Did you ever run away from home? How far did you get?

This is Number 36 in the 100 Journal Topics from the old angelfire page I found. I read this the first time before the boy’s soccer practice on Tuesday, and thought about it. Then I didn’t think about it.

So today when I realized I had a few moments to myself, I got right to writing.

Right after I checked my email a dozen times, messed around on twitter, played a game on facebook, and looked at pinterest. Then I got right to writing.

I really don’t remember ever really trying to run away from home. Marissa did once, but she only went as far as the row of trees to the south of our driveway. She set up camp there and read a book. So not that far.

In fact, the first thing that actually popped in my mind was when I was a young married lass living in an apartment in Alva. Ben and I got in some kind of dumb fight – who even knows what it was about now? Ben, maybe. He’s good at remembering things like that. Anyway, I got mad and I stormed out of the apartment.

Maybe I expected him to come rushing after me. I don’t know.

What I do know is that I had neglected to get my car keys. Or my shoes.

So there I am, barefoot and hacked off. It’s dark outside – late in the evening. There is no way I am going back in that apartment. He can just eat it.

So I thought about it for a while, and then I walked to some friends’ apartment. The walk was maybe four blocks, and it was grassy, so not a big deal. I think the most troublesome spot was the street right in front of their apartment, which was frequently gravelly or sported broken glass. But I persevered.

I went up to their apartment, plopped down on the couch, and watched them play video games for a couple of hours.

Ben called once, but they had strict orders to tell him I wasn’t there, and they performed admirably.

So Ben’s sitting at home, not sure when I am. He knows I didn’t take a car, and that I don’t have shoes, and that I’m not at our friends’ place.

I don’t know if he went looking for me. He probably did.

I do know that he called my parents and asked them to watch out for me.

My parents lived three hours away by car.

My dad gets on the phone and listens to Ben’s worry – that I’m walking 150 miles without shoes. Dad tells Ben that he doesn’t think I will do that. Ben says that I was pretty mad. Mom and Dad promise they will keep an eye out, but they aren’t concerned.

They know me well.

1676_1Ben thought I was making a terrible barefoot trek home to my parents, à la “The Long Walk” by Stephen King. Instead I was sitting between two handsome guys with my feet on the coffee table, watching Mortal Kombat moves.

Seriously – one of the guys knew every fatality and friendship move. It was awesome.

I don’t remember how I ended up going home that night. Maybe I called Ben, or maybe he called again and one of the guys confessed. Maybe I got a ride home. Obviously we were able to make up.

So I guess that’s it for my running-away story. Ben thought I was going halfway across the state, but I went four blocks and had a nice evening.

This probably shows that I’m not quite as crazy as he thinks I am.

Spooky number thirty-five

Did you ever see a ghost?


I went a long time saying I’d never seen a ghost. That’s not to say I don’t believe in things like that…I was just apparently not attuned to such things. Thankfully.

I know my grandma saw something when she was a young woman. She was living with my mom in a house (or duplex, maybe) in Alva, and she saw a lady come up through the floor and on through the ceiling.

I think they moved rather quickly after that.

My mother also saw something once. She was in bed and woke. My dad was asleep next to her. He had cancer at that point, and I think I was in college. So Mom saw two women up high in the corner of her room, sitting and talking. She couldn’t really hear or understand what they were talking about, but she felt calm about it – like maybe they were watching over my dad when he was sick. Then one woman looked and saw that Mom could see her, and then the other looked, and then they disappeared.

I think seeing either of those things would have made me lose my mind. I have always had a terrible, vivid imagination that makes me see things that aren’t there. I’m still afraid of the dark. I still imagine horrible claws and evil beings just out of my line of vision. I should probably write horror. Speaking of which, when I read It by Stephen King, I was in junior high. At night, I would put it on the front porch so I could sleep. That way it was locked outside.

