Dear Diary

May 1, 2013

The going gets tough.

Naomi

My first week of being 19 was pretty average. I noticed I’m doing things that a part of me feels 19-year-olds shouldn’t do: going for walks without a destination, looking for little things like a blossom forming, the church spire, a spot on the horizon. Do adults always have somewhere to go, somewhere to be? In the garden, gliding through the air on a swing I’ve had since childhood, I stopped and thought, Can a 19-year-old do this?

With each year and each new number, I’m still kind of waiting for life to start, expecting to get prettier, to gain intelligence, to become my “best self.” But this imagined zenith where everything comes together must not be the most important part of life, otherwise why do books always focus on the confusion and pain it takes to get there instead of the bliss and relative boredom of being content? At least with a book you know there is an ending, a certain number of pages left before the story can only continue in your head. (Does happiness continue until the end of the protagonist’s life? Does he or she find a house, settle down, start a family?) I can’t see where my final page is, but I often feel as if I am scrambling to get there, to find out how it all turns out.

I am slowly trying to come to terms with not knowing. Looking back to the beginning of this academic year, I can see that I knew nothing. Well, I knew about staying at home, the Smiths, feminism, the latest news, and studying for exams—but that’s really it. I’ve grown a lot. I think I finally feel on top of things, just as exam season begins. I am intensely looking forward to university now, and I frequently imagine myself there. I make up stories in my head for Future Me: what my bedroom will look like, what meals I’ll cook, what clothes I’ll wear, what music I’ll listen to, and the people I’ll meet.

Imagination is addictive. We haven’t had a proper hot day yet this year, so I keep visualising lying in the sun, pure heat on my bare skin. In bed at night, I can almost feel it. I feel powerful when my recollection is that vivid. Whatever happens from now on, I’ll always have that. Sometimes imagination is better than real life can ever be. ♦

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25 Comments

  • strawberryhair May 1st, 2013 7:12 PM

    Ruby and Britney <3

  • emseely May 1st, 2013 7:18 PM

    Totally get it ruby. I’m there. Have a better week, ok?

  • Naomi May 1st, 2013 7:28 PM

    oooooooh caitlin i love it!!!

    • Caitlin H. May 2nd, 2013 4:33 PM

      ~hidden symbolism~
      the orange balloon represents the one i blew up for you via skype celebrating your birthday!!!! <33333

  • freya2770 May 1st, 2013 7:37 PM

    ‘Take a moment to imagine the employees of White Castle forming chicken meat into rings (which is how I assume this goes down, but I don’t know), dropping those rings into a deep-fryer, then pulling them out and covering them with powder (as if we can’t just dip them in ranch dressing in accordance with the popular practice), and tell me you don’t feel bummed?’

    I can tell you I don’t feel bummed– for about the thousandth time I just feel SO STUPIDLY JEALOUS of people who live in the US and have access to this plethora of imaginative junk treats.

    Also feel like I could really go for some fried chicken rings right about now.

  • Kat Addams May 1st, 2013 7:45 PM

    Naomi has just explained so much of my life, it’s scary. Dream of the future or live in the present? Hope or a dull reality?

    • Lillypod May 2nd, 2013 12:11 PM

      Don’t be jealous. It’s edible sadness.

  • ColoredSoft May 1st, 2013 8:22 PM

    Britney, I think you have a right to mourn…I hope the very best for you.

    I’m in a library and trying not to cry.
    Sorry about the break up Ruby. I’m glad you, at least, don’t regret being with him

  • fallingstar May 1st, 2013 8:52 PM

    Katherine, I’ve been super stressed with finals too and deleting my facebook last weekend was the best decision I ever made. It makes you ridiculously more productive. And the procrastinating I do end up doing is looking at blogs and listening to music so its much more beneficial procrastination than just refreshing your newfeed x1000 times to see your friends doing things you can’t do with them because you have too much work to do. SO YES Katherine do it!

  • Tiger May 1st, 2013 9:22 PM

    Britney, I also think you definitely have a right to feel grief as long as you feel you need to. Everyone here on rookie is here for you and loves you.

  • allier May 1st, 2013 10:08 PM

    Caitlin! I just read Everything is Illuminated too! It was so strange and beautiful, I especially loved Brod’s story!

  • Blythe May 1st, 2013 10:16 PM

    Ruby–I totally know the feeling of “Well I picked a good dude for my first breakup.”

