Shakespeare once said, “The Eyes are the window to your soul.” I believe that is true in a sense for journal writing. As I write this article, I realize that journals are like our eyes. In a manner of sense, the journals that we write are the windows to our lives. We may have called them diaries when we were young but no matter how you called them, they were our own personal “recordings” by hand about what happened to us, what we felt at that moment or what we thought about everything around us.
We write these because it makes us feel better. I felt better when I wrote in my diary when I was a kid. I was a mere 8 year old chubby little girl writing about a crush I had with this new boy named Shaun and how he gave me a valentine heart candy that said, “You’re Foxy!” I also wrote about my friends and how I was just trying to have everyone like me despite the fact I was probably the biggest girl in that class. I had a few kids pick on me when I couldn’t run fast so I’d write how they can just be mean and then I try to move on. I know kids don’t know any better now but it was hard for me back then as I wrote in my diary, which was furnished with a lock and a key. I had almost thought of throwing my diary away into a large trash can and put a lit matchstick to burn it. But I didn’t. Maybe because I have always wanted to read what I was like when I was young.
However, as of this moment, I have had over four journals of my life and I have not regretted writing in them. Each time I read them, I think of why I decided to write in general and how I have come to love writing. The first time in my life when I knew I wanted to write was in 7th grade when I had Ms. Sassin, my English substitute teacher. She was the first person (albeit my mother encouraged me as well but she was my mother) who really encouraged me to write and to pursue it. I was regularly writing in my diary back then. I had at that time a floral journal with lines and I wrote in it almost every day about my pre-teen years. I wrote about boys, friends, family and life in general so I didn’t have to confront my emotions out on others. I felt like writing in my journal was a release for me. It has always been a release though.
About a week ago, I stumbled upon one of my old journals when I was working at a previous job. I had some time on my hands so I decided to start writing in a spiral notebook that I had brought to make notes. Day by day, I wrote about what was happening to me and I thought about how my new job was, what it entailed and what irked me at work. At the beginning, I noticed I was so happy getting this job and having a new life. I made a few decisions on my own before I decided to get this job that made me reconsider who I am now.
Now I know that journal writing is very important to me. I have started writing in my journal again and it makes me better. I can think better about how I want to express how I feel in words and figure out what emotions I want in my stories and novels. I make my characters more alive by helping my readers feel what they felt. I read what I felt when I was young. I can do the same thing now but as a writer to my readers.
Furthermore, I have come to a conclusion that journals are the like windows to our lives. They are what makes us today. We learn from them and help us realize we are just human. But to me, it’s more than that. I write about my dreams, loves, first crushes, what makes me mad or sad. All of these make me realize I can put something better on paper and not just a journal or a diary.
Journals are what make me what I am today. I write better and feel more focused. So yes, I can finally say that I am a writer.
“Don’t stop writing.” Many of those who believe in me and my writing tell me this all the time and so I won’t.
Journal writing is just another step for writers like me to keep on writing, especially when we have writer’s block. Just do it and you’ll see how it can help you in the long run.