Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE, POEMS

A dose of female empowerment on ‘International Women’s Day’ and to take with you into each new day ahead!

Each year on 8th March is International Women’s Day – the official website explain it “is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity.” So to celebrate I’m sharing with you a poem I wrote about the power of a woman and a post giving you a dose of female empowerment that can encourage you any day of the year!

“See the privilege that exists not only with gender or the country of residence, but with race and ethnicity even between the same gender in the same country!”

– Helen’s Journey point of thought
continue reading this dose of female empowerment
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Posted in ALL BLOGS, CHRISTMAS, POEMS

“CHRISTMAS CHEER” A Christmas Acrostic Poem encapsulating the Christmas Season.

A Christmas Poem encapsulating the beauty of the Christmas Season and all its traditions:

Happy Christmas to all my readers!

I decided to write a poem to try to encapsulate the beautiful atmosphere of Christmas time and all the things that work together to make it a special time of year. So, I chose the word ‘CHRISTMAS CHEER’ to use in an acrostic poem – enjoy…

Continue reading ““CHRISTMAS CHEER” A Christmas Acrostic Poem encapsulating the Christmas Season.”

Posted in ALL BLOGS, POEMS

Using CREATIVE WRITING / POETRY / PROSE & SONG LYRICS, to express yourself & your inner emotions towards different experiences in life!

Using Creative Writing, Poetry, Prose and Song Lyrics – to express yourself & your inner emotions, towards different experiences in life!

Throughout my creative work journey I have used words in many ways to express myself and to give others a platform to express themselves too.

One of my favourite projects with young people, that I planned, organised, managed and facilitated, was called PAYP – which stood for ‘Positive Actions for Young People’. It was funded by The Big Lottery Fund to provide a broad range of activities to help divert young people from taking part in criminal activity.

So some of the young people on the project were referred by Youth Offending Service, special education services when children have been taken out of mainstream school because of bad behaviour, identified as ‘at risk offending’ etc.

We contracted in a local artist DJ Moyma, I’m gladly still in touch with and he is still available for music workshops (Click on his name to go to his website in a new window). He delivered music based sessions each day for five days, which included learning how to use vinyl turntables, mixing, scratching and writing lyrics for music.

At the end of the five days we had a sharing for parents and friends to attend where the young people performed their own songs they had written or displayed their mixing and scratching skills on the decks. Seeing all their parents smiling faces and their feelings of achievement and accomplishment was heartwarming! They all took home a CD with all their tracks on too. Obviously the practical side of the workshops were left to the professional, but of course I had a go at ‘trying’ to be ‘DJ Hels Bells’!

DJ and lyric writing sessions for young people at risk of offending. creative work therapy. music therapy. art therapy. writing therapy.
“DJ Hels Bells on the decks” – put it this way, I’m better at posing that actually scratching lol 😉

Away from my project management role, I got to also use my creative writing skills with the participants when it came to the part of the timetable where they wrote their own song lyrics. My approach was more from a poetry background than specifically song lyrics.

However, being talented in this area meant we could split into smaller groups between me & Moyma to work with the young people on a more intimate level, as 1-2-1’s worked better for this part of the project where they were sharing emotional expressions. It had some of them feeling vulnerable and transparent, yet others were confident and outspoken – but seeing all of their journeys was rewarding.

THE THERAPEUTIC POWER OF WRITING:

Remembering this project gave me a great idea… to write a poem or song to express my feelings about an emotional event in my life recently. That is my whole experience of growing my hair over a three-year period, to then cut off 12 inches of hair to donate to the charity ‘The Little Princess Trust’ who provide children with natural wigs after they have lost their hair due to cancer treatment or other illness.

The outcome below is my creative twist on ‘The Fresh Prince Of Bel Air’ theme tune. A song/rap of someone sharing their physical journey with you of moving house. I felt it a fitting song for sharing not only my physical hair journey with you – every step of the way from growing it, to cutting it off!  But also my emotional journey during this experience too – as it really was like an emotional rollercoaster ride!

USING CREATIVE WRITING, POETRY, PROSE & SONG LYRICS - TO EXPRESS YOURSELF & YOUR INNER EMOTIONS! my creative twist on the fresh prince of bel air theme tune, in order to share with you a story of a rewarding life experience.
I chose this picture of me as I felt it was me embodying my imaginary inner rapper 😉 Question is –  WHAT DO YOU THINK MY RAP NAME SHOULD BE??? I’d love for you to leave a comment at the end of the post with your ideas *heehee*

Creative Twist on ‘The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air’ theme tune by Helen’s Journey:

Now, this is a story all about how,

My hair-life got flipped-turned upside down,

And I’d like to take a minute,

Just sit right there,

I’ll tell you how I became the Princess of having short hair!

