Jun. 14: Clumsiness is my super power

pgi0042 I broke my ankle three weeks ago. Here’s where I would normally tell you the totally truthful way it happened, one that would subtly underline my constant willingness to sacrifice my personal dignity for the sake of heroism and hearing it would make you want to send me flowers and food and gifts of all kinds.

But I’m too tired to come up with anything good. Please make up an action-packed story for me. Thanks.

What really happened is this: As I walked through the front door, I tripped on a shoe someone had left out. I faltered, twisted my ankle, and fell. I heard the snap of my bone break; it was … unpleasant. We went straight to the E.R., where they confirmed I’d broken the hell out of my fibula.

A week later I had surgery to repair the break with a plate and screws. I’m in a fiberglass cast for six weeks, after which I will graduate to a walking cast/boot.

Oh, and I’ve been diagnosed with clinical chronic crankiness. It’s a thing. Unfortunately, there is no cure. Sadly, it’s only the people around me who really suffer.

Some notes about this ankle-breaking experience:

  • kneescooter The orthopedist recommended a knee scooter, which I had never heard of but then tried, and now I believe that knee scooters are the most magical invention ever invented. Crutches are for suckas. Seriously, I may look like a moron on it, but it’s so much easier getting around.
  • I’m temporarily camped out in our living room—it’s easier to get around on the hard floors and no stairs. Also, when people come in the front door, I can screech GET OUT OF MY ROOM! It’s fun.
  • Sponge baths can hardly be called “baths.” Yuck. There’s no substitute for a good shower.
  • The pain killers I’ve been given—they’re the hard core, knock-me-right-out kind—put me back in the E.R. a week after the surgery. I woke up last Sunday and suddenly couldn’t keep down foods or liquids. Pffftt. Once injected with anti-nausea stuff and lots of saline, I was back to normal and haven’t had trouble since. I’ve been able to cut back quite a bit on the drugs this past week. 
  • All of this is sooo not worth the handicap parking.
  • I’m bored silly. If I open the blinds, I start doing that Rear Window/Mrs. Kravitz thing, and quickly close them before I witness any neighborhood crimes or gossip-worthy activities.

All this is to say that there is an explanation for the low profile I’ve been keeping. I’ve been sleeping 12-18 hours each day, which leaves little time for anything exciting to happen to write about. Toss in Netflix and, well, there goes my day.

jen

May 22: Sullen teen = sullen mom

boy The Boy frustrates me a lot lately. A lot of it is his snarky attitude—where on EARTH did he get that???—but the nagging required to get him to do anything other than play video games and play more video games is exhausting.

He thinks piano is stupid because most of his friends don’t play. Ask me how much I care about that opinion. Someday he’ll be glad I forced him to take a minimum of five years of lessons. I know this. But right now, I am sooo tempted to give in. I hate that he once thought it was so fun, but because of his idiot friends, he thinks he has to hate it now. I hate how he loathes practicing even though he really truly is good at playing; he caught on way faster than Katie did. I hate that he stops playing mid-song if the practice timer dings. I hate that he still has another year of lessons to get to FIVE and I really just want to get it over with so I can nag less.

I also really, really hate “Scarborough Fair.” So much. But I can’t ask him not to play it.

It’s not just piano. He makes the I’d-tell-you-I-hate-you-if-I-thought-I-could-get-away-with-it face if we remind him to do his homework before he gets on the Xbox. He makes the face again if we ask him why he hasn’t turned in assignments and therefore has a 29% in social studies. He makes the face if I ask him to push his chair in or pick up trash he’s let fall to the floor or hang up his towel. I do not enjoy that face. I want to smack that face. He has no idea how lucky he is that we’ve never adopted a spanking/slapping disciplinary method. He also has no idea how close I am to re-thinking that policy.

So… yeah. I’m sometimes not a big Jack fan these days. If I’ve had a little bit to drink, I refer to him as some not-very-nice things, and that is why I don’t often drink around him.

But then last week he came home with a recipe from his FACS class (FACS = Family & Consumer Sciences, this generation’s Home Economics) and wanted to make us dinner. It was basically homemade Hot Pockets, but he was excited to re-create what was “so delicious” in class that day, so we got the ingredients and let him make us White Trash Dinner. It’s hard to complain about a kid who wants to prepare a meal for his family.

