October 2017

1 October 2017. Yes, my diary is gone. And here I am scribbling on this scrap of paper. It’s just habit, I suppose. And when I have finished writing, I will probably crumple up this paper and throw it away.

Yes, my diary is gone. And so is Jonas. I suppose he has read it all. But what did I write? I can’t even remember.

I tried to phone Jonas. His phone was off. He sent me a WhatsApp later that day. Quoting from the Bible: They that sow the wind will reap the whirlwind.

What was that supposed to mean? Was he talking about Christo and me hugging? I tried to phone him back. But I could only leave a voice mail.

“Jonas, please. That hug was just platonic. Nothing else. It was like hugging my brother. You are the one I love. You are the most important person in my life!”

And that was the honest truth. Hugging Christo felt just the same as hugging my brother. Like that time when the doctor told us our mother was fully recovered. Warm and friendly and sharing our happiness. How could I make Jonas understand that?

Or was Jonas talking about my diary entries? I tried to remember what I’d written over the past nine months. But it was all a blur.

He phoned me finally late on Sunday night.

“One hundred and seventy-five, Harmony!”

“What? What’s one hundred and seventy-five?” But I think I already knew.

“That’s how many times you mention your boyfriend in your diary. And let me tell you: that is ninety-eight more times than you mention me! I counted! So don’t lie and tell me I’m the most important one! Don’t tell me you are my most loyal fan! Your diary is where the real truth lies!”

“But Jonas …”

I felt sick with guilt. Was it true that I had written about Christo so much more than about my own husband? What kind of disloyal wife was I? And what could I say to make this better? It didn’t matter. Jonas had disconnected. And he didn’t answer when I called. Again and again.

In the early hours of Monday morning, I took all my diaries outside. From all the years and years. I dumped them in the oil drum and set them alight. And I watched as my entire past, all the happy events and all the sad events, disintegrated into ash and smoke.

What was the point of holding onto the past when my future was hopeless?

* * * * *

“What’s wrong?” Christo asked at school. “You should be celebrating, not acting like your world has collapsed.”

I shook my head and turned away. Suddenly Christo’s light-hearted cheerfulness just made me feel worse. Real life was too serious now to be laughed away and forgotten about.

* * * * *

Two weeks! For two long weeks I couldn’t get hold of Jonas. Perhaps he was staying with his mother? I dialled her home phone.

“Oh, hello, Harmony. No, Jonas isn’t here. Sorry.” But she didn’t sound like she was sorry. Perhaps she was relieved that her son had left this wife who wasn’t producing babies?

17 October 2017. I’ve decided. I’m going to make an appointment with the fertility clinic. I’ll let them test me. I’ll see if it’s my fault. I want Jonas to know I’m trying to fix things. Maybe that will soften his heart?

Why was I still writing? Even though I threw the scrap of paper away the minute I’d finished? Some habits are hard to break.

19 October 2017. I have an appointment at the clinic for 1 November. But I’m so afraid. What if it’s my fault?


Tell us: Did Harmony do the right thing, burning all her diaries?