Dear Diary

June 26, 2013

The end of the school year didn’t come soon enough.

Katherine

I dig up my old French textbooks and begin to examine them in order to figure out what I do and do not remember. I list everything I want to review: verb tenses and grammar concepts I know I can’t recall without help, vocabulary words we never covered in class, and certain readings that looked interesting and challenging enough to be valuable. I write “Summer Curriculum” at the top of a page and organize the information from my old textbooks into units. I edit the list until I am sure that everything on it is helpful and easy to accomplish before the end of summer. On a separate page, I list French movies and additional reading materials. I realize that I am flaring my nostrils and gripping my pen too tightly; I take a break without actually studying, and still feel mad at myself for doing so.

I need to become fluent before I’m 21. In high school there was a kid who made it his mission to become fluent in Spanish in four years. He didn’t reach his goal, but our teacher would always use him as an example of how far we should have progressed. Last year there was a girl in my French class who had taken two years of French and could speak it with perfect grammar and pronunciation. I feel like It’s good to know more than one language, and I know that I have both the education and ability to speak French more proficiently than I do. I’ve taken six years of the language and managed to win all but one French-student award in high school—yet I can’t speak it without pausing to mentally conjugate verbs and rearrange entire sentences. I should be better by now.

I think about what I know and what I do not know—how I form my opinions, and how people around me form their opinions. I think about this when I wake up and lie in bed, not moving, when I go to see a movie, and when I’m talking to my parents or grandparents, listing trivia about my new school. I think about the coming school year—what will it be like, and what can I get out of it. I don’t mind being pragmatic or thinking analytically, but I’m ready for my internal monologue to change or evolve. Given time, it usually does. ♦

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19 Comments

  • soviet_kitsch June 26th, 2013 7:12 PM

    ruby, i love your entries. you are beautiful.

  • Bex_cygnet June 26th, 2013 8:33 PM

    Naomi, I registered just to pass on how poignant and relatable I find your entries especially this week’s. Thank you for writing x

    • Bex_cygnet June 26th, 2013 8:40 PM

      whoops. The kiss was reflex. Awks, sorry!

  • Paige R. June 26th, 2013 8:33 PM

    Britney- I just graduated from middle school too. It felt like this in some ways, but different. I was going to a small catholic school, where most people had been there for almost their whole lives. I had only been there for 3 years, though and I hadn’t made many good friends. It felt like I was watching their graduation rather than experiencing my own. It felt unreal (and somewhat awkward).

    Anyways, I loved all of the entries. You guys write so beautifully!

  • rhymeswithorange June 26th, 2013 9:12 PM

    Katherine, I feel the same way about Spanish!! I realized when I listen to a non-native speaker, I can understand almost everything, but when I listen to a native speaker I am totally lost. This summer I’m going to try and listen to more Spanish music and watch movies too

  • elektraheart June 26th, 2013 9:53 PM

    I love languages and I want to master as many as I can before I get too old. Great entry, Katherine!

    • Graciexx June 27th, 2013 8:00 AM

      same here! I really want to be multilingual before I’m 20 :)

  • sungiant June 26th, 2013 10:27 PM

    Ruby!!! <3

  • alienbabe June 26th, 2013 10:34 PM

    Caitlin did a great job with the illustration!

    http://sweetandsourstyle.blogspot.com/

  • Cassie N June 26th, 2013 10:48 PM

    oh britney, i just graduated middle school and i can relate!

  • Rebdomine June 27th, 2013 4:36 AM

    oh ruby, i love you!

  • Saana V June 27th, 2013 5:56 AM

    Katherine i feel you!
    and wow ruby as good as always and aa i have a lot to say but i can’t think of anything

    and britney, i was your age last year – the school system is a bit different here. A lot different actually, i’m a year away of going to high school. But what i was saying was that wow you are a lot more mature than i was last year. And you’ll do just fine in high school, i’m sure of it.

    • Saana V June 27th, 2013 6:06 AM

      and wow i had to make our school system sound more complicated so i think i’m on something like junior high now but totally not, and that actually the “high school” in here is something like high school but also is not?

  • Sophie ❤ June 27th, 2013 7:35 AM

    This is so absolutely beautiful- a and Ruby, I absolutely see you!

    http://plainlysophie.com

  • Chloe22 June 27th, 2013 9:38 AM

    Pardon my strong use of words, but that guy from prom, Britney- WAS A MORON! seriously, who does that? It’s so mean!
    http://rhinestonemoon.blogspot.com/

  • Kourtney June 27th, 2013 12:33 PM

    I love you Britney.

  • saramarit June 27th, 2013 12:42 PM

    Britney, a boy dumped me in the same way when I was your age but I ended up crying in the bathroom! Well done for not being lame like me! I also started high school not knowing anyone and made really good friends, you’ll be fine.

  • barbroxursox June 30th, 2013 5:29 PM

    Naomi, I’m feeling the same way! :/ Last summer my job gave me few hours and I barely made any money, so that stressed me out. But this summer they are giving me almost full-time work and I thought I’d like that, but it is also giving me anxiety… I wanna hang out with my friends but some of them are traveling/have other obligations, or I just have to plan meeting with them which wasn’t necessary during the school year when we would just go out on Friday and Saturday nights. I am not entirely unhappy; I am making a lot of money (yay!) and sometimes get to hang out with my friends. I just feel like I’m unintentionally distancing myself from my friends which sucks because we’re all going off to college in a couple months and will be physically distanced from each other.

    http://lizard-onawindowpane.tumblr.com