It's My Life (Diary of a Teenage Girl Series #2)

It's My Life (Diary of a Teenage Girl Series #2)

4.3 33
by Melody Carlson

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In this emotional sequel to Diary of a Teenage Girl, Caitlin O'Conner faces new trials as she grows in her faith and strives to maintain the recent commitments she's made to God. As a new believer, Caitlin begins her summer job and makes preparations for a Mexico mission trip with her church youth group. Torn between new spiritual directions and loyalty to Beanie,

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In this emotional sequel to Diary of a Teenage Girl, Caitlin O'Conner faces new trials as she grows in her faith and strives to maintain the recent commitments she's made to God. As a new believer, Caitlin begins her summer job and makes preparations for a Mexico mission trip with her church youth group. Torn between new spiritual directions and loyalty to Beanie, her best friend (now pregnant), Caitlin searches out her personal values on friendship, romance, dating, life goals, and key relationships with God and family. Tough choices threaten her progress, and her year climaxes in her realization that maturity sometimes means life-impacting decisions must be made ... by faith alone.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up-Caitlin, introduced in Diary of a Teenage Girl (Multnomah, 2000), continues to use her diary as a sounding board. Now 17, she writes, "Can a girl who loves cool clothes and thick, glossy fashion magazines ever learn to accept people for who they really are underneath that veneer? I think, with God, I can." She needs to, since the people in her life turn to her for help with an overwhelming variety of problematic situations. When her psychology class gets to codependency, even Caitlin herself is appalled at the list: "I must admit that over just the last year, I've made myself almost sick with worry about others from time to time-there was my mom and dad and their marriage problems,-Aunt Steph, then Beanie with her pregnancy, Josh just because he's Josh, and for a while I was worried about Andrea, and then Zach with his drug problems, and lately it's been Jenny." Fortunately, just one prayer session with Caitlin is enough to straighten anyone out-including Beanie's abused, alcoholic mother and Jenny with her eating disorder. The diary format is almost too realistic-there is a lot of detail that doesn't move the plot forward, and Caitlin's style is difficult to take in large doses, especially her prayers in screaming capital letters. The teen alternates radically between helpful, caring actions and selfish, childish worries. Some of her decisions (not to date, to become a missionary) are interesting, but complex problems are created and resolved too quickly.-Amy A. Healy, Loyola Academy Resource Center, Wilmette, IL Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

The Doubleday Religious Publishing Group
Publication date:
Diary of a Teenage Girl Series
Edition description:
Caitlin Book No. 2
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.17(w) x 8.21(h) x 0.65(d)
Age Range:
12 - 17 Years

