Thursday, December 29, 2005

Journaling and writing

I guess I've always had this thing about writing. At times I wish I could write more or better than I do, but ever since about the 6th grade, I have been writing to some degree. It started with my first diary. You can see it in the picture... the little brown one with the lock. I didn't write in it every day. Actually I only wrote maybe 20 entries and that was over a period of about 3-4 years. But that's when I started writing my thoughts down.In the 8th grade I started writing poetry. O.k. they were cheesy love poems about my broken hearts and such, but I enjoyed the process of putting my thoughts and feelings into verse. I started collecting my poems in a journal sometime in high school. I filled my first book with 73 poems dating from March 1984 until March 1992. I started a second book where I only had five more poems from July 1992 until January 1996. I've written others here and there, but stopped putting them in my journal.
When I was in junior high, I didn't write my thoughts in a journal, but generally used notebook paper. I started collecting my thoughts and the pictures I drew (of some boy's name) in this green notebook. (Yes, Bret... the infamous green notebook... that I still have.) It is so funny to go back and read some of my entries. How tragic my love life was, how I'd never find love and how Bret completely broke my heart. Even after high school, I still wrote when I needed to get my feelings out. Usually on paper or other notebooks, but nothing organized. Even when I worked at the walmart snack bar I found the urge to write and not having any paper, I would write really small on the backs of old cash register receipts.
In 1995 I got a new journal that I would write in from time to time. I found often, though, that I would write regularly for about a week, then several months and sometimes years would go by. In September of 2003 I bought myself another new journal in hopes that by writing I could deal with a lot the issues that were going on in my life. This was a month before Richard and I decided to divorce. I wrote several entries during that time about my thoughts on our relationship and then the concept of our divorce. Throughout 2004 and 2005 I continued to write in it, but not very often as I found myself blogging more often. I still write in it from time to time, but find that blogging is easier. At the beginning of this year, however, I got yet another journal because I wanted to practice the art of journaling and bought a book called the Journaling from the Heart workshop. I completed the first section of 25 exercises and wrote quite regularly. I stopped doing the exercises for the most part in June, but have since picked it up again. I may find some good blog material to post from those entries at some point, but much of it got quite personal and even though I put a lot of stuff out there in my blog, it's stuff I don't think I could voice to the public.
When I was dating Marty and he found out that he was going to Alaska, I got a journal that I started writing just for him. My plan was to journal my thoughts about our relationship and how I was dealing with the split and then give it to him once he finished his year. Well, I had started writing in it when everything blew up and I ended up giving it to him before he left. I guess he probably read it, but he never said anything to me about it.
So why do I write? Because I find sometimes it's easier to get the thoughts that swirl in my head to make sense when I put it on paper. Sometimes I don't want to lose the thoughts that I have or I feel that it's necessary to remember certain feelings and situations. I'm not always the best at verbalizing my thoughts, but if I can take the time to write it out, then I can hopefully get them out where they make some kind of sense. Putting things down in written form is lasting. It's something that you can go back and read and remember and perhaps even learn from. I can see how I've changed and grown by reading my previous entries. And mostly it's because it's therapeutic. It helps to just get it out there. Because once it's out, hopefully I can start to move on.
There are some fabulous writers out there whose blogs I really enjoy reading. One of them, my friend Jonathon, has commented how much he loves my writing. I guess I am my own worst critic as I tend to think my writing can be mundane and boring. But he reads faithfully every day and that makes me want to keep writing. Even when it's not something noteworthy or thought-provoking, I still want to put my life out there. I don't know what the appeal of putting myself out there for the world to read is, but I don't want to stop. And as long as someone is reading, I'll keep posting. Posted by Picasa

1 comment:

Summer said...

This entry made me a little sad, not the words, but the picture. I started writing when I was in junior high school. I kept diaries and journals throughout my life, but, they have all been destroyed. As a child when I found out that my mother had been reading my diaries, I burned them. The same with my adult journals when I found out that my husband had been reading them. I've never put thought to paper since then. It's all hidden here, secure with passwords. It makes me sad.