Writing Wins and Woes: Finding Treasure

Gradma's letter page 2 001Have  you ever found a treasure that wasn’t worth anything to anyone else but is worth everything to you? When I was eight years old, I got a letter from my grandma. It was an ordinary type of letter. She tells me she loves me. She describes her day. She was a cleaning lady, which is kind of ironic, because I am a part time custodian. She tells me to trust in God, to pray and to never give up even in the darkest hour; there will eventually be light. I love my grandma’s letter. It’s the only one I have. Shortly after she wrote it, she died. I am so thankful that I spent a few weekends with her. I remember them in detail. We went shopping, got barbecue chicken in a bag at Woolworth’s (or some store in downtown Lancaster where she lived), we went to the movies. We saw Planet of the Apes, one of the sequels. She fell asleep and we had to sit through it twice, so she could see what she missed. It was a matinee, and in those days you could stay for as many showings as you wanted for the price of your ticket. We went back to her apartment and stayed up late at night watching Dr. Shock theater. She liked scary, campy old movies just like me.

I misplaced my grandma’s letter for awhile but just recently I found it again. I was looking for something else that was more important but what I found was treasure. I never found the more important document, but it is replaceable. My grandma’s letter is not.

It is stuff like this that made me write. Each childhood event became a story. I had to write them down, from the story of my first dog, my mom’s sleepwalking experience where she stole a stuffed animal right from my bed to a matinee with my grandma. I’m so thankful for memories like these that became the stuff that stories are made of.

Do you want inspiration to write? Look no farther than your own story book life. After all, writing comes from the heart.

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