A Drug Bust Hoax & An Extremely Intimate Embarrassment (11-17 January)

Monday 11/1/88A Life in Words

Had wierd dream about muppets before I woke this morning: not ordinary ones: the ones (monsters) like out of LABYRINTH [see pic on the right] & THE DARK CRYSTAL. It was really wierd, but good! Well I got up after 8:00 some time, closer to 9.00. I rang Fiona & she said she had to work, but (’cause she rides now) I said I’d ride with her to town at 10:00 and do “nothing” till she had to work. She mentioned on the phone that Steven had said to her “I can’t believe she did that. Mark has finally committed himself to her.” [If you haven’t been following this blog, I highly recommend you read the previous post to understand this statement and grasp the continuing story, in this post.] Great Lissa; he commits himself & finds out this… he won’t ever trust me will he? I really struck out there (well… he didn’t ring me today either) [That sounds like you’ve resigned yourself to an end to the relationship?] So after that I rang Jo, then got ready. It was so windy! I couldn’t believe it… so hard to pedal… I felt totally immobile!! Boring in town: quick glances thru’ shops before riding back to Fi’s Newsagency. I decided (even though the wind was behind me) to catch the (12.30) bus because my bottom was very sore(!!) (Saw Crabbie & Kel too – didn’t recognise them in the car at first!) Listened to BAD on headphones while watching TV at home. A Life in WordsThen nearly fell asleep, so went in to bedroom and slept for about an hour… came out for dinner but could not finish it- felt sick again (see, last night I was feeling extremely nauseous.. very sick, but nothing would happen & I’d still feel horrible: I ended up going to bed with a bucket – moaning. Mum & Julia thought it was because of Mark) [….stress-induced nausea as opposed to an actual stomach bug or other physical health issue…] Thorn Birds is on again, so another late night … have to be at Mike’s work by 8.00 tomorrow: SHIT! I won’t even get to see if there’s any (hate) mail from Mark. I want to send him a bunch of roses & ask him to give me a second chance. See, I’ll have to make the first move, as usual. […so if it’s always the same and you’re not happy with it, change it…] Well, I’ll probably get to bed around 10:30, so goodnight.

Tuesday 12/1/88

I had great difficulty getting to sleep last night. After Thorn Birds, I listened to George Michael & also Terence Trent D’Arby [their entire albums, I would’ve meant] ..before crashing. [Stress-induced insomnia now too…] But I woke early … around 7:00 actually, to a phone call from Mike. I got ready, piled all my art stuff into a bag & got to GERNI around 8:15. About 8 phonecalls all day, one visitor, and mum popping in and out [to check I was coping alright]. I wrote a letter to Mark in the morning (wrote roughly twice before the good copy) and mum got the roses (ordered them) just after lunch, [again, my mother was so good to me… I wouldn’t’ve paid for those roses; it would have come out of her pocket and her only reason would’ve been to try to make me feel better …because I’m quite certain (although I am putting words in her mouth, herewith) that my relationship was a source of concern for her, since she’d (helplessly) witnessed the emotional rollercoaster that it was …for almost a year…] so he would’ve gotten them late this afternoon. The letter detailled my side of the story – how I didn’t intend or want it … and how he should give me a second chance. However, no phonecall [from him] tonight. (Except from CB- good long talk to her) I rang Jo today; she was just going for a job interview at Crocodilliacs. After her, ‘Don Power’ from the Aust. Federal Police called saying there was going to be a drug bust. A Life in WordsI was shocked – Mike & drugs(?) when mum came, she rang Cynthia, who rang this guy she knew, not from A.F.P., but Ray White Real Estate. (It was a joke!) [yep, gullibility is one of my weak points!] so I did my scrapbook for the rest of the day – left around 3.45. Watched TV at home. Am so bored- Fi’s working & Jo may soon be too. What should I do? [Um, maybe YOU should get a job too?] I have no idea. [To be fair to myself, I was thinking ‘bigger picture’: that is, whether I should study or get a job. Study would most likely have been undertaken in another town or city so I was probably thinking there was no point in getting a job there for one month…] Oh I wish Mark would contact me. What shall I do tomorrow, huh? Well, to be sure, I want an earlier night tonight. No later than 10:00 (12:00 or 12:30 or so last night -ugh!) So Mike paid me only $20: that’s disappointing, [hmm, twenty bucks for seven hours: that’s just under three dollars an hour. Mind you, it was hardly taxing work…and it was the 80’s…] but I’ve got to try and make it last (awhile)

Wednesday 13/1/88

No mail from him: no call in the morning. But I had a strong feeling he’d be out tonight. Anyway, this morning Sharon rang around 10:00 or so (a little earlier) and we decided, at 1:00 she’d ride here & we’d ride to crystals. Well, mum took me to the D’s newsagency [I’d left my bike there after riding in on Monday] & I rode home (really good ride!) and at home, did my scrapbook (lauren & tiggy & ‘the tribe’ [some younger girls in our ‘hood] came up & watched me for awhile- a bit annoying). [Not fussed on an audience, Liss?] When Sharon came, we didn’t know whether to go to crystals or not: she was pooped & I thought it was too hot (I was too lazy!) But we decided to ride to the Rocks & see if we’d have enough energy to go on to crystals. Huh! The ride took us more than ¾hr, but we made it (& the ink of pens on my school bag ran with body sweat so my shorts, shirt, towel, all stained.) We enjoyed our swim immensely. A Life in WordsThe ride back was much faster: 20-25mins (& we were dying of thirst so [privacy omission] a can of coke from the Redlynch shop!!) At home I rang Fi and CB. Had to throw all my stuff in a bag quickly & go to Mike’s (to give him his b’day present) Dougie was being very rude & moody & I had one glass of Westcoast [a popular brand of ‘wine cooler’ in the 1980’s]. At [privacy omission]‘s around 6:30, we talked, & I had a shower. Sharon came & so did [privacy omission] (←she’s really nice -hates [privacy omission] too!) Tasha couldn’t stay. We got ready really slowly. I wore my black dress, even though I felt like a real slut [I was ‘conservative’ enough to feel like a ‘slut’ wearing a slim fitting black satin dress… thank god I didn’t grow up in this century, wearing the stuff that girls do today…] (no one else thought so) […because, of course, it wasn’t slutty at all. I think I was feeling more ‘over-dressed’ than vampish. It was actually quite a sophisticated dress.] Sharon, Megan (we picked her up) & I went in the 1st load. Megan got asked for I.D. Keith & Nicole were there. I only had 3 or 4 drinks that night. I saw Mark & Chris & Steven & Cameron (who came up and talked to me – so glad!) [Privacy omission…but to understand this particular character’s relationship to me and the impact of our interaction herewith, read this post …especially if this is your first visit to this site.] came up to me when I was near the bar at one stage – tapped me on the arm & said “Thanks. Thanks a lot.” I said “OK” Freaked out a little after that, but was O.K. When we were dancing, he came on the floor & tried to lead me off. I said “what?” “I want to talk” “NO” “Just talk to you” “NO” I said again. A Life in Words“Well get fucked… fuck this!” (giving me the finger) I felt a bit drained [shocked: I’m non-confrontational and don’t cope with conflict very well] after this & went to talk to Megan. Found Sharon & I saw him dancing with Helen. I asked Sharon to see if he was dancing with anyone & she came back quite a while after saying “Mark’s coming over.” [Hmm, in hindsight I have to wonder if she actually told him to come and talk to me? It’s the kind of thing she might very well have done (and actually had in the past) because it’s the type of friend she was: she cared about me.] Great. I asked him how much he’d had to drink [not wishing to try to reason with an intoxicated person?] & I don’t know… we just started yelling. My voice was already giving way so we went into Smithy’s. It was long, very painful talk. He told me he hated those roses: they were an “insult” (he didn’t want roses, a letter or a phonecall… just me, to talk to him) he hated me & [privacy omission], but had forgiven us. .wanted to know what I wanted (second chance) He didn’t think it was worth it. He said how much he loved me ..how it hurt so much; he put everything to do with me away in a box. He couldn’t stop thinking about me though [privacy omission]. We talked about me & my affairs & he was very vicious. He didn’t want me to take blame, feel guilty, apologise – yet he said so many things which made me feel guilty. Finally ([privacy omission] had left & I was going to catch a taxi home with CB & Trevor (who insisted on waiting for me)) he said for me to go with my friends & forget, tonight, to apologize to Trevor (for snapping at him when he came to arrange going-home arrangements) and want tomorrow or Friday for him to ring & talk somewhere & tell his decision on our relationship. [God Elissa, this happens every time. Why was he always the one to decide the future of the relationship? Why was the ball always in his court? You let it be; you needed it there because you were addicted to and dependant upon him. So …oblivious.] So I went without saying goodbye (I must’ve cried so much – and he’d been wiping my tears away so tenderly, saying that it hurt him to see me cry)…

