Find it. Write it. Live it.
Sandra Marinella’s The Story You Need to Tell is a collection of illuminating stories that show us the power of writing to transform our lives.
Sandra Marinella has written a wonderful guide for all those struggling to make sense of the story of their lives! It can serve as the perfect prescription for real healing.
The Story You Need to Tell is a beautifully written book with stories that inspire the readers to make their way through trauma, illness, loss, and hardship.
Sandra Marinella brings keen research skills, a brilliant storytelling voice and a distinguished teaching career to this cohesive guide for writing the unspeakable.
Change your story and you can change your life. Our brains think in story. Our lives hang on our stories. In the midst of an illness, a trauma, or a loss, our stories can help sustain and heal us. Our workshops explore the power of our stories.
Holding to Hope
When I went to the store today and there were no eggs or bread, I realized that this pandemic keeps unfolding in unexpected ways. Initially I felt a bit spooked–and it is no wonder. When we experience a shock, our brains have to absorb it or take it in and find a new way of coping. One way to help is simply to use our writing to help us with the change needed in our thinking and behavior.
To calm my fears, I pulled out my journal and drew a line across the middle of the page. On the top half of the page, I listed all of my fears and worries. On the bottom half, I wrote what I could do or what action I could take to readapt to this time. Here is what I jotted down:
On the top I listed concerns me about the pandemic:
Will we be able to get food?
Will Edna (my mother-in-law in assisted living) be okay?
Do we need to be tested?
On the bottom half I listed what I needed to do:
Call the grocery about the best times to go.
Call Edna throughout the day to check on her. Deliver groceries to her.
Check CDC guidelines on testing and email your physician if concerned.
Holding to Hope. After I made this list, which gave me a sense of what I could and could not control, I ended with freewriting about hope. What gives me joy or makes me feel hopeful? I wrote with abandon on this and it was pretty clear that I needed to call my friends and grandkids more, prepare my garden for spring, maybe take that online class, try to talk my granddaughter into creating a coronavirus journal tracking this historic time—oh and I have wanted to get a handle on a book I should be writing.
How about you? What brings you joy and hope? Put positive energy into this writing, and I think you will be pleased at the results!
Family Writing Prompt: Journaling Our History
At this time we are part of a living history event. It will be recorded in history books and talked about for generations. Our schools are closed; our sports events are canceled, and people are quarantined across the globe.
Let’s help our children to create a tangible, primary source of their own living history. Ask them to keep a journal over the coming five+ weeks. They can record what is happening day by day. What is different? What has changed? What are their activities? Their feelings? Their fears? Their joys? What is challenging? What is wonderful amid our hardship? Let them interview their parents, grandparents, and friends. Let them research to see if there has ever been other events like this in our history.
Encourage them to bring their voice to this journal. Don’t fuss over spelling or grammar. Focus on our story. Let it be handwritten, typed, created with photographs or drawings, or if they want to make a video or podcast that is fine, too. When this challenging time is over, save or store this journal in a safe place. When the time is right, share it and give it to your children. They may choose to share it with their children in the future. Let this be a gift of our own historical story.
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