I started a journal this week. I'm not very good at keeping them going though, but I hope to be able to keep this one current. It's not an electronic journal (surprise, surprise huh!) but it's all hand written. I chose to do this because I recently realized how much it helps to leave behind your thoughts, ideas, and even whimsical remarks for your children. Not yet a year ago our family lost whom I called "The Queen Matriarch", our Big Mamma. She was my husbands grandmother, yet just as much mine as his due to how much she loved me and I her. She wrote things down. Kept a small notebook handy and would jot things down or write poetry. She wrote things about her family, things that she treasured about them. One entry was about my daughter, Serena. Big Mamma wrote something to the effect of: Serena ran into the house and said We're having 2 tomatoes! My daughter was referencing the impending storms and had been watching the news about the tornado warning. Her Great Grandmother thought to write it down and it's a moment that won't be forgotten for those of us who read Big Mamma's writings. She had poems about her children, grandchildren, and her home place. Her thoughts written so much in the manner that if you read them aloud, you can almost hear her voice as if she's reading them to you. They contain so much of her character that we will always be able to remember her even when in years to come memories get hazy or fade some. And they do, as much as we never want to lose those memories, we are human and our minds do grow older each day that passes. So I'm writing. For my children to have when the day comes that I'm called Home. My first entry was a simple watercolor of a photograph that I'd taken while out walking with my girls. I plan to include many visual memories for them of our times together whether it be a photograph or sketch. My second entry was basically a reminder to my 2 precious girls of how so very special they are, each in their own way, to me. So I'm going to continue writing the old fashioned way with pen to paper, each time including a special memory for my girls to have.
I've learned as I've grown into adulthood that as a child time passes so quickly that we often overlook things because we are children, enjoying the moment with sheer joy and always in anticipation of the next event. As children we give lots of hugs and kisses to our moms and dads never realizing how much those mean to them. As teens we became wanna-be adults, and of course our parents were "cruel" or "mean" because they chose to enforce a rule or restriction, etc. We would often fail to see the love in their eyes when they looked at us or the hurt in their eyes when we defied them and rebelled. As a person entering into adulthood we perhaps began to recognize that all along our parents had good intentions, yet sometimes we still have that "My way or no way" mentality often causing us to end up hurt or sometimes in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or perhaps we are entering into our own journey of creating a family of our own, and of course we still know what's best for us. We might often wish that our parents would just "back off" and "stay out of our lives". Still sometimes forgetting that they only love us and that this is all just as new to them as it is to us! I'm at the point now that I have 2 children of my own. I went through all the above phases and in the last several years entered the phase where I 100% emphatically realize I need my mom, my dad, my mother in law, and father in law. I need them in my life, my husbands life, and my children's life. I've realized that family is something you never take for granted and this is a piece of truth I most definitely want my children to know always.
And as my children continue to grow, I will continue to write, and I pray that when the time comes to hand over a journal (whether I'm here or gone on Home) that I can perhaps offer them some clarity in life. Sometimes we just need to know that someone else has been through the same situations, or be reminded that we are valued and loved above all the treasures of this world. I pray that my journals will be a soothing reminder of my love for my girls when they need it the most, just as Big Mamma's poems and writings were for her family. I want written proof for my girls, so that they are able to look and see that yes it was a very rough day and yes I may have wanted to pull my hair out and just scream at the top of my lungs because of how they may have behaved, but with just a simple smile from them my heart melts and everything stressful is once again worth it. That every pain melts when I look into their eyes. Much like the day they were born, all the bedrest, sickness, pain was more than worth it the moment I heard their first cries and saw their sweet brand new face.
When my kids grow up I want them to see through my eyes the potential I see in them. I want them to see through my eyes the love I have for them. I want them to always have a tangible reminder of just how very precious they are to me. Of course much like this blog I'll infuse the journals with scripture, reminding them how very important God's word is. So I'm going to do my best to keep these "pen to paper" journals current. I never want to take life for granted, and I promised my baby girls that I would be there for them always. I know that physically that isn't the case, but maybe just maybe this is the way that I can be. Like they say, babies don't come with a manual. But maybe that's because as mom's we don't write down what gets us through it all to hand down to our daughters and sons when they have their children. Sometimes it's easier to take advice if it's written and read in your own time, rather than hearing it from someone when a child is in your ear screaming!
Like I said before, the mind is fleeting and fades with time. Especially mine with all the brain fog from the dysautonomia. Perhaps the journals may even help me in my day to day life, helping me remember the things I so often forget. And now my ramblings must come to an end, for it doesn't take long for this mind to tire and things are growing hazy now. So here's are two quotes, food for thought if you will.
"The act of putting pen to paper encourages pause for thought, this in turn makes us think more deeply about life, which helps us regain our equilibrium." -Norbett Platt.
We can all use a little equilibrium in life :) Have a wonderful day and may God richly bless you and be with you.