Open Book

When I was a kid, I kept a diary (that’s probably shocking for a. a teenage girl who thought her handwriting was the bee’s knees and b. someone who currently keeps a diary and simply calls it something else and lets other people she doesn’t know – and some she does – read it).  

My first diary had a lock and it was blue with a picture of some horses on it, which was odd because I was never really around horses and never developed that odd fascination that a lot of elementary- and middle school-age girls develop with the horse. I even tried to disguise my diary as something else by writing “Moby Dick” on the spine in my nine-year-old handwriting and just leaving it on my closet bookshelf for all to find. 

I wrote things about going to my grandparents’ homes for the weekend or for Christmas and how my friend Lisa had bigger boobs than me and no boy would ever like me because I was flat-chested.  

While the flat-chested thing never actually changed, boys did start to like me and I graduated to one of those pretty, flowered, cloth-covered journals without a lock. When I was 13, I wrote about how I loved Chris, no I hate Chris and I love Joe, no, I love Chris again, now I still love Chris but it’s a different Chris than the first Chris, that Chris is just icky. And I wrote about how much I hated my mother and wished she would just leave me the hell alone, god what a bitch.  

Then I went through years of not keeping a diary. In college, I began writing letters to a fake person as a writing exercise for a class, and I wrote about how I was scared of graduation and I didn’t know what I was going to do with myself and I even admitted that I almost was jealous of the 1950s woman who was just going to get married and have kids. Except that I didn’t even have any really prospects for marrying and providing financial stability.  

After college, I started getting paid to write for a newspaper and that job was never a good fit for me. All it did was sour me temporarily on the whole writing thing, and I abandoned any type of journal. When I got pregnant, I started keeping a little bit of a pregnancy journal, but even that went by the wayside, what with all the vomiting and the peeing and such.  

During my maternity leave, I earnestly purchased a pretty pink-checked baby book, resolved to record those special little moments in Angel Face’s life, like her first smile and her first laugh. My darling girl, however, was born with a hip joint that never formed. Initial treatment didn’t work, which meant she was in a brace for the first six months of her life. All those precious firsts came much later than those of your average baby, and I was discouraged. 

Then, I discovered the online journal. Perfect! No need to sit down with a pen and paper! No pressure to fill in little boxes or empty pages! And things still get recorded. It’s just different. I mulled over starting my own blog for awhile, even came up with my title and talked to my husband about it. Then Zoot posted the Her Hangout announcement, and I knew it was sign. 

That’s how I started my blog. How about you?

This entry was posted in I'm a daughter, I'm a freak, I'm a mommy. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Open Book

  1. Erin says:

    I started my first blog just before my wedding….and then eventually graduated to my typepad space. I always tried to keep a journal as a teen…but I have terrible handwriting and my mind thinks quicker than my hand can write….typing is much better for me. Plus…and this is weird I know…I like that people can read my blog. It gives me some sort of bizarre validation to my thoughts or something.

    And you should know that I’m fairly certain that your flowered journal is in the basement of our parents house.

    My comments on your blog are always so long!

  2. Christina says:

    Oh I loved this post! I never kept a journal as a kid. My Mom was WAY too nosey for that. That is probably why I became such a daydreamer now that I think about it….
    I had been thinking about a blog since I found Amy (amalah via snarkywood) after I had been living in NC for a couple years and thought it could be a fun and somewhat easy way to keep up with everyone. I never went thru with it for fear that they would in turn stop communicating with me. If i put everything out there whats left to talk about.
    After we came to Columbus my Dad visited and I was newly pregnant and he said he sure would like more updates, how about myspace (Im sure i barfed in my mouth) I told him I’d think about it.
    NO kidding that was the day Zoot offered up Herhangout. About an hour later it was a done deal.
    Im glad I did it, as much for the baby as I am my family… however, my fear has come true. I have lots more readers than commenters and they are related to me but they dont involve themselfs. They just read it and go on about their day… Oh well. At least they feel like they are in on the changes and if that keeps us a little closer than its worth it:)

  3. mommymartin says:

    Love your blog. Online journals are really great–once you get over the initial fear of having total strangers read your thoughts. And I’m glad you got over the bad taste newspaper gave you towards writing!

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