Goodbye Journal

I just keep coming back to journaling as important for you. She says it almost apologetically, the tone earnest in its simple suggestion.

I nod then, my eyes sliding away from her, landing on the window to my right, set high in the exterior wall.

For a moment, several long, quiet seconds, I watch the crane in the construction zone across the street swing faintly in the December wind. I nod again, barely, as I consider what I might say next, where my thoughts, my emotions, my body might lead to next.

And there is something next. Maybe she speaks first, maybe I do- filling that warm, gently space with truth and value.

And the minutes move by, and later, soon, an hour has passed and I stand to leave, thank her, say goodbye.

And weeks pass, and I have other meetings, other times spent sitting on that white couch on the third floor.

But today, last night, I’ve heard those words in my head, in my heart, once more.

Journal. It’s important for you. Journal.

And that little book, the same one that I opened on January 1st, the same one that’s become fat with notes taped in, stickers and momentos affixed to its back; that notebook rides in my bookbag every day.

And in a quiet moment in class, after chapel, sitting along the second floor window outside the coffee shop, I pull out that book.

And I write.

I journal.

Moments of beauty. Things I glimpsed that I dare not forget.

Thoughts. Prayers.

Words shared with me, words overheard, words claimed from the texts I pour over every week for school.

All of this- and more besides- I write in that book.

And there are many things about the next week that weight heavily upon me. Goodbyes. Transitions. The end of a three-year-long part of my life, a part that I will never forget.

Yet with all of these things, with all the movement and the wind and the trailing, racing, wondering unraveling of my normal, I have that book in my bag, and a pen besides, and I’m writing, writing, writing.

And just like she said, all those days ago, it is important.

It is valuable and honest and real

and it’s helping me say goodbye,

or at least, see you later.

~Natalia

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