The next day he came home with recipes for lemon chicken and blueberry muffins. I noticed he kept referring to the iPad while making the chicken, and assumed it was a FACS web site or something; when I asked, he said “It’s got tons of recipes and they look so good. It’s mar… tha… stewart… dot com.” I think he’d be even more impressed with her if I showed him this:

stereotypes 

While the chicken was grilling, Jack even set the table. We ooohed and aaahed over the yumminess of the meal. It really was quite good. When we were done, he cleared off the table. In other words, he acted like a normal human person.

cook Last Friday he came home with a cheesecake recipe—a cheesecake recipe that called for THREE AND A HALF POUNDS OF CREAM CHEESE. I thought that was slightly excessive, and encouraged him to find a different one. At the same time, I was glad he was wanting to make things from scratch rather than reading directions on the back of a Jell-O cheesecake box. Once he’d settled on a new recipe, he was eager to get started on it, and stayed up until midnight to wait for it to finish baking.

That cheesecake was fall-over-dead delicious. He was so proud, too, to watch us devour it.

After twelve long years of feeding that kid, it’s kinda nice to have the favor returned.

Now he’s talking culinary school and getting all snobby about food. It’s hilarious. Forget that the kid has still never eaten anything green, nor does he ever plan to. He thinks he’s a foodie now.

And it makes my shriveled black Mean Mom heart fill with love and adoration again for this little boy who can still acknowledge that not everything that makes Mom happy is as horrible as piano. Today, cooking. Tomorrow, maybe a concerto? Eh, I can hope.

jen

Apr. 30: Month in review

april April 2014 is over. I haven’t done one of these month-end things in a while, but I sooo want to bid this month GOOD RIDDANCE that it seems appropriate to resume the semi-habit today.

Special days I celebrated this month and how:

  • Ummmmm… can’t think of a one. I mean, some good things that happened this month, sure. No actual celebrations, though.
  • Sherilee swung/swang/swinged/swunged through town while touring college campuses with her son. We met up for breakfast and had a lovely visit, as we always do. I’m crossing my fingers that Seth chooses Lewis & Clark so she swings through town even MORE often!
  • I had a court date for My First Speeding Ticket Issued From a Person, Not a Camera. I know, I know… it’s not so shocking that I got stopped for speeding, but that it had never happened before. The whole thing was unremarkable, as I shared in my Facebook status immediately after. Boo.

photo1a

  • Spring is here, finally; we had some really beautiful days this month—this week the temps are hitting the mid-80s. The sunshine is a lovely thing to see.

I saw things with my eyes:

  • Lots of good stuff on TV these days… And OH so much trash! Chrisley Knows Best, I’m talking ‘bout you.
  • I’ve watched (listened to) Frozen on repeat most the month. You know those annoying people who recite movies word for word, beginning to end? It physically hurts me not to do it. Ye be warned.
  • Katie has now been introduced to The Breakfast Club. She knew about the movie from its references in Pitch Perfect and had been asking if she could watch it. Like an idiot, I forgot to consider all the reasons it’s rated R. Oops. (How does that saying go? Something about “great parenting falls somewhere between ‘don’t do that’ and ‘oh, what the hell.’”) I think what Katie enjoyed most about it was recognizing four of the five stars from their episodes of Psych.

This month’s good and bad:

There’s really only one thing to talk about here: Theresa’s husband lost his cancer fight on April 10. I rambled a bit about it here. It’s hard to write about for many reasons, but mostly because I want to be respectful to Scott’s family’s grief. I’m intensely angry and so, so sad.

There aren’t enough four letter words for cancer. It’s time to invent new ones. I bet Val could help me with that. :)

I likes to share the silly stuff:

I want to close on a less bummer-y note, so here are pictures I’ve been collecting.

photo 1

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photo 4

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  photo 2

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groceries 

Time to move forward. May will be good, right? 

    jenoriginal

    Apr. 21: Related-ish to 4/20

    In the midst of feeling super-shitty about life and pissed at the world in general, it’s nice to happen upon things that bring a smile. Recently I’ve found a lot of them on Instagram.


    This Baby Max Easter photo:

    1527787_652372414834721_1568897663_n

    It’s been awhile since I’ve gnawed on those cheeks. Great-Auntie Jen is going through withdrawals. Must fix.


    Margaret posted a pic of her beautiful, obedient pups:

    d6e7f85ac90811e388450002c9d722a0_8

    How cute? So cute!


