In Her Voice Ep. #26: Shirley Melis on Transforming Through Grief

Shirley Melis is a longtime business writer, travel writer, and newspaper columnist who traveled the world interviewing everyone from busboys to heads of international organizations before launching a career in public relations in Washington, D.C. With Banged-Up Heart, she now takes her writing in a new direction, delving deeply into her own personal story of finding love late, losing it early, and discovering the strength to choose to love again. It is a fascinating odyssey, a journey both creative and erotic as Shirley and John work lovingly together to blend their dreams—until a mysterious bump on his forehead starts them on a tragic struggle against the dark hand of fate.

A graduate of Vassar, Shirley Melis has created an intimate memoir bearing eloquent witness to the kind of wild trust that can grow in the heart of an ordinary woman thrust into circumstances that few others must face. Now retired, she lives in Galisteo, New Mexico.

Here are a few of the big topics we talked about:

  • Her story of discovering her inner voice as she worked through her deep grief of losing her husband.

  • The concept of “unpacking” our feelings and emotions around a circumstance.

  • How writing takes us to a deeper understanding of who we are.

  • The concept of Depth Journaling by Barclay Braden

  • Writing Down The Bones by Natalie Goldberg

  • The difference between getting over grief and going through grief.

  • How to find gratitude in your grief, and how to learn what it is offering to teach us.

In Shirley's Voice:

“There's a connection that seems to unlock the consciousness when pen is in hand.”

“I don't want to go through life without an awareness of what I'm doing.”

“Grief tests our courage to go on.”

“I think some risks are worth taking.”

Connect with Shirley:

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