Writing as a Spiritual Practice

This week the book fair is at school and I found myself transported back as I wandered the shelves. A first grader showed me a diary that came with a key and I was instantly transported back to wandering the book fair and buying my first diary with a lock. A smile crept across my face as I told this first grader, “Diaries are the best way to keep track of your thoughts and ideas.”

For as long as I can remember, writing has been a part of my life. It’s always been the way I’ve processed life and changes and questions that tend to wander around and around in my heart and mind. I was blessed to be a part of a school community that fostered that writing and to have parents that encouraged that side of me through summer writing camps, self-addressed envelopes for submissions, and celebrations when I my writing became published.

It wasn’t until much later in my life that I realized, writing, for me, is a spiritual practice. The act of bringing my body and mind together to form words and sentences (whether coherent and legible or not) centers and calms me. It reminds me that to pause and reflect and wonder. It reminds me of where I have been and where I want to go. It allows me the sanctuary to grieve and grow.

Over the years, I have kept track of where my writing has been published, collecting the works where my word appear. For the most part, they remain on a bookshelf among other books I love, but today I brought them out to offer thanks for the way writing has guided me and led me to where I am today.

Sometimes you don’t know how much you’ve grown until you remember where you’ve been.