“We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospect.”
As I blog on day 2 of the SOL challenge, I’ve been thinking a great deal about my writing life, and how this challenge might change it. In fact, I slept fitfully last night, dreaming constantly about blogging.
One aspect of our writing, and that of our students, is our journal writing. Why do we keep a journal? Why might we write in it every day? One reason, as the quote above hints, is to “taste life twice.” Writing in our journals about our honeymoon in Hawaii, the perfect writing lesson that inspired our students, or the thoughtful gift of a friend brings back the wonderful feelings we experienced when those events actually happened. We taste them a third or fourth time when we reread our journals days or years later.
As we write about those events, I believe we are also working our way through them. When we write about how a friend hurt us, how a lesson wasn’t as effective as we’d hoped, or something that made us cry, writing about it soothes us. As we put our thoughts on paper, solutions appear, causes become clear, and things don’t look so awful. We are filled with hope and tomorrow looks better.
Even though the audience for our journal musings is mostly ourselves, I believe it’s a valuable writing genre promoting self-growth and a joy of living.