I've had many journals. When I was married to my first husband, he read them without my permission and it caused a LOT of fights. He would never get it through his head that just because I wrote my fears or my dreams or my feelings that it meant I was unhappy with our relationship. He never understood the therapy of writing out feelings and then being done with them.

I stopped writing in journals for a long time after that, until after we divorced. Now, I've filled dozens of journals and I keep at it as often as I can. It's such a therapeutic release for me to write out my feelings and thoughts. I put in dreams and then their interpretations. I fill it with cards and mementos from special events. I even put in cartoons that I cut out from the newspaper!

I have it specified in my will that when I die my journals are to be destroyed. I don't think anyone could ever understand and be objective of what I've written.

Why do I keep them now, instead of destroying them as I go? I like to read them sometimes. It's a special feeling to see my growth through different times in my life. Since they cover decades, it's interesting to see what I felt important at one time in my life compared to now.

Writing is important to me. It's like breathing. I need to write.