Morning Pages, Memories and Making Myself Do It!

One week into Julia Cameron’s 12-week program from her book “It’s Never Too Late to Begin Again.” I’m not a fan of journal writing, maybe because it is so difficult not to censor myself, to just write what’s in my head, in my heart – it sounds dangerous to this insecure, dumped and divorced introvert.

But I’m doing it.

Seven days of writing two pages, longhand, of whatever goes from my foggy morning brain, through my hand numbing from carpal tunnel syndrome and into barely legible words on the page.

Believe me, there is nothing earth-shattering on any of those pages, but I am beginning to find that by putting down in black and white what I feel about everything in my life – from how to get a better night’s sleep to what to do with my wedding ring (yes, I still have it) – I think there are already fewer cobwebs clogging up the old brain network.

There are other things to do too, like the memoir part: remembering things about the first five years of my life. Yikes! I’m 66 years old and can’t remember what I had for breakfast – this part isn’t going to be easy. And dredging up childhood fears, disappointments, traumas like some sort of do-it-yourself psychoanalysis? (Can you tell I’m somewhat skeptical – or at least quite reluctant?) But by the end of the exercises, I caught a glimpse, just a sliver around the door into that core of joy in simply being alive that is born with each of us. It’s still there inside me. And that was a surprise!

So after these seven days, I have no answers to anything or anyone, most especially to myself. But I do feel hopeful. Hopeful that I will come into this this stage of life in front of me with actually more than I left behind.

Hopeful feels good after the past six years of regret, anger and fear – always the fear. It feels so good that I’m almost looking forward to another week of numbing fingers over morning pages, another myopic peer at the second five years into my life story, walks by myself, a “date” with myself. (Okay, that part doesn’t sound too bad!)

Is anyone out there following the same program? If not and you’re hurting, afraid, lost, I recommend giving it a try. There’s really nothing to lose and the whole wide world to gain.

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