Monday, March 24, 2014

Writing to Heal: A workshop with Deborah from Heal Write in SF

Long before I started eating to heal my gut, I was drowning in depression. I felt as if I was reaching out to grasp reality but I was weighed down by a fog that kept me confused and exhausted. This was before my gut pain started , when I was around fourteen years old. It was around when I was 11 when my first journal entries show tendencies towards depression: melancholic reflections on my and the world's failings. In my teens and 20's doctors attempted to treat me with anti-depressants and anti-psychotics before I started hearing anything about the gut-brain connection. Finally, ending my twenties, I started exploring how food was affecting my health. Upon the removal of gluten and dairy I felt 10 times better! But I still have a ways to go towards experiencing what would be called a "normal" level of health for my age.

When I first heard of Heal Write workshops, I thought, "Perfect!" I love to write and I am working on healing. Writing has been an integral part of my emotional and physical health management since I was, well 11! But, lately I've been wanting more guidance. After I signed up for a workshop I started to wonder if it would actually be good. Now, after the experience, I can say I agree with other reviewers of Heal Write on Yelp that Deborah creates a safe setting to explore creative writing through wonderful prompts!

In the two hour workshop we had four writing exercises. The last exercise was prompted by a lovely poem about the life a daffodil, breaking free from the ground and into the harsh extremes of the weather. Deborah then asked us to write about an experiencing breaking free. This is what I wrote:

Freeing my mind
from the think pea soup of fog,
lifting a molecule,
a lie,
away at a time.
But the lies lay
on axioms that
I can't yet see
through the murky green.

A molecule,
a thought at a time
gets you no where.
pulls more in.

And the movement
starts a churning

What is true,
what is real?
it doesn't matter.
I am
My own normal.
stop the spinning
defining my own

is where
IT is.
is where
I stand.
Throw all the pea soup at me
that you like.
I'll eat it up
Spit it out.