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I devoured your essay…and have read it three times this evening. You reached inside my brain and brought out the painful and then wonderful memories of my journal stolen from my Locker in high school. I know it was someone in my speech class…because we all used journals that we quoted from…omitting hurtful personal and private thoughts when we shared in class. Our class was competitive and I was resented for my literacy.

I was deeply hurt by the loss of some of my earliest essays about my life and did not write in a journal again until college…but I kept writing them and when I joined the Navy I wrote a journal and closed it every year. I am now 77 years of age and have every journal since college here in my records at home. I published a memoir from my Service in the Vietnam War … using notes from my Daily journal writings.

I have almost burned my journal collection several times because I am in my last years of life now, and I know there are things I wrote that would be painful to read….but so much has notes of beauty and strength like your essay and this note of sincere thanks for you, your sharing, your courage, and your gift of words. I am so glad I found your open heart here. Godspeed and write until your last day. I will.