The value of keeping an old-school journal

I started journaling a few years ago as a way to get some of the thoughts in my brain out in a less public way than a blog. I focused my journal on writing letters to my daughter about everything from my own childhood to her loving attempt to serve breakfast to our family this morning. The journal coincided with my decision to wind down the number of blog posts about her, mostly because she deserves to tell her own story when she wants to tell it and in the way she wants to tell it.

I also want to save the embarrassing stories for when she starts dating.

Lately, I have done a lousy job keeping up on my journal. Until a few nights ago, I had not updated it since mid-June. Life has been hectic, trying to balance a demanding job with an exacting MBA schedule, family, and my want for being involved in city politics. Putting off journaling has been easy, there is always something that seems more pressing on my plate.

Finally I made the decision to wait one more day before finishing a paper so I could journal. A lot has changed since my last entry. I rediscovered my love for mechanical pencils. The Kid started kindergarten. She is actively reading on her own now. She has a few golf lessons under her belt. She has show herself to be pretty good at math. I have survived an accounting and a statistics class. I drove through the tail-end of Hurricane Irma. We are all discovering her love language is acts of service.

What has not changed is how therapeutic the act of writing by hand in a journal is for me. The sound of a pen or pencil on paper is soothing. Thoughts are explored more thoroughly and feelings are explored in depth because I cannot write as fast as I can think, so I dwell on what I am writing longer. That time sears the good memories into my consciousness and gives me a chance to properly work through the difficult memories.

What I've discovered is that I need more clicks of a pencil and fewer clicks of a keyboard in my life. My daughter and I deserve it. 

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