Thursday 14/1/88

At [privacy omission]‘s, Dean was flaked out on the lounge room floor & Sharon & Cara were sitting talking. [Privacy omission] went to bed & I did soon as I could, too. CB & I had a bed each, and talked (I was so tired) till about 3.30 or so, then bombed. Sharon woke me at 6.50 wanting to know if I was coming… [where to?] I said “I don’t know” and went back to sleep. She came in again at 7:25 & I said “NO!” but ended up getting up almost straight after, anyway. [Privacy omission] & Sharon left & I waited round after packing up (my white turtleneck strangely disappeared) white turtleneck top[Dang, I loved that top. But I’m fairly sure it turned up again: someone would’ve just borrowed without asking…] till mum came. At home, I nearly fell asleep on the lounge when a phonecall at 10:55 woke me. It was Mark. I said there was no way I could get there so he said he’d ring back, but mum came home about 30 mins after, so I rang & said I was coming around. On McManus St, the beginning of Faith was heard on the radio: an omen? Well, our talk was much less continuous: he couldn’t see the point of getting back together (like Fi said: it took him to get hurt to make him realize) basically he was afraid I’d do it again (Now he knows how I feel (felt)) in other words. he won’t be able to trust me too well. Anyway, we decided another go, but this, definitely the last. We are going to remain faithful to each other, even while apart (ie: we’re still “going out” while he’s at college) [oooh, long distance relationships are really hard work. This’ll be interesting, considering the two of you can barely sustain it whilst living in the same area…] so, I could tell he was nervous to touch me & I was, naturally, to him. But, lying on his bed, we eventually kissed: he was extremely passionate. But then it stopped (I was sure it had something to do with thoughts of the past ie. [privacy omission]) [privacy omission] soon made love.. .Sandra getting a shirt just before it and …SHIT… his mum WALKED IN (just after it) [privacy omission] she saw everything. HOW MUCH SHAME! A Life in WordsWhen she went out (she’d hidden her- inevitable -surprise & shock really well – expression did not change as she asked if I was staying for tea) [Kudos to her – I was so impressed by her composure, I’ll never be able to forget it…] Mark said [privacy omission] and laughed. I could not believe it, I was so stunned & WORRIED “Never coming here again” She didn’t know “well, she does now”, Mark said. He laughed – it was a big joke to him. Oh god, we stayed there for about 10 mins – him laughing at my worrying. Outside, Mr W made me stay for tea: oh the shame of it. [What’s that saying? “…I wish the ground would open up and swallow me…”] Although I tried to forget it & we did talk ..about Gatton I felt really bad [entirely uncomfortable] when Mark was out of the room. He drove me home (Paul came, too & I asked him to ring me tomorrow) I told mum & I knew she was shocked, [and possibly a little embarrassed …even for herself: the potential discomfort that may be present then next time she and his mother met…] but she laughed with me. So then I rang Fi, then Jo, then CB & [privacy omission], telling them all the great news (us being back together, that is) My voice was really bad then …Mrs W, Sandra & esp. Paul had laughed nearly all day at it! Watching cricket when Fi came down (830) and stayed, talking, till about 10.00 or so – I had a shower etc & got into bed at 11:00. So tired.

Friday 15/1/88

Well, I was woken at 9.00 (feeling extremely tired) by mum saying to take $50 out for her to borrow. I got up after she left & waited till 9.15 or so before ringing Mark. Thank God Sandra answered (!) […as opposed to his mother…] Mark was woken up  & it was obvious we wouldn’t do anything today.. I said I’d ring later this arvy. Then I proceeded to ring everyone else. Fi said we’d catch the 10.00 bus. Well it was 9.30 so I rang Jo: busy today said to ring back this arvy. And CB & Cara said we could meet them at 11.00 at the mall, but as I thought, they missed the bus (Mum took Fi & I in anyway or we would’ve missed it, too) so we walked around looking mainly for an Xmas present for mima. Saw mum at 11.45 – she took my card to the hospital [I had an appointment there later in the day with the orthopaedic surgeon who attended to me during my hospitalisation after the bus accident] so I stayed in town for lunch with Tasha, CB & Cara. CB & Cara didn’t show up so Fi, Tasha & I got sandwiches & sat in the mall. I went to the hospital at, just after, 1.00 and finally got out around 3.15. Dr Clarke was saying how they might be able to, in the future (far future) stitch up the scars on the inside, to pull the sagging skin together & give it shape. [And this was pretty much what the revisive surgeon did in Brisbane in 1990 (not really the ‘far future’)…] At home I watched TV and got quite a few phonecalls (well Sharon & Jo, anyway) before I rang Mark. Mr W answered (!?!??!) and he wasn’t home. So I watched TV and waited. A Life in WordsAnd waited. And waited. I swore I’d kill him (or punch him) the next time I saw him. Then at 9.30 I got a call. We talked until 10.45. It was a really good call (hated the bit about Nicole[?]: god I hate her)([privacy omission] was telling me today how much she hates her too) So I didn’t get to see him & he tells me now they might be staying over [at Fitzroy Island] Monday night, no, sorry, Sunday night, as well. Why is he not spending all the remaining time with me? Oh well; I guess I’ll have to get used to it. It’s almost 11.00 now. Am very tired. Goodnight.

