Tuesday, August 30, 2005

journals, diaries and omas

I started writing in 5th grade. While visiting my Oma in Texas one summer, she gave me a diary covered in Chinese men sitting in fishing boats. She made sure to pick one with a tiny lock and key to protect my words from curious eyes. It wasn't my birthday or a gift giving holiday, she just somehow knew. I filled it almost daily with crushes, rants about my parents, stupid things my brother's annoying friends would do and my eventual obsession with River Phoenix. That little diary took me to a place that no one would ever know about.

In high school, I graduated on to black and white Mead Composition Books. Those were and always will be my journal of choice. I'd write almost nightly about innocent romances, my fears of moving away from home, my dreams of being on Broadway, adventures in canoes on the Intracoastal Waterway, feeling stupid, skipping school to play on the beach and my crushes on John Parker, Tilley and Garrett. When I'd have nothing or little to say, I'd scribble meticulous drawings of trees and flowers onto the pages.

In college, I found new uses for my Composition Book. I spent a semester befriending pot. My thoughts spilled out in long nonsensical ramblings, mostly indistinguishable words and sentences. I wrote about spaceships taking flight from my cigarette butts and rollercoasters riding over the edges of my skin. I'd write in a complete panic to get every fleeting thought and image onto paper. My entries would go on for pages and pages. Despite the romanticism and magical days I spent with my friends running around our backyard in afternoon rainshowers and lazily lounging on our backporch sipping colas, I failed a class. I failed my first college class on The Theories and Dynamics of Racism and Oppression and I decided that drugs were no longer my daily friend. After that, my journal became legible again.

I defaulted into Creative Writing Classes in college because my best
friends Karen and Ama were majoring in Creative Writing. Ama, was and still is, in love with words and literature, moreso than anyone I've ever met. I'd read her poetry and my heart would sink. Never in a million years would I be able to write like she could. I'd never written a real short story or even a poem, really. I went through the motions in short fiction and poetry classes. When I arrived at my dramatic workshop class my senior year was when I truly found something I would embrace. We were assigned a one-act play. About anything. I came home and quickly scratched out a play about the time my mother found an enormous spider in our bathtub. It took all evening and several neighbors to help rid my mother of her worst fear. My class loved it. They laughed and laughed. I fell in love, not with the story, but with the dialogue, the characters and the relationships I'd created. But I digress. This is supposed to be about journaling. I think.

I pretty much stopped writing when I moved to Texas in 1997. My journal has a mere handful of entries about my first day in Austin, my one day break up with my then boyfriend, a few dreams and maybe an occassional upset. I found myself writing when I was depressed. I found comfort in those lined pages. I eventually moved from my composition book to Microsoft Word. I moved from entries about my life to stories about made up people.

Sadly, I haven't had a composition book in a long while. Ama decorated one for me a few years back, which I've filled with editing notes and scores from spades games. I was given a blog site when Stacy set up the Storie Productions account almost a year ago. My blog doesn't contain my darkest fears or my innermost thoughts. Just my daily ramblings. I'm glad I have it. I'm glad I have a space to fill. I need to start back with that composition book though. I need a space to free myself of those days and thoughts that I can't share on a website for everyone to read.

1 comment:

goldendove said...
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