Updated: Aug 1, 2021
“ I would take the diary inside my closet in the dark with a blue pen, unlock it with the metal key, and write curse words on page after page "
When I was ten I bought a present, an orange diary, for a girl from school I had a crush on, but I never found the courage to give it to her, painfully shy and afraid of anyone not in my immediate circle of neighborhood friends. I might have had the courage, but my much older, bully brother had been convincing me I was a fat, weak shadow of a thing since the day my mother brought me home and began to give me the attention he had been getting. I was one of those wide-eyed kids who always believed everything he was told about himself. So I kept the diary for me, hiding the little metal key in my desk, even before I wrote the first entry. I wanted to write something important about myself, to say what I was feeling about school, or this girl, or what the neighbor guy had been doing to me in his basement, but I was convinced no one, even the invisible diary reader, would care what someone like me thought. For the next year, I would take the diary inside my closet in the dark with a blue pen, unlock it with the metal key, and write curse words on page after page, in bigger and bigger letters, until the entire book was filled with underlined obscenities. Once it was filled, I was afraid that my mother would find it, so I ripped it apart, cutting up each sheet into little pieces with the scissors from her sewing kit.