But. Did I ever see a ghost. All I got is this:

I was upstairs in my room, reading or something, and out of the corner of my eye I saw Ben walk by out in the hall, toward the kids’ rooms. He was wearing a green shirt. I looked up and waited for him to come back, but he didn’t. I thought it was odd that he would be hanging out in one of their rooms, so I got up and looked for him. He wasn’t in there. He was downstairs watching TV. He wasn’t wearing green. None of the kids were wearing green. I know I saw somebody.


Another time I heard Ben calling me, clear as a bell, but when I got up to see what he was hollering about, he wasn’t anywhere near and hadn’t been calling me. I would swear I heard him calling my name.

So those were weird.

First one back

Write about something you desperately wanted as a kid.

This is my first post to write for reals on my writing website. The others were from 2009 and 2010. I started doing the 100 Journal Entries on Livejournal, as a way to get back into writing after my years at the newspaper. My baby was about to turn two when I started.

Then my sister, Marissa, died in November 2009. That was a serious life-changer for me. I went through a long time of depression and I didn’t do much of anything. I tried to pick up the 100 Journal Entries again in late 2010, but I only did a couple before letting it go again.

So here we are. I wrote my first young adult novel last year, and I’ve followed it with more. The experts advise having a website to make it easy for publishing people to find you, so here this is. Of course, it’s supposed to be professional, and instead finances dictated that I do it myself with my limited knowledge, so we’ll see how that goes.

But what I desperately wanted. That’s what I’m supposed to be focusing on.

When I first started thinking about this, my mind went to material things. Then I started thinking about how I always wanted to be a writer.

But you know what I desperately, desperately wanted? I wanted friends.

My best friend as a little girl was Becky. She was marvelous, and I loved her very much. Only having one friend was great, except for when she had to miss school or something, and then I was lonely at recess and lunchtime.

That was okay with me, but I don’t think it was good for her. Of course, I’m only seeing it from my point of view, but she decided she wanted to be part of a group of girls, and they didn’t want me, so she left me for them. I thought I was welcome to come along, but I learned that wasn’t true at lunch one day. She and the group of girls were sitting together, and I went and sat with them. They got up and moved to a new spot. I was confused, and thought maybe they just wanted us all to move, so I followed them.

And then they moved again.

When I realized what was happening, I was heartbroken. I sat there and ate my lunch as best I could, then escaped to the bathroom to cry. It was one of the most tragic moments of my young life, and I still feel pain when I think about it now.

That painful day paved a path to several unhappy years in my life. I went through junior high without one friend. I know that sounds like an exaggeration, but it was true. It’s not to say everyone was mean to me – some were and some weren’t. But I had no friend. Every day I ate lunch alone. I started to bring a book so at least I looked like I was doing something. When we paired off in classrooms, no one paired with me. When the gym teacher had two people pick teams, I was always picked last. I’m not trying to make people feel sorry for me. It’s just the way it was. Someone had to be picked last. It was always me.

Sometimes my mom would come and pick me up for lunch. What a delight it was to see the station wagon with her inside and know that I didn’t have to be alone at lunchtime! She would ask me sometimes if I wanted to transfer – to a church school in the city, maybe – but I said no. Part of my perfectionism, I guess. I wanted to stay at the same school until graduation.

Things got better in high school. My sister was a senior when I was a freshman, and she welcomed me to her nerdy little group. Don’t get me wrong. I liked them all and they were very much preferred to being alone. I’m pretty sure they knew they were nerdy. It’s cool. Marissa taking me under her wing gave me what I needed to get back into the swing of things. After that year, I was able to connect with some people who were in band with me. Not people in my grade though. I never was able to really fit in there.

So that’s what I wanted as a kid – at least after Becky and before high school. I wanted a friend. I wanted a friend so badly.

I sometimes wonder if that experience was what led me primarily to homeschool. It seems like there are many factors, but surely that is a big one. And how would I be different if I hadn’t spent those years alone? Looking back now, I wouldn’t change it. I like myself too much now to change something that had such an effect on my life.

Not wanting to change it doesn’t make it right, though. It’s not right that any kid should have to be without a single friend.


Did you ever win or lose a contest?

Did I ever win or lose a contest. No, because I have been living under a rock my entire life. Of course I have won or lost a contest! For pity’s sake, 100 Journal Topics. Be realistic.

