I’m a “writer”. Not like the professional kind, or even semi- profesional ~ just one of those people (typically women) who like to write. I have been called a “deep thinker” by a professional counselor, and I tend to write down a good portion of my thoughts. And I’ve been doing this for as long as I can remember. Most people refer to this commonly now as Journalling. Back when I was in school, it was “keeping a diary”. I have recently decided to acknowledge to myself that I am obsessed with “journalling”. Especially when I discovered that it takes me several days, if not weeks of research on and off the web, just to find the “right” journal to write in. It must be spiral bound, and at least 5 x 8 as I have large, dramatic handwriting. I need to have unobstructed room to write, so the spirals must be relatively small… etc. etc.
In the past week I decided to gather all of my respective journals and take inventory of them, and my life. I found some dating back as far as 1996 ~ which isn’t that far ~ but most of my journals prior to this time were lost in a sea of domestic violence, quick middle-of-the-night moves from house to house or shelter to shelter ~ and they got left behind and probably destroyed. So, in reading my journals starting in 1996, I decided I really needed to condense all of these spiral bound notebooks into one comprehensive document that is easily locateable, and easy for me to continue making entries as necessary. I have created a journal on my computer. Not online, but here on my desktop. I have made all appropriate fixes to it so that I can actually print it out if I want to, and put it into an 8.5 x 5.5 3 ring binder… or not.
Well, for the past couple of days, I began to type all of these entries into my computer. Oye vey! Until I discovered that my fingers just couldn’t take it! Fortunately, my beloved husband purchased Dragon Naturally Speaking for me… two years ago for Christmas. It has sat in its box, until this past weekend when I installed it. I was wary that it would not work as proclaimed, as these things often do not live up to (my) expectations. However, I’m happy to say that it has been a complete blessing in this incredible documenation project! I am now halfway through the project!
Having said that, I did not anticipate the flood of emotions and vivid memories that would come back to me during the reading of these journals from 1996 and forward. In 1996, I was still in my “before Al” period ~ very turbulent, selfish, into drinking and prescription drug abuse, domestic violence, self loathing… wow! You name it! As I’ve been reading aloud the journal entries into the computer, it seems like these times of self destruction and depression weren’t very long ago ~ not long enough, anyway! I’m through 1996 into 1997 and almost to where I met Al, my husband ~ and where everything changed. I’m eagerly anticipating the uplift in mood and thought from late 1997 into 1998 and forward.
I’m thankful, though, for these journals of my history that I do have. There have been moments I have read that were long forgotten until relived in writing. I’m talking many of the GOOD times ~ yes, we did have them, as witnessed in my journals of my past, and the future to come.
Until next time, TTFN ~ Tamara Eckstadt