Instagram post by @katemadeira Kate Madeira

At least once a year, when I'm going through one of my many boxes of mementos and clippings saved for collage and zine purposes, I rediscover this awesomely embarrassing letter written in gel pen on Amelia's Notebook stationary hidden in the pages of an unfinished zine from 2011. I had my first big crush and was simultaneously amazed and horrified at how emotional I was over it and passed this note to my friend Emily as we sat with our sisters in the choir loft at church, drawing and reading Archie comics. As a lowly 5th grader, I was pretty in awe of Emily's 6th grade wisdom, and she wrote back a characteristically sage reply, and then I totally forgot about the letter until a few months later when my dad picked me up from school, bearing the letter, which he had found as he and my mom worked on packing up my room in preparation to move into a new house. He was all verklempt and started making some speech about how sweet it was that I was growing up and being open with my friends about my feelings and I was MORTIFIED. I burst into tears, and always figured the letter got tossed until a decade later, when I went over to my mom's house for dinner. Once again, a move was preparing to be made, and as I sat down for dinner and she and my sister started laughing and told me they'd found an amazing letter in a storage bin full of papers and drawings from my childhood, my blood ran cold. They whipped out the letter, and even though I hadn't seen it since the day my dad found it, I automatically knew what it was and freaked out. And then I chilled out and read it and found it p funny with some distance between it and the memory, and set it aside to use in a zine that I never got around to finishing, and finally called out a quiet thanks to no one in particular that middle school is now just a continuously fading memory.

12 Comments

  • 29w ago erinhindy erinhindy

    Omgosh you must send this to emily as she does not have instagram. โค๏ธ๐Ÿ˜‚

  • 29w ago erinhindy erinhindy

    "It's only the beginning kate." Hahaha Emily's frankness.

  • 29w ago katemadeira katemadeira

    I'll tag/share on Facebook haha. Her response is honestly what makes it so funny.

  • 29w ago bloodboneandhoney bloodboneandhoney

    When I tell you my entire thesis is made up of 300 pages of archival docs like this, I'm not lying even 1% lol. It's all gold. I used to type up notes I wanted to give to my boyfriends before handwriting them so I made sure I got all the typos out and knew exactly what I wanted to say. I still have all the typed drafts printed and stuffed in various diaries. 17 diaries, to be exact ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ’ฏ๐Ÿ—

  • 29w ago jadamwhat jadamwhat

    Hopefully, in those reflections of discomfort, you can find the beauty in being who you were in middle school and how those moments shaped the person you are today.

  • 29w ago monigirii monigirii

    God this is so fucking great

  • 29w ago katemadeira katemadeira

    @jadamwhat oh, most definitely!

  • 29w ago katemadeira katemadeira

    @sarahelizabethborst omg, that's fantastic. The potential creations that can come from old relics like that are why I am such a sentimental hoarder of stuff of that ilk

  • 29w ago bloodboneandhoney bloodboneandhoney

    @katemadeira it's literally ridiculous. I did a performance piece of a curated selection of the documents I put together back in the spring, and used everyone's real names/real pics because it was in a private setting with my MFA program but now I'm trying to figure out the best way to censor out names while keeping it authentic. It's hilarious af. And so ridiculous. And sad? All of it.

  • 29w ago evelyn_anderson0 evelyn_anderson0

    I love this! And the fartknocker shout out! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

  • 29w ago soomegirl soomegirl

    Oh man, I had those stickers too. ๐Ÿ’•

  • 29w ago katemadeira katemadeira

    @evelyn_anderson0 lol there no way I could make a collage about growing up and not include that. Fartknocker was a pillar of my childhood ๐Ÿ˜‚

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