There is a picture of me in my baby book, sitting on the counter at McDonald’s. I am three years old in the picture. It is a Polaroid two-step photograph – you know, the ones where you take the picture and then kind of shake it back and forth and then after a minute or so, you peel off the cover and there it is? I am sitting next to an Easter basket that contains a lot of fun things and a stuffed monkey. Next to the photograph is Mom’s writing, telling me that I’m a lucky girl and I won the basket, and that there were 530 names in the hopper.

Because of this, I have always been considered “lucky.” When Mom signs up for contests, she sometimes puts my name because I’m luckier than her.

And just now, looking at the topic, I realize that it says contest, not drawing, and that I’m going about this the wrong way. So yes, I won contests too. Tuttle Talent Show and 4-H and all that stuff. I also won a prize from the Daily Oklahoman in their Valentine’s Day classified ad contest. I’ll veer over that way for a moment, then get back to the drawings.

I read in the Oklahoman that they were having a Valentine’s Day contest. This was in the year 2000. You had to buy a classified ad, and then the best one would win a limo ride, and roses, and dinner at the Haunted House in Oklahoma City. I decided I would like to win this contest.

So I composed a poem, and e-mailed it to the Oklahoman. I paid for the ad with a credit card. The ad cost about $50, because it was so long, but I knew I would win it so it was okay. And I did win it. I felt a little sorry for all the other people who bought ads, thinking they might win, when they didn’t have a chance against my dazzling poem.

I was going to reprint it here, but it wasn’t in the first place I looked. I tried to get into the Oklahoman archives, but my password isn’t working. So I sent an email about it. And then I waited a while. And then I gave up and got back to it. You can trust me…it was a good poem. It was based on “Trees” by Joyce Kilmer. It was about Ben.

So I won that contest. Ben and I went to the Haunted House restaurant with the $50 gift certificate I won. We actually had to spend some of our own money – that’s how expensive that place was. Classy. He picked up the dozen roses from Trochta’s flowers for me. I decided to save the free limo ride until Christmas, and then we got the biggest limo they had and took Mom, her friend, my sisters and their families on a Oklahoma City Christmas light tour. It was pretty neat. There was only one seat belt in the limo, and we strapped Lenora’s car seat there.

So – back to what I wanted to write about. My luck. This is a good one.

One year, Karlene, Marissa and I took mom on a little birthday trip to Cherokee, Okla. for their centennial celebration. Now, I was feeling lucky. I can hardly describe it. I have never felt lucky like that before or since. But I knew that I was destined to win something. I kept asking Ben to take a weekend trip to Kansas so I could buy a lottery ticket. I knew I would win. I knew it. It was inevitable. We didn’t go. No one believed me.

But we took mom to Cherokee, which is a mere half-hour from the Kansas border. I asked to go to Kansas while we were there, but no one wanted to.

We got our tickets for the centennial party, which included a stagecoach ride, a barbecue dinner, admittance to a play, and a chance to win both the centennial quilt or the centennial gun.

I wanted to play the lottery so bad. Instead, I found myself standing in line in Cherokee, waiting to buy my ticket. I remember looking from the gun to the quilt, and back again. I thought, word for word, Will it be the quilt or the gun? I hope it’s the quilt. Again, I knew I was going to win. There was no doubt in my mind that either that quilt or that gun would be mine. I decided that whatever I won, I would give it to Mom, since Cherokee was where she was born and it was her birthday weekend.

We had fun in Cherokee and left before the play, which is when the drawings were made. But you did not need to be present to win.

When Mom called me the next day, she was giddy with the news. She called and told me I was not going to believe it, but she had talked to Lenora P…

In my head: I know why you’re calling Mom, is it the quilt or the gun?

…and it was the quilt. I won the centennial quilt. Mom hinted around that she wanted it. I told her she could have it. It hangs in her living room now.

I knew I was going to win something. I still can’t believe how lucky I felt, and how assured I was of it.

