Burn Baby, Burn
Biloxi Blues by Neil Simon– that is the movie that made me more seriously consider my written words. Matthew Broderick’s character, Eugene, always journaled his own observations of life. At one point, he wrote about his best friend, Epstein and not being sure of his best friend’s sexuality. As this movie was set in the 1940s and within the military, this was an especially big deal. Not so much to Matthew’s character, or people I know today; but due to the implications for his friend, Eugene (Broderick) wanted to rip out those pages of his journal. His friend Epstein – the subject of speculation - told him not to destroy his writing and to never to compromise himself; “Once you start compromising your thoughts, you're a candidate for mediocrity.”
That has resonated with me for 25+ years. I have been journaling since I can remember and am pretty sure I have never thrown away thoughts. And while I fully agree with Epstein’s character and am not okay with mediocrity, I do believe some thoughts and feelings are intended for moments in time. Just like friendships come for “reason, season, lifetime” categories; emotions do as well.
Whether with family feuds, changing friendships, hurt feelings and – of course – broken hearts; no matter the person or relationship, life evolves to present different paths, lessons and challenges. All we can do is make the best choice for our lives at that time and embrace the blessings each experience provides. Darn it – don’t we often learn the most from the most painful of situations…?
So #ThisJane Says, it’s okay to burn certain pages from your proverbial journal (or real journal in my case :-); to let go of a way you know you feel or felt at a certain time because you no longer can, do or should feel that way. Heck, write the journal entries you NEED to burn for the cathartic experience. Where mediocrity can be met when compromising your beliefs, it can also be lived by not allowing yourself to grow beyond you at one point in time. Burn baby burn…