Pure and unadulterated embarrassment at the girl I used to be. Literally, my face was turning beet red as I read the scrawled cursive. And there's no one even home for me to be embarrassed in front of! How could a 4th grader be so obsessed over boys? Is this normal? Were other girls this way?! I mean...my god. There's really no other way for me to explain than to just lay it all out on the table. I feel like I should use code names to spare certain former classmates, but let's face it: we had 18 people in our class...pretty sure they're gonna figure it out anyway. And Daniel? I really doubt you're reading this (God forbid...), but I apologize in advance.
"January 30, 1998. No, really. I dated every. single. entry.
I love Daniel. Really? The word love? Really? Daniel doesn't love me the way Kasey loves Bethany. I am jealous because my boyfriend (Wait, boyfriend? I guess in the 4th grade, "love" didn't necessarily have to be returned in order to be boyfriend/girlfriend.) doesn't love me. I kissed Daniel's locker once, but he wiped it off. I gave him a valentine that said, I love you, and had a piece of gum taped onto it. For a long time it was in his locker, and I thought that he loved me, because the valentine was still in his locker. But at the end of the day, he ripped the valentine up and put it in the garbage. Then he ripped the piece of gum up, too. Wow, Daniel. You ripped the gum up too? Harsh. I try to kiss him, but he runs away. Oh, young Chelsea. You should...probably take a hint. Now I think Andrea loves him, but she said no. I don't want anyone to read this except Angie. I apologize. It is now shared with the world. This is a true story!"
Seriously. "This is a true story!" Like anyone would ever doubt the amazing pathetic-ness of that entry! The rest of the journal...is basically the exact same thing. An entire notebook, dedicated to my "love" and how it wasn't reciprocated. There are a few mentions of my hatred of Sunday School and practicing piano, along with the drama of writing your best friend's name on a paper football and having her not write your name in return.
I did find one more entry of interest, however:
Okay. Just to be clear. This says "Things to Remember About 98 Degrees". ...I can't even...
I guess I was mistaken when I called it a diary. It is also "part boyfriend journal." Don't get it twisted!
In my 5th and 6th grade notebook, I had matured quite a bit. Every entry was written in a different colored Gelly Roll pen (remember those?), some of them so shimmery I can barely make any words out. I wrote my new boyfriend (this time, it was consensual) a note that said the following (I recorded it in my journal for posterity):
"April 10, 2000.
I was thinking maybe we could write to each other? I just wanted to ask you, Do you think I am a blonde? Please don't dump me if I am. Write back as soon as you can.
Love, (premature, Chels)
Sigh. Gloria Steinem would've had my head on a platter for that little blonde comment. (Wait, Gloria Steinem is a feminist, right? I...should know this.) The rest of the notebook was mostly a play by play of my days at school and tales of prank calling teachers. Here's a snippet of what my life was like in 2001.
"February 26, 2001 - 7:00. 7:00, guys. Did you get that? The time I wrote this is very important.
I am listening to "It's Gonna be Me." And reading J-14! Be right back. I have to rewind the song. And get a diffrent pencil. I can't wait till Friday, or tomorrow! I am listening to "Bye, Bye, Bye," but when it gets to "It's Gonna be Me again, I'm going to dance! I'm going to read my J-14, okay? Okay. Now I have to go dance. Be back soon! I <3 NSYNC!!! The exclamation points had hearts instead of dots. Just so you know. Tomorrow in the ICN room, I'm going to kinda write Brian's name in my notebook, really big, and let him see it too! Subtle. I am almost done with the NSYNC tape. I read my J-14 already. This is fun!"
Important stuff. I also included the entire song list of the Now That's What I Call Music 5 cd. School dances were of course involved, including the infamous dance of the Butt Grab. There was an especially long entry (3 pages!) concerning my anxiety over starting the 6th grade.
"June 19, 2001.
I can't wait till 6th grade. It will be so fun having different teachers. I'm not that excited about the Sheffield kids. The dreaded "Sheffield kids" were the kids in our class from a different school...we consolidated in middle school and became a class of 40. Contrary to how this entry makes it sound, the Sheffield kids were not that terrifying. :) Actually, I'm kinda worried! Cuz I don't think I'm gonna fit in. Oh, well. Get used to that feeling, young grasshoppa! I just thought of something I won't like about 6th grade. We have about 7 minutes before gym, and 10 minutes after. In the 7 minutes before, we have to go in the locker room and change into mesh shorts and t-shirts. Gasp! Then, in the about 10 minutes after, we have to go back in there and take showers! Not that!!!! I am just going to not even get in the shower just lean in and get my hair wet. But if someone says that I HAVE to take a shower, I'll just get in and rinse off. I bet that that's what everyone else will do, too. If someone won't take a shower, then somebody might tell on us. And then, Connie, our nurse, will come in there and watch us! But they promised that they wouldn't tell. So they probably won't." Yeah, this was never an issue. Showers were for kids who sweated in gym, and as someone who hates physical activity of any sort, I never sweated.
Look at this relic!
Also, I had a sticker on my notebook that said "Boys R Toys." In 5th grade. (To be fair, I got it out of a vending machine at Pizza Hut. Their stickers were super sweet.)
Can someone please reassure me that I wasn't the only one with such a...sad little diary?