Saturday 16/1/88

Restless sleep this morning, so I eventually got up around 8.00, to watch RAGE TOP 50 (was up to about no.25, that I saw) rang Jo’s place from 8.45 till 9.30 – no one answering. By then I had to leave. At TAFE, we only just walked in the administration block (seeing a large queue) when a lady asked if she could help us. I asked about reception courses & she said “They’re Monday, 5.30” so we went straight back to the car, and on to KMart to do grocery shopping, all the time I was picturing me & Jo shopping for our flat or house. Wouldn’t it be FUN?! I can’t wait to get working & get responsibilities!! [ha ha ha ha ha ha. Oh this is hilarious. And seriously, seriously naive…] I was thinking (mum suggested) reception for WOODWARD & THOMPSON (for Mrs R!) but I was after Hotel reception, even though it is shiftwork. At home, just got home & Jo arrived. We went back to my place to get her “BAD” tape (I drove – can you call it that? – up our street … ha ha, ha!) Then to shop for pies. I didn’t want to swim so lay dozing in the TV room. They took me home around 1.30, before Jo went to work. At home did nothing …scrapbook, watch cricket. Couldn’t get in touch with Fiona. Tasha & Cara were the only ones at [privacy omission]‘s – told me [privacy omission], Sharon & CB caught the 4:00 boat to Fitzroy. That hurt cause I’d seen CB on the way home this morning and had said I’d ring her at 3.30 to arrange the trip & she’d already gone. And when I rang Tasha back, it sounded much like she wouldn’t be able to go tomorrow (& was definitely not allowed out tonight) So I depended totally upon Fiona, who, I found out, after ringing Stuart, Mr D, Mrs D. & finally Mrs B, was at a wedding. I left an “urgent” message with each of them. A Life in WordsIt’s 9.00 now & she hasn’t called yet. If Tasha can’t go & Fiona can’t go tomorrow then I can’t for sure (not with [privacy omission] on the same boat) ITS NOT FAIR. How can they do this to me? Everyone left me totally out (except Tasha – but she couldn’t help being not allowed out) I can just see me not going tomorrow, then Mark staying Sunday night as well. Well, it’s 9.35, and I’ve given up hope. I’m going to bed (we’ve been minding Dougie & Thomas – Julia’s at Amanda’s – so I’m really glad they’ve gone) I feel so depressed & “BETRAYED”

Sunday 17/1/88

Woke at 6.50 and decided I’d better get up. I had no calls till 7.25, so started ringing others: [panic station!] D’s, then B’s, then (Fi couldn’t come) Amanda’s (but Julia, Manda & Cherie didn’t want to come, either) Jude’s (was working) & eventually Tasha’s. She was allowed and had been trying to ring me! [See? It all works out in the end…] So I got to the terminal at 8.05 and bought my ticket. At 8.20 (after seeing Chris & Glyn; ooh) decided I’d better get on the boat. It was 8.25 when Tasha & Cara turned up (I was so relieved!) We lay on the floor for the (long, boring) trip. [I’m quite sure the big old wooden ferries were still operating back then, even though newer catamarans had been added to the fleet. The old ferry rides took longer and were less luxurious so were cheaper, especially with a student ID – which I still had even though I was technically no longer a student. (It didn’t expire until 28 February ’88) Lucky me.] Once there, CB & [privacy omission] met us & we took our stuff to the camping grounds. I saw Mark but he didn’t seem to want to talk, so we ([privacy omission] CB, Tasha, Cara & I) went on the pontoon- water was full of lice! A Life in WordsWe all just got out, when a huge jellyfish was dragged out of the water. It was monstrous! [Although I didn’t specify whether or not it actually was a box jellyfish, it could very well have been because Fitzroy Island was much closer to the mainland than Green Island, and box jellyfish only dwell around the mainland because they prefer shallower waters, and breed in river mouths, estuaries and creeks.] Then, by the pool, sat & swam (Mark at the table on the other side) Nicole (with Keith, Greg & [privacy omission] Rachel (or Wendy C??)) at the table near the end too. We left & went back to get food money & shoes… had lunch (2nd time Mark talked to me – of his own accord, too – told me I could have some of their lunch & told me he was going surfing) [….which I find laughable. The Barrier Reef ensure no swell makes it to our shores (which also makes the box jellies happy) unless driven by cyclonic conditions. Having said that, if someone had a boat and took them to the outer reef, there they might find surf…] then we sat again by the pool .. Cara & Tasha  went for a long walk & [privacy omission] & CB were associating with Nicole in the pool, so I  sat out with Trevor, Jason & Nigel. Then I got in when CB, [privacy omission] & them left on the 2.30 boat (Cara & Tasha were back) Mark got in & we were barely talking – he was really cranky & it annoyed me – he could at least have tried to be nice – just put me down & whinged about about how hot/cold/tired/sore he was. Then, he said he wanted to get out. I said “goodbye” He said “are you going now?” I said “yes” & I got out & packed up & noticed he was in the pool again with his mates. Great. So I left, got very annoyed & hurt at him for not saying a nicer goodbye, especially as he was staying over again. The trip home was, seemed, shorter…. we were on the front dozing & later singing songs. Just before docking, Glyn threw a towel at Tasha; she ducked, and it went straight over into the water!! He laughed so much! We got off & I rang mum. Tasha, Cara, Steven S left & I waited 10 or so minutes for mum. Lazy at home – am so tired … stuffed myself full of ham/pineapple/cheese on toast, for dinner. A Life in WordsRang [privacy omission] & them at 8.30 or so … may go to the movies tomorrow night. SOMEWHERE IN TIME is on now – that beautiful story.. I love it. Well, I’ll sleep in tomorrow & hopefully be able to ‘punish’ Mark for his rudeness. Nah, I’ll forget it in a flash! [I don’t know about ‘punishment’ but I’m also not down with forgetting about how someone important to you has treated you…]

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OJ Spews, ‘Approximate Exactitude’ & Relief for Nana (10-16 August)

Monday 10/8/87

Felt a bit down again this morning. I can’t get over the time he spent with her. All night they talked – all night I believe nothing happened. I really do, but it still hurts to think he spent 5 odd hours talking to her.. alone, without getting bored. He would never do that with me. Can you understand? [Oh I understand something completely different…] It makes me feel really down- [like] I bore him or something. Anyway I perked up around lunchtime (incidentally I don’t like Angela’s hair black, at all) See, it is jealousy – I’m jealous that she can keep him interested, that he would talk with her alone all night without getting bored. […and my opinion about her new hair colour would most likely have been a little tainted by this jealousy…] God it hurts so much. It’s pointless me trying to let him know. I’ve tried in the past to talk & explain – its useless – he doesn’t hear me. [Soooo… maybe don’t try ..and save some of your precious energy?] What am I doing here, then? [Exactly.] Did some HW tonight. I resent any talk about that night. [Privacy omission] said “as a joke” something to Nicole about Mark wanting to fuck her. THAT IS REALLY SICK. A Life in Words[What I’m unable to illustrate – due to the limitations of computer text options – is how heavily I had underlined the word ‘really’ (see pic). Not once, but four times. I evidently felt strongly about this…] another late night.

Tuesday 11/8/87

Strangely, we’ve been getting on pretty well over the past few days. Wonder why? [Now the positives induce suspicion.. this isn’t ‘healthy’.] It’s wierd. [and I continue to spell ‘weird’ incorrectly…] A Life in WordsAnyway I woke this morning with a sore throat, from all my coughing & I felt a little sick in a wierd way. I was also v. tired. I went to school anyway, thinking it was over-fatigue, but at school it got worse (on & off) By the end of lunchtime I had the biggest headache so Jason drove me home. I bombed out and slept till about 3:19 [LOL. “about” 3:19? What, was it 3:18 and 54 seconds… or a few milliseconds after 3:19? Approximate exactitude is oxymoronic!] (heard the answering machine), then till about 3:45 when mum & Jules arrived home. I slept the rest of the afternoon (after some chips) my throat is dry & a bit sore from all the coughing & my headache is horrible. I had some fish for tea: not much + pineapple (sickly) Dozed in front of T.V. till mum “dragged” me to bed about 8:00-8:30. [One of the sweeter, long-lost memories of my mum’s expression of love for me: I can hear her in my groggy stupor murmuring my name, gently shaking, then trying to lift me up from whatever position I’d languished in. And when I acquiesced, she’d’ve escorted my aimless body all the way to my bed.] Hope I get better for Friday – baseball & Sat nite-Nigel’s party. Was going to ring Mark, but headache was too bad & I was too weak to bother

Wednesday 12/8/87

Really restless sleep last night – about 11:30 I woke…and vomited (chips, fish & orange juice) [oh, the burn! OJ is possibly the worst thing to regurgitate I think…] A Life in Wordsstayed home today (for sure!) Mark didn’t ring & I couldn’t be bothered to ring him. Fiona, Jason & Anna dropped round after school sometime, for a short while. My headache disappeared this morning – today I had fever (temp.) cough and sinus blockage and was very tired and weak. Is about 9:00 or so now. Auntie Ruth [my mum’s aunt – one of my grandmother’s (many) sisters] arrived around 7:45 tonight. Read my novel all day. Ate 3 mandarins & an orange .. lots of vitamin C. Am taking tomorrow off as well, to make sure I’m better for the weekend. [Because my social life was always first priority…] Did no work & I have an english assignment due on Friday + a biol test on Tuesday. Heavens above! (←ha!) [I’m probably laughing at myself using such ‘dated’ – and semi-religious – terminology here.]

