I say ‘had’, because nowadays I genuinely find myself too busy, and too preoccupied with my desire for sleep, that I simply cannot keep up with writing a mild essay at 11.30pm every night. That, coupled with the general realisation that my diary seemed to document my whining more than it did the actual events of my day. I wrote it more like a presentation of my life than I did a documentation, as if I were writing it in preparation for an adaptation to a blockbuster movie, expecting it to be dug up in 100 years time and poured over like a hidden gem of 21st century life.
“I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read in the train.” – Oscar Wilde
I liked the formality that my diary presented. Not in a “Dear Diary” kind of way; more a friendly reminder of how far I’d come, how much things change, and how quickly today’s dramas are tomorrow’s anecdotes. I have a couple of diarys from when I was younger, back in the miserable school time that meant every day was a tale of tears or a barrage of bullying, documented forever more in my size 16 scrawl and acting as a constant reminder that, contrary to popular believe, your school days are not the happiest time of your life.
“I do not keep a diary. Never have. To write a diary every day is like returning to one’s own vomit.” – Enoch Powell
But this year’s diary is different – or was different, until I found myself too caught up in the joys and excitement that life can offer, meaning my desire to compromise my living for the sake of documentation rights is not high on my list of priorities. This is a diary of the real world. And it’s beautiful.
My diary is the solid embodiment of time. The past, present and upcoming future, all encapsulated within a few pieces of parchment.
“It’s not easy keeping a diary. You have to be pretty committed.” – Karl Pilkington
As the black, silk ribbon that bookmarks the stages of my everyday life descends its way through thick, creamy pages, day by day, the time that passes documented forever more in a deep navy, embroidered into the history of time by my own shaky and timid writing, I am reminded of those moments that will be lost forever, the memories too big to fit within the confines provided, the feelings too strong to be found using a means so archaic as the written word.
“Painting is just another way of keeping a diary.” – Pablo Picasso
While one day is captured through heartfelt adjectives, bouncing from the page with more excitement than when it was originally written, the next resides in teardrops and words better left in the comfort and security of my mascara stained pillow case. The raw and unedited scribbles capture moments that merge between smiles and sorrow, while the tears remain absent and laughter fades away.
“The only really safe thing to do is to write a diary of where you’ve been, what time you went to bed, what you ate. If I wrote honestly about everything I think it’d be a disaster. It would cause a lot of trouble.” – Ellie Goulding
Yet the empty pages of tomorrow and beyond, preparing for what’s to come, so pure and virginal, shining with their awaiting hope and optimistic future, inspire me into what is ahead, the pathways untarnished from blotchy ink to stain the daydreams and imagination still to come. It’s here that I plan scripts for my days, paragraphs to each hour, chapters to conclude and sentences to store; the future pathways that are still so malleable and untouchable, absent and unsolid, ready to be created and edited exactly how I please.
“The pen is mightier than the sword.”
So when I do find time to pen a moment of time, to write a Day In The Life Of, to document the real events of my everyday living, I am thankful that the ever changing life of my year so far can stay locked away, safe and secure, within the pages of my black leather diary.