Life By Kristen

Go, and embrace your liberty. And see what wonderful things come of it. – Little Women

Journal Keeping

Lately, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about the future, in particular where I want to live, what I want to do in the next decade, etc. This major dose of introspection is some of the reason for being a bit quiet on here- I’ve been doing a lot of journal writing that I’m keeping to myself, if for no other reason than a lot of my what ifs? and who cares? are generating a lot of incoherent, random thoughts that I don’t quite think I could organize just yet.

There’s a lot of big picture stuff, a lot of small things like ‘why am I keeping books from grad school?,’ and a fair share of random but important stuff ” why do I get so mad at the teenage boys who skateboard in the parking lot next to the house? Why did I buy a house next to a parking lot?” My mind is a happening place these days you could say.

All of this big and small thinking is not unusual for me- I’ve always been a big journal keeper and that was one of the tell-tale signs of my decline into a bad place with my marriage was when I stopped writing in my journal. Part of me is tempted to go up into my attic to re-read journals of years past; the ones from junior high school are mostly accounts of my social life, high school more of the same with some big things like “I’m worried I won’t make any friends in college.” The ones from college are deep thoughts, big ideas, and the goals/dreams of a 21 year old who couldn’t be stopped. I’m hesitant to read some of them from grad school and the years where I first met my now ex-husband- reading them now I’m sure it will be so clear where the decline began and when I stopped thinking of myself and trusting my gut.

It’s funny to me to think that in years to come those journals will serve as the remnant of my life ( provided I keep them). Some of them contain things I now find a bit embarrassing or ridiculous ( like names of boys I kissed or the perfect outfit from some random day), but others show me life as it’s been- a life in stages and cycles, but a life filled with so much hope, excitement, disappointment, and everything in between. It’s tough for me to go back to some of those places– even though they make up who I am today, I’m not sure I have enough distance from them to be able to read the entries with any perspective. Reading the entries from the time of my separation and divorce are definitely wounds far too fresh to reflect on– part of me has wondered if I should get rid of them, while the other part thinks keeping them is smart as a reminder to always be true to myself, trust my inner voice, and do what feels right.

I know there isn’t a right answer here, but on second thought, maybe I should revisit those wide-eyed dreamer journals from college.

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