    Kim F’n’s goofy dog loves the sunroof:

    a8516558c8c711e386640002c9d3484e_8


    OK, this is just THE BEST: Ed has been taking/sending his nephew’s Flat Stanley around the world (Portland, lately):

    acf4d1e6c7d511e399600002c99c4784_8

    Now, what I love most about this is not just that he’s taking pics of Flat Stanley all over the world (which is pretty great), but that he’s gone an extra step and made accessories for him. He turned him into a hipster for recent Portland pics, and gave him a helmet for a bike trip. And what I love about that is the picture in my head of Ed buying a box of crayons (24? 64 with a built-in sharpener? I must know!) to make Stanley his new clothes/gear, designing them so they look right AND fit perfectly, and laminating them. It just makes me so, so happy.

    It almost makes me feel bad about the time I accused Ed of hating all the nice things in life.


    wtf_omg_lol_-_pnk_girls_cu

    This made me chuckle and shake my head: 

    My dreams are always insane, but last night’s was particularly vivid. This will sound like I embellished to make it extra-weird, but I assure you that every part of the following account was actually in my dream.

    1475260669_1378816234I was having post-cancer treatment tests, and results were all good, so I moved in with my dad (???). I got my hands on some marijuana but I didn’t want him to smell me smoking it, so I ate it. I ate it right out of the unrolled paper, because yuuum, I guess. While touring the campus of the nearest public high school—in hopes of being enrolled—I ran into a friend from college who was working there as a recruiter… because public high schools recruit students like me, 45-year-olds who have zero athletic skills and eat weed like sunflower seeds. Oh, and he was wearing a cape. Totes normal. My dad was embarrassed that I was talking to this caped guy, and I was all WHATEVER MAYBE YOU’RE THE WEIRD ONE, but that can’t be because Dad was cape-less. While arguing, I got a phone call from Ed, who said I had to leave immediately for the hospital to see someone about one of my tests. I guess I was too high to question the fact that Ed, who is technically not a physician, was giving me this info. While in the waiting room—which was also an airport terminal, duh—Boyz II Men walked by. They were white, and because I was friends with them since way-back, they stopped to chat. Yup. Peeps were soooo jealous. I finally got called in for my meeting, and was surprised to see B.J. Novak behind the desk. He started by asking me what happens when a computer screen is inactive for a while. I said, “Ummmm… the computer goes to sleep?” and he said, “Yes, and that’s what you’re going to do.” Ooooookay… We went back and forth with him being super-mysterioso, and finally he said the reason I was called there was so he could tell me I was at my insurance max and they had to let me die. It seemed strange, since I was fine right then, but he said a rule was a rule and WHAT. A. JERK. right???

    Who needs to actually smoke (eat) pot when my dreams are already like this??? Here’s a possible explanation for why dreams like this happen as often as they do. The fact that marijuana was one of the stars on 4/20 wouldn’t be such a puzzler if I actually partook… EVER.


    jackieold Something similar to the above kind of crazy is a short story I read last night, Jackie Old: a tale of the future told in the past, by Armistead Maupin. It was written in 1980 but is set in 1999 in San Francisco, which has been leveled by a 1906-like earthquake. Mick Jagger’s daughter is the mayor and married to JFK, Jr. Across the country, Jim Bakker is U.S. president (yikes), and his newly-formed Praise the Lord political party is determined to rid San Francisco of evil once and for all. Jackie Kennedy, who has become a bit of an eccentric recluse like her cousin featured in the train wreck that is Grey Gardens, discovers a new way to get back in the public eye when she decides to save San Francisco from the PTL-ers. 

    Particularly amusing were the futuristic assumptions Maupin made, such as hologram news broadcasts and Truman Capote being a PTL-er—while JFK, Jr. has to use a payphone to call his wife at City Hall. Ha! My favorite part of all, though, was Jackie’s first encounter with the drag queens. So clever, that Armistead Maupin.


    I hope your week doesn’t suck.

    jenoriginal

    Apr. 18: Cancer is an asshole

    a5000e802d87b82dcb658c8dadfe91feEvery time I start to blog lately, my thoughts wander from whatever meaningless topic I was planning to write about and focus on all the reasons I have no business writing about meaningless things. That’s why it’s been quiet ‘round here lately. A couple friends have messaged me to ask if everything’s okay, and I want to say that it is, but that’d be lying.

    Things are not okay.

