Time never forgets

I’m going to tell you why I hate moving. It’s because I’m compelled to dump the thousand pounds of paperwork that I’ve hauled everywhere. Not only that, but also because I take the time to read it.

And I just shouldn’t.

I just threw away my entire fundraising career. Believe me, I have no plans to return to nonprofit management/development. But I also got rid of the cell phone and credit card numbers of some of Pittsburgh’s most prolific donors. Why I kept that info is beyond me, but I have notebooks upon notebooks of telephone conversation notes, contact information, budgets, timelines and whatnot. It’s amazing, really, what I have accomplished in my lifetime. It’s a good reminder that I set out to be special and I didn’t let myself get in the way of that goal too often.

And then, in the process of digging, we unearth the personal writings. The stuff written in margins and at the back of those reporter’s steno books that I adore so much. And it makes a girl realize how far she’s come, yet how grown-up she was when she didn’t feel like it at the time.

But my observations and such are so timeless, like I knew I was going to want to write a book about it someday. Which I will, I promise. The world hasn’t met me yet, but I always knew I’d want to introduce myself someday, somehow.

Anyway, I wrote this when I was 25:

I really don’t understand the need to meet in order to schedule a meeting. That 15-foot distance to traverse to ask me a question isn’t a moat or anything. (God, I wish it were.) Instead of asking me when we can meet to discuss one issue, how ’bout asking me the damn question that you’re gonna ask me in two days?!?!

I’m so tired of looking at the same sad-sack faces and hearing the same flat voices every damn day. ‘Tis annoying. Am I the only sign of life around here?

So I sent out a resume. Not my dream job, but then again, what is? Any job that’s not this one is my dream job. And it’s in D.C.

Heh. This was circa the mid-1990s. And I actually DID move to D.C. in 2002. But wow, I can still feel the pain from the day I wrote it.

Speaking of painful, I used to write poetry, too. This one is dated May 6, 1999:

I remembered a time
Long since forgotten
When you were all I ever needed
And wanted.
An era when your smile
Or a loving word or glance
From you
Could heal me
Of any malady
The world had inflicted.
Years when the depths of your eyes
Would envelop me
And absorb what I was feeling
Without my ever
Uttering a single syllable.
If you only knew
What I’ve gone through
To get over you
Can you ever comprehend
The loss I felt
Looking at you now?

You always knew me so well
Better than I could ever
The wars and the parties
Taking place in my mind
And in our relationship.
You were always on my side
Even when you picked up
Your weapons
And armor
To instigate
Or retaliate.
Where are your arms now?
Your dagger now
Is your silence
Your distance
Your detachment.
And those hurt more
Than any sharp word
Ever could
Or did.


Would you believe me if I told you I don’t remember for whom I wrote that?

Yeah, I didn’t think so.

I never thought I’d show it to that person or to anyone, for that matter.

There’s lots of other prose and poetry in my notes, but I have a bonfire to build, lest I have to read the entry from May 7, 1999 (the day after the prior epic), which says, among other things:

It’s easy enough
To hope for a second chance
And it’s all well and good
To think the third one
Could ever make a difference.

I think it’s a sign that the pile of notebooks from which I am typing just slid off my lap into a careless heap on the floor.

Oh, but it wasn’t all black roses and darkness. I had a sense of humor back then, too:

“… You Might be Stupid”

1. When you decide to have “casual relations” with the obsessive, needy boyfriend you dumped two years earlier.

2. When you give your new phone number to the ex you changed it to avoid in the first place.

3. When you stay at a job you abhor so you can still be invited to happy hour.

4. When you stop a run in your pantyhose with black nail polish and you have a dark circle on your leg for a week because of it. In an obvious place, no less.

5. When you tell your mom you won’t go on a blind date she arranges for you because you’re a lesbian.

I’m going to go back to entertaining myself in my bedroom (with my old files, kids, that’s all!) now.

Boxes packed: 0.
Memories relived: 4,700.
Joy that I wrote down every single emotion I ever had back then: Priceless.

2 Responses to Time never forgets

  1. MB :

    What great finds…down memory Lane!

    It seems like it only took seconds to live it all…
    When, in fact, it was years…

  2. Caterwauling :

    […] As you know, I’m unearthing little notes I’ve written to myself throughout the years. (See here for an example.) […]