I was listening to an audiobook by Brene’ Brown (Braving the Wilderness) where she speaks about human connections and how a gathering of people feeling joy can emphasis and expand that feeling of joy far more than if it’s just one person feeling it. She gives specific data that states staying connected with people can lengthen your life as much as if you quit smoking a pack of cigarettes a day. Wow.
Her research brought to mind this memory of when I was a young girl in a girl scout troop. I signed up for a week long camp of crafts and campfires at Camp Sacajawea.
My favorite part of camp was always, always, without question the evening sing along’s and campfires. We would talk and laugh, make smore’s and then right before heading to our bunks, we would sing. The singing gave me joy and singing with a diverse group of girls with a common purpose and connection lifted my heart and sometimes gave me goosebumps. I felt close to those girls and leaders and the feeling of unity and joy is hard to put into words. I still get that same feeling when I hear “Make New Friends but Keep the Old, One is Silver and the Other Gold” or “Barges”
“Out of my window looking in the night,
I can see the barges flickering light.
Starboard shining green and port is shining red,
I can see the barges from my bed.”
Writing and sharing our writing helps build these connections too and increases our collective joy and brings comfort in our collective sorrow.