Dear Diary

May 30, 2012

School’s out forever.

Katherine

At first I thought this week was going to be all blaarrrrggghh, then I thought it was going to be ehhhh, until I realized it was shaping up to be sort of “Well, OK then.” I guess what I’m trying to say is that my week was all right, but I thought it was going to be the worst.

Every year, the senior class at my school takes a trip to Florida. The girls in my class spent the month before the trip ENDLESSLY talking about how they were dieting or how they felt like they were too pale to go on the beach yet (“No, I’m paler than you, let’s compare arms”). I’m pro-diet if that’s something that you like doing, but also pro just getting through a school lunch without someone talking about how fat they feel. That is fairly annoying. Also, because I have a contract with myself that says I have to feel sorry for myself 100% of the time, I would randomly mutter things to myself such as, “I don’t even know who I’ll sit by on the bus, let alone hang out with on the beach,” or attempt to crush someone’s excitement about the trip by saying things like “BUT WHAT ABOUT THE SAND THAT GETS IN THE CROTCH OF YOUR BATHING SUIT.” I was being a total Debbie.

Saturday morning, I randomly chose a bus, let out an exasperated sigh, and looked for a seat. Seemingly all were taken. Then, all of the stars aligned and the gods and goddesses of friendship decided to give a sister some help and a magical rainbow of ACCEPTANCE pointed the way to an empty seat. I was more than thrilled when the voice of the girl I’ve had the biggest friend crush on ever was all, “You can sit by me, Katherine.” That sounds like a really lame and common thing to quote, but to me, it was as if Harry Styles were serenading me with “What Makes You Beautiful” whilst offering me a baby kitten. We spent the next eight hours on the bus quoting Parks and Recreation, being obnoxious, and pretending to be Scarlet and Savannah, two southern women who judge their self-worth by their attractiveness to men, ability to reproduce, and wealth. We were stupid and loud and it was honestly just fun to have a normal interaction with THE COOLEST FUNNIEST GIRL EVER. I’m not creepy or anything. She’s just the Ann Perkins to my Leslie Knope and I may have told her I loved her on the beach the final night of our trip. Whatever. I just think she’s so cool and I want to be friends. SO BAD.

Anyway, the trip was just fine. I got to talk to people I always wanted to be friends with, even if it was a little too late. I hung out on the beach and was actually happy to be with my grade at some points. I also may have told one of my former high school crushes that it burns to pee in the ocean, but it’s whatever because there were bananas on his graduation party invitations, and he called Bridesmaids “just a chick movie.”

There was one night when the dean of students gave this really scary speech where he said that there were six or seven seniors he would not be seeing in heaven. He said that he could list those six or seven, but he wouldn’t. He told us that although God wouldn’t punish us, he would let terrible things happen to us until we believed. He said that eventually we would become too tired, and we would turn to the faith. He also told us that we were too young to be able to know whether or not there was a God, and that because we had so little experience we had no right to question the faith of our fathers.

Obviously, my friends and I were furious. I was angry that he told us that we were essentially too stupid to make decisions about anything. I was also mad because I know no Christians who think that you should never question any aspects of the faith or that God lets bad things happen to nonbelievers, but that nothing bad happens to Christians. Those who believed felt misrepresented and scared, and those who didn’t felt frustrated and scared.

When we returned for the final assembly of the year, the school was beginning a renovation. As I walked down my hallway, I watched a worker sledgehammer the wooden cubby that is my locker. I watched it splinter into pieces and I felt like I was being set free. I can finally let go of all my frustrations of this past year. I don’t have to think about teachers trying to save my soul, deans giving terrifying death-and-damnation speeches, or chapel speakers randomly stopping in the middle of a speech to tell us that believe that being gay is a choice—the worst choice you can make. I can find other people’s faith beautiful again, because I won’t feel crushed by the negative aspects of religion. I can let go of getting stood up, dealing with school-dance drama, hiding during pep rallies, and facing narrow-minded teachers. I can hold on to the memory of my religion teacher, who encouraged me to continue to speak in class discussions, even if the kid who sat behind me called me a bitch and a baby killer.

I don’t think I’ll ever return to my school for a visit, but I don’t want to spend forever hating it. It’s in the past; it can’t hurt me anymore. And it wasn’t so terrible. I never had to deal with bullying or major family problems or any other issues that plague high school kids in general. It sucked, but it was all right. ♦

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16 Comments

  • WitchesRave May 30th, 2012 7:43 PM

    Ruby, write whatever you feel like writing in the moment that you sit down and type and know that ever girl, boy, man ,woman, hedgehog that reads your entries is by your side and would give your hand a squeeze if technology allowed it (I mean seriously its the 21st century cant some russian scientists have invent that already? Who ares whats in space!) :)

    witches-rave.tumblr.com

  • lylsoy May 30th, 2012 7:50 PM

    If a fairy offered me a wish, I’d wish that no teenager ever has to experience the death of their parents. I felt just like you for a very long time. There are events in life that I just want to share with her, but I can’t! And that still hurts.
    hugs x
    gossipgonzesse.tumblr.com

  • taste test May 30th, 2012 7:51 PM

    Katherine! I just got out of a conservative Catholic high school and I loved your diary so much. Like you, I realized in the last couple weeks of school that my classmates really aren’t that bad, but on the whole, I’m just really happy I’m done. I’ll never have to argue against not just my teacher but my entire class about abortion again. I’ll never have to study a textbook that compares homosexuality to eating dirt and girls who have had sex to chewed gum again. I’ll never have to listen to the girls comparing each other’s “bikini bods” and calling each other sluts or the guys calling everything they don’t like gay. I can put all the bad memories behind me and move on with my life.

