This morning on my hike I was thinking about when my youngest son was little and I used to say to him: “Kevin use your words…” . Being that he was the youngest of 4 he didn’t have to talk, he could grunt and his siblings would give him what it was he wanted. Generally because they didn’t want him to cry or whine. Well, eventually Kevin began to talk instead of whine or grunt or point! The visual came to me because I began to think about the power of words in our lives. Have you been struck by the beauty of someone saying to you with meaning…”I love you” or “I hear you”. Words do have a power of their own, a power for good. I have been making an effort to really speak my truth, by saying the words that are sometimes left unspoken. Words are important, like “I am sorry” and “Please forgive me”.
As I teach my students about memoir writing and the journey of using the pen to find yourself I think it is important not just the words we choose, but the opportunity to remember them. I have been blessed in my lifetime to have heard so many wonderful words. I want to spend the rest of my life sharing my words with those I love. Words of encouragement, words of love, words of blessings and hope. I want my words to be a present to those I am around. I want to use my words, and to remember to use them wisely.
Today in your writing I want you to remember as many times as possible where words have encouraged you. Who spoke those words to you? Were they whispered to you or shouted out to you? Try to go deep to the feelings of what those words felt to you and how you feel today about those words. You may need to pull out some emails or letters and find those kind love letters written to you. I had a box when I was living in San Jose that I kept full of love letters written to me from my students. Several come to mind, I remember getting one written in cute 1st grade writing print that said:” Ms. Coia, you are the best teacher I have ever had.” (So cute since the student may have had only one teacher before me!) Or this one that said: “I love Ms. Coia because she is so smart, she probably knows 1 +1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1 + 1+ 1 + 100 + 20 + 10 + 100=”
Start collecting your words that have been written to you, some may just be carved on your heart. Cherish them. This week use your words to give a blessing to someone else.