Chase March

To Journal or not to Journal?

I have written a journal now for several years and I find it hard to continue to write it. I used to write in it a lot. I used to pour out my deepest feelings into it and was brutally honest about a lot of things. Maybe I was too honest. I had a girlfriend and I knew that some of my words in certain entries would cause her pain. That was not why I wrote those entries. Not at all.

Writing is cathartic. I can’t think of anything in life that allows you the same sense of healing and working through strong emotions, other than personal writing. So I write. Everyone knows that journals are a personal writing. Everyone knows that you should not read someone else’s journal without permission. My journal was for this purpose. I don’t know if I ever saw it as that. It was just something that I liked to do. I knew it was a baring of my soul though so I made sure to explicitly state at the start of each chapter that this journal was not to be read by anyone, that it was made for me and me alone. And in great big letters, I made a plea for my privacy.

Of course, I know that reading someone’s most inner private thoughts can be tempting. This is why I hid the books in such a way as I thought they would never be read. In order to find them and read them, one would have to be very snoopy or determined.

Needless to say that the one person I never ever wanted to have read my words, found a way to get to them. Maybe it was my fault for writing them in the first place, but I don’t think so. I explained in the books why I wrote them. It was very clear that these books were journals of mine and that they were not to be read.

She still hurts today, because of my words. My unspoken, never meant to be read, words.

I can’t forgive her for reading them. I don’t think I ever will be able to. But here is the paradox, I can’t forgive myself for letting them out there into the world. I’ve hurt her in ways I never wanted to. Nothing I do can make this right.

Writing is powerful. Words can be weapons that can hurt someone in ways that scar. And my words haunt me. Not just because they were read and used in a way that I never intended. But that they are “out there” now, floating around and may resurface at anytime.

So, do I close my journal up for good now? What do I do? Or do I continue to write and make sure this time that those words never get out there again? And how can I do that? And why do I write an online journal now?

These questions have no easy answer. Suffice it to say that I am a writer. I write because I enjoy it. I write because it is cathartic. I write stuff to be read, and I write stuff not to be read. This blog is meant to be read. It is personal but not on the level that my journals are.

So read on, dear reader. Comment on anything you read here in Silent Cacophony. Share it, tell people about it. Enjoy. But, for some reason, if you ever come across my personal journal, please return it to me unread, or if I am dead, do me a favour and destroy those words. They were never meant to be read. Thank you.

To Journal or not to Journal?
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