Tales Of A Teenage Crackhead: Page 3

Daily Post prompt: Write page three of your autobiography.

No fair! I’ve already written my autobiography. It goes from birth until about ten years ago when exciting things mainly stopped happening, It’s the only book I’ve ever actually finished.

I was compulsively driven to write it. I could not stop. I would go to work, come home, write until bed time, sometimes later, and then get up and do it all over again. On the weekends, I wrote for eight or nine hours straight. It took over a month of writing every day. The NaNoWriMo people would have been proud.

When I finished it, I backed it up a thousand times in a thousand locations. I have copies of it stowed away everywhere like a squirrel. I never looked at it again. I never even read it. I have no idea what’s in there.

Today is the first time I’ve opened it. Today is the first time I’ve read even a little. It’s raw. It’s full of grammar errors and stupidly written sentences, but it’s true. It’s the truest thing I’ve ever written. It’s the truest thing I’m ever likely to write. It is me.

It has chapters:

Screen shot 2012-12-30 at 9.53.26 AM

When I wrote the last word on the last page, my first thought was, “Now I can die.” It’s not that I wanted to die. It’s just that I felt like it would be alright if I did. I wouldn’t regret a thing. I had finally finished something and there would be a part of me left when I’m gone. I had written the thing that I’d been working on my whole life.

I’ve been writing my autobiography for as long as I can remember. It starts in a bunch of old school journals when I was fifteen in awful, illegible cursive handwriting before I decided to print words instead. It’s strange to have a window to the past like that. To open a book and connect with your fifteen year old self is difficult to say the least. When I was fifteen, a lot of terrible things hadn’t happened yet. In only three years time, my life would drastically change forever. Sometimes, I want to go back and warn that fifteen year old not to do the things she’s going to do, but it wouldn’t do any good. I know how stubborn she is. I wrote a blog post about it.

Now, I have a different window to the past. I have a view that I wrote as an adult with all my ducks in a row. Until today, I hadn’t bothered to look through it.

So, without further ado, here is page three of my AutoBio:

Screen shot 2012-12-30 at 10.10.50 AM

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I think I have some editing to do.

There are 7 comments

  1. sha'tashari

    I kept journals and poems from my past as well. I do read them at times, but they are not happy moments so it’s not something I rush to do. Have you considered doing a rewrite? Everytime I discover something I had written years passing, I feel a need to “fix” it even though it’s pobably better to leave it in raw form.

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    1. goldfish

      My journals don’t have happy moments either. It was awful to read about terrible things as they were happening. It brought it all back. I think I was so driven to finish it just so that I wouldn’t have to relive it again. It’s the same reason I hadn’t looked at it again since I wrote it. Visiting the past is never fun, especially when you can visit it viscerally through journals and when your past isn’t full of happy moments.

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  2. HudleyFlipside

    I am happy to see this… I see passion and it is a the best place to start when writing a biography. The fact that you let it sit for some time is better… I feel this is when what we write has time to mature and developed a nice bouquet. I suggest as you reflect back on what you have written… you may find the humor and then the happier moments to add… and one can always hire a good copy editor ahahahah Thankx for sharing…

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  3. twistingthreads

    Sometimes I think that the rough draft form, the raw form, of life experiences are truer to us than pruning. When we prune and edit our own life stories, we become revisionist. It would be interesting, perhaps, to write a new draft every five years without looking at the old one, and see how our perceptions of an event change, and what we’ve forgotten.

    But, I keep my old journals and autobiographical attempts hidden away. I see them rarely. It’s easier to put my memory cues in a box and know they’re there than to carry them around with me everywhere. I don’t rewrite them all the time. I will probably forget how I changed my perceptions and why they’ve changed with time, but I don’t have the energy to experiment. I’ve put them aside so I can deal with my life now, and I would still rather be here than there.

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    1. goldfish

      I’m definitely a revisionist because I don’t have the memory to remember everything correctly. That’s why, as much as dislike her, I’m glad that I have my old self’s journals lying around because she doesn’t revise. It’s all there in ink. It certainly made it a lot easier to write my life story.

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