From Cheryl's Writing Crate
As I write this, seven of my eight children are snuggled in their warm, cozy beds—sound asleep—probably dreaming about the wonderful Christmas we just celebrated earlier in the week. It wasn’t the festive decorations lovingly placed throughout our home, or the heavenly feast we dined on of roasted turkey and brown sugar baked ham, and although they received most of the gifts they hoped to find under the tree, that isn’t what made our Christmas so special this year. Nope—this year, more than ever, we all truly appreciated just being together as a family.
The tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14th rocked our entire nation. It is still unthinkable that 20 innocent first graders and 6 of their inspired teachers could be killed in a matter of minutes by a gunman who couldn’t possibly have been in his right mind to carry out such a heinous act. Sadly, however, it did happen and now those families who lost their loved ones as well as families throughout the country are trying to pick up the pieces and figure out a way to carry on in the New Year ahead.
As horrific and sad as this event makes us, for me, the best way I have found to cope with such a devastating loss is to honor the victims by spreading kindness and positive thoughts in their memories.
Nothing can bring these precious lives back, but focusing our energies on something that denotes love and compassion could certainly bring about some type of positive feeling from such a terrible event. That is why I have been striving to practice as many random acts of kindness, in every aspect of my life, each and every day since the tragedy.
Examples of this are being mindful of the person standing in line behind me at the grocery store. I make the effort to let someone go ahead of me now, regardless of how much they have in their basket. Making eye contact with strangers is also something I look forward to doing when I’m out and about in the community. Sometimes just sharing your smile can really lift another’s spirits. If I see litter on the sidewalk, I bend right down and remove it (as do my kids!). I’ve reached out to friends I haven’t spoken to in a long time due to my busy schedule. What good is being so busy if I don’t make time for my friends?
Not only am I honoring the victims with small acts of kindness, but I’m also honoring them with my writing. No, I’m not paying tribute to them with the written word, but I’m making it a priority to follow thru on the many writing goals I have set for myself in years past and now, for the New Year ahead.
When I am bogged down with life due to running a household of ten people and two crazy but loveable dogs, I am pledging not to give up on my writing goals just because I’m tired or have too many distractions in my life. Instead, I am inspired to sit down in the sanctity of my “Writer’s Crate” and fuel my biggest passion—sharing my creative thoughts through words, no matter what obstacles might be in my path in 2013.
Instead of crafting a list of writing resolutions, I am choosing to dedicate the amazing New Year ahead to those brave, loving souls who lost their lives on December 14th in the Newtown shooting tragedy. Thinking of those sweet, adorable children and their beautiful teachers whenever I am feeling uninspired or unable to sit down and write because I am too busy will surely be the motivation I need to be still, write, and let the words flow until my pages are full. I can already sense that my muse is very inspired by this and that 2013 is
going to be filled with my most satisfying written pieces yet.
Do you have any New Year’s writing resolutions for 2013? We’d love to have you share them with us.
Wishing all our Writer’s Crate readers the most creative year ahead!