Read an Excerpt

Friday, July 13 (I’m back…)
Is it just me or is this world going totally nuts?
Okay, before I get carried away, let me first say how good it feels to pick up a pen and write in my diary again. I thought I wanted to take a little break from writing in my diary during the summer—you know how it gets with work and sunshine and fun stuff to do. Anyway, I somehow imagined I was too busy to keep writing about my life. Big mistake, Caitlin! The thing is, I need to write about my life. Like, it sort of clears out my head or something—makes things more understandable. Almost like praying, but not quite the same.
Anyway, back to the world going totally nuts. Or is it me? You see, I’ve been working at my dad’s advertising firm (actually I’m just a part-time receptionist, and not doing such a bad job if I do say so myself). But lately it seems like all these older guys have been hitting on me. Okay, now I know that sounds all narcissistic (a word I just read in a magazine, which means you think the whole world revolves around you, which I don’t really think, by the way). But I don’t think I’m imagining it either.
I mean,  Todd Alberts (who’s probably at least twenty-five) even asked me if I wanted to go get coffee with him today. Now, it’s not that I’m not flattered (because, believe me, I am!). But sheesh, I’m only sixteen (well, almost seventeen) for Pete’s sake! But in Todd’s defense, I doubt that he even knows my age, and he’s probably just being friendly. And I’m sure if he knew I was still in high school he’d run the other way—and fast. But here’s the honest truth—it feels pretty good to be noticed like that. And yet at the same time, it bugs me that it feels good. You know, like I should be above those sorts of feelings. Especially after making my vow to God about sex and dating. It’s like I just wish those feelings (you know, feeling interested in a cute guy) would all just go away, once and for all. But they don’t. So why is that?
Well, to make a long story short, I nicely told Todd thanks but no thanks (not in those exact words!). And now I feel kind of bad because he actually looked sort of hurt and disappointed. But maybe someone in the corporation will set him straight about me and how old guys like him shouldn’t go around hitting on high school girls. Big laugh!
But now that I’ve vented over something pretty unimportant, let me get to what’s really bugging me. It’s Beanie Jacobs, my supposedly best friend. I say supposedly because lately she’s been treating me like I’ve got smallpox or something. I mean, every single time I call her to invite her to go do something, she makes some totally lame excuse not to come. Okay, I know she’s pregnant and not feeling too cool lately, but it’s not like it’s my fault, and all I’m trying to do is to be the good friend that I’ve promised her I would be.
Like tonight, for instance, I just wanted someone to hang with. You know, go to the mall or something simple like that, and she says, “Sorry, I can’t.” Just like that. Not even an explanation, apology—nada, nothing. Well, instead of me grilling her like I usually do, I just said, “Well, fine!” and hung up—bam! Which, to tell the truth, left me feeling pretty rotten inside. Because I know she doesn’t need that from me or anyone else right now.
But, I ask you, how far backwards is a person supposed to bend for her these days? I mean, it’s not like she’s a whole lot of fun to be with right now. And now she’s all worried about putting on weight and getting fat, which, if you ask me, she should’ve considered before she got all hot and heavy with Zach last spring! Okay, there I go getting all preachy and judgmental again. And Beanie accuses me of doing that a lot lately. In fact, she even sarcastically calls me “Sister Caitlin” sometimes, which totally fries me!
So anyway, I called up Andrea LeMarsh, after being turned down by Beanie, and we went to the mall and hung out and had a really fun time (at least when I wasn’t feeling guilty about Beanie). Andrea and I both got these totally cool Hawaiian print bikinis—and we imagined ourselves wearing them on some sandy beach in Mexico next month when the youth group goes on their missions trip. (Okay, I know we’re primarily going there to help poor people and stuff, but we plan to have some fun along the way too!) But the whole time we’re shopping and joking around and having a great time, I’m thinking how fun it would be if Andrea were my best friend instead of Beanie. And just thinking those kind of thoughts makes me feel really, really low. Because I do know that despite Beanie’s prickly disposition of late, she really does love me, deep down, and she needs me too.
So, here’s my struggle: Just because my best friend has totally messed up her life by getting pregnant, does this mean I must also sacrifice my summer, my fun, my life just to hang with her while she’s being all depressed and glum and tired? I mean, I do believe in loyalty and I’d never stop loving Beanie or caring for her. But what I want to know is: Is it really my responsibility to see her through this whole pregnancy thing? Good grief, it lasts nine months (practically a lifetime in teen years!). And quite frankly, the idea of hanging with a girlfriend who’s obviously starting to look pretty pregnant (not to mention how she never seems to care about her appearance anymore!) is starting to wear on me.
Well, now it’s plain to see what a rotten, selfish, lowdown (and yes, I’m sure, narcissistic) person I truly am. But isn’t this my life too? Don’t I have the right to do what I want? To hang with whomever I please? I mean, it’s my life!!!
