I Belong to a Family Hurricane

Two days ago, I tried to write a blog. I had had a bit of free time before my graduation party started (read: before anyone actually showed up), so I thought I would compose something.

A post in which I had intended to briefly describe my family frustrations turned into a nine-page harangue in which I divulged anger, disappointment, annoyance and apprehension toward several of my family members. When I ran out of family members to talk about/to, I directed my speech toward other people's families. Six pages in, I was nearly crying.

My disappointment about last weekend--about my graduation--triumphed. I realized that I could not go back and redo the ceremony. That I could not go back and command my family members to "behave themselves." That I could not forget standing in an intersection between Chauncey and Jimmy John's listening to my grandmother and mother scream at each other over the word "bitch."

I cried more than once last weekend; none of my tears were ones of happiness.

My brother complained. My mother argued. My grandmother never shut up. She also used the words "Oriental" and "Chinamen" in conversation.

I couldn't post anything; it was far too personal, and far too lengthy.

I tried again yesterday. I was met with another lengthy stream of words--11 pages of words, in fact.

I couldn't post that, either. It talked about my family again. About Hans and I. I wanted to talk about graduation, my fearful apprehension. And, yet, it turned into a multi-page journaling experience (which is something I haven't done for years).

Indeed, I have more than 40 spiral notebooks packed into a gray tote that rests on the middle shelf in my closet. 40 notebooks (and approximately a dozen years') worth of memories, photos, pictures, poems and thoughts. Streams of consciousness, have you.

Those of a nine-year-old who worried that her mother was unhappy with her job. Those of a 12-year-old who avidly planned for a potential trip to Hawaii. Those of a 13-year-old documenting her first crush. A 15-year-old who wrote about her job, her lengthy crush on the senior basketball star, the rumors about her that her "friends" spread, the arguments with her mom, the loneliness she felt. A 17-year-old who recorded every conversation, every word, every smell, every sight, every hotel room, every person she met and spent time with in Australia. Those of a 19-year-old college student who was (at the time) unknowingly unhappy with her boyfriend.

I quit writing when said boyfriend ended our relationship five days before Christmas in 2008.

So, after two and a half years of no documentation, I confessed many recent thoughts while Ingrid Michaelson and Sara Bareilles sang on. And Florence and The Machine.

I brace myself 'cause I know it's going to hurt
But I like to think at least things can't get any worse


  1. Ahhh. Sounds so tumultuous. Sometimes it's nice just to get it all out - regardless of whether you post it or not. Hope you're feelin' better and the sun's shining!



  2. I miss you. I want to give you a drink and cookies and a hug and just talk about cats and ugly sweaters and insane family members on the large squishy leather couch I'm sitting on now and I can't because you aren't here.

    So this is me telling you that I miss you and that we need to figure out a way to simulate beverages and baked goods and a lengthy conversation. Also that it will work out somehow. It generally does.


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