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I Write, Therefore I am

Posted Aug 05 2008 1:20pm
The best way to become acquainted with a subject is to write a book about it.

-Benjamin Disraeli


I'm offering a journal writing workshop entitled KEEPING TABS on August 2nd and this illustration by one of my favorite artists, Julie Paschkis, is on the brochure. It depicts my enchantment with scribbling and the light hearted, super-powered life I've scripted. I have written for and to myself for most of my life and have a collection of journal books, black and white composition tablets and spiral notebooks to support a bookworm colony.

Writing on a computer, much less publishing what I write on-line, is a very recent practice. My left hand has led hundreds of pens over thousands of blank pages, in long-hand, for a long time.

My mother has kept diaries and journals for as long as I can remember and I have memories of visiting with her father, his journal written in Japanese, resting on his lap as he greeted us from his bed. My maternal grandmother, Haru Matsuda, also kept a journal and wrote poems that have found their way intobooks by Buddhist authors.So I may quite well have a journal gene spiraling within me.

Psychologist JamesPennebaker's researchhas revealed that people who write about their issues and concerns experience higher levels of immunity and life functions. Professionals who had been laid off from work and instructed to write their deepest thoughts and feelings about unemployment, were much more likely to find employment than those in the study who were told to simply write about their day and those who did no writing at all.

More than just a spot to pour out gripes and grievances, my journals were thecrumbs that I followedmy way into the future. Twenty-two years ago I wrote: "To sit and spend time moaning & groaning about the negatives is a waste! I need to concentrate on affirmations and things positive." When my writing voice changed, my speech changed. It has made all the difference in the world.

I recently responded to a friend's questions: "How similar is your life now to how you imagined it ten years ago? Twenty years ago?" I commented onher blog:I thought I would have a whole lot more. But never did I dream that I would be this happy!The "whole lot more" that I refer to are just peripheral visions. My focus has always been to seek balance and joy and it thrills me to see that my wishes of old are here today and spilling over into my future, as it is written.

Illustration:Julie Paschkis

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