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I'm so glad that Journal of a Solitude "has spoken" to you at this time in your life. As I believe I've mentioned, I appreciated it so much during a period of solitude/soul-searching and creating a rich internal life.

I loved your comments and review.



I would really love to read this soon as well.
Yes, there is a hige difference between solitude and being alone or even feeling lonely.
A balance is hard to achieve at times. I'm sorry to hear things are still stressful. I wish this may change.
One person's happiness may be another's contentment and vice versa. It's sad that people from more affluent countries tend to have so much less joy in life.


When I look back at the end of the day most of the time I see it were the small things that made the day.So I totally agree.


I really enjoyed this book, as well as one other collection of her diaries (the name escapes me at the moment). They are good for rereads, as different things pop out at me at different times.

I am sorry to hear that you are still struggling with stresses in your personal life. Some periods of life are harder than others to go through--I hope it gets easier for you soon. I'm sending you virtual hugs and good thoughts. Reading your blog has brought me many happy hours, both the blog itself and the books I've discovered by reading it. I hope that some of the good you send out in the world comes back to you multiplied!


This was the first of Sarton's journals that I read and still, I think, my favourite. Like you, I read at a time in my life when I needed to think through many of the same type of questions that Sarton is addressing and it was a great help. I hope you continue to find that the same is true for you.


I'm looking forward to getting further into it and plan on taking it along with me tomorrow when I go to my sister's house. I think the timing is indeed going to be good on this one-just what I need. One of the reasons I love books--knowing that someone else has already gone through what I am experiencing and likely has some good advice for me!


It is hard to find a balance--and I think I need to be happy with the smaller good moments rather than look for some overwhelming feeling of satisfaction. Life has just been frustrating in so many ways (best not to go over them all here)--it's hard to be optimistic sometimes, but I need to try and worry less over things I know I have no control over! And I think you are very right about the happiness thing and life in so many western cultures--Isn't Denmark supposed to be the country rated highest for happy/satisfied people? Must look that one up. And some people always seem to be naturally good humored--not sure how they do it!


I am trying hard to let go of the big things I know I have no control over. In a book I just read the characters (and the setting was WWI--battlefields) tried to find one beautiful thing every day--no matter how big or small or even seemingly insignificant. Maybe I will start trying to do the same thing.


Thank you Kathy--that is so nice of you to leave this comment--it has made my day. I sometimes think I let things 'get to me' but it can be very hard sometimes to not feel frustrated--I think it is often that lack of control over the way life is going at the moment. Lately they just seem to build up one after the other until I want to just throw up my hands! My reading has been off, too, but of late so many of the books I have set aside during the course of the year all of a sudden sound so very appealing--maybe that will help things get back on track by picking up some good stories once again and continuing on! I have one of May Sarton's other journals, too, the one about the house by the seaside (the name escapes me right now)--when she was living in Maine? Anyway--first things first--will take this one slowly and try and read it thoughtfully!


I really hope so, too. Sometimes reading a book that complements my life in some way--at some point in time is like having a great epiphany. It's wonderful when an author can put into words the things I am feeling.


I was convinced that I had read this book but having checked back through my reading diary, I now realise that what I actually read was Plant Dreaming Deep about living in an 18th century house in New Hampshire, which I loved.
Must look out for this though as I may well be in search of solitude after the Christmas season!
I have always tried to find that beautiful thing to focus on each day as it has always helped me through difficult times when it feels as though you are going under. Had a bit of a grim day yesterday but the dazzling array of stars that were on show last night when I went to put the rubbish out, really cheered me!


I read this a long time ago and loved it. I am sure you and Cath will both love it too. And I agree, it is the small things that make one happy, that mean the most.


Sorry to hear your day wasn't so good--I've had more of those of late than I like, so I can sympathize! Isn't it funny how when you look you can, however, find something beautiful--even when doing something so mundane as taking out the garbage? Is it the Northern Lights that are on display now? I've spent most of today cleaning (getting rid of stuff as I hired a dumpster), but I hope to spend the remainder of the weekend (maybe Sunday and Monday--since I have the day off) reading! And I must now go and check out Plant dreaming Deep as it sounds good--right up my alley!


I definitely need to focus on the small and unexpected things! I am hoping to find inspiration from the Sarton--and hope to spend some extra time with it this weekend!

vicki (skiourophile / bibliolathas)

I agree - there's a lot to be said for the value of the little things, because they do keep you going when things are rough. They also make you appreciate how happily serendipitous life can be -- something new and good is potentially lurking around every corner.


I like the way you look at it--and the idea of some unknown just around the corner. I have been doing lots of planning--small things to look forward to like buying a ticket to see Martha Graham Dance Co in January (which I am seriously contemplating at the moment....). Waiting for the biggies--whatever they may be, just means I end up being disappointed most of the time, since biggies rarely come my way. Though I am trying to find the beauty in small things--and things that cannot be bought (!), too!

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