Thursday 13/8/87

A Life in Words
The earliest photo (in my possession) of Nana & me, at Lone Pine Koala Sanctuary in Brisbane. There’s no date on it but judging by the size of me, it would have to be 1971-72

Slept very restlessly last night; woke nearly every hour, I think. I heard the phone ring around 6:00 this morning. Nana died. [Clearly my great-aunt Ruth arrived just in time for her sister’s passing, but I’m not sure whether she actually got to visit her.] I didn’t cry when mum told me & I don’t think I really will cry over the fact that she’s dead → I’m so glad she’s out of her misery – she was in a lot of it. [And that was it. I think, having personally met with Death in such an intense and unique way just six months earlier myself, I was somewhat prepared emotionally – and spiritually – for this moment, which is evident in my reasoning. I still believe – in fact more now than ever – that ‘wherever’ we ‘go’ when we pass is ‘better’. At this point in time, I was comforted by the ‘knowledge’ that leaving her gnarled body, Nana was now free of the insufferable rheumatoid arthritic pain. And to be brutally honest, since I wasn’t terribly close to her (we ‘clashed’ a lot in my early teens) I wasn’t going to miss her presence on a daily basis as I did Monique’s…] I spent the day reading again.. no fever – am just very tired & have the cough & nasal congestion still, but I feel (and Auntie Ruth agrees) that after tonight’s sleep I’ll be fine. I hope so. I rang Mark tonight .. cos it didn’t look like he was going to ring me. He was at Earlville with Terry ..so rang back. The phone did not stop ringing tonite – Keith & Jemima also rang me. My eyes are stinging – I need sleep to get better. I had 4 (or 5??) mandarins today! (+ dinner – veges) so I should have the vitamins required to boost my energy level tomorrow. [See? Even back then I was acquiring and demonstrating basic nutrition knowledge, hinting at my innate passion for the subject!] Haven’t done english assignment. Too bad. I’ll come late to school: miss double english. Is 9:45 …To sleep!!!

Friday 14/8/87

I’m feeling quite a bit better now. See, this morning I woke – feeling absolutely normal .. until I got up. The cough was persistent and even got worse early tonight, and my tiredness, fatigue & weak feelings plagued me (Making my joints feel heavy, and ache) I went to school anyway – it was a total waste. At little lunch (I went to school during 3rd period) I had to go up to Mark. He said one or two things & that was it. Didn’t even turn to face me, or offer to make room for me to sit down. So I went & sat on my own, practically, he walked past & did nothing. He walked to art ahead of me. Love the concern he shows for me. (He doesn’t – that’s just it, elissa – you should know by now it’s the way he is.) [ …if that’s so, and you aren’t happy, why persist?] so I was really depressed & mum picked me up at big lunch. I dozed at home. Mike & Cynthia bought over dinner – Golden Rooster. Couldn’t eat too much my stomach has shrunk. Is 9:30. I had a lemon & honey drink (YUK) as a last resort. A Life in Words[And I bloody-well love those things now… with ginger and turmeric added as well. Here’s a link to the recipe on my food blog, Food Fervour] Good sleep tonite & hopefully I’ll be fine for the party. Mark really gets to me. [You “let” him. No one is put on this Earth to either elate nor annoy You.] Hey! I’m not coughing!!! (Yet – touch wood!)

Saturday 15/8/87

I woke this morning – coughing. [I obviously didn’t touch any wood?] Alas & alack! But it was easier for me to stand etc. I still get times when my joints (limbs) ache & feel weak, but not as much, and not as bad, as before. We went to the doctor & got amoxyl (penecillan) & cough tablets. [So it obviously wasn’t a flu or viral infection after all?] I’ve been resting a fair bit today, in preparation for the party. (I’m going- there’ll be plenty of opportunities for me to sit down if I need it, mima said) Mark hasn’t rung. I’ve been thinking alot while lying down today… nothing’s the same anymore. We need the biggest, longest talk. There’s a lot of sorting out to do. A lot. [Talking… sorting out… it’s pointless when only one party is ‘interested’…] I’m not exactly “elated” in this relationship. [You don’t say?] A Life in WordsHe doesn’t make me feel like the ‘princess’ I used to be. [*NB: back in the 80’s being a ‘princess’ didn’t have the negative connotations that it can these days.] But that’s not all. [….well, what?] It’s almost 6:00. Am going around 8:30. [There was no mark in my diary to indicate I’d finished the earlier segment of my entry, but from here on in I’m clearly writing at a later point in time (most likely when I got home) describing my night:] It [the party] wasn’t that good. In fact, a waste of time. Only having tea when Jemima, Brent & Fi arrived ..at Nigel’s  it was boring. No one there. saw Mark & Keith once, they came back & went again. I went and lay down in Nigel’s room (feeling ill) Jemima, Brent, Jason & Fi talking to me. Mark told Sue he didn’t think I liked him. He thought I didn’t like him. (How?) went downstairs & Keith was there – took us to the other party everyone was raving about, At Toogood Road. TONNES, & I mean TONNES of people there→

Sunday 16/8/87

I was bored: Feeling ill, I needed to sit down all the time + problem of Mark – I asked him about it, but he seemed reluctant to talk so left him alone all night. I asked him to take me home, but I went with Brett instead (Cameron too). Just dropped cameron off – in Collins Ave. Brett stopped & I was sick (O.J.) At home I bombed out & I didn’t wake till around 10:00-10:30 this morning. Party was the pits. I asked nearly everyone if they knew what was up with Mark, [oh Elissa!] No one did tho’. Watched TV, rested today. Mark & Keith came over around 3:00 in the afternoon. Left soon after. I asked Mark to come around again tonight. A Life in WordsWe went to the park.. bit hard to get started talking, straight away, and the talk was not quite what I expected it to be. It’s really strange. This week, Mark was, apparently, really insecure – thought I was going to end the relationship. I can tell he still feels different, in a way. But it mattered a lot to him. And after that party I realised it. He not only loves me, he’s devoted, too. [You can’t be serious?] He left around 9:00. I watched mini-series show. Is now 10:40. Clean my teeth & off to bed.

