Tag Archives: healing

Maybe Journals Can Help Us Heal

It seems as though everything happens at once. You know the saying, “when it rains it pours.”

Unfortunately, there has been a lot of heartache around me lately. Friends, family of mine are losing people they love so much. You think to yourself… what do I do, what can I say? How would I feel? I remember that feeling when it happened to me. It’s awful. There is no solution. No resolve. The best thing you can do is provide comfort and make them feel safe.

I remember when my Grandmother got sick. My Mother moved to New Jersey temporarily to take care of her.  In a small apartment, doing what she could to provide comfort, and go through the acceptance process herself, she began to organize and go through my Grandmother’s things. She found a box of letters.

My Grandfather
My Grandfather

My Grandfather had passed when my Mom was 14 years old. My Grandmother, Italia (or Tily as we called her), never remarried. In the box, were letters to my Grandfather. Not letters from when he was alive, but letters she had written afterward. She had written things like, “you are the love of my life.” It was so moving. THAT provided comfort. Sadness that she had lived this long life without him, but comfort that she would be with him again soon. She missed her partner, and her friend. Nobody compared. I’m sure she must have been attracted to people through the years, and had male friends. But, nobody could be her “companion” like my Grandfather could. Love, support, friendship go a long way. Lust is temporary.

I’m Catholic, I believe in heaven. I truly believe there was a great reunion when she crossed over.  The thing is, I only knew my Grandmother to be happy. She laughed. She made me, “eat, eat, it’s good for you!”


It’s amazing what you can discover from what people write down.

I’m public, yet private. Sooo private. People think they know me from what they see or what I put out there publicly, and sure, that’s a side of me. But, only about 10 people know me completely.

M, T, M, S, D, B, A, my Mom…. okay, make that 8.

I’m so protective, that sometimes it can be annoying. It can. But, covering the news for so long, I’ve heard it all. This is a popular soundbite I’ve heard over and over through the years, “I never thought it could happen to me.” So… I’m a bit of a privacy nut. I’m okay with it though. I like the private conversations I have with special people, that people don’t know exist, because I don’t tweet it or status update it. It’s private and special. There’s a whole entire world outside my public world. I think it’s important to keep it that way. I like balance.

Okay, so where is this going.

Basically, I’m saying this…. it’s been said for a long time that writing things down can help you. Seeing it, writing it. Reading it over. It’s healthy. It’s between you and you. But maybe we can also provide the people we love some sort of comfort. My Grandmother’s letters were beautiful, therapeutic. If we all left our feelings and stories for our loved ones to read, would it help them heal? I think it might.

What’s been happening around me has unfortunately made me think of these things. We are all going to experience extreme pain from losing someone close to us at some point. I had a friend tell me he hurts knowing that I will feel how he feels someday.  So I guess I’ve been thinking how can it be less painful? What can we do?

Maybe we can write some things down at key moments in our life, when we are feeling happy or sad, inspired… whatever. We aren’t all vocal about how we really truly feel. That’s a fact. So it’s easier to write it down. Maybe it would help if people could read our stories. They could learn something they didn’t know, or laugh out loud at something they wrote. Maybe someone has always wondered what you truly thought about them, they just weren’t sure, and you have more love for them then they knew. Wouldn’t it be amazing to find out in a note or letter. Maybe we don’t have the courage to say how we really feel now, but we want people to know what they meant to us. All this, makes me think it’s a good idea. I have always journaled, but stopped once my life became writing. I have notes and things I’m grateful for written down, but I will soon make a conscious effort to do it. It is therapeutic, I know this.

As I always say, this is all just food for thought. Might be worth it. You might feel better too.