It is the first Friday of the month and you know what that means, friends! It is Random Journal Day in this here neck of the woods. So Journal Keepers, grab your journals and join us. We will be here through Monday about noon. Meander on over and link your post anytime until then!
Each month we feature a different Journal Keeper, and this month is no different. I am very happy to present Author and Blogger Deanna Wiseburn as our special guest this month. I appreciate Deanna’s heart for journaling the hard stuff. Deanna has recognized journal writing as a strong component in managing her health and well-being. She has also used journaling as a tool to develop her faith and further her writing life. Deanna blogs at The Pure Sacrifice and we have become friends through blogging, and a mutual interest in Mental Health issues which she often writes about at her place. All that to say-
Here she is and here we go!
For a long time I didn’t understand why people would keep a journal. I tried to journal in the past but never could make it stick. It wasn’t until I was in a period of great distress that I began to journal. In 2008 I was in the midst of a bad depression constantly battling my moods and thoughts of suicide. During this period a friend often suggested that I begin to keep a mood journal. I didn’t think it would make a difference. But I didn’t know what else to do so I began to write each morning early how I felt upon waking. Later if I noticed a significant change I would also record it. I did this for a while but it was nothing more than talking about the weather or what I needed to do and documenting my mood.
In 2009 I found that I was being hospitalized and I had this great online support network. I didn’t want to have to try to remember everything to tell them when I got out. So I made a point of writing down everything while I was in there. My thoughts and impressions, my fears, my questions. When I was finally released from the hospital about 10 days later I came home and shared with everyone online. I honestly thought at that point that I was done. It had filled the purpose. I learned that I enjoyed this documenting of my days. Well perhaps I didn’t really enjoy it at that time. I found it essential. See when I wrote out my thoughts and feelings it helped me give words to what I was having a hard time feeling. I went out to the store and bought my first “journal” so that I could continue to write my way through this.
Coming to this community I have found that my journals are often different from others. At first I struggled with that because I find mine are more negative. I liked what Wendy said a few months ago, how she doesn’t record the bad things. I really pondered how to do that only to realize that would never work for me. I loved the idea and looking for entries to share I realize mine are not very positive, yet it works for me. I need that outlet to express the things I am struggling with.
I find now that the biggest storm has passed that I still record a lot of negative stuff. Maybe I need to work on that. Yet it is the writing that helps me to process these things. The truth is that I use my journal to write out things that I would not say or should not say out loud. I process my days and my problems in the way that makes sense to me. I can write the hard stuff. The things I could never actually say in a way that many others would understand. So my journals tend to see all of my conflicts with myself and with others. Something about the written word makes things clearer to me. I have seen that written communication is a true gift that I did not know I had.
I actually began blogging before I ever made keeping a journal work. Sadly the early years of my blog does reflect a journal of sorts. But I never made the connection until later. In recent years I have started keeping more than one journal. I journal my way through book studies. I journal through bible studies. I have a scripture journal, where I can record prayers and what I am learning about scripture. Those journals are often much more positive. I see the benefits of all types of journals.
This month I want to share from my Scripture Journal so be sure to come back and check the link up for that.
HERE IS THE LINK! Be sure to visit, comment and encourage one another! I will catch all of your posts and read them all over the course of the weekend. Oh, and I will be linking up a bit later- per usual…always late to my own party. But, help yourself to coffee, tea and conversaion- I’ll catch up!