Tertiary Ed Enquiries, Hurt Feelings & Tears for Nana (3-9 August)

Monday 3/8/87

O.K. day. Couldn’t concentrate, though – still in great spirits from the weekend… so excited. Wish we could have it all over again. Rushed a shitty english assignment tonight. Really stupid. I hate it. Will have to read over & fix up (a lot) tomorrow A Life in WordsMark flicking me with rope & being a nusance (??) […I wasn’t sure I’d spelled nuisance correctly…] He rang me this arvy, cause he thought I’d be sooky. What a joker. Sometimes they really get to me, though. Getting hot again- too early. Had no fucking winter at all- piss me off. [Not these days, it wouldn’t…] Saw a few photos today; none of our group, though. Can’t wait till they’re all done. Ate a lot of shit food this arvy. Unnecessary. It’s 10:44 : I shouldn’t be having such a late night. Wanna sleep in, but probably won’t be able to. SCHOOL’S SO BORING.

Tuesday 4/8/87

I got rather upset today at lunchtime. In fact I was (felt) nearly ready to break up with him (but I knew I wouldn’t, couldn’t) [of course not…] His jokes go too far. It’s not fair, I feel as if I’m doing all the giving; he’s taking. It’s just as well I’m so goddammed patient & forgiving (I love him too much) [Needy? Possessive?] I hate his pride; his self esteem. I feel I’m competing with it all the time. What really hurt was when he got out his NIKKO pen and scribbled out (on his port) my name: “Elissa loves me” & wrote “sux”. A Life in WordsTHAT HURTS MORE THAN I CAN SAY I hope you’re reading this. [!!!] I hope I will get through to you one day about just how gentle you need to be with me. Be thankful I have little pride, [oh dear] & lots of patience.. DON’T TAKE ME FOR GRANTED. [It’s incredible how completely your perspectives can change over time.] I had dance practise at Smithfield High tonite. Boring. The dances are silly- I don’t like them. I’m much more at home with CHS & those dance pracs. we had. [I developed an intense ‘loyalty’ to Cairns High …or should I say, bias?] Got my english done. No other HW, tho’. Mark asked me if I’d like to watch them play Americans [in baseball, I assume] Friday Arvy. Wonder if he still does? (Seeing as I suck) [ouch!] So tired. So bored.

Wednesday 5/8/87

Yet again: another late night. (10:30) I am so tired. I can never seem to get any HW done, either. Better mood today.. I said hi to him (thought “uh-oh”) […expecting no, or worse a negative, reaction] but he turned & smiled! (kind of). Not so joking in biol., then big lunch was really good. I was in a crazy (laughing) mood & we got on v. well. I think he was even affectionate, in a way!!! [Yo-yo relationship much?] Then Cameron, no, Brent doubled me to the North Cairns Reserve … caught up with Fi, Anna, Danäe, Juliet, Colleen & Jude. No one was there for soccer [I’m assuming this was my recreation choice for this semester]: a lady came  & told us that for this day it was at Endeavor Park.Days of our Lives We were too lazy to walk there (too far!) So went to Jude’s & watched Days of our Lives. Linda got photos developed – I’d like some of them. Warm weather. SHIT. Dance practise boring. (Jason P was there: he took me home this arvy) God I’m tired. Must do some work soon. Mark (& the boys) are going out Sat. night. I want to go to Croc Rock after the [Smithfield] formal, but no one else seems to want to. Even if she [who?] did & wanted after to go to the party.. [Wha..?] Mark’d probly not want me to hang around the guys. “BOYS NIGHT” I guess. [Well that was one confusing little sentence there. I obviously had one particular girlfriend in mind, whom I (failed to name, and) was hoping might accompany me after the formal to the night club and/or party …even though my ultimate aim was to locate my boyfriend… whom I then presumed most likely wouldn’t want me there?!]

Thursday 6/8/87

Well, he wasn’t quite “affectionate” today: I was the one who did all the “first moves” They’re (the boys) are going out Saturday night (boy’s night (!!)) We didn’t talk very much, but got on …O.K. when we did. So cool tonite (expected min. 15) I was quite cold at times today – a cold (cool) wind blowing. My appointment (with mima) with Ms Forbes this afternoon was very long, but I’ve sorted out basically what courses I’m looking at, and what uni’s & colleges I’ll attend. [You mean, you’ll “apply for”… not very many walk straight into their ideal course…] (No HW tonite) Finished my formal film today, at lunchtime A Life in Words[to explain to the youth again: when we took photos (with actual cameras, not phones) back in the day, we had to put a little canister inside the camera, which contained only enough film for a certain number of photos. I’d clearly not used up my reel’s quota at the formal so brought my camera to school and took random shots on this day in order to ‘finish the film’] – can’t wait for it to be developed + the professional photos are done: they’re excellent, but so expensive. Bored out of my wits in art all day. Is 9:40.. earlier than usual tonite! Nice & cool (cold) My feet are cold! Mark & I should do something together tomorrow night, if he wishes. (Hope so) [Oh good god; if that doesn’t scream ‘subservience’ I don’t know what does…]

Friday 7/8/87

*Took first pill tonight. Today was a fairly good day. Got to school a bit late … double english was a bludge – still watching Macbeth video: went to see Ms. Forbes, but mima and I spent our whole time (3rd period) sorting out differences in courses offered last year & this year. BORING. NO, interesting really. Am tired now. How will I last tomorrow night? [Did I actually mean, would I stay awake? Or was I referring to ‘surviving’ the formal it appeared I wasn’t keen on attending?] Double art talked all about the crash. Am getting $52 worth of those professional photos (that’s only 14 – RIP OFF!) [Approximately $3.72 per photo.. hmm, I can’t imagine professional photos would be that cheap nowadays?] Speaking of which, my formal photos are pretty good! “Bludge” day. Fire alarm during last period (chem.) after school, Jason took us to Rugby Union match.. CHS: Cameron, Chris & Glyn (etc) playing Brothers (Saints) Lo & behold P, N, I went [over the moon]!! A Life in Words[I’d thrown a little ‘cryptic’ illustration in (see pic) instead of blatantly writing the ‘incriminatory’ words. Incriminatory because …how could I be attracted to anyone else when I already had a boyfriend?] When I got home, rang Mark – but he rang back when he got home! I went to his house around 7:15. We did nothing really .. went for a drive with Sandra & her friend (forgot her name) to pick Paul up from work. After we lazed round in his room.. then about an hour before I left, around 12:30 we ….. we amused ourselves doing …well… GUESS→special significance→* [Alrighty then! Even though I know most of you would have put two and two together I decided, since a picture speaks a thousand words, to include one from my diary for, you know, even more clarity. A Life in WordsYou see, I often wrote more than the lines on the page would allow so I’d return to the top margin of the page to continue the entry (if need be). So you can now comprehend the role of those punctuative arrows above.] Am so tired- is 1:30 & is raining. Tomorrow nite (after the formal) should be ACE

Saturday 8/8/87

A Life in Words
Part of the now quite weathered clipping that appeared in the Cairns Post in the following week

Spent the day doing nothing: we fixed my black dress with the turtleneck (my CAD exhibition one) up for the formal (well, mum did, with Mrs B’s help, when she & Jemima came to visit: I had very little to do with it) [honesty!] Did run late: Gordon came & I was still finishing make-up. Forgot the pill ..2nd night & I forgot, so, after picking up Justine & Jason (& getting photos done – we’ll be in the paper!) we were running late when we went back to my place so I could take it. [Oh really? What would I have said, I wonder? “Hey guys I forgot to take my contraceptive pill, can we please go back for that? It’s really important because I’ve only just started taking it” …just doesn’t seem like something I’d say.] At the formal, it was a bit boring at first, but ended up like a dance at the end (that Allen guy is really nice!!) Around 1:30 Jason took me to this guy’s place [?] and he “escorted” me in.. […to the ‘guy’s place? No, it turns out I’ve written another confusing sentence: it appears we dropped by some guy’s place then went to the House on the Hill (Crocodile Rock) where Jason ‘escorted’ me in…] Guess what? I should’ve expected it ..they weren’t there : none of the guys.. [nor] Joannah or Sharon. Only Colleen and Anna. They said they’d come back soon, cos’ they had to pick them up (they went to the party) But we danced till 3:00→ a whole hour & they never came. So 3:15 I got Jay to take me to the party: and, you guessed it, they’d already left there. I was so upset & pissed off. How could they [next page…]

