The tattered journal that I have carried around for years holds the deepest parts of me. The ugly parts, the mundane, the guilty, and the parts of me that I do not see fit to show the world. I hide these parts, not for fear of others, but for fear of what someone else would do with this most valuable information.
The key to my heart, my success, my failure, and all that encompasses my very being is scribbled along on the pages of the faux leather-bound journal that held so much promise when purchased over a decade ago. At times I have fiddled through the pages and read as if I was a distant reader with no attachment to the author. I tried to find hope, yet all I found were words describing the memories that so often riddled through my head. Replaying like an old film. The small details, I took the effort to note, were not the details I remember. The smells that flooded my nostrils, the tone in the voice of those around me, and the void of silence that fell upon me during the times I so bluntly described.
My public writings are ones I have filtered and edited over and over. Deep and meaningful, but in search of understanding and safe for prying eyes. My hand of comfort for those that stand in shoes I once wore as I completed parts of my journey. It’s usually the gritty and ugly parts that get the attention of the masses. My personal assumption is that when the chips are down, and the hand is shown, it is the heartbreaking and flesh-tearing moments we seek like minds. The moments that the world seems to go dark and the words that seem mumbled, yet so clear in front of our eyes.
Reaching a hand out during those times is almost like nursing an injured animal. You can only guide someone into the light so much on your own, and dragging them is not suitable for either party. Instead, you hold their hand and let them and nature do the work. Mostly a simple understanding that someone else has, in fact, survived this vary wound is enough to change the mindset of some from “I can’t” to “I just don’t want to right now,” and for those that have been injured so fatally, that is enough.
The passion falls in the darkness for me. It’s not the articles of extraordinary space exploration or the “How To Do Mundane Task With A Flare” post that genuinely drives me to write. It’s, in fact, the memory of my darkness and the silent whisper of the lost that drives me to continue. I have wandered the darkness, torch in hand, and found nothing on occasion. Instead of giving up, I simply leave a quick note and continue on.
The true passion lies in that one reader, the one who wanders through the darkness alone with no expectation of being found. The one reader who needs to read the words I so carefully type. For me, it as if I am approaching a wild animal. I ease myself into the presence of those lost but frequent thoughts. I approach with caution and sometimes take the pain and injury expected when approaching the situation that once so brutally created my wounds.
Sometimes the tears fall, sometimes my heart screams, and sometimes a whisper of comfort aids me as I complete my final sentence. Yet, the passion of touching another heart is enough that I continue on.
The tattered journal that holds my deepest and most personal thoughts sometimes reveals itself in my public writings. A portion slides gently into a post or poem that I am tentative to let hit the naked eye of a stranger, but I do anyway. My questions, my pain, my happiness, and the places my mind goes when in need of rest are shared into a sea of words and letters in a saturated marketplace… all for the simple hope that one person will read it and know they are not alone.