And yet, I know (deep down inside of me, someplace where I want to just plug my ears and cover my eyes sometimes) that this is definitely NOT what Jesus would do. I know, good and well, He would NOT treat His friends like that. Sheesh, He wouldn’t even treat His enemies like that. And I can just imagine what Clay would say to me right now. In fact, I still vividly remember that time (just a couple weeks before he was shot and killed) when he told our youth group about how he wanted us to love one another like Jesus did, by putting each other above ourselves. And sure, it might sound nice and easy, but let me tell you, it’s really not.
Oh, crud, I still have soooo much to learn about being a Christian.
Saturday, July 14 (oh, brother!)
We had another car wash today (to earn more money for our Mexico trip). And naturally I didn’t even bother to invite Beanie since she’s made it perfectly clear that “no way, no how” is she going with us down to Mexico in August. Not that I blame her. I doubt I’d want to go either if I were in her shoes. So anyway, not wanting to bother Beanie, I called Andrea and then drove over and picked her up in my freshly washed car (no need to waste the youth group’s time on it!), and we headed over to the minimall where we’d prearranged to hold the wash.
Well, last night Andrea and I both decided we’d try out our new bikinis today. (I mean, why shouldn’t we enjoy them while it’s hot and sunny and we’re getting all wet anyway?) And to our pleasant surprise, they didn’t hurt business at all. Man, you should have seen how many cars pulled over being driven by guys who obviously wanted to flirt. (We were halfway tempted to hose a couple of ’em down, but then we might’ve missed out on some tips.) So as you can imagine, it was a pretty successful fund-raiser. In fact, the best car wash event we’ve had so far this year.
But here’s the clincher. After it’s all said and done, Josh Miller (the guy who broke my heart last spring before I gave up dating completely) has recently joined our youth group and is now planning to go to Mexico with us. So anyway, he pulls Andrea and me aside like he’s got something really important to tell us. So I’m thinking he’s probably going to say something nice about how hard we worked and all, which makes sense due to the fact he’s in charge of the car wash today (because Greg Thiessen, our regular youth group leader, had to be the best man at his brother’s wedding). So anyway, we cheerfully come over to listen, and then he says, “You girls think it’s wise to be showing so much skin around here?” I mean, he just says this totally weird thing without even batting an eyelash. Of course, I get all indignant and say, “Just what do you mean by that?”
Then he sort of shrugs and says, “Well, it just seems a little un-Christian to go around half naked like that.” Now that really makes me mad and I snap at him, “Sheesh, Josh, we’ve been working real hard here today, and we’re just trying to be cool and comfortable, and all you can do is snipe at us!”
“Yeah, I know, Caitlin.” He suddenly looks slightly uneasy, like maybe he wishes he’d never brought this ridiculous subject up. And for some reason his discomfort pleases me a little. (Okay, you already know I’m human!) Then he says, “But you should really think about us guys. You know, we’re supposed to be your brothers.” Then he sort of laughs but not quite. “Maybe you sisters should have a little mercy on us.”
“So, are you suggesting our appearance creates some kind of a temptation for you?” asks Andrea in what seems a fairly flirtatious way (although she’s just like that sometimes, and I don’t think she even totally realizes how she comes across).
“Maybe,” says Josh, then he reaches over to me and flips the string tie that’s keeping my bikini top on. “You know, I’d think you’d be especially uncomfortable with something like this, Catie. I mean, what with your commitment to sexual purity and all that stuff.”
Well, I’m sure my eyes must’ve flashed some sort of very un-Christianlike message right then, but somehow I managed to answer in a rather quiet, albeit hostile, tone. “Since when does what I wear in any way reflect my personal beliefs or convictions?”
He shrugs again. “I don’t know, Catie. It just seems to me you’re sending out some pretty weird mixed messages.” Then he walks away and starts coiling up the hoses.
Well, Andrea and I just stood there and laughed at him; then we took down the car wash signs, got into my car, and I drove off—fast. Because I was still irked. And all I could think was: The nerve of that guy! After all our hard work, all he could comment on was our unacceptable attire. Who does he think he is anyway, God’s fashion police? I mean, grow up, Josh Miller! All of which I expressed to Andrea, but she just threw back her head and laughed. She hadn’t taken one single word seriously. She just thought the whole thing was a joke.
But I really don’t think Josh was joking. And to be completely honest, I must confess that he has actually got me to thinking about what he said. And I’m wondering if he might not be partially right about me sending those “mixed messages.” (Although I refuse to admit as much to him just yet.) And at the same time I still wonder, what right does he have to judge me in the first place?
I mean, is he trying to imply that just because I made a promise to God to remain sexually pure, that I should go around dressed like a nun or something? How fair is that? Why shouldn’t I dress however I want? Last time I checked it was still my life. And if he’s got a problem with my appearance, he can just look the other way!
Can’t he? Or maybe not. I’m not entirely sure anymore. But I guess I will consider what he said, and I’ll try not to be too mad at him for saying it. I suppose he was just trying to be honest, even if he was pretty irritating and judgmental about it. And maybe I’ll even ask Greg about all this tomorrow in youth group. Or maybe not.
Well, I do know this, I will ask God about it. Because, it’s like Clay used to say—convictions are a personal thing—they need to come straight from God and directly to you—no middleman needed.


