Journals Hold Memories

A notebook can be the holder of thoughts and memories.

I started writing in a notebook as a young teen and at age 18 or so, embarrassed by the writings, destroyed those.  I journaled again at age 18-21 or so – and again, a few years later destroyed them.  Wouldn’t it be fun to be able to read them now?

I married and then the babies began to arrive.  With each pregnancy, I began a journal for that child and wrote about my feelings and ultimately about their doings.  The early months of each child’s journal seemed to focus a lot on the timing of nursings and how much sleep I was getting or not getting.  The writings moved on to record what they did, what they said, and their development.

A few months after my last child was born (1988), I began to keep a journal for/about me.  I didn’t write daily – and some of the memories probably overlap with what was being written in a journal about one of the children.  This was the year we began to consider moving out of CT and to a new location 400 miles south – to the state of Virginia.

Moving away and leaving family and friends behind,  in the olden days before the Internet existed and phone calls cost lots of money – a journal could “listen”.   Writing helped me to process through loneliness, happiness, annoyance, craziness – and to record the ordinary – and the extraordinary times.  Should my journals get read on some distant day by family – I did try to balance my ventings with joys.   The thoughts I record are often the opposite of profound, but there may be something of value for my children someday.  Look what Mom survived!  🙂 Writing – and now typing – permits those thoughts in my head to find a home.

My maternal grandfather kept a farm journal that my sister has transcribed and posted online. Does the urge to write things down have a genetic aspect to it?  He was a letter writer as well – as  I was years ago.  But with email and Facebook – there seem to be no secrets or news left to share.

Blogging is a more public form of journaling, but some thoughts and memories are still meant for  pen and paper.  There are still some secrets, some expressions of love, some thoughts meant to be written down, read, and tucked away for reminiscing some far away day.