When I was thirteen and about to turn fourteen I kept a diary. I wrote all kinds of stuff in there; and if you read how I write instead of what I write, you can chart the onset of psychosis – it’s unbelievably creepy.
(I’ve just found out how to work this Read More thing and it’s a bit of a buzz – it means I can fiddle with techie stuff and feel like a computer whizz and fit more posts on my home page! I’m sure it’ll wear off soon…)
It’s my fifteenth birthday this week. I’m not thinking about it much. OK, so I’m typing this, but not all of me is here; I’ve sent some of me away so I’m disconnected. It’s the only way I can think about some things. It’s a little similar to the way I’ll turn myself off when I’m showing off my faked emotions, but not much. So anyway, because I’m not thinking about it I haven’t processed it – I’m refusing to process it. I am fourteen. I am fourteen now and for ever. I’ll always be this way. I will –
Unfortunately, having last year’s diary means I can see that I thought exactly the same way last year, except last year I hadn’t figured out that I could split myself off like that and so I was overthinking it instead. Every moment of every day, I was thinking ‘I’ll never be this girl again’ and being completely rude and antisocial to everybody because I didn’t want to change. I spent ages recently explaining to a psychiatrist how you’re a different person soon as you hit a birthday and we got it down to your birthday is just another day in a series of days, but the number changes – there’s no easing from one to the other, it just changes. I was obsessing last year – I wrote myself goodbye letters, I wrote apologies to myself, I dated everything and preserved everything I did intact – if a document on the computer I made had a spelling mistake I hadn’t noticed at the time, I wouldn’t change it, because that was interfering with the memory of myself, aged thirteen – even though I was still thirteen at the time. I didn’t sleep because I couldn’t stop thinking about how I was wasting my life, I woke up crying from nightmares, I woke up paranoid from night terrors, and I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I was going to be fourteen. I was going to grow up even though I was fighting against it so hard.
I wrote creepy entries in my diary, and I recorded my nightmares, and I illustrated them and I made very little sense for a lot of the time. An example is probably gonna embarrass me and confuse everybody else, but let’s have a go. The first entry in my diary is from the 23rd April (’36 days left’ it says next to the date – I thought I was going to die; I was counting down the days I had left to live) and it’s seven pages long. Let’s go:
If celebrity culture has taught me anything, it’s that each and every person is a one-dimensional creature with a single defining personality trait and with no problems that cannot be easily and probably humorously resolved within twenty minutes. I began to write that sentence sarcastically. Now I realise that it’s true.
I am somewhat scared by that.
Yes, when I was writing to myself I was a somewhat pretentious young lady – but let’s not forget I thought I was going to die! Also, I suppose on another of those levels I refuse to acknowledge, I still think this is true. Y’know? I say it’s not, but faced with a problem, I know I’d be surprised it wasn’t like television.
On my birthday, I got up early, realised I wasn’t dead, accepted fourteen as my life, and immediately got sad because of all the time I’d wasted dreading it and then got angry because I was already patronising my thirteen-year-old self, just like I’d spent the last two months trying to avoid.
Apparently I can’t win.
Filed under: Uncategorized Tagged: | antisocial, birthday, computer whizz, dead, depersonalisation, diary, disconnected, emotions, fake, farewell letters, fifteen, fourteen, night terrors, nightmares, numbers, paranoia, patronising, peter pan, pretentious teenage angst, psychiatrist, psychosis, television, thirteen