Writing Through Grief, Part 7

PROMPTS FOR WRITING THROUGH GRIEF
(and other ways of working through it)

In this series about writing through grief (and other ways of working through it), we will explore:

Some of these postings are quite long, but I hope that in them you may find a few gems that will help you through your journey with grief. And please remember to add your own thoughts, ideas, and prompts in the comments. Thank you so much.

Ideas inspired by Julia Cameron’s book The Artist’s Date Book

An important part of the grieving process is daily doing things that help you “get on with life” while not ignoring your memories or grief. These include, of course, daily life activities like hygiene and dressing; carrying on with your education or career; taking part in the life of family and friends; volunteering and/or helping others; engaging in hobbies you enjoy and/or learning new ones; and taking care of your physical, emotional, intellectual, and spiritual health. But sometimes there are also specific things that you can do which might not seem very important or significant but can be healing in their own right. One source I have found with many of these simple ideas is the book, The Artist’s Date Book by Julia Cameron. It is meant to stimulate your creativity, but it can also stimulate your emotions and bring light and joy into dark moments of your life.

Here are just a few examples from the book; each one is illustrated in the book with a fun line drawing, which itself may be encouraging and enlightening for you. You don’t even need to do them specifically with the thought in mind of the person you are grieving, or the healing you are seeking. Just choose some of them, adjust them if you wish to your own situation, and see what happens:

Go to a park; write a lullaby; buy fun shoes; make a sandcastle or twig teepee; experiment with a new food; wear a fake tattoo; invite friends for a traditional tea party; put stick-on-stars on your ceilings or walls; visit a sacred place; beachcomb; build a fort with blankets or boxes; play with squirt guns; make a puppet and entertain children with it; spend a day in silence; make something out of papier-mache; write a prayer and illustrate it; sing in the show; play with blocks, go fly a kite… and much more.

In the comments, share with us some things you do to help you “get on with life.” Thank you!

4 thoughts on “Writing Through Grief, Part 7

  1. Julie H. Ferguson says:

    I would add: Continue your annual routines/ traditions too.
    . Family vacations
    . Travel with small-group tours to places you had planned to visit
    . Decorate for Christmas, Halloween, etc., even if alone.
    . Entertain friends at home on special occasions
    . Celebrate your birthday with someone — a relative or close friend. Or take yourself out to lunch or dinner at a restaurant

    There’s much more that we all do annually that is specific to you and your family, so make your own plans. The above are just a few ideas. Hope they help.

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  2. aggiestevens says:

    Thanks for the reminder about The Artist’s Date Book. I’ve used it in the past for many fun activities, like building sandcastles by myself at Jericho Beach in Vancouver and drawing dozens of fish, then going to the aquarium to see if I could spot my invented shoal. The activities may sound silly, but they heal the soul.

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