|Today’s Guest Journal-Writer,
Carol Ohmart Behan is a published novelist
as well as a pilgrimage and labyrinth facilitator.
On my writing room shelf is a set of a dozen or so pocket-sized books that I treasure, a set of journals kept by my Great-great Aunt Mary from 1908 to the late 1920s. The short entries, written faithfully each day, are full of the doings of her life on a small farm. Again and again she writes, "A beautiful day". She passed this journaling habit to her niece, my mother, and this special legacy came to me early on at the age of 12.
Both women lived in bustling households and that they made time to write almost daily has been an instructive image for me. For one, I learned that making time for writing is not indulgence, but necessity, and yes, deeply pleasurable. I've always pictured each of them sitting down, likely at day's end, opening their journals, and with a grateful sigh entering a space apart from all that was going on about them, a place of quiet and reflection, a still point. It is a place that I've come to know as a blessed and sacred space.
For those of us drawn to writing, the clamor and rush of our 21st-century lives makes journal writing all the more vital. And without such quiet reflective time how otherwise could we plumb our hidden depths or sail the vast seas of our imaginations? My book shelf now holds many years' worth of my own journals, testament to countless hours spent between their varied covers, pen in hand, my creative spirit happily engaged. This daily, nourishing ritual of writing is a gift of grace that I cannot get along without. May each of you reading this be similarly blessed in your writing lives and if not, don't go another day without embarking on this marvelous journey, journal and pen in hand.