is said..or rather.....
The other day I was the living room, watching TV and leaned over to grab my bottle of water sitting on the floor and noticed my blue spiral notebook tucked against the side of the couch. I hadn't touched it in weeks.
I've been journalling on an off since I was around 14 or 15yrs old. I'd start out super motivated, determined to write in it every single day, even if it was just a short note saying today sucked, don't feel like writing or today was great! will tell more later.. then I'd get busy or bored or just forget and go weeks or sometimes months without writing a thing.
That come and go habit of keeping a written record of my life has remained with me over the years. Every few years when I move, or just decide it's time to really clean house, I'll pull out my old journals and read through them. I've lost a few here and there, had an ex-fiance tear one to pieces because I'd written in it about a guy I liked before him, but for the most part I have a somewhat consistent log of my life from about 1997 until now. I have poems that I've written dating back to 1992 that hint at where my life and mind were at the time as well.
I started this blog in July of 2005 and for the remainder of that year wrote 2 whole posts. For a few months prior to my blog I was writing somewhat regularly in an online diary, mydeardiary.com I think, but I've long since forgotten what my userid and password were. I don't think I even have the e-mail anymore that I used to sign up, so unless they delete accounts that are inactive for so long, those posts are still floating out somewhere in cyberspace.
I've always wondered why some people journal and others don't. I do it for a few reasons. I've always been a very self contained person, even as a child I never felt comfortable sharing my thoughts and feelings with others. I never had a close relationship to my parents, so where my friends would run home and tell their moms all about their hope, dreams and shattered hearts, I'd run home and wish my mom had less time for watching Dynasty, Dallas and Falcon Crest and more time for me.
My mom has always been a very strongly opinionated person (wonder where I got that from?!) and if what you said, thought or felt didn't match up with how she thought you should think or feel then she had a way of well.. making you feel stupid and not very worthwhile. I don't think she ever did it intentionally, it's just how she was.
I remember one time, I was telling her how I felt about something, I think it may have been a crush on a boy or something of equally insurmountable importance in my teenage mind and I remember thinking, I'll try it, this one time hoping beyond hope that she'll understand, that she'll reach out to me and we'll somehow suddenly have the kind of relationship that my friends have with their mothers.
It's as clear in my memory today as it was then. She looked at me and said.. Well that's just stupid, you shouldn't feel that way. I never shared with her again.
As she and I have gotten older we've managed to form a somewhat closer relationship. I still don't tell her much about my personal life, and it hurts a little less now than it did then that I can't share things with her that are important to me. So I journal.
Over the past year I've gotten pretty personal on this blog, but the secret things, the things that make or break my world, the things that I think no one could or would ever understand.. they still get written down. Pen to paper.. the old fashioned way.
A few years ago I'd have never in a million years thought that I'd be a person who felt comfortable sharing my life with well.. everyone, and to some extent I'm still not, comfortable, but even though I have my picture on my blog and a link to my MySpace I still feel some sort of anonymity. I suppose it's because here.. online I can write what I think and feel and not worry about seeing the expression on some one's face when I tell them something that is more important than air to me. I don't have to worry about seeing them look confused, or disinterested. I don't have to worry that they (you all) will look at me and try but fail to hide the pity or anger you feel from showing on your face at something I've said.
Writing online does have it's not so great moments. I've had some pretty negative comments on a post I'd written about my views on the south. I even lost a "friend" because she decided to get offended about my personal opinion and then determined that because I wouldn't apologize I wasn't really her friend. We'd been friends since 6th grade. Now we don't speak. Because I shared my personal thoughts and experiences on my blog and she didn't agree with something I said.
Over all though I'd have to say it's been a pretty good experience. I love writing, and I love hearing from readers who've been touched by something I posted. It warms my heart to know that I've made someone laugh, or that by sharing something I've been through and survived, someone else has been given hope that they can get through it too. I wish more people would comment. I guess I can't complain though, I don't comment on other blogs much either.
There are several blogs I read on a regular basis and I've come to feel like I know those people. I share in their sorrow and anger, I rejoice in their happiness and laughter. I cheer when something good comes their way and I pray for them when hard times fall. I think most importantly I gain strength from their stories, I read stories of hope and love overcoming insurmountable odds and through them I get a little stronger. I read the lives of some of the most incredible, strong, loyal, positive people I've ever known and I hope to be like them. I hope my stories have the same effect on others.
Maybe one day I'll get to the point where I'm brave enough to venture outside of the 4 walls I've built around myself to keep me safe and share the deepest part of me with you. Maybe one day I won't need to feel safe anymore. Maybe one day I'll owe that to you.. for being willing to read what I write, for offering kind words of encouragement and support, for letting me know that what I feel, what I say, who I am, really matters to someone.
For even allowing the thought that that will some day be possible I thank you.. and when that time comes I'll thank you again.