September 24, 1998
Revisiting the Past (Spring 1998)
We all know the importance of keeping a journal. A safe place to record our thoughts, fears, wishes and dreams is essential to our ability to "sort it all out." The purchase of a blank book is an exciting event. We know that our next few months, or years, will all reside between the covers. We choose that journal carefully.
Dutifully, we show up at the page every day, summarizing our experiences, fleshing out our new ideas. But how often do we pick up an old journal like a good book, eager to discover a new character and her stories?
If the answer is "not often," then it's time to do yourself a favor.
Recently, I began writing about my need for an epiphany. God, if I could only sort out my life and understand myself better! Instead of writing, again, about my confusion and worry, I opened a journal from seven or eight years ago. I picked a page and began reading.
At first, I reacted to the words critically, "Oh, c'mon, you know better than that!" "That's not how you spell that!" "What was I thinking?" I got over the self-editing in short order and began warmly remembering the sensations I'd written about. I could feel the emotions, but in a safer way. Of course, these experiences are a part of my cellular memory, so the feelings are still there, somewhere. But now I experience them from the perspective of an onlooker... with enough inside information to really appreciate all of the characters.
As I read on, I discovered dialog with myself about an issue similar to the one I now faced. Wouldn't you know it; the epiphany I was looking for was there, in my own handwriting, just waiting for me to need it.
No one knows you better than you do. The next time you feel the need to pick up a self-help book, consider the Self who wrote it.
Posted by bonnie at September 24, 1998 05:56 PM
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