November is a month of remembrance.
Many Christian religions mark All Souls’ Day on 2 November. It’s a time to pray for the dead, especially family members. The All Souls’ service I attended this year helped me grieve the loss of a friend.
Remembrance Sunday in the UK this year is 9 November. It’s followed on 11 November by Remembrance Day in Canada, and Veterans Day in the United States.
Commemorating the end of the First World War (WWI) at 11.00 a.m., on the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918, Remembrance ceremonies have particular poignancy this year. I blogged about the WWI centenary previously and, on Remembrance Sunday, I’ll remember the men and women who served in that war.
I’ll also remember those who’ve served in the conflicts which followed the Great War. Not only members of the armed forces, but the ordinary people who do their bit to ensure we live in a peaceful, free and just society.
Also in November is the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims. It’s been marked on the third Sunday in November since 1993 (and adopted by the United Nations in 2005), to remember those killed in road accidents. It’s a time for bereaved families and friends to come together, and give thanks to the emergency services too.
Since road death has impacted my family, 16 November is a day I remember that loss.
In some ways, these remembrance activities make November a sombre month. But this time for reflection also brings comfort, hope, new courage and energy.
It’s a time in the year to focus on what matters to me and, like the writers participating in November’s National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo), to be encouraged by others and inspired.
My memories and experiences shape how, and what I write about. Remembering in November helps me refill my creative well.
Unlike the NaNoWriMo writers, I don’t measure my progress in a daily word count. But from this time of introspection, the word count will follow.
Do you remember in November? How do you refill your creative well?
I lost a dear friend and a beloved family pet only days apart from each other. Each year, I choose to honour their memories by reflecting on how they enriched my life and made me a better person. I still miss their presence, though.