I Hate Diaries

As a youngster, I thought keeping a diary was cool. Popular and mainstream and the in thing to do. A thought perpetuated by mainstream media and the agony of trying to decipher an identity for myself.

As a youngster, keeping a diary made me a fool. Invasive and disastrous are less words to describe, the horror one gets when others read your entries and use them as blackmail to curtail your behavior.

As a teen, I swore off all manner of bookkeeping. Of writing experience and chronicling every day incidents, choosing instead to keep in mind what was important and flushing out what was not.

As a teen, mistakes were plentiful, and red was the color of my ink. Demons would come for dinner, down the whole bottle of wine and speak whispers of memories, I thought I forgotten.

As an adult, I abhor such manner of writing. As if you decide that creating a paper trail of evidence of your life would add value to your seemingly incredible life experiences.

As an adult, your diary is fodder. For when old aunties come visiting at festivals, and instead of cake and tea; you place a book and invite them to dine on the juicy elements of your delicate being.

I hate diaries.

Only because, I rather that my inner world be kept away. It’s private.

Only because, it’s simpler to hide thoughts than a book within your bedroom.

Only because, those that know me, know me and not what I think of me.

Only because, parents should talk to their children and not read their diaries.

I hate diaries yet I keep a diary, of sorts.

Diaries in all instances are trigger objects.

Objects that conjure up a spectral of memory. A ghost from the past that haunts you; either malevolent or benevolent. It waits in ambush, in the dark crevices of your soul.

Objects that force reminiscent emotions to plague your thoughts with ‘What if’ even though you know, you can never change your actions of yesterdays.

Objects that mark milestones in life. The first love, first kiss, first argument, first breakup. And the first thoughts of how utterly stupid we are when perfect vision is only through the window of hindsight.

So I kept other things as trigger objects.

‘Memento Mori’, inked to remind me that nothing is permanent.

The Chinese words ‘Kind-hearted’, ‘Fearless’ and ‘Persistent’, are etched along my backbone. Words to prop up my character, personality and mannerisms.

Tribal symbols on my body, to remind me of my heritage. That I may stand visible in the after-life among my ancestors.

I hate diaries, the book that others can read.

But spend time with me and I may allow you to read me like a book. And I will tell you stories, no mere mortals can pen.



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