Thursday, November 1, 2012

In Her Own Words - Candice

As we celebrate the third anniversary of the Women's Writing Circle this month, I  asked women to write what the Circle has come to mean to them. I had written my thoughts and impressions many times on this blog, now it was their turn.  I wanted to share their voices about our community of writers.  They generously obliged. So from now until the end of November, the Women's Writing Circle features "In Her Own Words."  This from Candice Swick.
"To say that my life has been in a transition phase for the last two years would be an understatement.  If I were a piece of wood, I would have been stripped, sanded, painted and on my way to the varnishing station.

Two years ago I hit my limit and was forced to leave my best friend of fifteen years.  When we met, it felt like heaven.  We were each other’s everything.  For the majority of our relationship I felt loved, accepted and cherished.  Now in hindsight, I realize that although we were in love, in many ways it was a dysfunctional marriage.  Our paths weren’t connected anymore and in order to save myself I was forced to go solo.  Being alone after being a part of a twosome for so long was a scary almost foreign sensation.
Just when I was on my way to learning how to live and rely on myself, I ended up with another major detour. On January 9th of 2012, at the age of thirty-nine, I had open heart surgery.  I was born with a bicuspid aortic valve instead of a tricuspid aortic valve.  Although this operation was inevitable, the doctors thought I would be in my fifties, not in my late thirties.  I’m a survivor and my recovery has been exceptionally smooth.  Not a morning goes by without me appreciating every waking moment and breath.  It’s a gift to be alive.  The bow on top of life’s gift is the people we meet along the way.
I entered the next phase of my healing when I started attending the Women’s Writing Circle in March of 2012.  The group of ladies in this writing group welcomed me with open arms.  I refer to this time of my life as the healing stage, because that’s what I’m doing right now.  I’m mending physically from my heart surgery and emotionally from my divorce.  A new friend and fellow writer recently said, “Candice, you’ve come out of your shell so much since you’ve been coming to the circle.”  At that moment it hit me how right she was.  My confidence has come alive in the last six months.  This writing circle has changed how I feel about myself.

Our reading circle is a safe place where we gather to share little bits of ourselves.
I’ve witnessed a few other women join our group and like me they are hesitant at first.  In our own way each of us took baby steps: 

Step 1 - Having the courage to come and listen to the other women read.
Step 2 – Having the nerve to read our own material.
Step 3 – Having enough confidence to voice our opinions on others' work.

Each woman in the Women’s Writing Circle is special in her own way, but we share one common thread; we’re all searching for our own VOICE.

Thank you to all my new friends for being the colorful bows on my gift of life."


Anonymous said...

Candice, sometimes life really can serve up much more than is expected at one time! I admire your courage in facing the demise of your marriage and then the need to heal from surgery and the hurt of loss. I've walked both paths in my life -- the need for physical and emotional healing -- and neither is easy. Both take strength and courage. And then you exhibited additional courage in joining your writing group. KUDOS to you on a year of stepping up and moving on!

Susan, thanks for sharing your group's stories.

Sherrey Meyer

Mallory's Hollywood East said...

Thank you Candice. I have witnessed your growth and openness. And thank you Susan for the Writing Circle.

Unknown said...

Candice, Thank you for sharing your story. Your fortitude is inspirational. Though I just joined the Circle, I sense there is far more to it than just our writing. It is a venue for speaking the truth of our realities and finding witness to those truths. I am also learning to swim in the ocean after the end of a 15 year marriage. Just just knowing the Circle exists as a place where my writing can take on life brings solace.

Edda said...

Remembering your face and voice that very first visit to the WWC...and to see and hear you now, dear Candice...truly, you have grown, overcome and left your 'footprints on the sands of time.' Thank you.

LadyDi said...

Oh, Candice, I just love the honesty and openness of this story. It' a tribute to our circle and to you, an amazing young woman who gains strength each and every day. I am proud to walk this path beside you.

Patty said...

Candice, I'm so happy you found your way to the Circle. Finding your voice is indeed a healing and liberating venture, and you have a wonderful talent with words. Thanks for sharing!

Susan G. Weidener said...

November is set to be a very exciting time of inspiring blog posts from our wonderful women writers here at the Women's Writing Circle. It's very gratifying to me to read all your comments . . . and many thanks to Candice for providing her perspectives on life's lessons so eloquently.

Candice Swick said...

To all my dear friends-

Once again, your supportive words continue to raise me up. Something makes me think that our adventure together has only just begun. I can't wait to turn the page.