is intense and is full of prolonged grief and sadness, it can become exhausting to share.
Here is what Henry Nouwen has to say about writing to release the negative impulses that are caused from a stressful life:
Writing to Save the Day
Writing can be a true spiritual discipline. Writing can help us to concentrate, to get in touch with the deeper stirrings of our hearts, to clarify our minds, to process confusing emotions, to reflect on our experiences, to give artistic expression to what we are living, and to store significant events in our memories. Writing can also be good for others who might read what we write.
Quite often a difficult, painful, or frustrating day can be "redeemed" by writing about it. By writing we can claim what we have lived and thus integrate it more fully into our journeys. Then writing can become lifesaving for us and sometimes for others too.
Tamara has been in the hospital for the last month and will be coming home on Friday. My prayer for her is that she will realize how her thoughts and words reflect everything about her life. My desire is that my positive attitude will override her negative responses, to bring about change. I do need to remember as she reminds me daily, it will be small steps toward wholeness.
I have not posted about this situation because it is still such a sensitive topic. I asked Tamara if I could post about her disease and she thought it was a great idea. In her words, "Mom, my illness has affected our family and others."
Concerning the picture at the beginning of this post: On Friday, I purchased a beautiful journal, titled Spirit of Flight by Josephine Wall. My first thought when I picked up the journal was how the picture reminded me of the character profile of Sarayu (the Holy Spirit) from the book, The Shack. It does feel like my life is in total chaos, but I know God is creating a beautiful garden. The journal will be my safe place to release my fears and concerns I face daily, as I walk along side my daughter through her journey.
Sorry for the long post. My desire is to write further about brain chemistry disorders in the future. I currently have two books I would like to write reviews on: This is Your Brain on Joy, by Dr. Earl Henslin and Blue Genes, by Dr. Paul Meier. As for my papers and classes the journey has been slow for me. My prayer is now that the chaos has stilled, I will be able to focus on writing.
One more thought from Henry Nouwen: Writing, Opening a Deep Well
Writing is not just jotting down ideas. Often we say: "I don't know what to write. I have no thoughts worth writing down." But much good writing emerges from the process of writing itself. As we simply sit down in front of a sheet of paper and start to express in words what is on our minds or in our hearts, new ideas emerge, ideas that can surprise us and lead us to inner places we hardly knew were there.
One of the most satisfying aspects of writing is that it can open in us deep wells of hidden treasures that are beautiful for us as well as for others to see.
Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.
The wise in heart are called discerning, and pleasant words promote instruction.
Pleasant words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
Love to all of you.