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Monday, March 23, 2015

Wouldn’t you now the rain came back just as spring arrived. But that’s been just fine with me because I have been eyeballs deep in spring cleaning and the feel of cool little droplets of rain running down my sweaty back as I take load after load of donations and garbage to the back of my car felt pretty good. I wanted/meant to post last week but one feels a little reclusive after staring down the 2 inches of dust on the top of their ceiling fan blades, finding an AOL disk tucked in a box of very miscellaneous papers, and a kitchen knife in the back of their closet (that last one is still concerning me. why? how? who?)

And I have to say all this cleaning has seriously kicked my ass and I think my left hand might actually be a little bit broken, but all in all it’s been extremely cathartic. I have organized everything. Well almost, I still have a few spots left. I pulled everything out from everywhere and those first few days were daunting as I sat dusty amongst precariously leaning towers of my shit. But as progress was made it all started to feel a bit therapeutic. 

Last night I started (and finished I might add) on my boxes of papers and journals. For years I have avoided reading my old papers, letters, poems, stories, and my never-ending streams of consciousness. Not wanting to revisit old ‘selves,’ old wounds, to dive head first into the past (because of course there’s no better time to write than those of melancholy or feeling conflicted). Worse I was afraid to find that some things might sound a little too familiar. And to be honest I found those too. I found writings I could still write today but instead of feeling ashamed I actually felt empowered in the changes I’ve been making here in real life. Like the change in and of itself of just facing these papers, reading them, accepting them. Accepting myself. Past and present. Then I tore up all the ones that I could still write (almost verbatim) today with no intentions, moving forward, of needing to write another. 

However, reading all of those writings what I realized most is that I miss writing. Even the writing I know I would have cringed at even a few months ago felt wonderful to read. I just was so happy for all the piles of paper, all the scribbles, all the attempts, all the thoughts and words. However profound or cringe-worthy I found them the most overwhelming feeling I was left with was my affection for  writing on paper. I miss the girl the who wrote on paper. The only thing I use paper and pencil for these days are lists. This must change. And spring, if I am not mistaken, is the season of change. Is it not?


  1. Funny. I've felt this yearn toward paper lately too. I have a couple notebooks I keep that all my notes go in. Lecture notes, notes for my film class (imagine my panic when I thought I'd lost it last week), that kind of stuff... so there is pen-to-paper writing going on. But not diving deep. And I've missed that too. We've talked before about how much I value the little bit of writing that blogging provides me. It *would* be hard to give it up!

  2. Reading your "old self" is cringe-worthy sometimes but also rewarding to see how far you've come. Good on you for getting rid of old things and moving forward. I can't stop myself from writing on paper (which is also where a lot of the words are going these days instead of the blog). I've got to transfer that from pen and paper to an electronic format and refine it further. SO much writing work to do, so little time

  3. i know exactly what you mean about missing paper. so much of what i write is on the computer. i make sure to have my journal out in plain sight at home so that when the mood strikes, i can write. i have had the same leather bound journal since high school and the only thing that changes are the inserts. sure the leather gets softer and has turned a different color, but i feel like i can't write unless it's in that familiar leather journal. i've tried pretty feminine illustrated journals, but i always go back to my leather one bc it's familiar and inspires me to continue to write on paper, even if weeks go by in between.

  4. spring cleaning *is* so cathartic. the discovery (and mystery!) it leads to goes so much further than just an organized drawer.

    i've been writing a lot in my moleskin and it feels so good to "be back". there's a rawness and vulnerability that you open yourself up to on paper that i just haven't been able to master on computer. i think the BACKSPACE and DELETE options are just too tempting so a lot of time i'm editing before i've even finished a thought. like rooth, i'm hoping to eventually move those thought from paper to screen, but in the mean time i'm really enjoying the process.

  5. I still write in my paper diary but instead of every day it now gets a word in it every other week or so. It feels like I don't have "time" anymore as I get sucked into the world of internet and whoooosh! there goes a few hours of your day. Love the illustration on this post.

  6. It is so wonderful to see the sort of universal gravitation back towards writing on paper. It's a medium that really cannot be replicated, even with as many keyboards and touchscreens as we have at our disposal. There's nothing that beats paper and pen! I'm so impressed that you kept all those papers and journals, and even more so that you went through them all before cleaning them out. I don't think I would've had the courage! Revisiting all those past deserve a medal :) Especially on top of all that other spring cleaning! Doesn't it feel good, though?? I need to really commit to doing a deep purge. I opened our laundry closet/pantry the other day and just had to back away slowly and close the door so I wouldn't get overwhelmed and just chuck everything in the trash, haha. xo

  7. I love writing on paper, I think notebooks are one of the things I buy most often. An idea for a blog post, a sketch for a project, I love writing it first on paper. But I have never kept a journal, I don't even want to read old notes I used to write to my husband years ago, I like to concentrate on the now of our relationship. But I can understand how liberating it must feel revisiting old writing and accepting the way you were then and the way you have evolved.


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