 

In Birmingham UK born and raised,

Growing hair has been where I’ve spent most of my days.

Chillin’ out growing’, hair styles’ all cool

And studying hair-care like a subject at school.

When a couple of hair knots who were up to no good,

Started making tangles in my hair’s neighborhood.

I got in one untangle fight and my comb got scared,

It said “You’re getting a tangle teaser to take control of the hair”

 

I whistled for a hair appointment and when it came near,

I couldn’t stop staring at my long hair in the mirror.

If anything I could say that this length was rare,

But I thought “Nah, forget it” – “Let’s donate this hair!”

Took me three years to grow it not seven or eight,

and off it got chopped singing “Bye hair see ya later!”

I looked at the short crop, It was finally there.

So to sit on my throne as Princess of short hair. 

This is a great example of me using Creative Writing as a means of expression – Can I call it ‘Writing Therapy’?

THE POWERFUL TOOL THAT IS THE WRITTEN WORD & HOW IT CAN BE USED FOR GOOD CAUSES AND POSITIVE OUTCOMES!

In a previous blog post I wrote about the therapeutic power of writing and how to use the written word as a way to deal with feelings, situations and as a release of emotional tension/turmoil.

I’d love more people to discover writing as this constructive method of dealing with emotions and different situations in life and how they make them feel. So I encourage you to click on the title below and read my previous blog post all about it:

“The powerful tool that the written word can be and how it can be used for good.”

I hope you have enjoyed how I used poetic and rhyming song lyrics to talk about this experience of donating 12 inches of my hair to charity, to change a poorly child’s life and self-image. I also wrote a blog post just before I had my hair cut off (click the title below to read it in a new window):

“WHAT I’VE LEARNT FROM 3 YEARS OF GROWING MY HAIR FOR CHARITY, TO MAKE A WIG FOR A CHILD WITH CANCER: “SHORT HAIR DON’T CARE” to “LONG HAIR COZ I CARE”

Watch this space as I am currently making finishing touches to another blog post to share with you the emotional rollercoaster the actual hair cut took me on:

Just what is it like having 12 inches of your hair cut off for charity? Let me share with you my journey from: “LONG HAIR COZ I CARE” to “SHORT HAIR COZ I CARE”

Enjoy reading my posts and poems? Then don’t miss out when new stuff is posted –Please click here to join my Email Mailing List to receive an email notification when a new blog is posted!

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writing therapy. a blog post about using creative writing, poetry, prose and song lyrics, to express yourself and your emotions in reaction to life events

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE, POEMS

“We are Woman!” A poem & a celebratory post about the power of a woman (Esp the single & childless woman)!

This week marked ‘International Women’s Day’ & ‘Mother’s Day’ ~ Day’s for celebrating all things woman!

A lot of people concentrate on the wonderful job we have of carrying human life form inside us, being a mother, a life giver, a wife, a homemaker etc. However, if you are single and childless do not feel any less of a woman or feel uncelebrated, unrecognised or insignificant!  These days ARE for you too!!

I decided to write a poem to encourage those of us who are single and childless to still embrace days we feel highlight our ‘don’t have’s’ and instead celebrate all that we do have – after all we still have the power of being a woman! 😉

“We are woman.

We are love, we are care, we are nurture, we are encouragement, we are strength, we are kindness.

We are inclusive, captivating, patient and able.

We are the wiping away of tears from our own unfulfilled yearnings of motherhood, as we look after and parent the offspring of others.

We are capable of not wanting our own children but still loving children and spending time with them in enjoyment and care.

We have that capacity to love beyond surnames, bond beyond family ties, join beyond blood bonds, unite beyond differences.

We are time givers, hug givers, love givers, caregivers, advice givers.

We smile with strength through our sorrows.

Showing our scars, these war wounds are our beauty marks.

 We are Woman”

~ Poem By Helen’s Journey

Single? Childless?

How these things can’t take away your ability of being a loyal partner or your maternal instincts to look after a child:

A woman who is able to love, nurture, care for and be there for a child that isn’t her own biological offspring – is still fulfilling the motherly role. Maybe you are an aunt, a sister, godmother or without an official title attached; simply a maternal caregiver to a child.

That ability isn’t because you carried the child inside you for 9 months or isn’t because of the bond created as you gave birth to them and held them close. Instead, that ability to look after a child like they are your own comes from being a woman, that built-in maternal capacity to nurture and look after others.

