Friday, January 9, 2009

My Journal

Towards the end of December I became impressed by the journals of some of my blogger friends. The words they wrote seemed to flow with lovely descriptions and vivid details. On one of my many Christmas shopping trips, I had bought several journals as gifts. I still had a set of three that I had not given as a present. I decided that on New Year's Day 2009 I would enter my first entry into a journal. I thought that writing in a journal might be therapy for me. I am past having aspirations for fame and fortune but I would like to find more purpose for my life. In an effort to help myself to articulate my thoughts more meticulously, I searched the Internet for information about writing in journals. After hours of reading material that appeared to instruct journal authors to write like students writing a thesis for a doctorate, I came across the following brief article which to me is what journal writing is all about.

Journal Therapy is the act of writing down thoughts and feelings to sort through problems and come to deeper understandings of oneself or the issues in one's life. Unlike traditional diary writing, where daily events and happenings are recorded from an exterior point of view, journal therapy focuses on the writer's internal experiences, reactions, and perceptions. Through this act of literally reading his or her own mind, the writer is able to perceive experiences more clearly and thus feels a relief of tension. This has been shown to have mental and physical health benefits.

My set of three journals

Although I am a novice, I have learned that writing in my journal is relaxing. I drink a cup of tea as I write and compose my thoughts in a leisurely manner. Life has enough pressures without my turning a fun project into work.
One of my favorite possessions is this appointment book that belonged to my great-aunt, Frances Irene Kyle Rosensteel who was born in 1901. She actually used the appointment book as a journal.

Aunt Frances was only 19 when she wrote in this 1920 appointment book.

Aunt Frances talked about her courtship, her family, and her everyday life. I have to use a magnifying glass to read where she wrote in pencil as it is so faded. I love reading about Aunt Frances' life as she lived it all those years ago.
My desire for my journal is that many years from now someone will read and enjoy it as I enjoy the journal that my great aunt wrote so many years ago.


ksarra said...

What a great idea Sweetie. And what a TREASURE that you have your aunt's journal. It is amazing that it has survived all these years. I agree that (for me at least) writing things down and then reading what I wrote helps me to understand my thoughts better. Good luck with your new project...

Anonymous said...

This is the best thing for you Sweetie.A while back I did journaling I have maybe 4 books.I went back and read them not to long ago.You will be amazed at what you wrote in them when you look back some years from now.I just couldnt believe what I was feeling then as opposed to now.Good Luck to you! By the way they have some really pretty ones out there,I love yours.Have a lovely day.

Bo said...

Hello Sweetie...what a great idea to journal your innermost thoughts & feelings that perhaps would be impossible to verbalize...I can see where this would be such good therapy...I think I'll consider doing this also. Hugs, ♥ Bo

Anonymous said...

I'm a big believer in journals, I just get very lax with doing it. I wish I wasn't like that. When I pick up an old one, I just love reading about my daily ventures.
It is good therapy'


Smilingsal said...

I think that it sounds like an idea that works for you. I'm afraid that I'd be more apt to treat it like a job. That's my personality. You're allowing it to be a point of relaxation. Good for you.

Your aunt's journal is a treasure.

Linda said...

Hi Sweetie. It is good to see you back. It is amazing, these blogs.
As we were driving home after Christmas, from Savannah, going through Pennsylvania, I thought of you! I hope you are doing well. I think the journal writing will be of great comfort. You are going to carry on the legacy of your aunt and someday, someone will be reading your tender thoughts with the good fortune of knowing you through your writings.
Hugs to you.

Judy said...

I think you will really enjoy writing in your journal. Like you said it is a relaxing thing for most of us. I just can't believe you have your Aunt's journal and it is that old. What a great treasure. I don't have anything like that from my parents or relatives.

Bridget said...

Perhaps your grandchildren's grandchildren will have the pleasure of reading your journals. I think that it is a wonderful idea for your own health and happiness as well as a legacy.
I so enjoy reading anything I find from the past.
Hugs, Bridget

onlymehere said...

I think this is a wonderful idea and I like the way you've chosen to write in it. I hope that this gives you insight and gives you peace as you write your innermost thoughts and feelings. Cindy

Carol said...

Leaving a journal for decendants to read is a good as leaving a signed first edition of a Pulitzer Novel! Good for you!

Sharon said...

What a great idea. My SIL has been doing it for years and she said that it is her way of unwinding.
How wonderful it is for you to have your Aunt's journal.
God bless

Susan said...

what a great idea..and a treasure for future generations

Jill said...

Hi Sweetie.

I have never really kept a journal. I tried once but never kept up with it. I've always written my thoughts into poetry. That is so cool that you have your great aunts journal to look at!

