keeping a diary

I’m trying to keep a diary now. This morning was day one. I bought a nice, soft, pink notebook with just-the-right-size lines and a ribbony bookmark, for this diary project.

I keep hearing about diaries. The idea of diaries seem to be in the air right now. I read other blog entries of diary-keepers talking about the benefits of committing to their diaries. I just listened to a Fresh Air interview with David Sedaris on his diary-keeping and he makes it sound like a really worthwhile practice. But I’m feeling skeptical.

I’m at a crossroads right now. A beginning-the-next-phase crossroads as I figure out the ‘work’ question. And my thoughts feel anxious and jumbled and confusing. I’m hoping a diary will help sort them all out. Give me time to just think and be. Think about what I want and where I want to go and be intentional about whatever next steps are ahead.

I’ve considered starting a diary for a few weeks, but I kept putting it off thinking that I have the time the kids are in school to think and be. But I never use that time for that. That time seems to be getting shorter and shorter as I tackle new projects and keep up things around my home the way I like to. For some reason I’ve marked school-time with certain things I *have* to do…and sitting around reflecting never made the cut. So this morning, I sat with my coffee in the dark before anyone else was up, and I began. I was hopeful that the diary would give me clarity, courage, help me sort out my thoughts, claim my path…but it seemed like my diary entry was just a rambling of neurotic worry. Sigh. So…is that helping? getting it out? giving air to worry? or is that just feeding my already active neurotic tendencies? I can’t really tell yet. But I’m curious if there is something to this.

Do you keep a diary?

My scrapbooking practices are changing too. This one I started, left to sit for a few days, and then finished up yesterday. I enjoyed approaching it in parts like that. A little here, a little there. It was a nice change. :)


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About robyn

I stopped teaching Kindergarten in 2005 to become the mom of two crazy boys here in Brooklyn. At first I thought being a stay at home mom meant that I needed to pour all my time and energy directly into my sons, but I realized somewhere along the way that being a rockstar mom meant not only taking good care of my boys, but also taking good care of myself. And taking good care of myself means pursuing something creative...just about everyday. I started Made In Brooklyn to motivate myself in my creative goals as well as share my work with others and perhaps inspire them in their own creative journeys.
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7 Responses to keeping a diary

  1. Cathy says:

    I have been keeping a diary for many years now. I use it to document our daily adventures. If I need to, I do use it to vent or to try to put some order in my thoughts. I always write at the end at the day. I’m sure that after a few days, you will get more clarity!

  2. Mama V says:

    sounds like a great discipline! the only time i ever do any consistent journaling is while traveling abroad. i always found that it helped me process that “fish out of water” feeling.

    i kind of giggle when i hear the word “diary,” which brings up memories of the little lock and key book i had as a kid. i tend to think of “keeping a journal” as the grown-up version. tee hee.

  3. Susan says:

    I was just at a (home schooling) conference where one speaker spent awhile talking about the benefits of journaling (by which she meant what you seem to mean by diary). Everyone laughed when she said that regular journaling is often correlated with weight loss. I think you’d disappear if you lost any weight, so watch out for that ;)

    I think of a diary as something with very brief entries each day where you’d record what you did that day and, maybe, the weather. I would call what you are doing a journal. I’m not sure it matters . . . and I haven’t listened to that interview (Does Terry Gross still do Fresh Air? I’ve always found her annoying).

    I have had journals regularly since freshmen year of high school but I often will go a few months at a time without writing. And then I write daily for awhile. Kind of like my blog! I’ll be curious to hear an update in awhile about how its going. I think it’s a skill you can hone. And I also think that, for some people, it can be just another way to be neurotic. But I’m betting you’ll find your groove with it.

    • Robyn says:

      I love Terry Gross! Wow! Why do you find her annoying?! Someone once said to me “Wow Robyn! You’re just like Terry Gross!” and I felt amazing! :) ha! so…yeah…she’s still doing fresh air. :)

      I used the term “diary” specifically from that interview. I had just listened to it, and David Sedaris called his a “keep-out-this-means-you-kind-of-diary” which was rattling around in my brain. So I thought I’d just go ahead and call it a diary. :) Journal, admittedly, is more grown up.

  4. janel says:

    No diary or journal for me..I have done a year of gratitude journal when I was working…and when I looked back through it…almost every day I was grateful for my bed….looking back, I don’t remember being so tired, but I must have been, because almost every day…I was thankful for my bed! Something I did for our daughter..and wish I would have done for our son is to make a journal that I would write in…whenever there was something that I wanted to express to her…I did it from the time she was born and it was a gift to her on her 21st birthday. Just my thoughts on family, love, relationships, daily life…..no rules, no have-to’s, just thoughts, quotes, love notes to her. And it really was a place for me to sort out what was important that I wanted to pass on to her…and even though it wasn’t a personal diary for me…it ended up being a book of my most intimate thoughts…just to her. I would do it all over again..for both of them if I had little ones!
    Love your blog…and so enjoy watching from here.

  5. Mama V says:

    hey, you call it whatever you want to call it if it helps keep you coming back to write more!

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