Sunday, April 24, 2011

Some Really Clever Title (This is my least favorite part of papers)

So, apparently neither Microsoft Word nor Mozilla Firefox recognize "journaling" as a word. Does that mean "to journal" is not a real verb? Does anyone know?

I've been thinking about journaling because Christine just got a five year journal (Technically it's a diary, but I prefer journal as it makes me sound less like an eleven year old. Also, it doesn't have a crappy lock on the side and will not be written in with a gel pen). This product is kind of a brilliant idea: every page is labeled with a date (say, April 24) and divided into five parts (one for each year). Thus, every day you write, you can look back and see what you did on that day the year before, and the year before that, up to five years ago.

Her excitement over this acquisition reminded me of how much I've neglected my own journaling. I've been playing catch-up the past couple days, which mostly consists of me logging all the random things that have happened in the last two weeks. I usually hate it when I end up just listing events. I much prefer the reflective entries where I write about my life in broader terms, which means I end up leaving out these daily details.

Last night (as in Friday), I was sitting in my kitchen with Christine and Jyna (another of our friends), when Christine mentioned a TV show she used to like, and we got to wondering exactly when it aired. According to Wikipedia, it began in 2001. That is when I realized something very odd: 2001 was 9 year ago. Doesn't sound that weird right? But get this: 9 years is about 43% of my life. That sounds weird.

I've never really thought that a decade was that long. I always remind myself: "Ruth, you are only two decades old. You do not know everything." So it's not that nine years is an insane amount of time. It's really more about the fact that I don't really think of the 90s as having ended more than five years ago. But nope, I'm a decade behind.

While I was sitting there having this realization, Jyna laughed at me. "Ruth," she said, "Those years are over. You've already had them." Because I have really. I think that's why I like the idea of a five year journal so much; it's pretty much the physical embodiment of the way in which each of your days adds up to your life. All the time you spend working. All the time you spend talking. All the time you spend thinking about stupid little things like what grocery items to get from the store or whether or not you should do laundry today. All the time you spend worrying about the future. All this is your life.

That is basic, and perhaps silly to need to say, but it's something I tend to forget.


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