    Things are not okay because while *I* may not have any diagnosed cancer cells in my body right now, cancer is still affecting people that I love. I AM NOT FINE WITH THAT. No one should be. I’m furious that people are still dying from cancer, that people who are being diagnosed immediately feel they’ve been given a death sentence. I know cancer cure rates are a lot higher than they used to be, but they’re not high enough.

    Examples? Why yes, I have several, DAMMIT.

    Theresa’s husband, Scott, was on hospice for a very short two weeks before he passed away last Thursday. He was way too young for this to happen. He had zero risk factors that contributed to his type of cancer. It’s just plain WRONG that he even had it in the first place. His daughters, 6 and 10, say it isn’t fair and ask why. What the hell can anyone say to that??? We agree. We ask why, too.

    The wife of another friend just found out she has an aggressive form of breast cancer. She’s also young, with two young sons.

    The doctor that ordered the scan that finally diagnosed my constant pain for the entirety of 2009—one of the kindest, most caring physicians I’ve ever known—was recently diagnosed with cancer himself.

    See? It’s all-cancer-all-the-time, and I’m pissed.

    Immediately after hearing about Scott last week, I felt an urgent need to DO something. Theresa’s house was full of family taking care of her immediate needs, and there was nothing I could help with there. I quickly figured out that sitting still just turned into crying, which did no good at all, so I tried to be busy. In the first hour I went out to our front yard and dug up every dandelion I could find, inadvertently digging up a few bulbs and other things we’ve lovingly placed “just so” over the years. Oops. When I finished our yard, I moved over into Tina’s. Then I went to the other side and worked on Trudy’s yard. I was exhausted and filthy, and I’d relieved a teensy bit of tension, but it wasn’t enough. I drove to a nursery to get more plants, and wandered the aisles back and forth, unable to make any choices. I don’t know why I thought plants were the answer. I was absolutely worthless.

    A few of us went to Theresa’s that evening. Conversation was all over the place, and at times it felt almost like any other girls’ night—we talked about a new job, a quirky husband, vacation plans, our hope to someday smoke pot just once, getting old, middle school drama, good wine, smelly boys, haircuts, Theresa’s near-perfect puppy, and more. But mixed in with all that was conversation about the hospice experience, Scott’s last moments, his big family (Val made a very helpful org chart of them!), memorial service plans, his bucket list, and the kids. It was good to be together, and it was good to smile. It was good to see Theresa smile. We all kinda love her a LOT.

    cancer images (9) (As a bystander, it’s hard not to put yourself in the shoes of the grieving person/people. We can pull from our own past experiences of loss, but the differences are huge sometimes—grieving a parent is not the same as grieving a spouse. It ends up being a lot of stumbling around, mumbling the same thing as everyone else: “I’m here for you” and “I’m so sorry” and “tell me if you need anything”—heartfelt, yes, but they just feel so friggin’ empty.)

    The next morning I was still antsy. I didn’t want to feel the feels, y’know? I attacked weeds again. I cleaned the house. I sorted laundry. I did whatever I could to avoid sitting and thinking. This was a good release of my angry energy, of course, but also made me feel selfish; I mean—and I know this sounds overdramatic—Theresa and her kids don’t have the luxury of avoiding thoughts of Scott.

    That evening I got the message from my friend about his wife’s diagnosis. I was watching TV, having calmed enough to sit for a few moments, and that damn email alert changed everything. It’s incredible—and a little scary—to feel how quickly anger comes over oneself. I pounded out a reply, and I tossed and turned all night with worry about his family, Theresa and her family, and cancer in general.

    I hate that I feel like a rotten friend to these people right now, because I know that ONE, I’m not all that encouraging—I want to be, but it’s hard to ignore all the screaming of four-letter words in my head, and TWO, I have a hard time separating my own experience from theirs. In other words, I worry that I come off as though I think it’s all about me. I know it isn’t. Everyone’s cancer fight is different. Everyone’s cancer fight is their own. But hearing another person has to start fighting brings back so much of the bullshit I dealt with four years ago.

    What I have to say to these people probably makes no difference at all, but I really, truly want to help, to ease pain, to give hope. Yes, I have some knowledge of what it means to be a cancer patient. But really, I should probably just shut the hell up. Cancer stirs all kinds of emotions in me, still, and I’m not so good at bottling them or waiting for the appropriate time to share them. The word “cancer” makes me just BLEARGH and throw my useless words all over the place.

