Last night, I sat on the floor in an empty bedroom of our house and read through over 20 of my old journals. My handwriting morphed from huge bubble letters, to heart-dotted i’s and loopy y’s, to awkward cursive [that made me feel sophisticated], to the penmanship I recognize today.
I cringed as I read the recount of a 6th grade pool party. That summer day came flooding back almost instantly. I had felt so confident in my new tankini [the kind with boy shorts – so hawt] only to end up feeling like I needed to die, because I laughed so hard that a piece of sausage [which had been lodged in my pallet expander] shot out of my mouth and hit one of the cutest boys ever, right in face.
I haven’t eaten sausage pizza since. Come to think of it, he probably hasn’t either.
I laughed and felt an odd since of playground pride as I read about the time I stood up to a bully who stole my best friend, Lauren’s, lunch money. Or about the time she got left behind after a school assembly in 4th grade. After voicing my concern, the teacher retraced her steps and found her locked in the lobby of our gym. With a purple gelly roll pen, I berated myself for not going to the bathroom with her, because “at least we would have been forgotten together.”
She was my perfect opposite, so goofy and delicate and shy, which is why I think we fit perfectly together for so many years.
It makes my heart hurt, in a bittersweet sense, to remember and appreciate a former best friend. A friendship that disintegrated not because of any malice or ill feelings, but only because we let life happen. I don’t regret much, but not keeping in touch with her tops that short, short list.
I stumbled across a saved letter from Danielle, a girl who probably doesn’t even remember me, telling me she looked up to me. Why? Because she thought I was pretty, I had met N*SYNC and because I stood up for people.
This proves that in 6th grade, mature priorities are almost developed.
I came across letters that I wrote to “my future husband” and even now, I’m still debating if I want to show them to Cory. But maybe I will, because they’re proof that he’s who I’ve been waiting for my entire life.
Last night I received a beautiful, bittersweet lesson. Unknowingly, I’ve taught myself that it’s the mundane things, the small moments which may never receive a second thought, that mold you into the complex, fascinating person you are today.