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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Writing (01/11/07)

TITLE: Express Yourself
By Carol Gray


My foundation started a long time ago. It will be fifty two years, in September of 2007. I listened intently to every word that my parents said to me. Children like to imitate their parents. Just like the parrot, who repeats every word they hear, children do like wise. Parents are the examples. I remember hearing my mother use certain words and phrases that I still use today. Recently I said, “Put the toys over yonder”. A child that I was speaking to asked me. “Miss Carol, what does yonder mean?” I looked at him and laughed. I told him, “That’s so funny” “It means lay the toy over there”. I could have said it that way before he asked that question, but I had heard that word used like that for many years. It’s engraved on my brain. See we use words to express ourselves. I guess I was thinking that everybody use words the same way, but they don’t. Wasn’t that cute, though?

Unfortunately, parents have negative ways of expressing themselves, also. Remember that someone very dear is listening and watching. Often my mother would say words like--mommy, go, milk, eat, spoon, etc. My father was a speaker in church, so you know he spoke positive words to me, and he read the Bible to me, sometimes. Of course, he said, “Say daddy”. How exciting it is to hear a child say its first words! So can you understand how important it is to say the right words in front of children? Remember the lesson here is, “Express Yourself”.

Eventually I began to attend a small kindergarten where I learned even more. Never in a million years had I dreamed of becoming a writer. However that was the ultimate goal of going to school. They taught the children---how to write letters, words, and sentences. I realize now that words, reading, and writing go hand in hand. They truly are the building blocks for etching imprints on the brain. In my mind, I can still hear the teacher saying, “A is for apple, B is for bat, and C is for Cat”. If those fundamentals had not been learned, it would have been difficult to proceed to the next level. You can add on with confidence, when you know your structure is solid. When it was time for me to enter the first grade, I was fifty percent ready. My kindergarten teacher taught me as well as she could before she became ill and died. Unfortunately, my parents didn’t have the knowledge, reading material, or skills necessary themselves to reinforce good reading habits. However, I did make it through elementary, junior high, and high school satisfactorily.

What’s next? Keep Learning. Express yourself!

If you are finding it very difficult to say it, increase your supply of words to choose from. That is the antidote for eliminating wordlessness. If you read trashy books, then your writing will reflect that. On the other hand, if you read books filled with information and knowledge, your writing will mirror that, as well. Have a vast scope of topics that you are interested in. Your life’s experiences, conflicts, or solutions might present hope for someone else in trauma. Sooner or later each one of us on this earth will experience something traumatic. Of course, it’s not always easy to express yourself to others.

What about taking a piece of writing from a short story and expounding on it? Now that’s where the rubber meets the road. Ask yourself this question. Does voicing my opinions quickly and easily mean that-- I’m capable of reading, comprehending, or writing an interesting or an intelligent response? The answer is a resounding, no! However, there is hope; since we were born to communicate, let’s do it well. The Internet is another great tool to increase your reading and writing skills. Never allow another day pass you by, without saying it in writing. Journalize your thoughts; express yourself today!

The opinions expressed by authors may not necessarily reflect the opinion of FaithWriters.com.
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Member Comments
Member Date
Jan Ackerson 01/18/07
You made some really good points here!

The first half--the part written in first person--is more engaging than the second half. I think it's just more interesting to read anecdotal material and draw one's own lessons from it, than to be given advice.

The part about "yonder" really appealed to me, and showed your authentic voice--very nice.
Julie Arduini01/24/07
A nice lesson we all could remember!
Myrna Noyes01/25/07
Thank you for sharing your perspective on the important subject of self-expression. I appreciated, too, your thoughts on the power of words--either spoken or written.