  • GlitterKitty May 30th, 2012 8:01 PM

    Katherine, this is so dorky but, can you, me, and the other girl be best friends? Like seriously, every time I read this thing I’m like, “Katherine is exactly like me. I am her. She is me.” Ex. I just started watching Parks & Rec and am completely obsessed! One of my friends is getting seriously annoyed of the play-by-play I give her after watching an episode.

    And Ruby, don’t write something you think is stupid just to have something light. Be real even if it’s hard because we all love the real you. And I wish I could give you a big hug and bake you some cookies but obviously, I can’t. So, ~metaphorical hug~ and ~metaphorical cookies~

  • Tara May 30th, 2012 8:01 PM

    Ruby, your diary was very moving. I say write what you want to write!
    Dylan, I’ve always been the baby too!!! I completely relate to this having gotten on with older people aka adults often but also looking like a child even now.
    Naomi I felt that way about ending high school too. not completely but had some not-so-great feelings attached to my social situation/relationship with peers/so forth and felt so ready to be OVER. I’m happy you could get through it too.
    Katherine-I love the befriending friend crush moment! I always have admiration for really cool people and that moment when you two start talking and have so much in common is a beautiful one. I really liked your thoughts on ending school. Not hating it but not liking it either.

  • Lani May 30th, 2012 8:32 PM

    Katherine, reading your journal entries is a perfect reminder that I am not the only one having issues as such during high school- right down to good times with a friend crush. Thank you so much

  • moonchild May 30th, 2012 8:47 PM

    Ruby, don’t feel like you ever have to write a certain way to please us readers. While what your mom said was smart, we are open to all of your feelings, light and heavy.
    Love ya dahl! :) :) :)

    Gwen
    http://under-a-bridge.blogspot.com/

  • Nomi May 30th, 2012 8:58 PM

    “Anxiety makes everything seem impossible.”
    I couldnt have said it better if I tried.

  • a-anti-anticapitalista May 31st, 2012 11:16 AM

    Dylan, I turned 19 this year and I am starting to feel the exact same way :c although I am still the baby in most groups of people I am around whenever a high-schooler shows up I feel like… oh wait… now I am not anymore, I have to be the grown-up for this person, how awkward for me. And being in activism whenever I find myself speaking about high-schoolers and “how to reeach theese kiiids” and acting as a sort-of mentor I just feel so strange.

  • eliza dolittle May 31st, 2012 2:31 PM

    Hi Ruby :)

    My dad passed away about 12 years ago now just before my 8th birthday. He had melanoma, and I’d been reassured that he was getting much better at the time.
    I spent a long time grieving, especially because I was 8 and hadn’t had to acknowledge death or the real existence of the outside world before.

    I would often cry or complain about how unfair it was, because it is always unfair, and how come it had to happen to me, because your sadness is always the strongest sadness in the world.
    Which is all pretty cliche, and I certainly feel very selfish thinking about how I reacted, but it’s important to know that there is no wrong or right way to feel, no matter what anyone tells you. And this includes not grieving; I didn’t cry until 6 months after my dad died, and a visit the hospital where he’d been for so long and knowing that he WASN’T there drove it home.

    So keeping yourself as safe as you can, you wallow in self pity or move on or get angry or question the living shit out of yourself and the world around you. Just do what you need to do, and don’t let anyone make you feel that you’re not coping in the right way. <3

  • cleobea June 1st, 2012 8:48 PM

    Dylan can you right a peice about how to get your way into getting a internship and your own stuff ans stores in such!!! Please rookie

  • Mim June 2nd, 2012 12:18 PM

    Dylan, I was always the baby (and still am) in my social circles. One thing that helped me interact as an “adult” was just starting to do “adult” things. So, like, encouraging the “precociousness” of my friends, even if they are officially too old to be precocious (I mean, if I’m too old for it, they HAVE to be (: ). One of the first times I noticed that I should do this, I was camping with some adult family members, and they started taking on various chores, and I was sitting around waiting for someone to ask me to do something (but totally willing to do it, just not taking initiative.) And one of my relatives took me aside and said that some people were annoyed that I wasn’t just jumping in… they expected me to just pick something and do it like the rest of the adults! So that was a kick in the butt… but now I look for things like that, as well as ways to be encouraging of people as well as have interesting interests to talk about. It seems to work mostly.

  • NadZ_8 June 3rd, 2012 4:10 AM

    My dad passed away when I was 3! I always wondered why he had to pass away so soon, I don’t even remember him… But later I found out in my early teen years why. Everything happens for a reason.
    Anyway, I’m busy with final exams at school.
    Its frightening, I don’t know what to do after this and if I’ll be able to stand on my own to feet.
    I guess I just HAVE to!

    P.S. I just joined. I fell in love with Rookie. :)