Have you ever opened up an old journal or diary and really hated what you found? It happens to me quite a bit because the only time when I consistently kept one was when I was with my ex. Every time I open the book it’s a reminder of living a lie. It wasn’t me living the lie, it was the ex. My ex wasn’t happy for the last year that we were together and I didn’t know that until the breakup day. Sad story boo hoo, the point is that I don’t want to be reminded of that time, but every journal that I kept had a really cool looking cover so sometimes I’m like “oh yeah! My sister E gave me this because it has cartoon owls on it and is adorable! I wonder what I wrote inside- oh. Fuck.” So now because of that, I have a fear of starting journals inside cool looking notebooks because one day I might look back and there will be something terrible inside. I guess that means I’m afraid of the future. Or the future after the soon-future. The so far in advance future that when I look back I will say “what was I thinking?” Like I do now with my ex. But what’s the point of starting a really personal journal inside a boring ugly book?

I’ve thought about tearing out the pages that I don’t want to see anymore, and just using the rest of the book. But that seems like living another kind of lie. I don’t want to pretend that the past didn’t happen, it made me what I am. Don’t you hate it when you’re not happy no matter what you choose? I could put the books in storage and just forget about them. Maybe then by the time I look at them again I will be laughing because I can’t even remember what it was like being a teenager. That would probably make the most sense. But then again, E did give them to me in the first place. And I’m very sentimental so I like to keep gifts and things like that around. Maybe I should write all my next journals in pencil instead of pen. Maybe then the writing would just fade away and then in 60 years I can reuse the journal and it will be about happy things. Like places I’ve been to, or friends that I’ve made, or who I’m with, and what my children are like. Thinking of it like that makes me less afraid of the future.

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