I have talked a lot recently about journal keeping, but I've never actually shared anything from my journal in this blog. What's the difference between a blog post and a journal entry? The journal entry isn't written for public consumption, but, at least during the moments it is written, for the pleasure of writing. Later, maybe, with editing, it becomes something else.
The paragraphs below are from my journal entry dated 4/12/2010. (These are unedited; I've only excised a few paragraphs in-between where I wrote more at length about having tendinitis in my thumb and the difficulty it creates for writing by hand).
I've explored the theme of writing out of loneliness before, in my October 1, 2009 blog post. Perhaps the other difference in writing for public consumption and writing in a journal is that you can indulge in a repetition of topics (like my perpetual prose on loneliness) without care that you are boring anyone; you are your own rapt audience (or not).
I realize now that when I was young, my writing came from unwanted solitude. Therefore, the reason I hardly write these days is from lack of solitude. It's ridiculous how many things take me away from writing when writing used to be my main identity/pursuit.
Even when I'm around lots of people, though, there's still that persistent loneliness, which only writing seems to appease. Saying something—putting an idea into words—feels like an accomplishment; it takes me away from the loneliness of the present moment. There's the possibility of touching the infinite, however momentary or fleeting.
I used to love the sensation of writing with a pen, but how it hurts and the pain detracts from what I want to say. How can an aching hand freely speak of joy?
It's nearly 11 p.m. I am sitting up in bed alone. I am not writing now because I am especially lonely but because I started to get that yearning that means it's time to say something, which I can only say with written words. I'd be tongue-tied if I tried to say any of this aloud. The paper is such an absorbent, steady listener—one couldn't ask for better.