Poobah's Journal: The Last Post

The experiment of reading the journals I kept as a young man is done. I've read all 620 pages, most of the time blushing at how vapid I was. But hidden amongst the leaves was a picture of who I was then - a young man with a troubled mind who felt lonely much of the time and confused the rest.

I kept the journals on a near-daily basis throughout my late teens and 20s. The next-to-last entry is a short one. It came about a year after my mother died and when the Omnipotent Dad and I continued to struggle with the grieving:
July 13, 1982 - The humidity covers everything in a wet, tropical pall. I can feel the individual little droplets lighting on me. It's a mostly sensual feel, making everything hazy and familiar.

A night on the town with Dad. Ribs. A movie. A good way to unwind I think.
The journal inexplicably skips forward more than three years. I don't remember what caused the long pause, but I suspect it was because my life had changed from one in which I was alone and able to spend long hours writing, into one in which I had a family, a demanding job, a house to take care of.

During that pause, I fell in love and married Mrs. Poobah. My Dad fell in love with my first stepmother and married her. I changed careers, leaving my previous profession as an aircraft mechanic and going to work as a technical writer. My life was fuller than it had ever been, yet there were some constants.

I still felt older than my years and suffered from frequent - and as yet undiagnosed and untreated - bouts of depression. In five more years, the Poobette would be born and I would finally emerge into what I belatedly recognized as full adulthood.

When that happened, I never returned to regular journaling until I started this blog in 2005. Today, my "journal" is less a diary than a mish-mash of political commentary, personal remembrance, and reflection. I'm still not sure that it reflects the average 51 year-old man and I think there's still a touch of the confused young adult mixed up in the mish-mash. I still wince when I read what I've written and still question a world that I frequently find confusing and scary.

This is my last journal entry. I don't remember if this was a belated closing that I realized I hadn't written in 1982 or an attempt to get back into the rhythm of regular writing to ease some of the devils I battled at the time. The thing that strikes me now is the poignance it carries. A 30 year old man still uncomfortable in his own skin:
November 2, 1985 - Things change and don't change all at the same time. I used to use these books as a way to categorize, feel, and think through the events at hand. I would sometimes go through periods when it seemed there was no real need to carry on the debate and others when it seemed the journals were all there was. Call this one of the in-between times.

I'm quite a bit older now. I've acquired a new life, a wife, and a home. I'm not the same person I was just a few years back, and therein lies the rub.

Lately, I've got the oddest feeling that I'm drying up bit by bit. That plasma that I was is now leaking away and leaving an empty husk behind. I don't write, or read, or just sit and think anymore. I don't do any of those odd little things that I used to do so much of. I've gradually become someone else, but somehow, I've neglected to get to know him.

The time is far past that I should make that attempt.

With age, I'm getting more savvy in the ways of technospeak. Before I just wrote. Now I recognize it for a form of stress management.

O, the wonders of the modern world.

Bring it On!

The Poobah also appears at Bring it On!

Tech Tags:

Truth Told by Omnipotent Poobah, Saturday, August 19, 2006

AddThis Social Bookmark Button