When Your Journal Falls Apart
"This journal is falling apart. Really. It is kaput. Broken into so many sections. It does not seem whole or like it could ever be whole.” I wrote these words in my (broken) journal. And then I paused. I wondered. I took a breath.
Now you should know...in relative terms to what is happening in the world – my journal pages coming undone is nothing. But as I sat down for my morning page practice to let my consciousness stream out onto the page, this was the first thought that bubbled up. Sometimes those first thoughts need to be written and then forgotten, but as it sometimes happens – the thoughts offer me an opportunity to dig a bit deeper.
What if the journal was still whole, even though chunks of pages moved freely, detached from the binding and still others were held together only by a binder clip. What if each page flowed from one to the next, by something else. One day, one idea, one long flow of ideas big and small. Some that make sense, others that don’t.
Broken. Or not broken.
Can you be whole if you are undone? If things are falling apart? If things are sticking out? If not everything fits neatly together?
Well then...that is the question, isn’t it?
What does it even mean to be whole? To let myself be whole?
Integrated comes to mind. At ease. Able to be entire.
Entire. All together. Or not.
You can have an entire of parts, like when your 2nd-grade teacher taught you about fractions using candy bars and pizzas. 3 slices of pizza plus 9 slices make one whole.
Entire me. Whole me. All the parts. Even the ones that stick out. Even the pieces that seem to be falling apart.
And yet, I cringe every time I sit down to write in this journal. Every single day for the last 3 months, I’ve wondered – will today be the day I give up on these pages and start fresh?
Because I’ve been afraid. To lose a part of it. Or, if I am being honest – of me.
Gulp. That feels BIG so I’ll say it again.
I’m afraid to lose one of my parts. To lose a story. To lose me. Even if, I know that there are even more parts of me. New stories. Ones that I haven’t even discovered yet.
A lost section of the journal. A page missing. What if I want to go back and read it? What if I need it?
Apart from the fact that most of my journal pages are illegible thanks to my handwriting, why would it be so bad to lose a section? A page? A thought?
I suppose I wouldn’t have it to refer back to. I’d have to find the answer, the clarity somewhere else. Within me.
I’m not afraid to go within, I tell myself. Or am I?
No, I’m not afraid to go within me. I’m afraid of not finding that place that I thought was a part of me.
What if I don’t need that piece anymore? What if it was supposed to fall away the way leaves fall to the ground? A natural cycle. What if I can still be whole without that piece? Without that story? That part of who I thought I was?
What if all the journal parts – the ones that protrude and the ones that are still bound with glue – what if I could let them be there for me when I needed them? But also surrender to them falling off, or apart to give room to new parts of me that want to emerge? To be explored? To be seen and to take up space?
Could I let that be ok?
Could I still be ME or rather what if letting go of that piece as it drops off, could help me be the me of NOW. Of THIS moment. Of mastery and abundance.
What if... I could let myself be nourished and fulfilled not by clinging to my parts but letting them fall away when they are ready – in gratitude for their service?
I don't know about you, but I'm ready to accept and maybe even release the dangles.