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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Inspiring another

I am very happy today to offer an update on a lady, also known as Ms. M, who I befriended a few months ago. Some of you may recall that she is a nursing home resident. Until we connected she spent her days crocheting and some people referred to her as the crocheting grandma. One step led to another and she is now a published writer. Unforeseen miracles happen when one purposely sets out to inspire another.

Our journey started when I listened to a story a lady was relating about her short stay in our local nursing home, following an accident. It seems writers never close their ears. I turned her words into a short story and she asked me to share it with the staff at Grants Good Samaritan Center. The staff was so impressed that they asked me to start a writing group at the center. It actually turned into a communication group called Sharing and Caring. It also put me in touch with Ms. M., along with several other interesting residents.

As the relationship between the two of us grew stronger we discovered many things that we had in common. I also found out that the lady had a secret talent for writing. She had been doing it all her life, with no instruction. She is a creative writer, who enjoys giving  animals a voice and cleverly waits to the very end of a story to add an unexpected punch line.

The next step in our relationship was  to invite her to join my writing group. She loved having a reason to get out of the facility and we loved having her. Ms. M certainly brought a different slant to our thinking and writing. She wrote as she talked, with a Texas twang, which was sometimes difficult to understand.

Realizing that she had some physical difficulty writing I suggested that we find her a typewriter. We managed to locate one, but it needed some work. In the meantime, someone gave her a used laptop. It was the best thing that could have happened. She wrote one story after another. I did everything I could to encourage her to improve the appearance of her writing. One day I even offered, "If you want your writing to be taken seriously you have to clean up your work." I wasn't trying to be mean I just saw that she had raw talent.

As time went on she moved her work from the laptop to a computer in the activity room. I was so proud of the steps she took to go beyond what was familiar. A staff member helped her open an email account and she recently started a blog to offer her stories to the public. By an unusual turn of events the editor of our local paper read one of her stories titled, My Motorcycle Ride, and published it. She had no idea who she was handing it too.

I'm sure Ms. M is not finished with her journey and I can't wait to see how far this now published writer will go.

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