I reminded Mom of how I knew I was going to win something. I told her that I knew without a doubt I was going to win one of the centennial raffles. I reminded her of how I had wanted to play the lottery. She asked me why on earth I didn’t talk them into taking me up to Kansas. Apparently they would have taken me if they had known that I was really going to win. Hmm.

And that’s the story of how I was lucky enough to win anything – and instead of playing the lottery and becoming a millionaire, I won a quilt.

Number thirty-two

Write about a time you had to communicate with someone you couldn’t understand.

It has been more than a year since I stopped writing my 100 Journal Entries. I did pretty well for 31 of them, and I just went back and read them all. How happy and flippant I sounded! Now I feel like everything I write is tinged in sorrow. My heart is still breaking after losing Marissa. She meant so much to me. I fear that I will never have such a powerful relationship in my life again. My mind still says it’s not possible; that I am mistaken and that she cannot be gone.

But this is not the road I intended to travel this evening, as I try to get back into the 100 Journal Entries.

I was trying to get back into writing last summer when I got my laptop, so I took up the challenge of writing 100 entries from an angelfire website that was designed for high school kids. Some entries were easier than others, but I did a fair job of keeping up. What was supposed to be daily entries changed to daily minus weekends and holidays and then sporadic and then the unthinkable happened with Marissa.

But here we are, still alive, still kicking, still thinking about how writing is one of the few things in my life that even make sense.

Even though this topic is idiotic.

I do not think I have ever attempted conversation with someone who spoke a foreign language.

I could use the whole “Don’t understand their way of thinking” avenue but I fear the person I choose might end up reading this. Not good.

I’m left with not being to understand little children, even though there is not a particular instance I can think of. I do, however, love how little children babble and babble and we wisely say, “Oh, I see,” even though we don’t understand them. Fooling little children is fun.

Belinda was hard to understand. Turns out she had a speech impediment. I didn’t even know it until Sarah started talking. I realized she sounded better than my kid, who was a year older. Belinda started therapy with Sooner Start when she was two and transitioned into therapy at the school at age 3. She likes going. The teacher is nice. I get weary of doing the exercises with her and taking her to class but I do it because it will benefit her. It doesn’t fit well with my whole “doing as little as possible” thing I have going since last November, but I do it for Belinda. I can understand most of what she says now, but I still do the “Oh, really?” thing with her sometimes. She still falls for it. I am quite the actress, apparently.

Not a strong return, but a return nonetheless. Yay me.


Write about something that flopped.

Ugh. Another one that I have nothing to write about. I know these are few and far between, but I had a minute and thought I’d try to catch up again, and when I read this, I almost just closed out the window and gave up for another day.


But then I didn’t. See, I know I’m not going to have an epiphany tomorrow or the next day and think of something that flopped…so I’ll never, ever get back into it. So I’m going to just sit here and try to think of something. Anything!

Okay. I got one.

And writing about things like this are hard – really hard – because they really show the imperfections of a person, I think. Like that babysitting deal I wrote about a while back. Revealing myself like that was really hard…and what it revealed was not as cool as I like to pretend to be. This is like that too.

Okay. I’m in college, and Ben and I and our friend Jeff are talking about doing something fun while we are still young enough to do so. I don’t remember what else we talked about, but the idea of saving up a little money and going to Europe came up. I remember thinking, Why not? We could do that.

imagebot (1)And the thing is, we could do it. There was this program that allowed college students to come to England and work for a summer as part of their education. It wasn’t really a green card type thing; it was a student program, but you could still do it the summer after graduation.

I did a lot of research on it. A whole heckuva lot of research. We had all types of fliers and pamphlets and information. I sent off for all kinds of brochures. I knew the program inside and out.

The idea of it was exhilarating. This was shortly after my dad had died of cancer, during our senior year of college. Maybe that had something to do with how thrilling the idea was of throwing away the shackles of college and a future of work and wifery that I was heading into. To travel – I’d never gone anywhere. To go out of the country – it was an unimaginable possibility. Could it really happen? My head said no…but my heart said yes. The excitement that other people experienced could actually be mine. I felt like an adventure of a lifetime – an adventure of new sights and smells and ideas – was within my grasp.

