Dear Diary- the Beauty of the written word by Swastika Verma
Because at the end of every dragging day
All I need is a steaming cup of coco mint tea
And the reminiscing of a dire memory
Twirling in my head as I open my diary,
Fingers clutching the pen as
As if hanging for dear life
I start putting my thoughts line by line
Letters into words
Words into sentences
Sentences into paragraphs
I wrote tirelessly poring my heart out
As if stuck by a deep resolve
You took all, took it all
Enslaving my words within
Your crisp coarse sheets
Setting me from after all this time
After all this time
And all those fake smiles.
Dear diary. Every day starts in a same way. With the usual sounds, smells and visions. Like the pleasant chirrup of the morning birds, the symphony of the neighbor’s grandmother ringing her sacred bell as she worships the deities, the crunch of the newspaper vendor’s bicycle wheels as they crush the discarded mango leaves and the simultaneous barking of the street dogs as they show their dissatisfaction on being awaken untimely.
The whirl of the Murphy radio as my mother tune it to her favorite morning news channel, followed by the strangling noises my alarm clock makes as it goes off, an herald to start yet another day despite the ache in our muscles left by yesterday’s assault. The rest of the day went like a blur, a feature film with no intervals and soon night knocks darkly on our doors as we find our way home.
But have you find this constant white noise humming inside your head as you go through your daily chores? This constant disturbance as if it’s screaming to be set free. An incident you witnessed but the absurdity of it is such that you can’t even pretend to tell a single soul about it. A decision you are contemplating but the web of confusion is not allowing you to proceed further with it. You want to talk and share secrets but no one is there to hear you. Or when you simply want to talk, share every intricate details of your day with someone without uttering a single word.
To listen to our own sub-consciousness without putting up filters. To speak our mind, pour our heart out or just to rant without giving a damn. If you can feel these yearnings then a Diary is all you need to grab onto when the cauldron of your reality started overflowing, smudging your mental health with its tar. Because trust me a Diary is not just a collection of sheet bound within a flimsy cover, it’s a medium, a companion, a listener, a taker, that friend which just takes everything you have to give and don’t even breath a single word of protest.
When I started keeping a personal dear diary years ago, I embraced the habit just for the sake of it. My mother was and still is a regular diary keeper and even though she writes in Hindi I was always a little envious of her whenever I saw her huddled with her LIC Jeevan Bima Diary cracked open in her lap, pen poised within her slender fingers scribbling furiously, documenting every detail of her mundane life as a housewife.
Her dear diary were like her kitty party friends, everyone whispering their little secrets in each other’s ear careful not to spill it in the open air. It was years after that I got to enlighten myself about my own mother’s internal miseries through her diaries, depicting her unfair and forced marriage, her trauma as a young mother to three demanding children, her grief on leaving studies midway to become a housewife and the laments of a love-less marriage, all these sorrows which were unspeakable for here was concealed within those yellow ink embedded pages.
In my case a chance encounter with a Premium Winx Club edition diary with a heart shape metal lock at a local stationary shop became my first ever calling to toy with the idea of ever owning a diary. Its always attraction at first sight that works for me in best case scenarios then be it a Book or a Diary.
What happens when we are bestowed with our own modest space to unburden our soul’s inner turmoil and swirling chaos out? I always feel light headed as if being done with a long awaited religious ritual after performing which you feel uplifted spiritually. The women in my family were always good with pen and paper, pen which teaches us to leave an undistinguishable mark and paper which absorbs it all, signifying resiliency.
The practice of writing isn’t something which works wonders on the soul if written in a Diary. Diary is just a medium, it’s the flourish of words itself which withstood the trauma of time and make memories intact. We can write in anything-letters, Journals, Digital Notepad or even Daily Planners.
What makes the connection strong and irreversible is the feel of your skin on the writing material’s surface as you glide your hand across it while writing. That physical contact as you write your heart out over your silent companion who does nothing but to accept our every blaze with grace, without throwing or molding any prejudiced opinion.
