Writing as a map

“Writing makes a map, and there is something about a journey that begs to have its passage marked.” ~Christina Baldwin

There are times I wonder why I am so attached to writing, both writing this blog and writing my daily morning pages. I’ve long known that part of the reason I write is that it helps me to figure out what I really think. It is in writing that discover what is lurking below the surface of my mind. It’s how I process what I’m experiencing and learning.

But it’s more than that.

My writing is also about trying to record this journey. The past few years have been such a transformative time, with so much change, so many insights, and so much learning that I am afraid that if I do not make a log of this journey in some way that I will lose some of the lessons.

Even now, when I go back to read old entries, I am reminded anew of lessons that have already faded from view in my constant attempt to keep up with all of the new things coming my way. And it is precisely those lessons that I have forgotten that I wind up having to re-learn because I have made the same mistake.

Writing it down gives me a map to allow me to re-trace my journey and helps me see where I need to go next. It gives me a guidebook for navigating the challenges of life by allowing me to apply old lessons to new problems. It becomes a nature guide to help me recognize and identify familiar patterns and situations when they appear in slightly new forms.

Putting these lessons in words on a page pulls them out of the air to solidify them for future reference. They become the standing stones in my life to remind me of where I’ve been, what I’ve learned, what I’ve experienced.

Writing helps me to see me. It makes me stop, look, and listen to my own life.

It’s one habit that has proven itself to be invaluable time and again. It’s one of the few things I do that I can’t imagine ever not doing. Not only that, it’s the only thing (after 25 or more years of trying) that has been enough to get this night owl to act like a morning person. Writing is the only thing that I want to do badly enough to be worth getting up early for. There’s really no higher endorsement than that!

A Note on Comments: A chrysalis is by nature a fragile and vulnerable place to be, so I am committed to keeping this a safe place for me and for my readers. Comments sharing your own journey, even if your experience is different from mine, are always welcome and encouraged. Expressions of support or encouragement are also welcome. Comments that criticize, disparage, correct, or in any way attempt to undermine the validity of another person’s experience or personal insight are not welcome here and will be deleted.