I'm continuing through my journal from age 11-12. Here's an example of what a little planner I was:
Some things I'd like to do or have or whatever when I'm a teenager are: Have one thing I eat when I'm upset. I read a book about a girl who ate pistatios when she was upset. Maybe I'll eat saltine crackers. I also think I want one boyfriend (some freckles on him would be nice) who is my best boyfriend, and then I don't care if that's all the boyfriends I have or if I have seven more.I think that was pretty flexible of me, don't you? Pistachios are expensive but saltines are cheap, and I was okay with ANY number of boyfriends up to and including eight. And I only had physical-attribute suggestions for the FIRST one.
I remember the very book I was referring to there. It was called The Pistachio Prescription, it was by Paula Danzinger, and I see they reprinted it in 2006. I liked the lead character's name, which was Cassandra.
Let's skip ahead to a couple of months after I announced my crush on David.
I am hopelessly in love (at least I think I am) with David. I don't want him to kiss me or anything, but I want him to like me for what I am. I think he might like (or maybe love!!) me already but he's trying not to show it. He smiles at me a lot and when he's grumpy and I get mad at him, he always apologizes VERY quickly.ZO-kay, well obviously this was the early days of Female Delusion Syndrome, in which men who show zero interest are presumed to be hiding that interest. We are talking about an 11-year-old boy here. Considering he was outnumbered by girls and a good half-foot shorter than the shortest of us, I'd say the quick apologizing was a smart tactical maneuver.
Then there is page after page after PAGE of fantasy valentines and fantasy notes---and, most agonizing of all, fantasy SCRIPTS in which I have David confessing his secret love for me and only me, and in which I explain that I had been afraid to tell him I felt the same way until I was sure of his returned feelings. In each script, he brings a flower to the conversation: a daisy, a pink rose, etc. WINCE, GAG.
Okay, and then there is a gap of FOUR MONTHS, followed by this entry:
I think I'm going to crack. David doesn't love me. David doesn't even LIKE me. I think I'll just have to give up on him. Maybe he once had a crush on me, or maybe he'll love me in the future, but right now he thinks I'm a flirtatios, ugly brat. (Unless he's just pretending, which I dought.) I'll probley still love him for awhile though.Well, gosh! What happened? I don't remember at all! Notice I still allow for the possibility that he's just HIDING his true feelings under a FALSE FRONT of dislike. Also: notice my misspelling of "flirtatios" is similar to my misspelling of "pistatios," above.
Luckily the heart mendeth with time, and within days I'm announcing a new crush, the new boy in school:
This time I think I've finally found a boy who loves me back. On the first day of school he said that he liked girls. I really would not be surprised if he kisses girls. I think that my love for him is different from my love of David. With David, I was in love with his appearance and not his personality. With Christopher I really do hurt with him and laugh with him. I think Christopher would make a good husband for me.* If I were to marry David I think I'd live to regret it.ACK. FLINCH. BLUSH. The asterisk leads to this note at the bottom of the page: "*But I have no intentions of actually marrying him." Ermmmm-kay, noted.
This is all of two weeks after meeting Christopher, and I could not have been more wrong about his husband potential. Rookie mistake: thinking charm and good looks equal good person. He sure did capture the imagination, though. My old classmates Jen and Heather can back me up on this: was he THE CUTEST, Jen and Heather, or WHAT? I think every girl in fifth, sixth, and seventh grade liked him, and probably even the fourth-grade girls raised an eyebrow in his direction. Tall, blond, blue eyes, VERY FLIRTY in a group of kids where all the other boys were still going, "Huh? What?" Plus, he had a SPORTS INJURY:
Today Christopher broke his arm. He was being so brave about it that I could just cry. I could tell that the pain was agonizing because he was occasionaly making agonized faces, but he didn't cry like I would have. If he lets us sign his cast, I think I'll dot my i with a heart.Excellent plan. A couple of weeks later, a newsflash:
CHRISTOPHER LIKES ME! So, you don't believe me, do you, Diary? We went through this all before with David, didn't we, Diary? Well this time I have a note to prove it.Well, and as it turns out, I DO, and it's taped to the page. In the note he explains why he asked another girl to couple-skate at the roller rink (SHUT. UP. The roller rink was SWINGING), and his explanation includes the fact that he WANTED to ask me, but was "in a bind" because the other girl's sister asked him to ask the other girl. The best part of the note, though, is the end.: "P.S. Remember I only like her as a friend. You on the other hand." ZOMG is that HEADY STUFF or WHAT?? I write:
It's a strange thing, love is. It's very strange to be wild about someone, to wish on every star, and pray every night that that person will love you, and then they tell you that they do and BANG! you're in a confused world that probley every teenager has once visited. That's how it is with me and Chris. It's like he's a stranger; he's not the same boy I loved before, and yet, I can still see the same qualities. Right now I'm just confused. I'm sure, though, that it will clear up soon.HA HA HA HA HA! Oh, YES, dear, love just clears RIGHT UP. (Also: BARF, WINCE, FLINCH.)
I'd forgotten how this little relationship between 12-year-olds ended, so as I was reading along I was thinking, "Well? WELL??" And geez, it's not pretty, so I'll make it quick: He asked to sit next to me every day at lunch, he gave me his last M&M, he told me "someone" was in love with me. Then he wrote me a note asking how I felt about him, and I risked it and wrote back that I loved him, and he wrote back that he'd been asking because he wanted to know if he'd hurt my feelings if he asked another girl out. He wrote: "So things were going fine and I thought I was falling in love with you, but a couple days ago her friend told me she liked me, which I had figured but I took it as good news. I still like you a lot but not as much as someone else."
YOWK. Do you know, that still makes me feel gaggy, well over twenty years later? What a nasty set-up that was, huh? I don't look back on that and think, "Ha ha, funny little puppy love!" I look back on that and think, "That was BRUTAL."