My email buddy Sue (who writes a column about her cancer journey in the Kingston Whig Standard) emailed me about my recent post about my dad. She asked me how it felt to get my feelings out by writing about it. I’m answering her in this rather public way because I want to share with others the benefits of writing about our experiences.
As I’ve been finding with the whole process of blogging, it was a release to write about my relationship with my dad. As you might imagine, it was a rather emotional exercise, but it felt really good to express my thoughts and feelings about something that I've been working through for most of my life.
I did a little digging on the internet and found out that there have been studies about the benefits of journaling (or blogging) through our cancer experiences and that there are even courses that you can take on doing just that. According to Ezinearticles, “A study published in the journal 'The Oncologist' in the February issue of last year supports the notion that expressive writing is effective in easing the stress of cancer.”
Some of the benefits I’ve had from writing this blog have been:
- It helps me to process my thoughts, feelings and emotions
- It helps me keep friends and family up-to-date on what’s happening with me
- It’s an opportunity to make connections with others with similar experiences
- It serves as a record of both my medical and emotional experiences
- It helps me express myself as an individual, rather than a statistic
- I get to be creative and show my ‘quirky’ side
And I don’t have to worry so much about the quality of the writing, because after all, it’s just a blog, right?
If you want to try writing as part of your healing, you might want to check out the website Writing Through Cancer, where a weekly writing prompt is posted to help you get started.