Sunday 9/8/87

→do this? Especially Joannah (& Sharon & Jude) cos’ she said she would meet me there: we arranged it. And she went back on her word. So Jay took me home & I went to sleep around 4:30. Woke this morning to the fucking phone : Mum was in the shower, so I had to answer it. I’m so tired. And feel .. well, I can’t describe it. I am v. pissed off but I know I won’t be able to get mad with anyone I haven’t the courage. I shouldn’t feel this, but I’m upset about it : esp. thinking about Mark. Fuck it. I’m so angry. WHY couldn’t they have waited ½hr till I got there; then left with me SHIT. Keith rang me today: I missed them by only minutes at the party: I found out when Jo rang tonight that Mark spent nearly all the time talking to Angie (M) and he rang after that to tell me they were just talking. It felt so good: I felt so much better hearing it. from him. I wish I could let him know that I like him to tell me.. That I believe his word. That is trust. (Part of it anyway – a big part – I’m trusting him to tell the truth.) Bludged today – did nothing constructive Saw Nana from 2:15-3:30. I cried. She’s going around the bend. Physically, she’s in great pain (on morpheine) & a vegetable mentally (due to morpheine, brandy (for the pain) and lack of oxygen) A Life in WordsShe is delirious & doesn’t know anything.. moans, mumbles & groans continuously. [This visit was more heartbreaking for me than when she actually passed: I remember clearly being so upset I had to go outside and one of the nurses comforted me. I’m not sure about the brandy but she was definitely high on morphine. Her drug-induced dementia really upset me the most: she couldn’t recognise me let alone hold a conversation. To this day I would say that my pain was primarily fuelled by my desire to express my love (and say my goodbyes) to her, to have them acknowledged and returned…]

More Trauma, More Surgery, More Drugs… (23 February-1 March)

Monday 23/2/87

Shit. I slept well last night…ready to finally go home..had shower, then the nurse took off my dressing for the doctors. They came, Talked. Then looked. MY STITCHES BURST, I HAVE TO HAVE A SKIN GRAFT ON WEDNESDAY. [In other words, I had to go under the knife again: to have the procedure I was meant to have in the first place. Not just insensitive & arrogant, but also incompetent surgeons?] I couldn’t stop crying when they left – mum & Kerri the social worker were with me. A Life in WordsI didn’t realise just how much I was looking forward to going home, till I couldn’t. Bastard. Bitch. I hate my leg… I’m going to have the biggest scars & a totally deformed thigh. it’s not fair. I’ll miss out on the carnival.. wednesday night. I hate my leg, I hate that bus, I hate life. Everything’s going wrong – my health, my “love-life” (Mark), my schoolwork. [Because I was so distraught about ‘everything’ by the end of the day, I failed to mention the tortuous consequence of the failed surgery; the removal of the stitches. It was horrendous, quite possibly the most physically painful experience in my life to date. At least I was in shock whilst pinned under the bus. I was given no local anaesthetic, no heavy-duty painkillers… just a couple of pills (‘digesics’) before the nurse began tugging (albeit as gently as possible) at the sutures stuck in the raw flesh around the entire circumference of the hole in my leg. You have NO idea…] I had a few visitors ..Justine & Angela & their mums, Yru & Mr Gordon & Dad came. [Dad] Got back from Adelaide today. God, I’m hot. And pissed off & depressed. Oh life’s a shit, a bitch. Imagine my scars .. to think I would’ve liked to do modelling [I’m not sure that I had ever really desired that myself: I think this was more of a notion inserted into my consciousness by others…] Everybody’s telling me it mightn’t (most likely it won’t) be bad… [being optimistic for me] They’ll disappear/fade with time. But I haven’t got lots of that. [? What did I mean by this?] It’s not fair. And Mark…that’s not fair, either.. we need to get on better.. I want to walk & go out …SHIT I’ll be here at least another week, I’ll bet. Not fair.

Tuesday 24/2/87

I was thrown into depression again, today. After showering I went with Kerri down to her office We had a talk about the crash etc. Fiona & her mum were waiting for me outside ..walked back to my bed.. A Life in Wordsmum came with the letter from Mark. It said “goodbye” & envelope contained the necklace which he “washed”. [Thanks for the ‘double whammy’, Universe. Talk about Murphy’s Law…] He was really angry about me sending him away. I got rather upset. Fi read it … I wrote a note for her to give to him & the photo of us… I was so upset. The rest of the day went slowly. I watched TV but wasn’t ‘there’. This arvy Miss Stephenson & Mrs Connors came & talked. Mark came up, while they were here. I had a heart attack – honestly, I thought you could see my chest pounding. When they left, we (or I) talked (mostly) He’s coming back tomorrow. We have quite a bit of sorting out to do. He can’t understand that I “don’t trust him”- ANYBODY. I’ve got to explain, but I’m afraid he won’t understand & will say goodbye for good. [Actually, I’m not even sure now what my reasoning was…] Had lots of visitors tonight. Is 9:30. Big day tomorrow – skin graft. Huh. Great. And bloody carnival I’ll miss out on.

Wednesday 25/2/87

A Life in Words
I’ve no idea why I decided I needed to keep this bottle of ‘Hibiclens’ pre-op soap…

I am rather ‘happy’ compared to yesterday & Monday. I slept badly last night – I mean, I couldn’t get to sleep to start with. This morning I had my pre-op soap shower & put on my lingerie (ha, ha!) (op. costume) about 10:00 I think, they started wheeling me away – but I stopped them: I wanted my pre-op needle!! [Junkie!] I got it. Waited less time this time, outside. [By now an old-hat with the pre-op experience, I had decided it was time to try to fight the grogginess and remember everything I could.  The wardsmen had stationed me right beside a tropical fish tank in the surgical waiting area and with my head lolling to the left for better focus on the aquatic life, I remember thinking “gotta count the fish”. Did I remember how many there were? LOL] At 10:55 they knocked me out totally. I remember being put back into bed.. When I woke, Mark was here, with Jules, Leanne (J) & mum. We talked well. He came up during lunch. .spent rest of the arvy with me. said he’s coming tomorrow too! YAHOO! He left me a letter, you see, telling me just how much he loves me. It is a gorgeous letter. Few more visitors today. (Jaque & Trina!!) BLOODY SWIMMING CARNIVAL on TONIGHT I’M MISSING IT. SHIT. NOT FAIR. I’ll be laid up in bed for “about 5 days”. Great. Huh. Little hot. I come out of anaesthetics pretty well, pretty quickly. [Like I said, I was a professional by now…] Am feeling slightly more confident about my scars now. Have a feeling I’ll get rid of them rather quickly! [Hmmm, seems I still didn’t understand the extent of my injury?] Hope so. Damn missing the carnival. Damn. G’night!

