IF I LIVED 100 YEARS AGO by Carolina Bomeny

Dear Journal,

What is happening to me? I feel sick all the time and can't control my mood. I feel very vulnerable, like as if I was feeling everything twice as much as I should. Today is different, I am only infuriated. It is Gabriel's birthday and I passed by his workplace to congratulate him, only to find him engaged in a seemingly hilarious conversation with a woman no older than 20. How can he possibly betray me like that? Or maybe she's just a friend, or… wait…. maybe I am just a friend? Can he possibly not love me back? We have something, even if he can't read my thoughts I must not be the only one who feels a sudden rush of energy when our hands touch for the split second he hands me my bag of groceries. Am I crazy? Of course, what was I thinking! I am a married woman and he is a handsome young man who is single and free to decide his own life. You two would never work, EVER, do you understand that Carolina? You have to distance yourself from him, look at you, I've never seen you so unstable, and now you are talking to yourself! Great! Ugh, I'm nauseous again, goodbye.

January 24, 1918

Dear Journal,

My out of control mood now has a name. In fact, it will soon have legs and arms and a little face. It is currently growing inside of me as I write. My lady days have not arrived this month, and my upset stomach only confirms my worst fear: I am pregnant. Pregnant with that man's baby. Just writing this makes me want to throw up again. A baby. It still doesn't sound real. How am I supposed to raise a child if I can barely take care of myself? I don't want a child to grow up in this environment, this is not a home. No one should live with a father that beats a mother and treats women like rubbish. What if I have a daughter? Into what world am I bringing her too? Oh God, please bring me a boy, as selfish as this wish may seem, for I fear my daughter's life already.

It's Thursday, four days left before I can see my mother and ask her for advice. Should I tell my husband? I mean of course, but, how is he going to react? We have never talked about kids, in fact, we've hardly even had real conversations. But a child is good news right? Possibly it'll warm that man's icy stone heart for once in his lifetime.

It's no time for me to be thinking about Gabriel, but I can not stop it. To get over him, I'd have to be taught how to forget to think.

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