Its human nature, when given appropriate time and thinking over a topic the chances of taking impulsive decisions and arguments reduces to a great extant. An argument with sibling or with Boss over company goals can lead to serious disgorgement of relationships. Jotting down our thoughts together in a structure allows us to analyze the situation more accurately, a valid reason why written reports and presentation are always preferred for formal meetings and organizational work.
Writing is a highly therapeutic habit if adopted. People going through clinical depression are also prescribed to maintain a regular diary or Journal to let their creative juices flowing, penning down their unstable thoughts, recollecting a particular sorrowful incidence which made them mentally ill patients in the first place, reflecting back on it, analyzing the futility of their situation once all is written in black and white.
People eventually publish their experiences in the form of memoirs to share it with the whole world. Some instances of how writing can be a therapeutic ritual can be traced to both the world of Fiction and reality. But since I am an avid Fiction reader I would like to go with Fictional examples only as another article can be devoted to real life incidents-
: P.S, I Love You- A romantic novel written by Irish Novelist Cecelia Ahern, published in 2003 narrates the story of newly widowed Holly who recently lost her beloved husband Jerry to brain cancer and is finding hard to get back to her normal life until she finds handwritten letters signed “P.S, I Love You” left for her as a transitional medium by Jerry.
Each letter containing a little instruction for Holly like- leaving the job she hates and find something in which her heart and soul resides and going to an all girls holiday with her friends, donating Jerry’s possessions each task assigned with the motive of enabling Holly her to finally move on and start her life afresh. Jerry’s words pulled Holly from her depression and started to listen to that tiny voice inside her head which she used to ignore all the time.
: Stolen- This psychological thriller was published in 2009 written by British author Lucy Christopher, narrates the story of 16 year old Gemma who was abducted at an airport by 24 year old Ty to the rough sandy terrains of the Great Sandy Australian Dessert.
The book is written in second person narrative and it is only in the end that we get to know that the whole novel is a word document written by Gemma herself as she recollects her memories to ultimately conclude the fact that her affection and soft feeling towards her now arrested captor was nothing but Stockholm Syndrome, a mental disorder in which captives develop soft feelings towards their abductors because of the total isolation and intimate moments spend during the kidnapping days.
Gemma started documenting her jumbled thoughts as prescribed by her therapist as a part of her post abduction therapy. Typing down her thoughts finally enabled Gemma to reflect back on what actually happened and why and how it happened clearing the fog of delusion from her heart and mind.
: The Correspondence- It’s a romantic English- language Italian movie starring Jeremy Irons and Olga Kurylenko in leading roles. The movie narrates the story of a young and ambitious PH.D student who is in a passionate love affair with an aged celebrated astrophysicists.
When Ed died because of his inevitable health issues he kept it from Amy and she continued to receive gifts, messages and emails from his unaware of his demise as Ed had activated a system through which Amy would keep on receiving replies and regular correspondence from him as if he was still alive. When Amy came to know about Ed’s death and the efforts he took to keep her company through his gifts, video and voice messages even after his death. Memory documented in any form goes beyond eternity and so does love.
The sheer beauty of written word is unexplainable, funny indeed. Words are nothing but a means of communication, communication means language, language means you can talk and if you can talk you would never feel alone. For those who think that Diary keepers must be emotionally repulsive and introverted beings they are so wrong in nursing such notion.
Even though life is going smoothly for you, who wouldn’t like to have at least an hour of pure blissful gathering with a dear diary, a pen and your thoughts alone? With nothing to care but just empty your burden out on those ever forgiving sheets without thinking about this vile-vile world. Writing a dear Diary is the best therapeutic treatment you could afford and the best means to express self-love. Go for it and embrace the habit. Dear Diary is good.
Written by:- Swastika Verma
Hey everyone, this is Swastika Verma . I hope you like it. I thank That Amusing Girl for giving me this opportunity. Do leave comments if you like it and I will reply soon.
Also read:- I am – A poem by Shabdika Data