Thursday 26/2/87

Mark didn’t come up today. But I wrote a letter for him this morning. Numbness of my leg wore off at 2:00 this morning – I woke – my leg was ‘burning’ – stinging so much it felt on fire. I got a needle & my leg hasn’t hurt too much since. I wrote a letter to Roger [my cousin]. Got a letter from Lucy- she’s coming up at Easter. Nothing much happened … Keith came up! So did some others – mima – told me about some notes [privacy omission] had written in [privacy omission]‘s biology book – something like “I heard Elissa & Mark have broken up- I feel guilty but I’m so happy.” Ha, ha! He loves me! She’s skint! I gave Julia my letter to give to him tomorrow. I wish he’d come up today. I might be out Monday according to the doctors & “how I feel” A Life in Wordsso hot ..have to have washes in bed ..no more showers – & bloody bedpans – I did a poop tonight – hate doing ’em in bedpans. SKINT [privacy omission]! mark – I love you!! Conversation mostly about carnival- I missed one hell of a night DAMMIT!!

Friday 27/2/87

He came this afternoon ..no kisses, but holding hands.. yum, yum, yum ..I’m in love! Julia said she gave the letter to Lynette C to give to him & Sharon told me he got it. (Mima, fi, justine, megan, sharon came at lunchtime) I did a little bit of work today, listened to music, watched TV … all the same boring stuff. Oh, he’s coming tomorrow, too. Can’t wait till I’m out of here. Longing. A longing to be with him as much as possible. My leg’s annoying. Needed a needle last night again . . woke 1st – got digesics (??) [oral painkillers] 2nd time given the needle. Wowee! Police Academy’s on TV now UNREAL!! ♥ Mark. Trina visited. I’m getting used to the food – I eat most of it now that’s how long I’ve been in hospital. Oh dear. All I can think about is Mark. I’ll bet he liked the letter. I hope. YUMMY – hot afternoon. Pain-in-the-arse leg. Oh, I wish time would fly. Am sleeping badly. Lucy’s coming for Easter hol’s – so are Jodie & Michael & A. Hilary & Delanie should have moved back up here my then too! WOW!

Saturday 28/2/87

mark spent about 3½-4 hrs with me this arvy- left at 5:30. (Although Andrew J & Martin J interrupted for about ½ hr – I think I gave them the hint … I didn’t know what to talk about – so didn’t say much… Mark mucked around with the stuff on my bedside table!) [How completely uncomfortable, but inexcusably rude. I am retrospectively embarrassed.] It was funny… affection now & then, (no kisses, though … not even goodbye) but mostly “buddies” …Crabby came up tonight and, believe it or not, Marney & Nola R! But I kept talking to Wayne I don’t believe how well we get on! He gave me a goodbye kiss, cos it’d be the last time I see him for a long time. They’re leaving for their leadership camp tomorrow afternoon. I want to go home Monday, for sure. I want to get better really quickly so I can walk & dance, at least. Even if it’s a limp. I want to go out & get with Mark; something I haven’t down for nearly a month now. I think, in a strange, twisted sort of) way, this crash has made me more “well known”….people being more friendly ..and perhaps (guys) noticing me. But I’m for Mark. I know how [privacy omission] feels now .. heaps of guys you’d love to flirt with, get with for a night – but the one guy you love and want forever. No one will ever replace mark. I wish we could have a future together – I mean life-long, you know. But it won’t happen … I’m sure. [A fairly safe prediction, that one: teenage romances burgeoning into lifelong partnerships are as rare as hens’ teeth] HOT again. Can’t wait to have a proper shower again!

A Life in WordsThe diary I used in 1987 was a generic one (not specific to the year) so it had a page for 29 February (perchance the owner happened to use it in one of those). Since ’87 wasn’t a leap year, I had extra space to write for Saturday… but underneath this very important notation:

Sunday 1/3/87

He didn’t come up today. In fact, besides Justin, Mr McKenzie & his family and  (of course) mum & jules, no one did. Boring! I watched TV, read magazines .. that’s about it. God, I hope this is my last night here. I really don’t think I could stand much longer – one more night. NO! I need to get out ..get better quickly.. I’m dying to go out & do things again. I wonder when I’ll see Mark again . . . would he come to our house? I wonder! Talked about the crash with Justin- I’d love to find out what happened- when. Wouldn’t it be great if we could put back the hands of time. But, no, I shouldn’t think that. What’s done, is done. [Nice little hint of Wisdom there] I hope it doesn’t hurt me to walk on crutches again… I want to be able to do it so I can get out. God, I want to go. I’m still in a bit of pain… but not near as bad as thursday  I still need tablets (digesics) but I can roll over at night again. I’m looking forward to a shower again, too (wash my hair!)

 

Surgery, Seat Belts & the Birth of my Spiritual Belief System (16-22 February)

Monday 16/2/87

Feeling still very depressed. The doctors caught up with me today. (Dining room for breakfast & lunch. were late for brekky …squashy next to 2 black guys ..PAINFUL) [I’m quite certain this was a statement of discomfort rather than racist ‘slur’, for those who may be wondering…] After my shower they came back. Wasn’t too painful… they took out the drains. Redressed  my leg after a while. 2 dressings a day now… this arvy, mima was with me. Fi came in, too. Mark didn’t come today- I knew he wouldn’t. Probably won’t tomorrow, too. But he should come before 3 weeks. See, I’m going to surgery (skin graft for the big hole, stitch up the little hole) on Wed, then I’ll be in about a week after that. Then Drs say I have to spend at least 2 weeks at home. No I won’t. [Um, if the doctors say so…] I’m missing too much schoolwork. & friends. Dad told me yesterday: Jenny & him are getting married in May. I was shocked, but hid the surprise good as possible. Jacque visited. A Life in WordsBoring, depressed.. my  leg feels like no progress still hurts as much to stand now as it did when I first did – I’m not getting used to the blood rushing down, thru’ the sore. Painful, still. Tania gave me a big photo frame with photo of me, moni, fi, sharon &  mima taken end of last year, It’s beautiful. Monique is beautiful. ♥ her 4eva.

Tuesday 17/2/87

I went to the Valentine’s Dance! On crutches!! Tania drove me. I’d had painkillers – walking, sitting etc was a breeze!! [I found another notation elsewhere that also mentioned I got in for free!] Felt so good today… I mean tonight … walking, etc.. I’ve improved heaps – can lift my leg straight, in the air. Just finished dressing …did it when I came back.. (while after) about 9:00. surgery tomorrow. very few visitors. Oh, I’m tired. Sleep well. Ha! Mark wasn’t there tonight, but he’s going to the swim. carnival tomorrow – I won’t be allowed. Have to stay flat in bed for 3 days…will be murder getting on crutches again. The “report” on the bus accident on the Today Show was disappointing. Not much about the actual crash.

A Life in Words
How would seat belts have saved lives in this wreckage?

