A to Z Challenge
I think I recorded just about every useless detail of my childhood at one point. Maybe that’s why I can’t remember much without, essentially, targeted provocation? I’ve had countless journals and diaries throughout my childhood. I think back on it now and I can’t imagine what I could have possibly filled 80% of those pages with….before I started liking boys, of course.
I never named any of my journals and I hated referring to them as my diaries. I liked the composition notebooks best because the lines were wider but it was more difficult to hide in the room I shared with Stilla. I left one out on the coffee table once. I have no idea what happened but I set it down and walked away. When I came back (hours later, mind you), it was on the kitchen table and mom and Krank Ficken were smirking beside it. They found out I had been smoking pot. Actually, I wasn’t but at the time I didn’t know the difference between common house spice and the luscious green herb. That’s when I started smoking pot with mom [and Krank Ficken].
The funny thing is, about a year before this Krank Ficken told me mom was reading my journal and warned me to stop putting in details. I told Stilla who already knew about the abuse and her advice was to write a letter asking for help where mom would see it next time. This is so stupid, I realize 20 years later, because he was basically saying mom knew about the abuse and instead of going to police or for help, only told him she knew through my diary? If she wasn’t going to do anything, why warn me she knew? I’m confused now. Why didn’t I confront mom instead of writing a letter and then hiding my journal better? I’m so confused…
My best friend in eighth grade, Jersey, and I bought a matching set of diaries. They had Taz from Looney Tunes on the front and a cheap button lock that probably came with a pointless key. Any time I spent the night we would switch diaries and read for hours. I could tell her anything and not worry. Opening my diary to her was an extension of that trust and that’s how she found out about Krank Ficken. It’s how we found out a lot of things, including how much we hated each other throughout the week. We always discussed what we read and fell asleep hours later not at all mad or changed. We were very close. I have yet to find a friend I can trust in such a way since.
My Taz diary ended up in court and used against Krank Ficken just before my 15 birthday. I had to go through and erase all of the mentions of smoking pot with mom so she wouldn’t lose custody. This devalued the evidence against Krank Fricken and it’s one of my biggest regrets. I should have handed over everything fully intact and gone to live with my grandparents like most pieces of white trash… The weight in my chest tells me he would have served more than 3 years in prison. It’s like he went to a cancer ward anyway…fucker came out healthier than he went in and with a new set of teeth.
The best part of having a journal or diary is when it’s time to destroy them. I have not kept one. LIE. I have one, but, for some reason I stapled all of the used pages together in sections. I have no idea what’s in them. I’m not even sure it’s a journal. Looks like some drawings/sketches inside; I see words to something. Then there’s a random poem and then notes from when I tried to learn tarot reading. I was terrible at it. I haven’t tossed this journal because I’m waiting to open the pages. I haven’t been interested enough yet.
I feel destroying old journals is like burning away the worthless parts of your past. I burned my first journal the summer after grade 9 as I waited for our lives to change forever as a result of Krank Ficken’s imprisonment. I brought my thin composition book that told of my happenings about town with boys I’d never see again, joints I smoked in the woods with friends I had already lost contact with, and school days I wouldn’t miss for another 5 or so years, to the graveyard across the street. I sat before my favorite headstone and smoked a joint as I watch my past burn in the grass before me. My life had already changed.
I burned Taz when I was 20. I had enough and it was time to really start putting that part of me in the past where it belonged. Lugging around this shitty diary with this shitty, torn story was a weight my tears told me was finally too much. I lived in a dumpy apartment above a garage surrounded by a mix of banana and palm trees. This meant we constantly dodged flying American cockroaches (freaky bastards). We had no a/c and the carpet reminded me of the kind my grandma has on her outdoor patio. I was depressed and my dude at the time, Lennon, showed signs he was bored with the relationship, as was I. So, I almost set the bathroom on fire one page at a time. It smelled awful and the paper burned weird. Some caught and turned to dust instantly whereas some burned slow like damp cardboard. The smell was atrocious but I felt it suited the moment. I was destroying a large part of what was destroying me. And it felt liberating despite the pungent funk. Clearly, I’ve yet to move on completely, even in my thirties, but you should have seen me 12 years ago!
Blogging doesn’t provide this final step…