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To Journal

January 22, 2011
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I journal for me. I always have.

My very first “journal” was just a few sheets of notebook paper clipped together. I don’t think I really comprehended that I was journaling at the time; I just needed an outlet for my grief. I was 10 or 11 years old and my grandpa had suddenly passed away, and it was the first time I had felt that sort of emotional pain. I didn’t know what to do with it. As a matter of fact, I clearly remember praying a little 10-year-old prayer that went something like this: Dear Lord, please come back before Grandma dies. I can’t live through this again. So I gathered loose-leaf notebook paper and stole away to the basement in my grandparents’ house in Olathe, Kansas to begin my journey of sorting through life- thoughts, memories, reflections, and lessons- on paper. I have a box of about 30 journals (kept from ages 10-21) numbered, dated, (AND NAMED, hah) and organized in upright chronological order. And now I continue on the internet.

I enjoy the benefits of internet blogging, ie. the community and knowing I am sharing with people who care… people who tell me consistently that they appreciate keeping up with Adry and I and hearing what I have to say. Some folks complain that blogging breeds drama, but for real- all the compassion and connections and commiseration and support and encouragement and thoughtful advice I have received/experienced (surprisingly more so IN PERSON or in letters regarding/as a result of my journal) FAR FAR outweighs the occasional dramatic blip…

But anyway, that’s not why I journal. If from now on no one read my journal again I would keep at it. For 11 years I religiously wrote down all of my memorable events, my rants, my emotions, my opinions… for no one to read but me. And I’m not about to quit because a few people think I stir up drama, or I’m negative, or I overshare, or whatever. Clearly, considering my history, that is not my purpose here. This is how I deal with life. This is how I remember life. This is how I organize my thoughts and opinions and beliefs. This is how I reflect, learn, and grow. And yeah, this is how I vent, too.

It seems like every online journaler/blogger I talk to or follow gets flak at one point or another. I hope you all know that I appreciate every single one of you, and every single thought or belief or idea or opinion you’ve shared, even if I’ve passionately disagreed. Y’all keep me thinking and learning and opening my mind… Even if I continue to disagree with you, I learn about myself… I solidify. So, thank you and keep at it 🙂

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