It is in the power of ‘Womanhood’ not just of ‘Motherhood’!

As child-less women we can still be an amazing parent – only it isn’t to our own biological children.

over 30. single. childless. we are to be celebrated too on mothers day! blog by www.helensjourney.com

As single women we still get to be that amazing partner you would be as a wife – only it isn’t within a marriage, it can be in any of the other relationships you do have in your life:

  • with a best friend,
  • your siblings,
  • a friendship group,
  • work colleagues,
  • your boss,
  • your church life group that meets up each week or once a month,
  • the support group you’re a part of,
  • at the place where you volunteer with a group of people needing a supportive relationship in their life as its lacking.

The list could carry on, but I’m sure it’s got you thinking of your own lives and the relationships you have built up personally.

If you’re thinking you don’t really have anyone close, don’t worry – as you have every day of your future to change that. Even smiling at strangers is handing out that natural nurturing and care giving gene within.

We don’t need the title ‘wife’ to be able to maintain lasting partnerships!

We have the capability of building strong, loyal, reliable relationships where you stick together, helping and supporting each other through life. Making nice memories sharing in life moments together along the way.

No it isn’t a romantic relationship as in a marriage. But that doesn’t mean we can not exercise the qualities of a wife before or if ever, we actually become a wife.

The point is, a single, childless woman can still emulate all of those maternal and wife like qualities before she gets those official titles or even if she never does.

I know if I never have my own children here on earth with me, that although not the same, I still got to experience glimpses of motherhood through my involvement and relationships with my nephews (and my ‘soon to arrive’ niece in the future), God children, children in my wider family and children of friends. Not forgetting all the children I have taught in drama sessions, after school clubs, activity days etc.

I love to love, to care, to educate, to encourage, to engage and to nurture. I couldn’t wait for the official title of ‘mother’ to be a maternal woman, because it was already a part of who I am. I can’t wait until I get the title ‘wife’ before I commit to a partnership with loyalty, time and care – because I’d of missed out on so many beautiful non-romantic relationships I have in my life, esp my loyal partnership with my best mate.

CHILDLESS WOMAN BLOG AT WWW.HELENSJOURNEY.COM for the childless and motherless on mothers day

Blood only gives you the title ‘Mother’, it doesn’t make you motherly – your actions do that:

One of my Aunties who doesn’t have her own children, showed me what it was to mother a child who wasn’t your biological child. As growing up she looked after us, invested time in us, listened to us, played with us, educated us and gave us enjoyable life experiences together going on day trips etc. she made the choice to grow and nurture those maternal instincts with us and we all loved her even more for it!

I also call some Mothers of my longtime friends, not only by their name but with Mommy in there too: eg: ‘Mommy Sonia’. Why? Because for over 20 years these strong women had me in their homes like I was their child, yes that includes telling me off if needed! lol.

In return ‘Mommy Sonia’ introduces me as her ‘other daughter’ and my Mom introduces her daughter as her own too – we’re family like that without the shared blood or genes and that is the whole point I’m making in this post.

Even Jesus did this as an example to set for today, He was dying so he told his best mates to now look after his Mom like she was their own mother and told his Mom his best mates were now her children – It’s special to still do this today in our own lives, if we are childless or motherless, to adopt our own families in life!

John 19 verse 25 – 27 (NIV translation)

“When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to her, “Woman, here is your son,” 
and to the disciple, “Here is your mother.” From that time on, this disciple took her into his home.”

So for us women who don’t have children for whatever reasons in life – Mother’s Day is still for us, and a celebration of the strength we have to give motherly love and care to children who aren’t our own.

Happy Mothers Day to all the women out there in whatever role they have in parenting or nurturing children ❤

Is today a hard day for you as you are a ‘Mother of an Angel’ or ‘Daughter to an Angel’? I encourage you to read this affirmation blog post I did to remind every one of how AMAZING they are (Click on blog title below to go to the post):

“YOU ARE…” A SELF-LOVE AFFIRMATION TO REMIND US HOW AMAZING WE ARE AND A BLOG POST TO ENCOURAGE SPEAKING POSITIVELY ABOUT OURSELVES!

thinking of you on mothers day by helen's journey. A blog about being childless on mothers day

Want to read some more of my poetry?

Here are some other poems I have shared (Click on the poem titles below to open them in another window):

“Never Judge A Book By Its Cover”  – A poem I wrote when I felt that I was being judged and treated unfairly.

“Making friends with Grief”      – A poem I wrote in ode to my Grandad on the anniversary of his passing.

