Tuesday, March 6, 2012

You have stories

"My point is...
You have stories. All of you. So many of you have written and told me your stories. Your heartache. Your triumphs. The pages of your book. Tell them. Tell your stories. There are a lot more books to be written, and so many of you have it in you. Let's change the world, okay? Let's turn pain into beauty, let's celebrate humor and love and inspiration. Let's share the things that make us come alive, and let's listen when others are sharing theirs. Let's jump in streets." Kelle Hampton

Kelle wrote that bit a week ago and I immediately saved it to my list of favorite blog chucks. I love the way she articulates writing--that it's exciting and powerful and inspiring. That is why I write. That is why I ask questions. That is why I write letters. That is why I teach writing. That is why I read blogs. We all have stories to share and tell.

Right now some of my camp friends are living the story of losing a close friend. A couple days ago she died in a car accident. It's tragic. From what they've told me she was an incredible girl; just a Junior in HS she was joyful, kind, funny, dedicated and loving. I don't know words to help or how to make things better or how to make sense of this. Figuring out how to process this loss and keep moving forward is their story right now.

My friend Sarah has been working on a project for work for a few months. When she commits to something she puts all of her time and energy into it. She's one of the most driven people I've ever met and I'm continually amazed to hear what she's up to. The project got approved and she has to move for a few months to continue working on it. This step is a huge accomplishment for her; all of the work she has done is leading into the next phase of her story.

Jenna and Kyle became parents a few weeks ago. Their lives look so different now as baby Luke is their focus. I can't imagine what it's like to become a mother and suddenly have everything shift, it's not about you anymore. My sister Katie and brother-in-law Nick are five months into parenthood--loving and taking care of baby Lincoln is a full time job . Figuring out how to be a great parent is the story of both families right now.

Last weekend at Hope my friend told me her story. Right now she's working doing what she loves but is debating whether to change jobs so she can make more money doing something she doesn't really care about. She knows that it's more important to be happy, but college debt is looming overhead and she sees all the things her friends are buying with their bigger salaries. A larger paycheck is looking pretty good even though she knows she would dread going to work. Deciding which path to choose is her story right now.

Your story, whatever it may be, is important and deserves to be told. Write it down, tell it to a friend, send it in a letter--find a way to share what is going on your life.

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