Friday, December 5, 2014

Happy Journaling!!! Random Journal Day Featured Writer!!

I tried, I really did, I promise. It is Random Journal Day and even though I am honored to be the Featured Writer this month over at Enthusiastically Dawn, I am not posting a randomly chosen journal entry today. Nothing resonated with me as I kept opening one journal after another to use as inspiration for a post. (Hop on over there and read my piece, ok?)

So I am going to cheat and will just continue with my observations of the impact that journaling has had on my life. 

My habit of journal keeping has turned into a pretty accurate and colorful chronicle of my life so far. I never meant for it to be that. I was just doing my best to capture my every day life with words instead of photos. But I did realize that the important moments of our lives are very often the bland and ordinary moments. The phases of life that move from single to married to chasing little ones around to badgering teenagers and then into the odd years of empty nest and now the beginnings of grand-parenting. (Wow, there's a whole life in one sentence! Sheesh!)

With that in mind, one of my little journal habits was what I called "Klein Shots". I would open my journal and then literally look around me and describe what I saw in that moment.Today I honestly treasure those journal entries so much, because they are so clear and precise at grabbing whatever the current phase of life I was in at the moment. (Keep in mind, this was in the days before, long before, today's instant iPhone photo-capturing a million times a day!) 

For instance, one of those Klein Shots included these words..."Three neat stacks of white athletic socks on the kitchen table, tiny-medium-large....A green dinosaur is hiding behind the bananas in our fruit bowl...Sesame Street is blaring in the other room...There are Cheerios squished between the cushions of this chair."

Another captured moment a few years later..."Son #1 is hunched over the computer, writing A Day in the Life of Me...Son #2 is across the street arranging action figures on his buddy's woodpile next to the house...Hubs is due home any minute."

These random moments captured-in-words reveal the ever changing shape of our lives. If I were to write a Klein Shot right now it would look like this..."My feet are on our chicken crate coffee table while I blog on my beloved Mac....Layla is snoring as her warm doggy snout rests against me....Hubs is on the other end of the couch playing a game on his computer as the TV news tells us abut Texas weather....Son #1 is in his home caring for his wife and our first grandson, Max...Son #2 is 2,000 miles away on a Friday night, really don't want to imagine what he is doing! But can't wait to see him in only 8 more days!!:) "

I am thankful for the moments caught in my journals. They take me back to my mood and life-style when written. I'll admit that on some Random Journal Days I open a journal and the words I see pull me into an unhappy time. I have to be careful not to dwell there and allow myself to keep reading until my current happiness is lost in past sadness. But this is why keeping a journal is so helpful and empowering. It reveals that the difficult times never last forever. There is always another page a little farther on that records a happy time and changes that moved me from despair to contentment or overwhelming joy. 

My message at the end of this wandering post is to encourage you to scribble your thoughts, hopes, dreams and doubts in a journal. Writing can bring great clarity and self-revelation just by bringing your inner-most thoughts out and onto paper. You will find like I have that sometimes you do not even know what you really think until you read what you wrote! :) Hmm, that's kinda tweetable!

Happy Journaling!
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  1. OH, my- I love the Klein shots...that seems like a great exercise in descriptive writing...I love this post...BUT is EVERYONE breaking the rules today???/ You started it, Missy! Shaking my finger at you! ;) Hugs!

  2. Susie: I also love the 'Klein shots'. The are like snapshots of your life.We all have those memories and they make up who we are. Sometimes, it is fun to change the rules.

    1. Very true. We are made up of our stories and memories in many ways.

  3. Good comparison of Klein shots to iphone snapshots...I love going back in my journals to see what God and I have been chatting about as I tend to process with Him on the written time I came across something and was like O yeah God we were talking about doing that...journals help keep me focused on His will and His creative way of engaging in our lives. I love the captured moments and wrote a couple on a sticky note today bkz another blogger...I think emily at chatting at the sky was saying we've forgotten how to write descriptively because of smart phone photos etc...although I do love the iphome camera and instagram...

    1. Well, first of all, there were no iPhones that many years ago! Ha! THEY must have stolen the idea from me! Ha! And secondly, I have wondered about the abundance of digital photos also and how they have replaced our ability to describe an event or even tell a good story. But if given an iphone that included the service plan I would NOT turn it down!

  4. This was great. I loved it. And what's Dawn talking about "rules"? I didn't know we had rules! LOL!!!!!! Just kidding. I'm glad you chose to write what we all needed to hear today. Love it. Keep on keeping on sweet friend.


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