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FriMar4 I’m not a particularly good daughter, but I sat through a month of therapy for my parents’ sake. I’d like to think they got more out of it than I did. Couldn’t have been too hard. Any system that requires the patient’s family to pay someone else to care about her is fundamentally flawed. But I digress. If my decision to stop attending therapy means James Fowler High School no longer welcomes me as a student, I guess that’s on me. The novelty of playing hooky has worn off, and I’m desperate to fill my time with something other than introspection, the occasional afternoon stocking groceries, and Mario Kart.
Bonnie just texted me. She wants me to burst through the clouds like the beautiful ray of sunshine that I am and come to a party tonight where everyone is apparently super super stoked to see me again. I told her it’s too dangerous. I have been known to blind others with my relentlessly sunny disposition. I may be desperate for a change, but I’m not desperate enough to face a party full of ex-classmates. Bonnie is a better person than I will ever be, so she promised to stop by later for whatever garbage I’ll be binge watching on my laptop. So that’s nice. It’s also nice to write in here. I haven’t written in this journal for months. It’s kind of funny that the only time I don’t write in here is when a therapist says I should. But I needed a break from myself. Understandably, I think.
SunMar6 Ditching school five months before grad isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. It’s too late to catch up now. I dropped the ship, that ball has sailed, Jane Sinner has left the building. Everyone is still a little scared to ask what I’m going to do now because they know I have no fucking clue. The parents certainly didn’t see this coming. They’re still scrambling to find “the window God must have opened, since he closed this particular door.” I’m old enough to close doors on my own, thank you very much. But the parents don’t want to hear that. They want to hear me say, “Why yes, I’d love to come with you to church this morning.” Not “I can’t, I have to catch up on a variety of reality television shows.” They thought if Bonnie came over for lunch after the service, it would encourage me to at least shower and put on a bra by the time they got home. It didn’t. Apparently, Bonnie’s fashion choices are rubbing off on Carol. They both decided to wear skinny jeans and fluorescent baggy sweaters to church, which annoyed the parents. Carol kept getting her sleeve caught in her lasagna while we ate.
DAD I wish you would have come with us this morning, Jane.
MOM You used to love going to church.
I also used to love running around half-naked with crayons up my nose because I thought they looked like fangs. I take comfort in knowing people can change.
DAD You know, the best way to move on is to get back in the swing of things. There’s nothing wrong with taking some more classes. You could use more structure in your life. Some order.
It’s like he didn’t even notice that I had divided my salad into a rainbow of vegetables.
JS You’re meowing up the wrong tree.
DAD [Sigh.] Barking, Jane. It’s barking up the wrong tree.
BONNIE Cats chase small animals up trees too, you know.
DAD Yeah, well. You don’t want to end up like your Aunt Gina, Jane. You can’t make a decent living for your kids by sitting at home all day, “being funny” and writing Lord knows what for the internet.
JS I don’t have kids, Dad.
MOM Oh, please. Can’t we all just get along for one meal? Bonnie, how have you been lately? Is school going well for you?
I guess that’s why they invited her over. Not only is she a conversational buffer, she’s also a reminder that even bisexual girls with tattoos can have their shit together, so why don’t I?
BONNIE Yeah, school is going okay, I guess. We all miss Jane.
CAROL Janie’s gonna go to community college instead. That’s what the guidance counselor thinks she should do, anyway.
BONNIE Oh really? She didn’t mention that to me.
JS That’s because I’m not going.
CAROL [rolling her eyes] Well, you can’t just not go back to school!
JS Thanks, Obvious McObviouspants.
DAD Well. You can at least go to the information session tomorrow. It’ll be good for you to explore your options.
MOM We talked to Pastor Ron this morning, and he thinks that finishing your diploma at Elbow River is a good idea.
The parents are Pastor Ron’s biggest fans, so if he thinks an idea is good, my parents think it’s great. I think he’s all right (for a pastor), but I’m not convinced he’s the most qualified authority figure in my life, considering that my apathy toward his church was the domino that broke the camel’s back. I’d tell the parents that, but they get frustrated when I use idioms incorrectly.