Tomorrow begins National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, a month of education that began in 1985. We at WOW-Women on Writing hope you, and the women you love, are well educated about a disease that affects one in eight women over their lifetime. You can find info at the U.S. National Institute of Health but you can also learn about breast cancer from the experiences of others. Thirty one writers have agreed to write about breast cancer on various blogs this month as part of our first Blanket Tour.
This month’s WOW Blanket Tour promotes Diana M. Raab’s book Healing with Words: A Writer’s Cancer Journey. Diana’s latest book reflects her experiences battling breast cancer at age 47 and then multiple myeloma, a type of bone marrow cancer, when she was 52. The book is part practical advice(she is a nurse, after all) and part inspiration, which takes the form of poems, journal entries, and friendly thoughts. To show readers the effect of healing writing, Diana also includes blank sections and writing prompts so the reader can contribute their own thoughts and writings. Diana describes her daily journal writing as “a daily vitamin-healing, detoxifying and essential for optimal health.”
We’ll be kicking off this month’s WOW Blanket Tour with a word from Diana Raab. Each time you post a comment at one of the blogs on this tour you enter to win a copy of Diana’s book. The list of blogs participating follows Diana’s poems.
To My Daughters
by Diana M. Raab, MFA, RN
You were the first I thought of
when diagnosed with what
strikes one in eight women.
It was too soon to leave you,
but I thought it a good sign
that none of us were born
under its pestilent zodiac.
I stared at the stars and wished upon
each one that you¹d never wake up
as I did this morning to one real breast
and one fake one; but that the memories
you carry will be only sweet ones,
and then I remembered you had your
early traumas of being born too soon,
and losing a beloved grandpa too young
and then I had this urge to show you
the scars on the same breast
you cuddled as babies, but then wondered
why you¹d want to see my imperfections
and perhaps your destiny.
I caved in and showed you anyway,
hoping you¹d learn to be careful, as
if it really mattered, because your grandpa
used to say when your time¹s up, it¹s up.
May he always watch over you.
by Diana M. Raab, MFA, RN
You may think I
like the music or
the rhythm of the band,
but of what I speak
is the sadness which
engulfs my heart today
and the one of my lover¹s
who prays for my recovery,
as the world around me
lurks in gloomy isolation.
A dizzying sense of blackness
churns around me. I see
no wonders created here. My
tears rise like the cream
in a glass of brew or a cup of cappuccino
which opens my eyelids each morning when
I really don¹t want to wake up and face
another day of loneliness free from answers.
I hunt for a place to turn, blinded
by my pain, begging for a tomorrow
free from aches gnawing at my nerves, and
pinching my ventricles tight like a girdle
to a throbbing broken heart.
It¹s time to die.
There¹s no other choice.
Check out what writers have to say about breasts, cancer, surviving and a slew of other related topics. We hope you find information, inspiration and the occasional chuckle.
Oct. 1 – No Thanks, I’ll Work for Myself
Oct. 2 – Colloquium
Oct. 3 – My Thoughts On…
Oct. 4 – Meryl’s Notes
Oct. 5 – Mom Blog
Oct. 6 – The Eclectic Writer
Oct. 7 – Mother-Daughter Book Club
Oct. 8 – Caring for Our Blessings
Oct. 9 – The Write Time
Oct. 10 – Beverly’s Bookshelf
Oct. 11 – The Gift Blog
Oct. 12 – Musings by Lynn
Oct. 13 – Kristie Lorette
Oct. 14 – Four Rooms
Oct. 15 - Jacquelyn Mitchard
Oct. 16 – The Writing Vein
Oct. 17 – Writing in the Buff
Oct. 18 – Read These Books and Use Them
Oct. 19 – My Happily Ever After Again
Oct. 20 - Phantom Paragrapher
Oct. 21 – Words from the Heart
Oct. 22 – Readin’n Writin’
Oct. 23 – Life Unedited
Oct. 24 – Stephanie Barko, Literary Publicist
Oct. 25 – Adventure Salon
Oct. 26 – Zee Monodee Author’s Corner
Oct. 27 – Mom-e-centric
Oct. 28 - Words by Webb
Oct. 29 – Musings from the Slushpile
Oct. 30 - Swimming in Lines of Haiku
Oct. 31 – I’ll Have What She’s Having
Does our WOW Blanket Tour sound fun? The next one begins Nov. 1 with Chynna Laird, her book Not Just Spirited: A Mom’s Sensational Journey with Sensory Processing Disorder, and the topic of parenting (especially parenting children with special needs). For more information contact Jodi at firstname.lastname@example.org !