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Rated: ASR · Non-fiction · Family · #1666246
My writing inspiration.
This is dedicated to my biggest fan.  Without her I would not be writing. I love you bunches!

I have always liked the idea of keeping a journal, but I have never been the type of person to keep one. I tried. I would always start off with the best of intentions, I would keep up with writing in it every day for a few weeks, then I would only write in it once every couple of weeks. I would progress to only writing in it once a month or so, finally I would just quit writing in it all together. Eventually, I would even forget that I had a journal.

There are times that I wish I had managed to keep up with my journaling. It would have been a great way to preserve my thoughts and feelings about a particular event in my life. I also seem to have a memory problem. There are a great many events in my past that I just do not have much or any memory of. A journal would have been a good memory aid.

There were many reasons why I failed at my journaling. I found it boring and tedious. I never liked what I wrote, and I never thought that I was a very good writer. I did not think it was worth the effort that I would have to put into it.

In September of 2009, my attitude about writing changed. The previous six months had been some of the hardest in my life. I had attempted suicide, started therapy for my depression, had been on several anti-depressants that had failed to work, and I had been hospitalized for a brief period of time in a state run psychiatric hospital. During this time period I became aware that I basically had two emotional states, extreme anger or extreme lack of emotion. When I was experiencing extreme anger, I behaved and said things that were horrible. I knew what I was doing, but I was unable to stop it. I began to believe that if I could write down my thoughts and feelings, that I would have more control over my emotional state.

Given my history with journaling, I knew the chances of me keeping up with my writing would be slim to none if I did not change my approach to it. I decided what I needed was some accountability. A real life person who would notice if I did not write anything for a few days. Not wanting to place yet another burden on my family, I decided to start blogging.

My approach to what I blogged about was the same approach I applied to my therapy sessions. Only the truth would do. The idea of being so honest in my writing did not seem that big of a deal. It was not until I sat down for the first time to write a blog post that I realized that writing the truth about me was going to be difficult. I would be showing myself in a less than positive light, and some of the subject matter that I wanted to write about would be emotionally painful.

Writing honestly on a blog seemed to work, for a while at least. I was able to express my out of control emotions in a constructive way. Between my writing and my therapy, I become a much calmer, less angry and anxious person. However, that type of emotional writing was very exhausting for me, especially since that was the only type of writing I was doing.

Around the end of November of 2009, I put writing in the blog aside for a while. I needed a break, some time to rethink how I approached my writing so that it would not be so exhausting. It was also around this time that my asthma began to bother me again. My inability to draw in a proper breath of air was also adding to my exhaustion. It took two months and a week long stay in a hospital for me to get back to my writing.

After so long away from writing, I lacked the motivation to begin again. Day after day went by and I never even attempted to put anything on paper. I figured that no one even noticed that I was not updating the blog, and the more time that passed the less important it seemed to me. I was wrong. The person who voiced their disappointment about the fact that I was not writing took me by complete surprise. It was my thirteen year old daughter.

At that time, I had been unaware that my daughter was reading what I had been writing. It was not until she came to me one day and said, “Mom, it has been a long time since you wrote anything. When are you going to write again?” that I realized she had been paying close attention to everything thing I had written, and for whatever reason she was enjoying it. However, I still did not do any writing. She came to me with that same question every day. I always answered it the same way, “Soon.”. This scenario was repeated many times over the next two weeks. Finally, I gave in. It was easier to give into her, than to have to listen to her ask that question one more time.

My approach to writing on the blog was different this time. I still did the emotional, truth filled blog posts that I had always done, however, this time I also did some silly, fun filled posts. It was a more balanced approach. I found that I really enjoyed writing, even when the topic I was writing about was emotionally difficult.

At this time, I cannot put into words how much writing has come to mean to me. It has come to be a part of who I am. I have found myself dreaming about how far I might be able to go with it, and have taken proactive steps to improve my writing skills. I enjoy the opportunity that it has given me as a way to bond with my daughter. By far though, the one thing I like the best about it is that my daughter is my biggest fan.
© Copyright 2010 Melissa Mashburn (melissam at Writing.Com). All rights reserved.
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