Sunday, November 16, 2008


this morning i woke up in tears. i'd had a dream, where i'd been walking down a cobbled lane, and out of an old dark terrace house came a small child. she grabbed my hand and dragged me and whoever i was walking with (mother? sister) into her house. in there, was a family in mourning. it was a large family, with many children, most older than the girl who'd taken me inside. she was about 4 or so. she didn't talk to me, just showed me the reason why everyone was so sad.

in her hand was a tiny, dead baby. the girl gave it to me, and it fitted neatly in the palm of my hand. i tried to convey my sympathy to her, without words. it was as if she was too young to be able to articulate her pain, and so would be too young to understand me. i think i tried to utter a few words, so sorry, such a beautiful baby, and smiled at the little girl.

then i became more aware of the other people in the room. there was a grandmotherly person, who was the only one of the others who seemed aware of the little girl, the dead baby and the grief. older children were watching television, or sitting - none of them as upset as the little girl. the grandmother was there supporting the little girl, but distantly. i felt the little girl had come out onto the street, to find someone to show her pain to.

i felt she was showing me her pain.

when i woke up, i wondered what this dream meant. very quickly i realised that i am that little girl, and on this blog, at times, i am showing people my pain. even though the diaries are old, way old, they are real. last night when i posted the latest entry, for the first time i left out something, something hurtful which i felt was just too hard to reveal.

i sense a connection between that omission and my dream.

i need to think about it, and work out what this means for me. as the diaries progress, they become more and more personal, painful, and i am revealed as a very vulnerable and at times stupid girl. there's nothing major - no rape, no murder, no theft. but there is lying (not me, others) and drunkeness, drugs, and later violence (not me, others).

why do i feel i have to say those really bad things come from others not me? why do i care what you all think? is this why i am blogging? to get some sort of approval from my audience?

i write, it's a big part of me. it's something i can't not do. just like reading, i have to do it. but i think i might regret it if i think that i am using my very personal inside diary stuff, my at times very painful past bits (which, let's face it, we all have) to entertain and amuse people i've never met. i don't know.

i'd love to know people's thoughts on this. i feel i'm at a cross-roads. the dream has resonated, and made me consider something that might be important. am i guilty of exposing all, is it inappropriate? reading my old diaries has been cathartic - it is, i think, a part of me leaving all that shit behind. a reconciliation, maybe. a realisation. and if i can learn more from it, then i would never not want to learn. but if the lesson is going to be regrets about publicising all this stuff about me, and then it's there forever, then that's not the learning i want.


Another Outspoken Female said...

So many of the feelings expressed in the diaries are universal. Well at least of our era (how'd I know what it is like to be a teenager now?). The disapproval of our bodies and swearing we'll diet and exercise tomorrow. The uncertainty as to how others see us. Boys! Boys! Alcohol and drugs. Sex.(Well i'm guessing that must be there somewhere). All the good bad and ugly stuff.

I've said before reading your diary makes me feel uncomfortable, its like looking into a mirror (though I was so bloody precocious that it makes me shudder now just thinking about it).

You don't have to bare your soul. If you think there is some healing that can come out of posting the censored stuff then do it. If you think it will make you feel crap then don't.

But in a way you are using the same filter as your teenage self when you've edited out what you once wrote by being guided by "what would people think of me if they *really* knew me?"

Perseus said...

I agree with OSF. This is your blog - do with it as you please. Censor if you need to, blurt if you want to.

The internet is not real. My name is not Perseus. You can do or say anything here.

I adore your diaries, I look forward to them, they're my favourite bit of the internet right now and I will take what you give, and anything you hold back is not in any way unfair nor is it short-changing me or any other reader. Ths is your e-home, and I abide by your e-rules.

You owe us nothing.

KittyMeow said...

I agree with Perseus - I know I haven't commented much but I do love your diaries.

We've all gone through similar things and done stuff we think is stupid.
Its no one's place to judge your actions so many years ago. And if they do - stuff them! :-D

I'm not Craig said...

Your readers are wise in their comments.

I can't speak for everyone (or can I?) so I'll just say that I lov this blog for the awesome writing, but even more so for the author's qualities that shine through the well crafted words, qualities of strength, enjoyment of life, a deep love for family and friends, honesty, good humour, depth and wisdom.

The diaries are great and I hope you persist with them, but I agree with everyone else that the key thing is to post whatever you think will help and heal and forget the rest.

And do take care of yourself, dear friend.

jo_blue said...

What a powerful dream. It's amazing what the sub-conscious brings to the fore. Some things are meant to be kept to ourselves, in our own private boxes, just for us. Everyone doesn't need to know everything and your diaries are an amazing read even without the stuff you wish to hold onto, if that is what you want.

I've had a similar struggle - wondering whether to keep stuff to myself or to publish it and make it part of my story. If I did publish it, what would be my motive - fishing for sympathy, writing it down to let go of it, fulfilling my victim ego? - the questions go on. It's a tough decision, don't rush it and go with your instinct.


Pepsi said...

Isnt doing this reminding you too about how far you have come from the diary girl?

As they've all said, its your blog - hiding under an alias gives you the freedom to be as honest as you want - dont stop just because you are worried about what we your readers might think, why do you care what we think really, isnt blogging just a way to vent and talk to strangers just like you used to on the CB years ago anyway.

I think dreams are just dreams, I'm not big on analysing them.

Its always a pleasure reading your blog Melba and when I'm poking around other places and I seen you've posted a comment it usually means its a quality blog so I hang around.

Melba said...

thank you everyone for your kind words, and encouragement. i feel reassured that it's ok to continue, that it's ok to omit, that it's ok to reveal, that it's ok to be, or have been, a flawed human.

i felt humbled when i read each and every comment here. and i feel validated in a really nice warm fuzzy way.

Mex said...

i agree with everyone. you alone have the ability to reveal or hide as much of your true self as you wish. whatever you omit to us doesnt matter but the point is that you are revisiting your diaries in a real and physical way which,like pepsi said, is part of the exercise of reflection (if thats what is happening here).

i love your diaries and even in the past year its amazing to see how much you (then) have changed. thank you for allowing us this window into your past - its pretty amazing and so are you!