After the coffee shop, I felt a little better. While I sort of recognized the man, I had this hunch that I definitely knew him from somewhere more than the hospital. Based on his reaction he certainly knew me. I wasn’t sure it was in a good way. That was too bad, he was pretty hot.
I looked around my bedroom, familiar and unfamiliar objects were equally carefully placed and thoughtlessly strewn about the room. My mom had tidied up some while I was in the hospital, but she didn’t move much around the room because she told me she didn’t want it harder for me to remember. Since I got back I hadn’t moved much myself. I am a step below hoarder as I can throw things out, but still a pack rat. I opened my closet, packed to the gills with clothes and shoes and a few boxes. I dragged things out carefully before breaking down and completely ransacking my closet and followed by the rest of my bedroom.
The bedroom felt like my room even though I didn’t recognize most of it. It was if I was a time traveler and I was getting a glimpse of my future life without the option of going back. It definitely appeared like something I might have decorated and had some familiar objects. At least in ten years basic habits haven’t changed for me.
I still left random piles of cloths around my room and I could easily figure out which pile was clean clothes and which was dirty. Not that I currently had a pile of clean and dirty clothes with my mom around. I had a wall of books and collectible knick-knacks, though a lot were referencing things I knew nothing about and will have to add them to my list of things to research. Most likely Teddy would know.
I found my beloved journals looking mostly in chronological order in a leather ottoman sitting under the one window in my bedroom. They were hidden under an heirloom quilt my grandmother had given me for college. My most recent journals were on top of the stacks. My beloved friends Teddy, Jennifer, William, and Aunt Sally all looked up at me from the ottoman in their color coordinated composition book glory. They were the most familiar things in my room. I gathered the five notebooks into my arms and hugged them. Five? I looked down at my notebooks. I always had four journals, not five.
I started journaling when I was getting into puberty. It felt strange discussing different topics with the same journal when I first started noticing boys. Somethings I preferred to tell only a female best friend, while other topics would be better for a male best friend, or a trusted cool aunt.
Jennifer, the pink notebook, was who I’d confide in about girl stuff, like crushes, my appearance and insecurities, things that only another woman going through growing pains might understand. Teddy, the brown notebook, was the equivalent of a male best friend. He was a safe space for me to talk about my non girly interests that someone like Jennifer just wouldn’t get, like sports or comic books and such.
It was a bit stereotypical but at the time it made sense to my pre-pubescent mind and I just stuck with it over the years.
Then there was William, the blue notebook, where I would pour out my heart replaying interactions with guys I wanted. What I said and what I should have said or wished I had said.
And last I had Aunt Sally, the green notebooks. Sometimes I needed adult advice but didn’t want to actually talk to an adult about it. So I’d write it out and figure out what my “cool Aunt Sally” would have told me I should do. As I got older I wrote less to Aunt Sally then I did as a teen.
The green notebooks were far more scattered in my ottoman than the pink, brown, and blue. For every four or five pink notebooks there was maybe one green. But I looked down at the five notebooks in my arms, there was a purple journal with hints of glued on glitter. I glanced down into the ottoman and saw a total of two other purple journals in there that were introduced much later in the past 10 years.
My oldest journals from childhood started on the left and worked their way through high school and college, and then into my 20s and 30s. I carefully placed all the notebooks except for the purple down onto the other journals in the ottoman. I opened the first page of the purple journal to see the name Thomas neatly written on the first page and the date August 21, 2016.