    Come ON, medical science. It’s not okay that we have to keep hearing about more cancer. It feels like we’re all just waiting to get the news for ourselves; it doesn’t seem to matter if we avoid known carcinogens, eat right, do all we’re supposed to for good health; cancer’s still gonna find its way into us.

    I’m pissed. I’m so, so tired of being pissed. It’s not okay.

    —Jen

    angryface

    Mar. 17: More from my Wonder Years

    Oh yes, it’s time once again for me to share choice, censored bits and pieces of my Wonder Years. You can watch TV if you get bored.

    Remember, when we left off in 1985:

    • I was using the word “sexy” way too much for a 17-year-old.
    • 1986 Margaret was evil.
    • Mike D was dating his half-sister (er… somethin’ unholy).
    • I was in my senior year at a fine Adventist high school and, by all appearances, still the churchiest girl there ever was. In fact, I journaled often about being worried I’d have to transfer to public school—my dad cared NOT ONE BIT for Adventist education, and I had to work my butt off to pay my tuition each month—though I know it wasn’t public school I feared, but leaving my friends.
    • I was singing almost every week at church or school assemblies or prayer meetings. (Side note: sometime between high school and college my ability to carry a tune disappeared, though I didn’t discover that until I had performed (terribly) at several embarrassing college functions. Nowadays I rock it in the car—who doesn’t?—but nowhere else. Sad.)
    • I went to church when I wasn’t performing too. It would seem like sitting in church every Sabbath would translate to being a good, worship-ful teen, but in truth I went just to see boys boys boys.
    • Not found in my journaling was anything about one of the stupidest things I ever did: I brought wine coolers in my travel mug and sipped from it at my locker between classes. I brought alcohol to school because it was risky and exciting, not because I had a drinking problem—I wasn’t in denial; truly, I couldn’t stand the taste. (My easy access to booze was courtesy of my over-21 brother-in-law.) I was sure I wouldn’t get caught because no teacher would’ve suspected such behavior from a good girl like me. If any of my friends had told on me—and OF COURSE, all of them knew about it because I thought I was that safe from suspicion—I would’ve been immediately kicked out of school. I don’t remember how long I did this, but I’m guessing the guilt and fear kept it going for a very short time.

      I wanted to be a bad girl. It just wasn’t in me. I mean, I sewed my own prairie dresses, for goodness’ sake.


    My first journal entry for 1986 contained very important information:

    Jan. 7: My newest cassettes are by Eddie Murphy, Jack Wagner, Amy Grant, Depeche Mode, Charlie Sexton, Mr. Mister, Van Halen, Sting, Phil Collins, Whitney Houston.

    I was still as boy-crazy as ever:

    Jan. 12: Last night we watched Footloose and it made me sort of depressed—it is so romantic in some parts. It made me think of AH, I think because it brings back so many memories from last year at [my other school].

    Laura, Tracey, and I went to tea.

    moonlighting Tea? I do not remember this tea. We were such wanna-bes, though, that I’m not surprised we thought it would be fancy and fun, thereby making US fancy and fun. Laura? Tracey? Do you remember?

    Jan. 24: I found the stereo I want. It’s got a dual cassette and everything else.

    Wow. That is some high tech right there.

    Jan. 26: The Bears won the Super Bowl. I ♥ the Refrigerator!

    I cannot believe for a second that I really cared.

    Jan. 27: I got my stereo! It is so totally cool.

    Rissa and I have been writing really naughty stories.

    Feb. 11: I was supposed to study for Cit Ed but Moonlighting was on tonight.

    TV was always more important than studying. Thank goodness I was applying to a college that didn’t care about grades. (Can you write a check? Congrats, you’re in!)

    Since I started keeping a journal in 1985, every time I mentioned my niece, Erin (4-5 years old), I wrote how cute she was, how sweet, adorable, all that. And then this:

    Feb. 17: Friday night I babysat for Erin and she was a brat.

    Not to worry, Erin; that’s the only time I said anything bad about you. On paper. ;)

    Feb. 18: Today started out shitty but it got better. We had a health check at school and I was measured at 5’8”. I can’t believe I’m that tall. I was in there when Mike D got measured, and he was embarrassed that he was an inch shorter than me.

    April’s nasty story is the best one yet.

    Is Mike being shorter than me really all I needed to know to make my shitty day better? I was so easy to please! Also, I can’t believe I used the word “shitty” back then. I was such a rebel.

