December 31, 1993 – Friday – 3:40 p.m.

Hi!  Last night I had a dream.

But first, welcome to my 5th Book of Days!  It’s almost 1994!

Okay, the dream I had last night was so real, I’ll try to explain it the best I can:

I was at church.  I was with someone.  A girl.  I don’t know how she got there, but the girl was Emily.  We were outside preparing to go home.  I said something like, “Well, either Henry lets us drive the other car or we have to ride home with him.”  Next thing I know, Henry is telling Kevin that he has to ride home with him so Emily and I can drive home together and be alone.  Kevin questions him, but Henry says thats just the way things are.  But suddenly Emily shows up standing next to her own car and says, “We can take mine.”  I repeat what she says and Clay agrees.

At first, it seemed like Emily was driving and we were having a conversation.  We said about four or five sentences to each other, I can’t remember what, but the next thing I know, I’m driving, but I’m still in the passenger seat and the steering wheel is on my side.  Emily is lying down in the seat and her head is lying in my lap.  With one hand I am driving and I ask her something along the lines of, “What do you want?”

She kisses me and says, “That’s what I want.”

Don’t laugh, but for the next five minutes we are kissing while I’m driving and keeping one eye on the road.

Suddenly we are in the parking lot of the Siler City Motor Lodge and my Dad and Kevin and Grandma are there to pick me up.  Isn’t that weird?

So it seems that Emily is gone and we are all getting into my Dad’s car.  Then Emily comes back with gifts and says, “I just want to say that it was great meeting all of you.”  The gift for my Dad was an application to fill out so she could write my Dad.  Grandma got a lot of famous newspaper articles.  I don’t know what Kevin got, but I received three tapes and three CDs of Broadway musicals.  I don’t even own a CD player.  I also got newspaper articles about the musicals.  

We said goodbye.  And the rest of us got into the car.  Emily came back again and gave me a picture of a key that she had cross-stitched.  There was a poem on it as well, relating to it being the key to her heart.

Then we promised we would call the other person soon and it was over.  She was gone.

When I woke up, I was so happy and I was wondering where my tapes were.  It took me forever to figure out it had all been a dream.

I was so disappointed.  What did all that crazy stuff mean?

I wonder if I’ll see Emily again.  Hopefully we’ll plan our Deep Creek trips to be at the same time this summer.

This past summer, when we played card for three hours, was so wonderful.  We started out playing spades; I think I didn’t know how to play, so she said she would teach me.  I sat next to her and she explained everything.  I watched her play as she told me what she needed and why.  One time she said that she needed an eight and then it showed up on the table.  She laid her forehead against the side of my head and whispered, “Whomp, there it is,” as she giggled.  I was so shocked.  She touched me.  She whispered to me and me alone.  It was like she was there with me and completely ignoring the other seven handsome young men surrounding her.  I wish I could make you understand how beautiful this girl was.  Girls this beautiful aren’t supposed to show guys like me that much attention.  It’s just not how I’ve come to see the way the world works.

Later on, she needed a partner in a card trick she wanted to show us.  All the other guys immediately raised their hands and volunteered, but she picked me.  By the end of those three hours, we had an entire system of nonverbal communication going.  In order to make the trick work, I would tap her underneath the table on her knee to let her know which side of the card I was going to point to; it was a complicated card trick.

Anyway, 1993 is almost over.  Here I am at the end of the year, with it’s last hours fading away, and I’m not thinking about Veronica, or Ryan, or Christi, or even Jenna or Tenielle; but about Emily, a girl I saw for only three hours, half a year ago.  

Almost a year ago, God told me that it would all begin in 1993.  Was he referring to Emily?  I don’t know.  But either way, He was right.  It did begin.  So much happened that will lead me into the years to come.

December 28, 1993 – Tuesday – 8:43 p.m.

My Grandpa came to visit me today.  He is still the wisest man I know.  I hope I will be like him when I am his age.  Wouldn’t it be something if I kept writing My Book of Days past sixty?  Over 50 years of my life written down.

I just read the introduction in my new Les Miserables book.  Victor Hugo finished writing the book of his life when he was sixty.  I’m 17 and I think Challenger’s Deep is the book of my life.

What will all these days mean to me when I’m sixty?  I’m almost done with my fourth Book of Days.  Is any of this important?

My life has hardly begun.

But nevertheless, it has begun.  I’m here.  I am on this earth, and I can’t leave.  I have to be here.  I often think if I would be a different person if I were born into another family and another environment.  But now that I think about it, it is stupid to think that way.  This is the only life I’ve ever known.  God gave me this life.  I don’t have a choice.  I am me, whoever I am.

I guess that is ultimately up to me to decide.  God gave me free will, but in that free will he gave me characteristics of who he created me to be.  He has a will, but it is up to me to live up to it.

Have I figured myself out yet?  I believe I have.  I know I have.  The people I’ve come in contact with know that I’m a person who loves Jesus, loves the theater, tells stupid jokes, is inspired by Les Miserables, and sees himself as something valuable in the future.  I am a person with hope.  I person with joy.  This is my duty.  I can’t be anyone else.  I guess the beautiful thing is, I like who I am.  I like hanging out with me.  I like who I have to be and need to be for other people.

This could actually be fun.

December 27, 1993 – Monday – 11:06 p.m.

Today I went shopping with Kevin and Dad.  I bought two pairs of jeans, a complete unabridged 1460 page paperback edition of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, and a new cast recording of Guys and Dolls.

Guys and Dolls is okay, but not nearly as good as Les Miz, Miss Saigon, Phantom of the Opera, or Cats.

In the Bible, it says to praise the Lord and thank him for His work.  Well, today I saw some amazing and beautiful works at the mall.  God had a good thing in mind when he created women.