Others said it would never happen. Part of me agreed with them. How could I possibly go to Europe? But I pushed that part aside and said we could do it. I figured out how much we would need to save each month to make it happen. I looked into hostels and other places to stay and things to in Europe. I thought that if I acted like it would happen, and believed that it would happen, it would happen.

I guess Jeff felt the same way – he even went so far as to get a passport. I never made it that far. The first month, we didn’t make our savings goal. That was okay; we could make it up the next month. But that didn’t happen, and we never met our financial goals for the travel expenses. Three months into it, I realized it just wasn’t going to happen. Jeff still talked about it for a while even after I accepted the fact that we weren’t going. That was hard.

I wish we hadn’t told other people that we were going. But I really thought it could happen if we believed in it enough. I don’t think Ben ever believed in it though. I don’t know if that made a difference or not.

Well, you’ve probably guessed from the topic of this entry, but long story short, we didn’t make it to England. Instead, we graduated and moved back to Tuttle.

It’s okay, but it is kind of a painful subject – not because we didn’t get to go to the U.K., but just the failure of the whole thing. Planning for something and believing that it would happen, and then just having to let it go like that was a real disappointment. It also seems vaguely uncool, and trying to appear cool at all costs is kind of my thing. I guess I’m going to have to start letting that go, huh?

What a fun entry! Thanks, 100 journal entry site! These memories are truly priceless.

Minor League

Write about something minor that turned into a big deal.


In the words of Lucy Van Pelt, when do the good things start?

I feel like I am grasping at straws with every journal entry. Something minor that turned into a big deal?

Okay. I got one.

Hope it’s not too real for you.

Let’s go back a decade or so.Right around the new millennium. Y2K didn’t turn out as bad as predicted, and the computers are still on and a lot of people have a lot of emergency rations to eat and a lot of generators to store or sell.

It’s a Tuesday – my day to put together The Tuttle Times in Chickasha. All week I write stories and take pictures, and I put it all together on the one day. Until the week before this, I did The Minco Minstrel on Wednesdays, but the publisher has decided to stop publication on that one, to my horror. So this week is a little different; I usually would be back in Chickasha the next day, but not this one. Never again.

So I put together the newspaper. It’s nice. Nothing to write home about, but a decent paper nonetheless. I am looking forward to getting home, since I am 35 weeks pregnant and a little tired.

I finish the last page, then go and check to make sure everything printed out okay. I wait for composing to wax the ads and stick them in place. I don’t wait for it to print today; I want to go home.

So I do. I go home and check the fridge. There is a half a cherry pie in there. I cut a slice and put it in the microwave for 30 seconds. So far so good. With half a minute to kill, I head to the bathroom.

We’ll keep this as delicate as possible. While there, I…strained for a moment, and then felt a strange pop. Odd. Then I started peeing. And it didn’t stop.

Great, I thought. Way to go. You’ve rendered yourself incontinent. Yes, I actually thought that, in those words. I am a nerdy verbalist even when having conversations with myself.

Finally I decided to just grab a maxi pad and let that handle any urine leakage I had going on. I got up, went to the kitchen, and got the pie out of the microwave. It was good – a little chewy in parts of the filling, because it wasn’t covered up in the refrigerator, but it was tasty anyway.

About midway through the piece of pie, I thought I’d go check on the status of my pants.

I went back to the bathroom, sat down, and checked my undies.

The maxi pad had taken on a slightly pinkish hue.

Hmm. Wasn’t expecting that.

It didn’t look like a big gusher of blood or anything…just that slightly pinkish hue.

I changed the pad.

I went and got my copy of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. The book explained that if you experience Premature Rupture of Membranes, or PROM, the doctor will generally wait and see if you go into labor naturally within a few days.


I ate some more of my piece of cherry pie and waited for Ben to come home. He was late. I called the office but he wasn’t there.

