In the days before I started this here online publication, I was a hard-core journaler (is that a word? — now it is…).
I did morning pages every day. I obsessed over the work of a couple well-known journaling therapists and explored the depths of my soul with pen in hand. And I worked with people one-on-one to share this transformative medium with anyone I could.
I even embarked on a mission to get my male friends to journal (I wrote about it at length here). I thought I’d be ignored, but somehow I ended up with a half dozen grown-ass men around my dining room table one night with their dusty old journals (maybe it was the whiskey that lured them, but I can pretend they were drawn to the idea).
Gentleman’s Journaling became a thing. I since lost the url, but the Facebook Page is still intact (look forward to a revival of that soon, btw). I hosted several journaling workshops, all of which I’ve enjoyed thoroughly.
But when I started blogging every day, I put my journal away. After all, there’s only so many hours in the day.
I don’t regret it. I consider this publication my life’s work. It has changed my life. (I’ve written about this in depth many times, I won’t belabor that here.)
But now, the journal is calling me back.
There’s nothing like buying a new journal.
Just picked one up the other day.
And I intend to use it. I’ve restructured my life so as to make room for this kind of work. I can’t tell you how thrilled I am to jot out that first entry.
Because writing in public is a giving act. Even though it’s incredible, you’re feeding others. After some time, the storehouse becomes empty.
Writing for yourself — in private — is a requirement for any writer who puts her words out to the world regularly.
Journaling fills up the creative storehouse. It’s from You to you (capital Y intended). You can be free there. Even though I’ve experienced a newfound freedom with my poetry of late (which I hope you’ve enjoyed — it’s been terrifying sharing it with you), with my journal, I can say whatever the hell I want.
Where else in life can we really do that (without getting punched, kneed, slapped, laughed at, spit on, or arrested)?
There’s something human about that.
We need to process.
Who knows — maybe I’ll share an entry or two with you.
But then, it wouldn’t really be a journal.