Tootsie said...

I am so glad you are getting a chance to do this! I am also very impressed that you have that old Journal...many of those type things get tossed away!
Hope things are happy and full for you friend. I think of you a lot...and it is great to see you seem to be in good spirits...the winter blues are hard to kick....especially with so much going on in our lives!

ceekay said... comment is about your aunt's journal. I would so scan it and darken the page and print it out. You would still get her handwriting. Keep it with the original so your girls will have it in the future. I just love that!!! Great post! Hope you are doing well. Think of you often.

Linda said...

Sweetie...your aunties journal is a wonderful keepsake...when I clicked on the pages I was able to read part of her story...I enjoyed reading about sweeter times from long ago. Keep writing in your pretty journals....someday someone will enjoy your story as I did hers...hugs, Linda

Happy To Be said...

Oh Sweetie what a great know my Mama use to do this until she got ALS and it such a comfort to be now to read her words..she always told me to put it in black and white...thanks for sharing...may you have a safe and blessed week end dear prayers are with you at all times..hugs and smiles Gloria

Belinda said...

What a pretty set of journals, and how special to have your aunt's journal.

This is my first visit to your blog, and I can't even begin to express how my heart aches for the loss of your beautiful daughter. You have a beautiful family, and I've no doubt they must be a huge source of strength to you. Sherry was such a gorgeous girl, her kind spirit shines through in her photos.

Kathy said...

I have no doubt that one day someone else will cherish the words you write in your journal each day. A journal is a wonderful idea. I'm praying for you, Sweetie.

tardevil said...

I've never done a journal b/c I didn't know if I'd want someone reading my most personal thoughts after I'm gone. But, I think in your situation, it might be very good therapy for all you've gone through. My aunt died last year,
1 month after I moved here. She wrote down her prayers in a book, and it was nice to read what she was going through right before she died. We also used some of her prayers at the funeral. It was kind of like she was still there with us. LOL and I wish you the best! Keep writing. Oh - and I came over to tell you thanks for following! (sorry that I got distracted).

imjacobsmom said...

I bet there are some very interesting things in that old journal. How the times have changed....When Jacoab was a baby I wrote a little something everyday on a square in of all things a Fleet Farm calendar. Some of it was first person and some of it was third is fun to look back and read what was happening and what I was thinking or feeling that day and also about Jacob's milestones. How could I ever predict that Fleet Farm would be his favorite place... ~ Robyn

sherry smyth said...

Sweetie, I'm so glad you came to visit my blog so that I could come and visit you.

I love your blog, your music is moving (I remember fondly singing Peace On Earth when I was 14 in a vesper service) and the fact you have begun to discover the joy of journaling -- may you find much solace, joy and your own peace in writing down your thoughts in such a beautifully bound book.

Morgan Mandel said...

I wish I had the patience and time to journal, but blogging will suffice for me. My penmanship has deteriorated due to typing for so many years. I hate cursor writing and most of the time I can't read what I write. Neither can anyone else. I do admire people with good penmanship, like I used to have way back in grammar school.

Morgan Mandel

PEA said...

I've often heard that keeping a journal is the best therapy there is so I'm glad to hear that you've now started to keep one:-) It's always good to put our thoughts down on paper instead of everything going around in circles in our head!! What a treasure you have in your great aunt's journal, I've no doubt you read it quite often:-) xoxo

Anne said...

What a treasure you have with your aunt's diary. When my grandmother passed away, I just wished she would have left some journals behind so that I could cherish them like you do your aunt's. So I've since then have been hand writing a jouranl for perhaps my great grandchildren to read one day. What a great idea to pass on to your readers.

Sandi McBride said...

OH how wonderful, a journal from your beloved Aunt and now you are writing a journal that someone in a hundred years or so will handle lovingly as they read about your day, what chores you performed, what you prepared for dinner, the cost of will be like a light unto the darkness, Sweetie...what a wonderful idea, your great grandchild's children will thank you for it. Take note, never write in pencil!

The Muse said...

I am glad you have found a respite...a place to linger and find moments of peace and memories of happiness :)

Your Aunt's journal is a true treasure!

Neabear said...

My cousin did a lot of journal writing and she has saved them all. I think they now contribute to some of her music compositions that she writes. She has used them to create songs and then set them to music.

Nancy said...

I think journaling is going to be great for you. I have an idea I want to do but haven't started yet. I bought a journal when I was in Florida and also one for a gift. I have to start on just papers I think so I get the right order for what I plan.
I am going to read the new entries now. I am catching up.
Love Nancy

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