How foolish I am to believe that a cup of Coca-Cola at 7pm would allow me to be asleep at 11.

Tonight has been the night of assessments.  Talking with my brother is an assessment of sorts, a detailing of the past few weeks of our lives, passing information along about our family to one another. I was missing him a lot today, but I sort of like that we’re away, because it makes our conversations more direct and meaningful, and our time together increasingly enjoyable.

After the conversation I wrote a sort of self-assessment in my journal. It’s an exercise I’ve been meaning to take on for a while, and many times have contemplated in my head. I ditched my older journal, which I have filled to about three-quarters, and dove into a journal that my BFF Whitney bought for me in San-Francisco. It’s one of the leaf-covered, handmade paper journals, and I have the perfect pen for the paper that seems like it’s come out of a paper press. The act of writing on the paper is enough to make me want to fill it quickly.

My assessment was quick and to the point, covering the mental, physical, spiritual, and emotional facets of my life. It has been a long time since I’ve been that broad and open with myself; often when I write in my journal I am so emotional that reading the pages all the way through puts me on a roller-coaster with myself. But I enjoyed this assessment, finding that my thoughts came together quickly and I wasn’t critical of myself, but compassionate. I’m going to bed reading Richard Foster’s A Celebration of Discipline, a gift from my cousin and his wife, and thinking of things to share about my journey.

I like checking in with myself once in a while. My conversations with myself involve a lot of criticism and nagging, and tonight I felt a sense of awareness, openness, and compassion. I hope I can carry those things through into the world tomorrow.