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Monday, October 21, 2013

Book of Me Written by You: Journaling

I tried on and off for many years to keep a journal, I was just never very successful.  My first was given to me when I was 6 by my maternal grandmother.  I can remember it very clearly.  It was huge in my little hands, with a Holly Hobbie motif and glided edges.  Not really knowing what to do with it, and being in first grade, my entries talked about all sorts of things.  Entries were erratic and covered topics from what happened at school to how unfair my parents were.  The diary was lost long ago, but I have to say I wish I could see it now.  It probably would cause me to giggle.

My next diary was given to me by my paternal grandmother when I was 10.  It quickly became less about what was actually happening in my life and what I wish my life was like. Then and in the future.  At 10, or 5th grade, I had a lot of turmoil in my life.  To be honest I really don’t know why.  My family life was fine but I was making poor choices with friends, getting into trouble, and being rebellious in many ways to put it mildly.  My journaling was the way I escaped from reality.  It was pure fantasy, written like it was really happening.  I wrote on and off in it until I was 12 and then I lost it during a move.  Then, quite by chance, I found it in the bottom of a trunk when I was 16.  Appalled by what I read, and scared people might think that was really what went on in my life then, I burned it.

In college my recording of events, thoughts, and emotions came from my calendars.  I kept very in-depth calendars of my class and work schedules.  In the margins I made comments about what was going on when, hearts around important dates, and other little symbols to remind me of people and groups.  In fact, my calendar only recently went from handwritten to digital, and that was at the prompting of my husband.  For the last year I have used my calendar on the computer for my appointments, and you could say this site for my thoughts.  Well, at least my genealogy thoughts.

There is also a partial journal from when I was pregnant with my oldest child.  At the time I thought it would be a wonderful heirloom; a written record of the appointments, thoughts, and happenings surrounding the birth of our first child.  It abruptly stops at 25 weeks, the time my oldest was born via emergency C-section, and the start of the rollercoaster ride that comes with being a NICU parent.  I kept daily accounts of that time and put them into a scrap book for my son.  It was my  therapy to say the least.

Several years ago I began a private livejournal account.  I loved my livejournal.  Yes, I said loved.  To be honest since I started writing here more and writing other places more frequently, writing for me fell to the wayside.  I keep telling myself I will go back, it just hasn’t happened yet.  What I love is that I was able to make a book out of all the journal entries I created.  Now, even if I lose my account, I won’t lose my memories. 

One day I will learn life balance and will be able to write what I want, when I want, how I want, and
hopefully that means I will pick up journal writing again.  Not, just recording dates, names, and places.  Cause we all know that is boring! 

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