When I was in middle school I started writing a daily journal. Unfortunately, when I turned fifteen I destroyed it. I was embarrassed by all of my tales of wanting to fall in love and decided to rip up the pages and throw it away. (Such a silly thing to do.) I returned to keeping track of my thoughts intermittently in high school and college, but over time those records were also lost. I’m not sure if I purposefully discarded them or if they were caught up in some mass cleaning I performed when moving from point A to point B, but either way I can no longer find them.
I’ve maintained a variety of other journals along the way. While I was traveling in Barcelona I wrote down everything I could remember each evening about the places we visited throughout the day. And when I unexpectedly fell ill eight years ago I kept a daily journal listing my thoughts and fears.
In this digital age it seems a lot easier to keep track of my thoughts. As soon as I feel the need to dump out my thoughts I can grab my laptop and start typing. Over the past seven years I’ve created four separate blogs to address my desire to write. The first blog was focused on the time of my medical problems. I started One Frugal Girl second. It was my attempt to clear my head of all of my aches and pains. It gave me something else to focus on during a time when it was truly difficult to focus on much else.
Before my son was born I started a pregnancy blog. Actually it goes back a month before he was conceived when I experienced a chemical pregnancy after months of trying to get pregnant. I now maintain a blog for my son. In the beginning I listed details about his growth, milestones and what he was learning, but over time it has become so much more than that.
Now I write about his personality, the things I love about him and how much I’m learning as a mom. Sometimes when I can’t sleep at night I pull out my iPad and click back to the very first blog entries and read the entire blog in order. I only write intermittently when the mood moves me, so there aren’t a ton of entries in the pregnancy blog or my son’s journal, but it can still take a few hours to read things from start to finish.
Looking back last night I wish I would have written more. As I read through the pages I now realize how much I have already forgotten about those early months. In the beginning I focused more on his abilities and less on the emotions and I wish I could fill in the cracks with how I felt throughout that first year.
Initially I thought I was writing that blog for my son. I wanted him to be able to look back on his early years and know what I was thinking, but as time passes I realize my words are really being typed for me. It’s a way to treasure and retain the wild emotions of parenthood. It’s a way to relive those moments so I can treasure them as long as I live.
2 thoughts on “The Value of Writing It Down”
That’s great that you have so many blogs to document your life. I have kept a journal since my elementary school days. I used to write in it daily (which helped me enormously during the emotional turmoil/social drama of my teen years) but nowadays, my paper journal has turned into an electronic diary/journal in which I write infrequently–mostly milestones or when I’m feeling esp. emotional (annoyed, angry, happy, anxious). Btw, I have started putting together an ABC photo book for my daughter. Thanks for sending me that link!
So glad to hear your designing that ABC photo book for your daughter. I picked out a bunch of photos, but never did create it. Thanks for reminding me to finish that task. I wish I was more consistent with journaling. Whenever I read the entries I wrote I feel so fortunate that I wrote my thoughts down and then I wish I wrote more often. By the way I know I still owe you an email 🙂