One of the greatest discoveries I ever made in my young life was my mother’s journal. As I remember it, she wasn’t too happy the day she found me reading her most private of private possessions. Today, however, time has passed. When my mother died I inherited all of her journals. Boy did I inherit a gold mine.
As it turned out my mother had made it a life-long habit to keep track of her daily activities, thoughts, and dreams. My mother’s earliest journals were composed on loose leaf un-lined paper all secured (apparently some time after she had written them) in three-ring notebooks. Others are in cardboard composition notebooks. Her later journals, however, are truly things of beauty.
Most of her adult life my mother bought a new journal every year. I can only imagine her browsing the shelves of our town’s only bookstore picking out those journals. Some have little locks on the side, others pictures of birds and butterflies, and others are lovely textured leather. Although some have held up better than others, these journals have protected her priceless words through the ravages of time, many moves, a couple of husbands, and even the prying fingers of curious children.
It is said that you can’t tell a book by its cover but it’s almost as if you can tell just from looking at the outside of these books how my mother’s financial situation changed over time. Although some have held up better than others, these journals have protected her priceless words through the ravages of time, many moves, a couple of husbands and even the prying eyes of curious children. They reflect much water under the bridge and, to this day, they remain my most cherished possession.