Today while cleaning out my desk, I stumbled upon a stack of floppy disks. A couple I remember I used for storing my homework. Then I noticed one labeled, “Lewis’s Journal: TOP SECRET.” I had totally forgotten about this floppy.
I went downstairs to fire up the old Dell Dimension 4500S with a Pentium 4 and 512MB of RAM. For such an old machine, she booted up pretty quickly. I inserted the floppy to find a solitary .doc. I opened it up to find about ten entries, in a super obnoxious Tempus Sans font. The entries were poorly written and about shallow topics but the last entry stood out to me. It reads:
“October 31, 2001
It is Halloween. I have yet missed another school dance. It seemed very pointless to go with out any one. I wish I would get invited to one. Just one is all I’m asking for. So today I went skateboarding with Willie. I’m getting very frustrated with myself because I cant ollie up the curb. I can ollie over cracks but whenever I approach an unleveled surface, I get scared and bail. I pray that I can ollie the curb soon. I was planning on going trick-or-treating this year but my parents were yet over protective again, saying that the candy might be poisoned. I can’t blame them, since the attack on the World Trade Center in New York, they have been more protective about me and my sister. The newest thing that has swept the nation by storm is the anthrax problem. Anthrax is a deadly virus that can kill you. It goes in to your lungs and creates blisters or it can go on your skin and make rashes or something. I’m so afraid of packages and letters now. I HATE those terrorist! I wish this never happened.”
Nine years seem so long ago but the entry is still relevant. Everything changed after September 11th. The whole atmosphere in which we live changed for the worst. My parents definitely became more protective of my sister and me. I remember we all got cellphone shortly after the towers collapsed.
The entry also shows how much I haven’t changed. I still feel like the awkward wallflower that never got invited to any dances but with age comes acceptance. It’s just who I am. Luckily I have friends and family that have looked pass that awkwardness and accept and love me for it. That’s all I could ever ask for, really.