[Of course by this time there were preliminary investigations under way but very little had been published, since a formal inquiry was to be held at a future date. Naturally there was media & public speculation about the cause of the accident and associated discussions about prevention. The most prevalent opinion was that wearing seat belts would have saved lives. Absolute RUBBISH. One look at the bus wreckage should be totally explanatory. Interestingly enough, there was an article in the Cairns Post on this topic (not however in the manner of my specific argument) on Friday 20 (see below). I’m not against seat belts at all (if it’s even possible – per the article) but if WE had been strapped into our seats when that bus roof sheared off & seats were ripped from their places, the death toll would’ve been much higher…] Oh, I’m upset..Tania said to me tonight – talking to [privacy omission] he said something about Mark wanting to _ _ _ _ me She said they were pretty close… I’m upset; is that all Mark wants?? [Well, he’s a teenaged boy…?] I like him so much.. so very much… Oh, I’m so worried. . . . Too bad if I forgot anything – I’m so tired. Night. . . painful leg – skin graft oooh It’s 10:30

Wednesday 18/2/87

I was late – I mean THEY were [for surgery]. I was s’posed to go in at 8:00, but I got my pre-op(eration) needle at 8:30, and was taken up awhile after that. A Life in WordsI waited for ages, up there, dozing & finally around 10:00 I think I was rolled in & soon after, given the “knock-out” needle. When I woke, drowsy, really drowsy I was in heaps of pain. Finally got back down here around 11:45. Crying & whinging in pain. [I don’t seem to have diarised anything about this but sometimes the nurses would administer needles for pain relief, rather than just oral pills. I can’t recall the name of the drug, but I do remember asking for it on a few occasions. I can imagine this would be one of the moments they would not have denied me.] It soon settled. Spent the rest of the day lazing . . dozed a little around 5:00. Mark came up today – but to see Trina he reckoned. I think he’s shitty with me. (Oh, my leg’s so itchy) Doctor told me I didn’t have a skin graft after all – GREAT, HUH?! The flesh repairing was so elastic they could just stitch it up!! No major scars! Great! [Oh how the tables turned in just a few days’ time…and months later I begged my mother to try to recall whether she had signed any consent forms that specifically outlined the surgeons’ original intentions…] No major visitors (‘cept Mark) …I mean very few but the ones who came were nice. A case of quality, not quantity. [Of course ALL of my visitors were ‘nice’!] Another school kid’s bus crash in N.Z. about 5 people killed… not nearly as badly smashed as our bus, was their’s. [Competitive? Sheesh. Trying to source information about this accident was almost as difficult as it is to find information about ours on the net. This article celebrates the growth & success of one of the survivors of the Woodford House girl’s school bus accident which killed two students, two teachers & the driver. The victim doesn’t recall anything of the accident, waking up with  permanent paraplegia two weeks later in hospital.] It’s just after 9:00. I may be going home soon. Keep thinking about mark.. he wouldn’t be after “one thing”.. he writes too much caring stuff. He doesn’t intend to ever hurt me

A Life in Words
Before I was “reduced to square one -again”

Thursday 19/2/87

A “down’ Day, definitely: few visitors, pain in my leg. Hurts to walk: put it this way…I can’t anymore… I can’t straighten my leg and find it easier to ‘hop’ on my left leg, keeping the right foot totally off the ground. But tonight, after doing my teeth I kept up [stayed up] & went for exercise walk …keeping foot on floor, stretching & bending knee as much as possible. [In hindsight, this makes me cringe.] mima, Fi, Brent, Jason came up at lunchtime – Mark was at school. . he didn’t come up here. I think I should’ve written a note for mim to give to him for me. Of course I care that he doesn’t visit me… I care a lot. Am getting anxious… hope Trish doesn’t get hooks into him. (Tania visited this morning…had to work rest of the day.. BOOHOO! She’s leaving tomorrow-MISS HER! Hope I can get out to see her off – have a prezzy for her silver bracelet (sterling.)) My leg- how can it be – I walk fine Tues. & after an operation am reduced to square one -again: A veggie? Is 9:30. Try to get to sleep. Ate little (cos too lazy to go to dining room for meals – too sore.)

Friday 20/2/87

* Another down day. Still painful…worse to walk. Trina left this arvy, around 2:00 I think. This morning, the doctors came- but not all of them… thanks to the charge sister, Lisa, they decided to take my dressing off  On the way, he [one of them?] called me a sook. Bastard. It stuck a bit & it hurts so much. [I still cannot grasp the insensitivity of these medical ‘professionals’…] So, after, I waited about ½hr before someone redressed it, then, too late to have a shower, I dressed & mum took me to see Tania off. No tears shed. But I’ll miss her. Another friend gone. [Developing a life ‘theme’?] Showered after I got back (had lunch – a pie – got some food) Few visitors .. Mrs McI gave me a beautiful book (for end of 9 yrs of speech-huh? That’s not right…yep! it is!) Mr Paddy & Yru (came seperately, but) talked in depth about the crash..esp. Mr Paddy …he helped me understand/accept death etc .. It’s still scary to me…but I’m sure it’s  a big step to recovery of shock. [I’d never had anything to do with Mr ‘Paddy’ (I got his surname wrong) since he was a Music teacher, but this conversation had an incredibly massive impact upon me. I believe it was the catalyst for the development of my entire spiritual belief system, for life. All he did was offer his ideas about ‘what happens’ after we ‘pass over’ but it put me at ease by intimating that death is not ‘The End’. So I came to believe in reincarnation or at least, endurance of Spirit. One particular suggestion he made actually came to pass just a few months later; it was an indisputable experience and perhaps this is what irrevocably cemented my belief, and therefore eternal gratitude, love & respect for him.] Mark didn’t come. I’m really worried. [Privacy omission] mentioned something about sex today, too… it would absolutely break me if that’s all he wanted – I know it’s not ..I think …some little doubt in side …well, my mind’s made up.. he’s not going to get it, ever . . till I’m ready -and that’ll be ages. [He] told me he did to [privacy omission]..didnt really surprise me much 8:55

A Life in Words
In case you’re unable to decipher the fine print, the article basically discusses the impracticality of seat belt installation from an engineering point of view. While there is no reference to our bus’s detached roof, the displaced seats are mentioned.

Saturday 21/2/87

They told me I could go home today. But I didn’t. I wanted to stay in til Monday. Everyone probably thinks I’m crazy- I s’pose I am – but I’m smart; I’ll stay in just to be sure -no infections. [If there was ever a point in my life up till then that I should have respected myself for heeding my ‘Gut’, this was it…] And besides; my visitors have to be told!! [oh you Social Butterfly you!] On Monday I’d also like to see the physio & drs before I go They took out the drain this morning- my leg’s quite a bit better! Walking a bit easier!! Except for Mark’s visit, today was an “up” day.. he came – we got on alright…but he left the same way he did the  last 2 times..without saying goodbye…just walking off in a shit..I’d said something about him being mean to me [and then] “well you can leave” … [so he answered] “alright I will” ..he walked off & didn’t come back. That upset me. I really am worried about if he does like me. (God it’s hot.) he’s so moody; impatient I can’t understand him. We really need a good talk.. it’ll be a long time though.. you can’t really talk well in a hospital..or even at school. Oh, I’ve a headache… feel hot..feel terrible. Can’t sleep very well. Quite a few visitors..very lazy day.     Oh . . . I fell terrible. Must try to sleep.

Sunday 22/2/87

What a waste of a day. Here I was thinking I’d get hoardes of visitors:- mum, the McKenzies (principal), Justin F & Wayne C. That’s it. Leg’s O.K. I get pain “jabs” – throbbing now & then…but noticed walking is getting a bit better. Totally boring day… so sleepy, but couldn’t sleep. Thinking about mark…. I thought maybe that I’d changed & he’d changed (y’know – from the crash’n’everything) and we just don’t “click” anymore. Oh I wish everything was “normal” again.  home tomorrow – I have mixed feelings about that, too. . . good cos’ I’ll get work done (less visitors) & be able to exercise my leg – go for walks (crutches!) BUT – I’m apprehensive – haven’t been home since before the camp – before the crash that’s 3 weeks exactly…the memories – it’s going to be different – “overwhelming” is the word I think of. [Wow, well said.] Oh dear… Hot (-ish) today. Didn’t see Jules. Mike B went to see her this arvy, mum said. Wo, Jules!! ♥ mark – u poop! DAMN YOU