This evening I played a game called “Slot Poker” on Dad’s computer.  Just seeing the cards reminded me of the first time I met Emily up at Deep Creek.  I got a letter from her a few weeks ago and I sent her a Christmas card.

I miss her.

Those three hours spent with her, a complete stranger at the time, were wonderful.  But that was in June, and it is nearly January.

We are supposed to plan our Deep Creek trips for ’94 at the same time.  That would be so awesome if I got to see her again.

Please God.

Let it happen.

I don’t know why she’s on my mind God, but please take care of her.

Thank you.

December 25, 1993 – 7:23 p.m. – Saturday

Christmas is almost over.

I got tons of clothes, praise God!  I also received some tapes and other stuff.  I’ll be up here for another week.  I’m going to miss church tomorrow.  Although I’m up here in Virginia, my mind and heart is still back in Sanford, NC.

I’ve been thinking about Jenna.  She may be 13, but why not take her out just to get to know her some.  We’ll see!

Today, I looked at my grandparents, they have been married for over 40 years.  Is that not amazing!  They’re so old.  One day that is going to be me.

Well, I really don’t know what to write.  I’m almost at the end of this notebook, this fourth Book of Days.  I’ve already bought my fifth book and I brought it with me to Virginia.

Once I get back to school, I have only eight days left in the semester.  Then I start four new classes: Advanced Math, Honors English IV, Computer Applications II, and Library Aid.  It will be harder than the first semester.

Today, I went over to my Aunt Katherine’s to practice Canon in D on her keyboard.  It’s coming along.  Everyone keeps saying, “who taught you to play the piano?”  I just smile.

Well guys, nature is calling at the south end.  I must be going. 

December 24, 1993 – Friday – 11:55 p.m.

In five minutes it will be Christmas Day.  Happy Birthday Jesus!

I’m in Virginia and yesterday turned out to be different.  After I wrote in my journal, Cheryl called me and wanted to know if I wanted to do anything with her, Amy, Ryan, and Christi.  I said sure, but I didn’t have a car.

So, those plans were shot, but after I came home, we went shopping in Sanford.  Mom had to go talk to our pastor about something, so she dropped me off at Christi’s.  Christi wasn’t there, but Jason was.  It was good to see him and he is doing fine.

Mom came back a few minutes later, the pastor wasn’t home.  What she had to talk to him about deals with Kevin.  I know most of it, and I cannot tell a soul.  It is a very mature matter.  Perhaps I’ll write about it later.

We left early this morning to arrive in Virginia.  And now it been Christmas for a few minutes.

Merry Christmas!

December 23, 1993 – Thursday – 11:10 a.m.

The day turned out different than I thought it would, although it isn’t over yet.

A few days ago, I figured I would talk to Jenna and Tenielle on Wednesday night and even though I just wanted to be their friend, we would still do something together today, since I would be in town getting some last minute shopping done.

Well, it snowed, and last night I didn’t really get to talk to them.  I also wanted to see Jason and Christi, but it doesn’t look like I’ll be able.  We leave tomorrow morning really early.  

I mailed Christmas cards off.  With Ryan, I just wanted to share everything with her about how I used to feel, but I didn’t, I just said Merry Christmas and thanks.

I miss Christi so much.  Cheryl gave me a Christmas Card and a candy cane last night.  So did Ryan and Amy.

It’s been a month and four days since I’ve seen Les Miserables.  That’s hard to believe.

It’s been a year since I’ve seen Brandon.

A year.

Brandon and I tried to tip a cow one time, but it was awake.  That was last November.

In Anne’s Christmas card, I told her when she gets back to college to take her time and not come back so soon.  Because when she comes back for the summer, that means its almost time for me to leave.

I don’t want to leave.

It’s too perfect here, but I know I must go.

Already it seems like I’m gone.  But I still have eight and a half months.

When I spent the night at Danny and Peter’s, it felt so weird.  It wasn’t my bed, it wasn’t my shower, it wasn’t my shampoo.

I’ve grown too accustomed to this place, but soon I’ll get used to another shower.

Right now, I’m in my room, my home, but it seems as if I’m so much farther away.

December 22, 1993 – Wednesday – 10:25 p.m.

It’s Wednesday.  It’s snowing.

My emotions are in a mix now.  I’m not sure what I’m feeling.

Monday night, I spent the night with Danny and Peter.  We had fun.

Tonight, when I came into church, I saw Anne.  She was home for the Holidays.  I talked to her and said, “So, I heard things changed up your way,” referring, of course, to her break up with Jason.

She smiled.  “Oh yeah.  Things did change and I haven’t talked to him since.”

Why do things work that way?

I didn’t think Jenna and Tenielle were going to come tonight, but they showed up in the middle of praise and worship.  I think they got it backwards when Shar said that Tenielle liked me more than Jenna.  Tenielle said, “hey dude!” and Rebecca, another one of that young clan, asked for me to wait up for Jenna.  I did, but it turns out Jenna was too embarrassed to talk to me.  In fact, she didn’t say a word, she just reached out and gave me a little wrapped gift.

On it is a little note, tied on with ribbon.

The note said:

“This is a very special gift

That you can never see

The reason it’s so special is

It’s just for you from me

Whenever you are lonely

Or even feeling blue

You only have to hold this gift

And know I think of you

You can never unwrap it

Please leave the ribbon tied

Just hold the box close to your heart

It’s filled with love inside.

1 Cor. 13:13  So Faith, Hope, Love,

Abide these three,

But the great of these

is Love.”

Image

Jenna doesn’t even know me.

She knows nothing of me.

She knows not what makes me tick or anything.

Nor do I know anything about her.

Friday morning I will go to Virginia and I won’t come back until the new year.

1994.

1976.

Amazing.