"Dear Diary"-- these two words had always been discouraged in a journal entry during my elementary school days. Journals were sophisticated, "Dear Diary" was for children. But recently I've begun to realize the value of these words and their variations. When I write in a journal, I no longer think of my journal as just a blank piece of paper to record my observations, thoughts, and future projects. I now think of it as a trusted friend, a journal angel, I like to say.
In addressing my journal as a friend, I feel more comfortable with sharing more in it, rather than always blurting out my thoughts and opinions to those around me. I find that it is an ongoing practice in maintaining composure around others, in being able to cherish my alone time.
"Dear Diary"--perhaps we don't have to write out these words each entry if we choose not to, but we can remind ourselves that our words are not to be judged, and that they are received and worthwhile.