"Sharing can be a way of healing. Grief and loss can isolate,
anger even alienate. Shared with others, emotions unite
as we see we aren't alone. We realize others weep with us."
~Susan Wittig Albert

Through our writing, we walk out of the darkness into the light
together, one small step at a time, recording history, educating
America, and we are healing.
~CJ/Todd Dierdorff

Monday, January 17, 2011


There's a lot that goes unnoticed behind the blogs of Memoirs -- discussions, for instance, between people who live miles and states apart, people who have a history through birth or by circumstance.

Craig Latham grew up in the same small town that I did, graduated from the same high school, and after forty-something years, we reconnected through Facebook and Memoirs. We didn't travel in the same circles, so I didn't have the pleasure of knowing him back then -- but what a nice guy and great friend he is. Craig has heart and I respect that. I also respect the fact that he did his time in Vietnam and he's had the courage to write about it here for all of us to share.

By Craig's suggestion, I want to share a conversation we had the other day in Facebook:

CJ Heck - January 15 at 6:49pm
Hi Craig -- I got your story and Thank You! It's going on the blog in the morning. I'm glad you had some good experiences. I think most did, and I'm surprised that more don't contribute.

Gotta ask -- is it me? Is it that others don't feel comfortable sharing? Or is it that they aren't comfortable writing, thinking they don't write well enough? It's very puzzling to me because Memoirs is getting a good readership, which means people DO come and read. They just don't want to share yet. Any tips, I'm all ears.

Thank you again, my friend. I always know when you send a story, it will be good and it'll touch hearts. A hug of appreciation, Cathy

Craig Latham - January 15 at 7:03pm
I assure you that it isn't you. It is hard to get people to open up. Some feel what they have to say means nothing to anyone but themselves or other Vets (which isn't the case). There isn't a week that goes by that I don't read some sort of Veterans web page or read what they have written in a Guest Book somewhere. Some think they can't write or put any of it into words so that most people will understand.

I write, but this article took me all afternoon to remember. Then sometimes when I'm remembering, I get a little emotional and have to stop for a while. But rest assured, I will write more.
Thanks for having the site Cathy.

CJ Heck - January 15 at 7:09pm
Thank YOU, Craig. You are one person who is making the site worthwhile for so many others. I'm amazed how it's helped me. Remembering is painful for me, too, but every time I read something by you, or someone else, (and I do get all emotional, too, at times) -- but I always feel better because of it. It's healing. Reading is, and so is the writing. Cathy

Craig Latham - January 15 at 7:16pm
Just a thought, buy maybe you would want to put what you and I talk about here on a blog sometime. That way, others might realize that we aren't just people here, but friends and we are always willing to listen to anyone, anytime, any subject. Craig

CJ Heck - January 15 at 7:17pm
Okay -- that's a great idea. Day after tomorrow, I'll cut and paste this whole conversation on the blog, if that's okay. It's a great idea.  Cathy

Craig Latham - January 15 at 7:19pm
Yep. Do it.  Smiles and Hugs to you. Craig

CJ Heck - January 15 at 7:20pm
The very same backatcha, my friend. It's a great idea. Cathy

***C'mon now, Veterans, just be yourself -- your thoughts and feelings are important.  Talk to me, I care.  Talk to us, we'll listen.  Talk to each other, you all understand.  Leave a comment, start a discussion, bring up a rant -- there isn't anything we can't talk about here.  

“I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do. And by the grace of God, I will.” ~Everett Hale

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