Why not come & follow my blogging footsteps on other Social Media Platforms too! (Click on names to open up each profile):

Bloglovin  / Facebook Page / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest / YouTube

Facebook Fibromyalgia & Chronic Illness Awareness & Support Group

Email Mailing List 

we are woman poem and celebratory post about the power of a woman, esp the single childless woman on mothers day by www.helensjourney.com

Posted in ALL BLOGS, POEMS, Spiritual Life

‘Never Judge a Book by Its Cover’ ~ Poem by Helen’s Journey

‘Never Judge a Book by Its Cover!’

Poem & Prose by Helen’s Journey

Have you felt unjustly judged in life, in work, in relationships and friendships?

Or do you yourself find you are being very judgemental of others or of appearances and don’t fully realise the depth to your stereotyping and assumptions?

We do not have to wait for ‘New Year Resolutions’ to look at moulding the ‘New You’  into how you want yourself to be and how you want to behave. I hope this poem will be a reminder for us all, to look at how we conduct ourselves on a daily basis and to be aware of how we generally treat other people.

Sometimes we forget just how much our attitude towards others, can affect them internally in ways in which we are oblivious.

 

Where to get inspiration from, when writing poetry:

When I wrote this poem ‘Never Judge a book by Its Cover’, It stemmed from being taught growing up as a Christian to “Treat others how you wish to be treated” yet feeling myself that I was being judged and treated unfairly.

treat others as you want to be treated - Jesus Quote. Luke 6 verse 31. bible verse

Do to others as you would have them do unto you. bible verse Luke 6 verse 31

Never Judge a Book by Its Cover – Poem by Helen’s Journey

 

What’s the point of going through the day?

Just to listen to the pointless things people say?

Just to feel uncomfortable when someone gives you a stare?

Or to be pushed by someone in a rush who don’t give a care?

To have people judge you by the way that you look,

But how many have lived just one day out of your book?

They love to criticise and list the things that you’ve done wrong,

Yet how many have taken time to stop and hear the words of your song?

They don’t understand the in’s and out’s of your life,

So because of it how can they give you strife?

Of you, people’s views and opinions are uninformed,

How can they know what goes on behind closed doors?

The tears that drop from my eyes flooding the floors.

They look at me, but they do not know the cause,

And hearing their comments just deepens the sores!

I try to move on, to find joys not just woes.

But it seems you’re blinded to my highs and only see my lows.

Your looks, comments and silence, all add to my shoulders heavy pile,

When really all I long for, is for you to truly SEE me and give me a warm smile!

🙂

So, remember as you concentrate on being the best version of yourself you can be, to remind the ‘new improved you’ that it takes more effort to frown, than it does to smile! So smile for yourself and share smiles for others – they really do go a long way!!!

I hope this poem touches hearts and consciences – please feel free to comment on the blog and share with me your experiences and reactions to my honest and open words…

Want to read some more poetry by Helen’s Journey?

Here are some other poems I have shared (Click on the poem title to open poem in another tab:

“We are WOMAN”– A celebratory poem for all that is ‘woman’ on International Women’s Day!

“Making friends with Grief”      – A poem I wrote in ode to my Grandad on the anniversary of his passing.

Fresh Prince of Bel Air Theme Tune Twist – Using poetry & prose of song/rap lyrics to express my feelings and experience after growing my hair for three years to donate 12 inches to charity to make a wig for a child with cancer hair loss.

'Never Judge A Book By Its Cover' poem and prose by Helen's Journey blog www.helensjourney.com

Why not come & follow my blogging footsteps on other Social Media Platforms too! (Click on names to open up each profile):

Bloglovin  / Google+ / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest / StumbleUpon

Facebook Fibromyalgia & Chronic Illness Awareness & Support Group

Email Mailing List 

Posted in ALL BLOGS, LIFE, POEMS

Making Friends with Grief! How grief can sometimes be met in a more soothing way by making comforting choices.

Today marks the 1 year anniversary of my Grandad Mac dying. He lived to the mighty age of 99 years and 2 months old.

Today I had a choice. I could wake up and only focus on the heartache and pain from missing him and once again get dragged down into that dark pit of sadness.

Or I could wake up and make friends with the grief, in order to feel more than the sadness I already know.

 

How to deal with grief in a positive way:

Now that may seem like a weird thing to say. Just how can we make friends with an emotion that comes from loss and despair? Well that is because although we can’t stop the nagging pain from the gap they left in our lives, we can choose how we respond to it.