    Feb. 19: I hope it snows tonight because I really need to get my hair cut. Life is so horrible.

    The drama!

    Mar. 3: GD is scared to death of me. He asked Debi why I always stare at him and she said because I want him really bad. He wouldn’t believe her, but now he probably won’t talk to me.

    Mar. 5: I had a really boring day, but after I got off the bus that all changed. I heard someone running behind me, and when I turned around, this guy was walking right next to me. I said “hi” and then he started talking to me. He asked me where I went to school and where I lived and how long I’ve lived there. Then I said, “Well, maybe I’ll see you again sometime.” and then I had to turn off onto [my street]. He was cute! I don’t know his name or where he lives. I think he probably goes to [nearby public high school]. I hope I see him tomorrow or I won’t see him ‘til Monday probably. It would be exciting if I saw him again.

    Wow. Just… wow. I wasn’t just boy-crazy; I was a dolt. Telling a stranger all that stuff? Did I learn nothing from all those ABC Afterschool Specials???

    Mar. 12: GD is so cute and sweet to me, but sometimes he acts so immature.

    Pot v. Kettle, 1986.

    Mar. 13: Laura and I wrote notes all day.

    Today’s kids will never know the daring fun of writing and passing notes, will they? I mean, it was THE thing back in the day. Sixteen Candles would have been a much shorter movie if not for the passing of the notes. Really, though, texts and emails are less likely to fall in the wrong sexy hands; it’s just so strange that this HUUUUGE thing of my growing up years is a lost art. “Art”? Maybe “medium” is more the correct term. Although the stories we wrote in our notes were definitely artistic, considering they were borne solely from our vivid imaginations. Yikes.

    Mar. 31: GD and I wrote notes back and forth all during Sabbath School.

    Yesterday I went over to Deani’s and she cut my hair. My senior pictures are next week.

    I let my friend cut my hair right before pictures? No offense, Deanna, but that was possibly not my best decision ever. Although I’m not wearing a hat in my senior pictures, so maybe you didn’t do too bad a job.

    Apr. 11: Some kids were rehearsing a play in the chapel today and when GD saw me watching he turned all red. He kept smiling at me. He is so cute and flirty. I’ll miss him so much next year.

    …which is funny, because after I left for college there isn’t a single mention of him in my journal. Out of direct line of teenage sight, out of teenage mind.

    Apr. 22: GD sat with me at lunch. He and CW made fun of me and it made me sort of mad. I told GD I hate when he acts like a sophomore.

    In all fairness, he was a sophomore.

    May 1: I was in a really bad mood today. Deani kept trying to cheer me up and that made it worse.

    How horrible of my friend to do that. Just awful.

    May 14: Today we got our caps and gowns. They’re red, and the cords are white and silver, the tassel is all three colors. It made me depressed.

    This shows the melancholy mood so typical of my teenage years. It was exciting to get our caps and gowns, but I couldn’t just be excited because I knew it meant graduation and the end of high school. While a lot of people hated high school and couldn’t wait for it to end, I loved so much about it that I wished it could last forever.

    May 15: GD hasn’t looked at me, except once, and I think it was an accident.

    May 16: Tonight Dad and I went over to [April’s house] for dinner. We had a good time.

    April is laughing at this memory right now, I just know it. The “we” that had a good time was me and April, not me and my dad. It’s a long story, and not interesting to anyone else, but my dad would want me to say this: it was one of the most awkward evenings ever, and April and I were all ♫ LA ♫ LA ♪♬ LA ♩♪♫♬ THISISSOFUN!! because we had no clue.

    May 22: Tuesday we had a special Girls’ Club meeting—it was like a goodbye for the senior girls. Laura gave me a rose and said the most special things about me. I cried so much.

    Wait! I have a picture!

    lljs

    May 26: [MG had a graduation party with DANCING (gasp!)] Last night was so much fun!!!

    I was trying to get SS to dance with me but he kept saying that he didn’t know how. Finally, after a whole bunch of people told him to get out there, we went out. We danced to “Faithfully” and it was really romantic even though it was only SS.

    Later “Hold Me Now” came on and BW said he loved that song so we got up and danced to it. He was singing to me. [I’m pretty sure he was drunk.] He is so tall!!

