There is a distinct difference between my “writing” and my “journaling.”
When I refer to “writing,” I am talking about writing for my blog, or other forms of putting down my thoughts by keyboarding them into a computer. Writing will be Part 2. Also known as…whenever I get serious about writing, I will write about it.
Journaling, on the other hand, refers to using a pen and handwriting in my journal, which is almost always a notebook that I picked up at Staples or The Walmarts.
Quite often, my journaling will lead to my writing. Of the two, I have to admit that I love the actual physical hands on, if you will, part of journaling. Picking up the pen, always medium point purple, and removing the cap and replacing it on the end for balance; opening the notebook and flipping through a few random pages, pulling out a word or thought, or perhaps a name. Rarely turning to the first open page, even though it is often marked with a colored tape flag. Smoothing out the page for a moment as I collect my thoughts. The feel of the paper as I turn my arm to run the outside edge of my right hand and pinkie across the paper is extremely important. A college rule, spiral notebook may not sound very fancy, but there are certain brands that appeal to my touch.
I begin every journal entry on the right side page by writing the date in the upper right-hand corner. Wasn’t that how we were taught in elementary school? If I am feeling particularly sassy, I will include the day of the week under the date followed by a thought or statement marking an event. For example…
I don’t often completely fill up a journal. Journals, to me, mark seasons of life. I ended my last journal about 2/3 of the way through. The last date on it was March 21, 2012 with the the subtitle: One Year anniversary. The opening sentence read: “We lost Andy a year ago today.”
My thoughts filled up pages that day. And it seemed like a fitting end to one season and the beginning of another.
My journaling flows back and forth between thoughts, prayers, statements of faith, character things I need to work on, problems I need to solve, and specific prayers for others and myself. Now and then I get really off track and write out my grocery list, household chore list or some form of random word list of anything that pops into my mind.
Organization and therapy in one fell swoop.
The tools of my trade…
My Man and my children *and my small group girls* have been instructed to burn my journals upon my death. I have full confidence that they will, for two reasons: One, I have tried to explain to them, throughout the years, that if they picked up my journal and started reading, they would totally read it out of context and could possibly be hurt, angered, etc…and two, that I will haunt them forever if they don’t.
Do you journal? Share some of your process, thoughts and/or tools of the trade.
As always…love y’all.