  • shinmachine May 1st, 2013 11:10 PM

    DD is now 1 of my fave sections in Rookie. i thought it’d be more interesting if hey made their entries handwritten by the writers,, though. (just a suggestion :))

    • shinmachine May 1st, 2013 11:11 PM

      *they.
      ugh.sorry. i just can’t ever say anything without a typo error *-*

  • Dylan May 2nd, 2013 1:17 AM

    Mannnnnn you guys

  • roosa May 2nd, 2013 7:52 AM

    ahh Naomi! I relate, so much. I feel like I’m living in a constant future, and it’s always been like that I guess. First it was, “when I get to high school, I will achieve the kind of life that i want to have”, then it was “oh well high school too is kind of sad and lonely, but when I get to university, well surely THEN I will achieve the kind of life that I want to have” and now my third year at the university is coming to its end and here I still am, as insecure and directionless as ever, basically feeling exactly like the 15-year-old me dreaming about high school and better days – with the exception that now I don’t really have any “next stage” to dream about, only a scary formless “adult future”. UGH. Oh well. But it’s okay to be incomplete, I guess life always is.

    For fellow drifters, a book recommendation: A Home at the End of the World by Michael Cunningham. Captures the feeling of not knowing where you belong so so perfectly, it’s like the most comforting thing, <3<3<3.

  • Myrea Alaia May 2nd, 2013 8:32 AM

    Aw Ruby <3

  • monalisa May 2nd, 2013 8:33 AM

    I relate to Naomi completely, and I am so sad reading Ruby’s I was hoping for it to be amazing for you. Stay awesome girls!

    apapillon.blogspot.com

  • eliselbv May 2nd, 2013 10:02 AM

    3 years ago I could have written what Ruby wrote. The exact same words, the exact same story. And today I’m dating the boy I broke up with three years ago again because “We’re both in better places, we can try again.”

    http://www.iloveyourjokes.blogspot.com
    http://www.iloveyourjokes.tumblr.com

  • Elizabete May 2nd, 2013 10:39 AM

    Chicken rings make me just as bummed as any kind of chicken meat, brr, it is really hard to believe that the ring was once a living being. But it is real world that shouldn’t be avoided. :)
    (I understand that animal rights weren’t the point of the dairy, it’s just that it is a rarely mentioned topic shut down by talking about human rights or lol proteinzz, but helping animals doesn’t mean neglecting humans!)

    Anyway, I admire all of the dairy writers, everyone is so talented!

    sorry about the offtopic comment, but i’m just incredibly lonely and will soon become the weird granny talking to bus drivers…
    http://melodyfairitale.wordpress.com

  • neenbean May 2nd, 2013 2:18 PM

    Naomi, you seem to do a lot of waiting. I’m 23 and I still go on swings, and you can too. Life is all about taking action, because nothing changes when you remain still. You already know that. While “getting prettier” sounds a bit dangerous to me (what does this mean to you?) you can and should keep reading and writing as you’re doing to become more intelligent and aware of the world. That is already a form of action. However, there is always more you can do to move towards a “best self” – and that self is one that is constantly evolving.

    Katherine, I love your writing style. You do a fantastic blend of hilarious and serious at the same time, kudos to you. Everything you do is visible socially now yeah, but maybe it might make you feel better that not many people care what you do and post online. It will be forgotten even if it doesn’t feel like it, and if not forgotten at least forgiven (hey, you were way younger, for crying out loud). I also feel like fried chicken on its own is kind of sad, so I’m not really surprised that fried chicken rings exist. It can’t be that hard to form when it’s barely chicken.

    • neenbean May 2nd, 2013 2:27 PM

      Ruby, you sound like an incredibly strong person. Most people are complete messes after first breakups. While maybe you aren’t displaying all of your emotions in your diary entry, you are really emotionally healthy and do seem independent enough to move on. Congrats on being awesome and powerful, lady.

      Britney, I am so sorry. You are not responsible at all for the hurt someone else feels. It’s a really terribly sad situation, but nothing you could have done would have prevented her from killing herself. Teens who are dealing with severe depression need serious counseling and the support of medical professionals, and it seems you were already a good, supportive friend to her. I won’t tell you she’s in a better place – I personally don’t believe in heaven. She’s gone though, and she doesn’t have to experience a life of pain anymore. Maybe you don’t want to hear it, but the depression will lift, as will the anger, and time does heal these wounds, and you should not feel guilty when that starts to happen (it might not feel like it ever will, but trust me, you’ll get there). She is gone now, but that doesn’t mean you should ever forget her, or forget the connection you had with her.

      Stay lovely, y’all.
      http://greybluedreams.blogspot.ca

  • chawi May 2nd, 2013 3:05 PM

    I definitely feel like deleting all social networking and living in the real world right now!
    http://sunshines-and-blue-skies.blogspot.co.uk/

  • pen2sword May 2nd, 2013 3:27 PM

    Naomi, beautiful writing, and my thoughts exactly. I recently turned 18 and have been feeling the same way; making goofy, pointless films with friends and wondering if I’m too old, plus dreaming about the future and especially the coming summer. Anyway… Off to read the rest of the entries now, just had to say that though.