May 28, 2014

Mortified

Recently I found myself watching the documentary “Mortified Nation,” based on the confessional reading series “Mortified.” People go on stage and read their diaries from middle school or high school. I’m sure there are also journals of shame well into the post-secondary years.

After watching this documentary, I decided to research a bit of my past writings and found one that was both a journal entry and online at Louisville Mojo. The whole piece is too long to share, but if you look hard enough, you might find it in its entirety.

I was younger, looking for love and, damn it, I knew exactly what I wanted. At least, I thought I did.

The piece was called “Just a Girl,” and here’s an excerpt:

I want just a guy so that I can be just a girl and we can be just together; low drama, something fun and peaceful. No more bar boys — these random jokers who make an acquaintance over drinks. Physical traits are of minimal importance. I don’t care about his height. I don’t care about his bank account, just that he is adult enough to have one. I don’t care much about how he looks as long as most things are in general symmetry and have some regularity of form. He needs to work; it doesn’t matter where. He needs a brain of some sort that is of general good use. No more idiots who can barely form a sentence, much less write one down. I want a companion, a man who respects me and loves me and who would be willing and able to create a small place in his life for me. I want a man unafraid of showing that he likes me by just saying, “Hey I like you.” No need for games or pretending to protect himself, as if my reaction could kill him. I am not cruel enough to kill. I want a man who can work through problems without whining and quitting. I dislike holding in anger and sleeping on arguments. I would like a man who has friends and doesn’t mind that I have them as well. I want a man to like my friends and I want to like his and feel comfortable when I meet them. I want a man like me but different enough to have his own mind and understand that I have mine. I would like a mate that could be supportive and take some of the weight off my shoulders after a long day and someone willing to let me do the same. I want someone who can appreciate beauty and understand when a rainstorm makes me cry or laugh or want to be close to him and maybe just sleep. One who will understand that the first snow of every winter belongs to my father and enjoy it with me. I desire a partner who is committed to living and enjoying life, someone with a creative spirit or one who admires and understands my obsessive need to create and can sometimes surrender me to the call of my art. I would like a partner who strives to make a difference in the world, even if it is as simple as talking to a troubled soul on the street. I want a nice, gentle man, a non-violent hot head who doesn’t scream; a man who can be angry and not react like a gorilla. I want just a guy who doesn’t worry about fitting my mold. I want just the guy who comes close.

Ugh.

To be honest, if my husband looked like Sloth from “The Goonies,” I don’t think we would have known each other longer than the first hello. “Baby Ruth”? I think not.

In defense of my youthful clarity, I think it is valid to make bold statements to the universe. Sometimes declarations need to be made. Once upon a time this was mine, and my husband is pretty close to what I was seeking. He’s relatively symmetrical and he’s put up with my extraordinary crazy for more than 10 years.

Even though, at 40, I find this a bit heavy-handed, I don’t regret writing the piece. I think my regret is that I spent too much time analyzing the journey instead of just existing in the moment. It’s hard to be in the moment when you are so desperately trying to understand who you are. Perhaps this is why journals are important. They preserve our most honest selves.