a dark side of journaling

I reread some of my old journal entries from last semester, and the intensity of my preserved feelings shocked me.   They were so raw, uncensored, intimate.

My journal entries are startlingly frank because they hold nothing back: as my private outlet, there’s no self-consciousness for conventions or melodrama.  So there’s something terrifyingly real about them.  It’s like I dipped my heart in ink and rolled it around the pages, and the imprints are just as fresh and poignant as if written yesterday.

For the first time, I wished that I hadn’t amberized that time in my life.  It felt like a disservice to myself to relive those feelings with such clarity.   Which is weird because I love narrating my life to others, putting my experience in words.  But I guess when you tell a story to someone, no matter how upsetting the content is, it becomes just that — a story.  But in a journal, the pages unfold the tragedy in real time, and you relive with all the inconveniences of dramatic irony.

My English class read Dracula and talked about how the written word is a form of vampirism: writing preserves conversations and events in an undead form, which can then be duplicated through typewriters and copies.  That’s cool and all, but maybe some things are better left deceased and part of the past.

I don’t think this will change my journaling habits, because I still find it very therapeutic.  But maybe there’s some worth in considering how I peruse the relics of my past and overanalyze my actions.





One thought on “a dark side of journaling

  1. Lu says:

    !!! sometimes time lets you forget, but the words won’t. i might remember things going differently, or having been less intense, but then a single journal entry’ll change that, lol, set the record straight. sometimes revisiting old entries is nice for clarity–reading helps you recall exactly what it was you felt, not what you think you felt. other times, thoughts, it’s just like .___. aka the terrifying realness you mention.

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