Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Oh Really? What I Learned from my old Journals

My mom handed me a pile of books and pictures.  Here, she said, it's a few of your things I thought you would like.  Four journals -- fifth grade, 7th/8th grade, 11th grade and one from my semester abroad during my senior year in college, some love letters from my first boyfriend and a jumble of pictures from my childhood.   I spent an emotional late night in the guest room of my mom's new house, with the door closed, reading, crying, laughing, remembering while the kids all slept and Mark was back at our house.  There was so much there to think about, but I haven't processed it all yet.  Here's just one observation about those girls.

This girl wrote:  "I am so ugly and dumb.  I am so ugly and dumb. I am so ugly and dumb." And she underlined it a bunch of times, because she felt so badly about the spelling group she was in.

This girl  (on the left) thought she was too fat for a bikini and oh so desperately wanted a boyfriend and to be popular.

This girl loved her adventure in Europe.  She was so broke, and so enthralled by everything she ate, drank and saw.  "I had something wonderful tonight -- it was a mix of chick peas, lemons, garlic all mixed together and served with pitas.  I loved it!"  It must have been hummus, and it sure made a good first impression.  She wanted to see the world, she thought her life was a big adventure. She felt like she had nothing to lose by trying.

I think about these girls and how they formed the woman I have become. I still feel so timid about my abilities and being vulnerable.

This woman is afraid of what will happen if she says her dreams out loud.  

 I want to go back to talk to those other girls and tell them not to be so afraid and I want to talk to that college girl to remember what it felt like to be so fearless and confident.  

I feel like this woman better set some high goals, and then achieve them to do those other girls proud.  Be bold!


Jane said...

Say your dreams outloud Jill. We all should. Why are we afraid to? Not sure. Hope you have a great day!

Tara Thayer said...

god, i love this, jill.
may be the best thing i've read in a while.