The book recommended calling my doctor, so I did. The answering service picked up. It was a young man. He was astonished when I told him I thought my water broke. He got very nervous and said he’d tell the doctor right away. He told me I was the first patient he had ever talked to who might be in labor. He was sort of freaking out.

I, on the other hand, felt calm and cool. I held the phone in one hand, the pie plate in another. I licked the fork and told him I was sure everything would be fine.

After all, What to Expect When You’re Expecting told me so.

I called my mother, and my sisters. I told them that my book said the doctor would probably wait a few days, so there was no worry.

Ben came home. Still feeling calm and cool, I told him the same thing.

I’m sure by now you know where this is going.

Yeah. What to Expect When You’re Expecting lied.

Dr. Perry called and told me to go to the hospital. I did. The nurses started prepping me for labor. I was surprised. Did this mean I was actually going to have the baby now? The nurses felt this was very funny. Of course I was going to have the baby now. What did I think was going to happen?

This was a big deal. This was a biggest deal of all. I was five weeks early. We had not even bought a mattress for the crib. We hadn’t bought a lot of stuff. I still had five weeks to go! I wasn’t ready yet!

But ready or not, she came. Lenora was born a little before 5:30 a.m. It was a very big deal, if I do say so myself.

lenora3We weren’t ready, in so many ways. But she forgave us, again and again. We’ve all learned so much together. And I’m so very lucky to have her.

I expected a few more days of prep, at least. She came less than 12 hours after I got home from work.

I can’t imagine anything as minor as that little pop turning out to be such a big deal as that beautiful baby girl.


Trying to get momentum back…

So, after getting sick, it seems to be hard to get that momentum back on journaling every day (or weekday, at least). I know it’s because I tend toward perfectionism, and now that I haven’t written every day, it’s not as exciting any more. I can keep doing this, though. Surely I can at least get through the initial 100!

With that in mind, here’s number 29.

Write about a disappointment.


Life is so full of disappointments. My first thought was, How to pick just one? My second thought was that I can’t even think of one.

Alice looks disappointed to be stuck holding that pig. I feel for you, Alice. I really do.

Well, I’m disappointed that I got behind on the entries.

I was disappointed when Bennett fell asleep on the couch the other night and then had…an accident.

I was disappointed when the power windows on the van stopped working.

These, however, do not seem quite the caliber of disappointment that I am apparently supposed to summon up. They feel pretty lacking, matter of fact.

I closed my eyes for a few moments and let my mind run…but the place it seems to go the most is disappointments from Ben to me, and I don’t care to post those because it really seems like a betrayal. Like I can expose myself on here (to a point, at least) but I can’t really do that to him. That narrows the disappointment playing field down quite a bit.

The real topic becomes:

Write about a disappointment without hurting anyone that you love or bringing up any bad memories that would make the other parties in question sad.

And how can I do that?

Even if a person doesn’t read my journal currently, I’m posting it on the stinkin’ Internet, for Pete’s sake. It could easily get back to anyone, or be read sometime in the future by the other players in the tale of disappointment.

I’m not really into hurting other people’s feelings.

So I have a couple of options.

One is to write about sometime I was disappointed in myself. These will probably not work because if I am going to be disappointed in myself, it is probably still too raw and personal to get posted, so sorry. I even want to keep secret the ones as a kid. Oddly enough, I can’t even think of one of them at the moment, but I get that nasty feeling in the pit of my stomach when I start to try, so I drop it.

Or I could write about somebody dead.

The problem with that one is that first, I’m not cool with speaking ill of the dead. Second, my dead people get elevated higher and higher to near-godhood status the longer they have been gone. Third, I can’t think of anything. As usual.

I could also write about something disconnected with me, like my disappointment in a movie or celebrity…i.e. I was disappointed when Arrested Development went off the air. But that, my friends, seems a little lame.

Think, McFly, think.

Twenty minutes have passed and I still got nothin’.

I waited another five, and now I am ready to say Uncle.

I have hope for tomorrow…and then the weekend! Wow! Goes fast when you skip the first three days of the week.


What was it like to come back home after a long vacation?

Me, making unforgettable memories on the Disneyland trip.

