Last Tuesday, I spoke to a room filled with Canadian veterans, sharing the story of my travels through the World War I battlefields of Belgium and how, while there, I unexpectedly discovered the value of my own heritage. I watched as some of the men and women present wiped their eyes.
They waited quietly and patiently, as I wiped mine.
Afterwards, they lined up to share fragments of their own experiences overseas. Although strangers, we connected in a very deep and tender place. For some, it is a very dark place.
Exploring our life stories from the perspectives afforded by age helps us to better understand the value of those experiences, leading to improved health and resiliency.
Sharing those stories is also vitally important, not only for our own well-being, but to strengthen our relationships with others and create ties of compassion between us.
Writing them down captures snapshots of our culture and preserves them for future generations.
That’s why I am thrilled to be collaborating with professors from the Centre for Interdisciplinary Research on Narrative at St. Thomas University on this upcoming workshop series.
During this series of three full-day workshops to be held in Fredericton, NB, I will show participants how the techniques employed in the craft of writing and storytelling can help us explore, examine and embrace the nature of our own personal stories.
Each workshop builds upon the one previous so participants should plan to attend all three sessions.
Registration is limited to 40 participants, ages 55 and older.