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Meet the Author

Melody Carlson is the bestselling author of more than seventy books for teens, women, and children with total sales over 1 million. She has two grown sons and enjoys an active lifestyle of hiking, skiing, and biking. She lives in the beautiful Oregon Cascade Mountains with her husband and Labrador retriever.

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It's My Life (Diary of a Teenage Girl Series #2) 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 34 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Caitlin O¿ Conner¿s life has changed quite a bit over the past year. Turning seventeen, she has realized that not everything is all candy canes and gum drops. When a missions trip with her church to Mexico, everything changes. Caitlin learns to help others by starting an organization to help the less fortunate. Life is just full of all kinds of secrets, her friends hiding things from her, temptations Caitlin never thought she would have, and challenges with her newfound faith. Yea, you could say this is the normal life of a teenager.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I liked this book because its about a Christian who doesn't have a perfect life. Like, other books I've read about Christian girls have perfect lives except like boyfriend problem or whatever. It's refreshing to read about a Christian girl who has a difficult life but can still stay a strong Christian.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Someone said that this copy from nook shop was only half the book. So i think that anyone who wants this book should just order it or buy it from the actual store. Cannot wait to recieve my copy.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It makes me feel like im not alone
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good christian book for teens 12 and up
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love it this book because catilan is living as hard life but simple. I love a idea when Catilan wants help needy child. I can't bear it who needs food,home and family. I cried for them. But Beanie is little disliked by me becaus i hate when Beanie is pregenat. I totally rate one gazllion stars!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great boook.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book but its only hlike half its missing likehalf of the book
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Guest More than 1 year ago
A Girl Trying To Follow the Right Path Caitlin O¿Conner is now back in the second novel, of the series, It¿s My Life. Caitlin returns to school as a senior. She¿s really excited because she waited for her senior year her whole life. Since Caitlin always has a lot on her mind, she decided to start writing in her diary again. Well as usual, Caitlin is still sticking with her commitment to God. She is starting to have doubts about her commitment with God. She tries putting that behind her, so she can go down to Mexico to help the poor kids. While Caitlin, Beanie, and the youth group were down there, Beanie and Caitlin found some kids that lived in this dump place. They felt really bad for them, so they brought the kids some food. When they got back from Mexico, Caitlin starts a fund raiser for the poor kids down in Mexico. While Caitlin is doing this fund raiser, something bad happens to Beanie. Caitlin couldn¿t believe it. When Caitlin and Beanie got past it they went back to school, and Jenny, a popular girl, started hanging out with them. After Jenny was hanging out with them for a while, Jenny comes down with something. Beanie and Caitlin didn¿t know what to do. What happened to Beanie that was so bad? What did Jenny come down with? Is it horrific? I thought that this book was really good. I liked this book because only one person is telling the story, so that makes it easier to read. I really liked how I could relate to the book in many ways. I could relate to the different emotions in the book, and different scenes in the book. I also liked how there were parts in the book where there were different emotions. Also, I liked how some parts got you very nervous. The only thing I didn¿t like about the book was that it stated off kind of slow, but it picked up after a couple of chapters. This book, It¿s My Life, is part of a series. I don¿t think that these books can be read out of order because you wouldn¿t get the book at all. You wouldn¿t understand what is going on. People, I think, that would enjoy this book are people who want to learn more about God, and people who like different emotions. I think these kind of people would like this book because it ahs a lot to do with God and how good He is. Also, I think people who like different emotions will enjoy this book because this book has a ton of different emotions that will capture you. I think that this is a very good book, and if you pick it up you won¿t be able to put it down.
Guest More than 1 year ago
it was great.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was an outstanding book.It was well written and i can relate to it.All girls of of my age could relate.I highly recomend this book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
How would you feel if your best friend was pregnant, you make a vow to God not to date, your aunt is getting married, and on top of all of that, God has called you to be a missionary? Beanie is Caitlin¿s best friend, and she is pregnant. Caitlin made a vow to God not to date boys, because she doesn¿t focus well. Caitlin is leaving soon after school is released to go to Mexico with her youth group to help the needy. While in Mexico, Caitlin finds a group of children that are always around a dump and begins to love them, and bring them food. When leaving Mexico, Caitlin realizes that she needs to go back again to help the kids. Clay, the youth group leader, died from a gun shot. Jenny stopped eating in school, and she became anorexic. Her mom took her to an institution where she stayed there all day and people could visit her. Caitlin¿s Aunt Steph is getting married to Pastor Tony. God has called on Caitlin to be a missionary and along with someone else in the book. Read to find out whom. I really enjoyed reading It¿s My Life in the series Diary of a Teenage Girl by Melody Carlson. I could relate to the book because Caitlin is a teenager and she goes through a lot in her life. One thing that I didn¿t like about It¿s My Life was that it was a little confusing when the youth group was in Mexico. Other than that I really enjoyed reading this book. It¿s My Life is part of a series called Diary of a Teenage Girl. You have to the books in order to understand them. The people that would enjoy this book would probably be teenage girls, because it is filled with drama and everything else in a teenager¿s life. This series of books is very similar to the Color books by Melody Carlson, because that series is also related to teenage girls that have problems and difficulties. This book is a page-turner throughout the whole book!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Ok i really loved this book. its refreshing to read a book that talks about God. i liked this book so much i cant wait to read the rest of them. i recommend this book to anyone who is a christian...or doesnt mind reading about God.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Well, what can I say? This book is about a girl named Caitlin, who¿s a senior in High School. She is trying to get close to god, by helping her friends who are troubled with problems,and trying not to date guys. Caitlin joined a youth group at her church and she and the other members of the group get to go to Mexico and the trip changes her life and relationship with god. Her friends help her a lot in the book too by getting over things. Even though she has fights with her friends and family she still comes out strong. I didn¿t have any dislikes on the book it was all very good. But there were some parts that were a bit boring to me, but I still liked the book very much because I was always wondering what was going top happen next.