So, instead of waking up and just crying being overpowered by grief and all the sadness it brings. I decided I’d make friends with the grief, identifying it as ignoring it doesn’t work and acknowledge the way it makes me feel.

Then I decided to use these raging emotions and tame them into something that promotes comfort and showers the despair of grief with love and soothing memories. That output for the grief for me, was writing.

Using writing to deal with emotions:

There was so much I had inside that I wanted to write about Grandad today, that no Facebook status or tweet could capture or satisfy. So instead I found myself writing away and in the end I created this poem:

 

A Toast to Grandad;

Here is to his smile, his loving eyes and even his frown. His uncontrollable burst of laughter when he thought you’d done something, that to him was as funny as a clown.

When you were down, his ability to lift your spirits to 100 feet tall. Not forgetting his loving touch of a individual nickname for us all.

For all his stories, his tales and his amazing memory oh so clear. The love in his voice when talking about Ireland, the home he held so dear.

Although he experienced hardships as a young man and as a boy, He was determined to live out life with laughter and with joy.

Here’s to his songs, the folk tales and to all his memorised pose. Not forgetting the tunes he would hum, to get everyone tapping their toes.

Here’s to his advice, knowledge and opinions, he was happy to lend. For his carpentry masterpieces and the clever ways he knew how to mend.

Here’s to the hugs, kisses and handshakes, when you’d greet him in his chair. He’d amaze you with seeming youthful and not just for the 99th year of a full head of hair.

For his humour and banter that stayed throughout ill health. Not forgetting all his life accomplishments, through hard work and stealth.

The cheeky grin on his face when he knew he’d got a rise. But it was in a loving jest, that the knot around you was tied.

For his soft love and his hard love – either way there’s never a doubt, that he loved all of his family, by an immeasurable amount.

He held each of us dear for our own individual ways, That reciprocated love is what means,in our hearts he always stays.

He left us all making the promise, that as a family we’d stay close. So thank you for joining me, in making the legend this toast.

Sláinte!

making friends with grief. how to deal with grief positively. A poem by helen's journey blog www.helensjourney.com

Finding comfort in photos of those no longer with us:

I also looked through old pictures and used some of them to make a collage, merging images of Grandad throughout the years all together – this was somehow therapeutic for me.

Again the driver for doing this was grief, but the outcome of creating something from it, gave me a dose of comfort, a warm smile and a hug for my hurting heart.

23113004_1366182296823422_484764299_o
Bernard “Brian” McMahon born 27th August 1917 in Galway, Ireland.

 

Making comforting choices when it comes to grief:

So, remember we always have a choice. I am not saying to ignore grief, as its a powerful emotion that I know personally can take you to some very low and dark places. It needs to be dealt with and acknowledged for all the things it stirs up in us. Some may even need professional help from a councillor to do this, which again I personally know can help you through the forest of despair and loss.

But after this. it is a powerful choice to then make friends with grief and use it to create something of comfort and a reflection of love for the lost. For me that was writing a poem, creating photo collages and writing this blog.

For you that may be scanning in old photos, singing songs they used to sing, making a toast with their favourite drink, making their favourite food for dinner, making a memory box, visiting a special place or sharing stories about them with others.

Whatever ways you deal with anniversaries of loved ones passing or the day to day gap they left in your daily living, I hope and pray that part of your process can be making friends with grief and therefore have the capacity to not only cry sad tears but also to then feed that friendship love, comfort and happy memories.

May all our friendships with grief blossom to radiate the love we feel for the ones we mourn!

 

Want to read some more of my poetry?

Here are some other poems I have shared (Click on the poem title to open poem in another tab) or you can find them under the ‘POEMS’ option in the blog menu):

“We are WOMAN”   – A celebratory poem for all that is ‘woman’ on International Women’s Day!

“Never Judge A Book By Its Cover”  – A poem I wrote when I felt that I was being judged and treated unfairly.

Fresh Hair of Bel Air – My creative twist on the ‘Fresh Prince Of Bel Air’ theme tune to express my feelings about the experience of donating 12 inches of hair to charity to make a wig for a child with cancer hair loss.

ENJOY READING MY POSTS AND POEMS – join my MAILING LIST?

Then don’t miss out when new stuff is posted –Please click here to join my Email Mailing List to receive an email notification when a new blog is posted!

Why not come & follow my blogging footsteps on my other Social Media Platforms(click on names below to take you to the different media profiles):

Bloglovin  / Google+ / Instagram / Twitter / Pinterest / YouTube

Facebook Fibromyalgia & Chronic Illness Awareness & Support Group

Email Mailing List