As a child I wrote notes and kept them hidden. Then I think that probably my mother discovered my notes, she bought me a diary. It was very beautiful, I can even feel the smell of its paper in my mind. It had a nice black leather cover, pages were thick and each page had the date at top. It was a grownup's thing given to a child and I just loved it. As a child when I opened that diary, the date on top and blank page below it made me feel that I should fill that blank page and write about what happened today.
It was not like interesting things happened to me each day. Sometimes I wrote about songs I listened. Sometimes I wrote about my very private feelings. It made me felt great. I felt like I am sharing these things with myself or with a trusted friend who won't judge me.
As I grew, my writings became more frequent and romance, love, loneliness, desires, planning, career, my relationships with other people became the main topics. I also used pages of my journals to draw, to write poetry, short stories and even movie reviews. I remember when I watched "Forest Gump" I wrote a whole page about it, cut a picture from newspaper and pasted it with that review. Then I started pasting pictures in my diary, I colored pages, copied things I read elsewhere and decorated them with colors and drawings.
I still keep a private online journal on blogspot. My writings are usually about my wife, my siblings, career, choices I am making, which are reshaping my life. I have never written about my mother in journal. When I don't write about her, I feel like my journal understands me and is telling me its ok we can talk about her later.
My writings evolved over time, topics changed, style changed, even the format and medium (now internet) changed. Writing diary helped me keep myself focused, understand my strength and weaknesses, it made me happy, provided me luxury of thinking out of the box.
It becomes routine after a while. It is like calling an old friend and talk to them or going through your favorite part of the day.
There are also times when I don't write for days and don't miss it at all. Then something would happen or something would come to my mind and I would want to write it down instantly.