Once the panic is over...once the psychic pain has receded...once I know I have survived, yet again...there is always something I learn from depressive episodes, no matter how painful they are.
Although I keep on telling myself there must be an easier way to gain insight, a more gentle method of figuring out that my life needs tweaking, thus far I haven't figured out how. And until I do, I guess I'm stuck with depressions that make me feel like I can only grow by getting smacked in the head by a iron skillet or run over by a two-ton truck. Still, hope springs eternal.
There were many such lessons in the last few months, but one of the primary ones is that I have been stagnant in many ways. When I'm not blogging, I keep on writing the same stories...over and over...with different words, but the same themes.
So, my new therapist recommended a writing class--my first one ever--taught by a poet. While I've read some brochures on it, tomorrow afternoon will be my first class, although it's the last of eight classes in this session.
Although we aren't expected to write poetry, and the teacher's method is unique and quite different--and I'll tell you all about it after I attend--tonight, in anticipation of class, I decided to skim a book I've read a few times, Poetic Medicine by John Fox, who's the president of The Institute for Poetic Medicine.
I particularly liked the following passage by Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.
"Poetry is simply speaking truth. Each of us has a truth that is as unique as our own fingerprints. Without knowing that truth, without speaking it aloud, we cannot know who we are and that we are already whole. In the most profound way, speaking our truth allows us to know that our life matters, that our viewpoint has never existed before. That our suffering, our joys, our fears and our hopes are important and meaningful. One of the best kept secrets in this technically oriented culture is that simply speaking truth heals."