After session reflection

Gabrielle Barnby, Orkney 2022, Culture Collective, Age Scotland Orkney, creative sessionsIt was a good session today, lots of warmth between the group members. Bob’s hearing did not seem to be annoying him as much as last week and he made no move to leave early. It was quieter without Sally, a gentle reflective mood throughout. Robert captured the atmosphere when he said, ‘It’s the talking and then the silences in between’ when I asked how he liked the session.

I think there is something in this, that the time spent ‘writing’ actually gives time for thinking and processing and I feel many memories are being turned over and in the end only a small fraction bubble through to the surface fully, and an even smaller fraction result in words being written down. There is also a value in the repetition of words, ‘family’ for Sam, written over and over  again. Nigel mentions his neighbours, humour and animals. Bob read a piece about a moment of solitude in the past, so treasured and so different from the enforced ‘silence’ of having hearing difficulties. The session was an exploration of morning that was safe and shared, those difficulties that are faced, the group is becoming able to share comfortably, to know perhaps that they are not alone. There is struggle and there is still the miracle of morning, and there is sadness and comfort in the quiet end of the day. I was moved by how much they shared – including doctors visits and all – everything part of daily life.

I have changed participant names keeping only their starting initial.


Culture Collective, Creative Islands Network, Gabrielle Barnby, Pier Arts Centre

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Gabrielle Barnby