Me, making unforgettable memories on the Disneyland trip.

First off, you’ve gotta understand that I haven’t really ever gotten back from a long vacation that I can remember. I know that we went to Disneyland just before I turned 3. I don’t remember that.

The Disneyland trip seemed to be my parents’ last huzzah. Before it, the family allegedly took other trips – to Florida, to Colorado…but I think I only got to go on the Disney trip. I don’t remember one single thing.

We went to visit my grandparents in Stilwell a couple of times a year. Coming back from those was always nice, I guess. I liked to come home and pet my cat and check the mail and read several pages worth of funnies in the newspaper. Mom was usually a dictator about having a clean house before we left, so it would be pretty clean at home.

The house always seemed silent and unlived in when we returned, and wood and things would creak in a funny way for a time or two until everything settled back down.

We still don’t take long vacations. The trip to Washington, D.C. that we’re planning in October is the first big trip we’ve ever taken. We’ve gone to Alva for a week, and we’ve been in Perryton for a couple of days, but this is the real deal. I’m looking forward to it.

Now I’m the dictator, and I demand the house be clean before we leave for any reason. I used to think it was the dumbest thing ever. Now I want nothing more than to come home and the house be clean. It’s so welcoming to come home that way…not terrifying, which is what I want to avoid. Plus it’s easier to go through all the bags and things that are dumped on the living room floor if there’s nothing already there competing for my attention.

And laundry. The worst part of any trip is the laundry upon returning.

One time I did my laundry at Jenny’s before we left. It was great!

Maybe things will be different after the big trip in October. Hopefully it will be the start of more vacations to come. We’ll see.

Worst. Entry. Eva.

Back in the saddle

It is so easy to get off track with this! It has been exactly one week since I last did my journaling. I have an excuse though. I was super-flu sick and could barely think, much less write a journal entry. Or maybe it was because I was so smug about doing so well writing each day. Pride cometh before a fall, does it not?

27. What was it like to spend your first night away from home?

Honestly, I don’t remember. Shocker, I know. I have vague recollections; nothing more. I remember sleeping on the pull out couch with Becky in her living room after playing the Clue VHS game until really late.

And I know we did that several times, and I know there were slumber parties in there somewhere, and I can’t remember a lick of them.

I know that one of the first times I went to Falls Creek, I got homesick and called home on the pay phones. I distinctly remember standing outside at the row of phones, waiting my turn, and then hearing the satisfactory sound of coins dropping into the slot and making the phone usable. I remember hearing their voices, and how good it made me feel to talk to them.

I don’t remember what we talked about.

I went to children’s camp too, and things like that, but Mom was a counselor or cook or something most of the time, and I didn’t have to be there by myself. I’m the same way. I don’t want to let Lenora go to camp without me. I’m overprotective, I guess.

I remember being scared my first night at college. I have always been a little frightened in the dark when I’m alone. I called Mom and Dad (again from the payphone) the next day or so and convinced them to come to Carmen for their 100th anniversary celebration that weekend. It was so nice of them to come. It was hard to be alone like that for the first time. I wasn’t as scared when my roommate came.

When I moved to the apartment at the end of that summer, I was very scared there. I used to watch TV very late with Ben so he would fall asleep on the couch and I would have him there all night instead of him going back to his parents’ house. I knew it didn’t project the best image, but I was so scared!

I’m a little ashamed to admit that one of the big reasons I wanted to get married so early was because being alone at night was scary.

I don’t get so scared now, since there’s usually someone else here with me. I still don’t go into a room that’s dark…I always snake my arm around and hit the switch first. When I go out the car at night, I start back in by walking calmly…but about halfway back I get nervous and sometimes start walking quick or jogging to the door. If I have to put the chickens up at night and I can’t find a flashlight, I constantly imagine that someone/thing is going to snatch me up in the dark.

Now I’m scaring myself, and I’m sitting in the dining room in broad daylight…the clock says it’s 12:34; that’s kind of cool.

This wasn’t really about my first night away from home, but at least I’m back in business.