    MB asked me to dance, but I didn’t want to dance a fast dance with him. Finally we danced to “Hold Me” by Whitney Houston and Teddy Pendergrass. That was by far the best dance. He held me so close and Deanna said he was smiling and had his eyes closed!! So did I. Rissa said we were picture-perfect, just the right height for each other.

    Mike D brought his kinky cousin/girlfriend.

    I looooove how creeped out I was by Mike’s girlfriend.

    May 29: Today GD gave me a great big hug and said he’d miss me after I graduate. I told him I promised to write every day.

    Later I was in the library and MB came in and was sort of flirting.

    ...which meant he was talking to me.

    Jun. 1: Today I graduated from high school.

    Jun. 2: I packed up all my stuff and moved to my mom’s house in Walla Walla. Tomorrow is my first day of work in the VP’s office.

    Jun. 7: After Sabbath School I was in the foyer of the College Church and saw MB!!! I couldn’t believe it. He said he’s here for his sister’s graduation. I wasn’t going to go to the ceremony tomorrow but now I am for sure.

    Mom invited people over after church and there was this guy [MH] that is WONDERFUL. He looks like BL but cuter. We went out for pizza and he held doors for me and pulled out my chair. Later we watched TV in my room and talked until really late. He is really really nice and so good looking.

    Jun. 11: I was in a bad mood all day because I was so tired and my hair looked gross.

    Jun. 22: MH was here again yesterday. I think I really like him. He’ll be back in August.

    Jun. 28: This weekend was really fun. I stayed in the dorm. I met a girl, Sher, from [the same school as MH]. I asked her about him and she said he’s dumb.

    Not that Sherilee’s opinion meant anything (ha!) but I never saw or mentioned MH again.

    July 6: I moved into the dorm last Monday. I LOVE IT!! On Friday Sher, Sherri, and I went to Ferris Bueller’s Day Off.

    To this day, going to that movie is still one of my favorite and most vivid college memories.

    July 7: Laurie and I went to [the guys’ dorm] tonight and the guy at the desk let us go to SG’s room. When he answered the door he wasn’t wearing anything! We were so embarrassed!

    There’s a story there that picks up about six years later, but if you ask me for details I’m pleading the fifth.

    Aug. 2: I found out this guy DB likes me. He is kinda cute but not really my type.

    The other night a big group of us made a few prank calls over to the guys’ dorm. Most of them were pretty boring but one really gross guy really got into it! It was disgusting.

    This might be the first recorded evidence of our epic prank phone call sessions. I wrote about my life-changing one here.

    —please take a Brief interlude—

    Between August and December there are an embarrassing number of pages about different guys I went out with (mostly the two that I didn’t like all that much and another that I really liked but kept me at arm’s length until I started dating other guys and then he wouldn’t leave me alone), high school friends that had finally arrived for college, moving into the other dorm and getting a roommate, the zit that nearly killed me, Mike D and me becoming actual friends, and surprisingly little about classes I was taking.

    Why is it that I’m more embarrassed by my immaturity in college than in high school, just months earlier? Whatever… I’m Facebook friends with too many of the people involved to go into any level of detail.

    —end interlude—

    Dec. 7: Tonight is Open House and all the guys are coming through the dorm. We have mistletoe! Shevaun’s and my room is so cool! We have posters of The Breakfast Club, Pee-Wee’s Big Adventure, Thief of Hearts, and Levi’s. We also decorated for Christmas—lights, spray snow, wrapping paper on our door, and tiny paper trees hanging from our ceiling.

    Wait! I have a picture!

    oh86

    This next part really freaked me out. This journal is written on both sides of notebook paper, and as I was transcribing for this blog post, I missed a side of one sheet, which made an entry look like this:

    Mike D and I went to the caf tonight and had a long talk about [the guys I liked]. He thinks I should come up with an excuse to call B again. [***] We came back to the dorm and he kissed me!

    ***Mike D has never kissed me, let’s just make that clear right now. He only kisses girls related to him. But between our talk in the caf and a page worth of journaling, B, the guy I HOPED would kiss me, did. That was the part I missed.

    Whew. And now that we have that straight…

    We’re done. The journal closes with a bunch of boo-hooing about how much I missed B over Christmas break… the recurrence of the killer zit… more whining about B’s absence… fights with my roommate… and the end of 1986, one of the most remarkable years in The History of Jen (now with more drama!).

    Shall I continue on to share bits from 1987? I’m thinking NO. Unless Meanie Margaret shows up again. That could be entertaining.

    jen

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