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:: 2010 18 October :: 10.12 pm

To my readers:

There's a reason I haven't been writing. I cannot talk about it here. But I realized this gave me the opportunity to do what I knew would have to be done someday. Say goodbye.

But first, thank you. Thank you for listening to my words through your pixels. Thank you for coming along, whatever your reason, whoever you are. Thank you for watching my mystery unravel.

It's hard for me. To let this go. Seven years of my life are in these pages. A documented path from student to scientist. I'm not leaving because there's nothing to say, rather the opposite is true. There's so much that got left out from this summer, all those months I wasn't writing. A huge chunk of this is missing because of it, but that's the way it goes.

It wasn't always this way. Woohu was a community once. I thought of it more of a message board for my dorm and the group of friends I congealed with freshman year. One by one they left here, but I made a conscious decision to stay. Not for any particular reason, other than this became home. And I began to realize that all along, this journal, the memories buried in these pages, had been for me. To see growth flowing through words, representing actions, representing faith in myself.

And this became my memoir. My memoir of everything I lost and all that I gained. My winding road from those terrifying early moments in chemistry freshman year to a full-fledged forensic scientist in the NYPD. From being horrified to speak in front of room of classmates to testifying in courts of law to a jury of strangers. From bemoaning biochemical pathways and stoichiometry to analyzing mass spectral evidence.

When this journal began I was 18 years old. I was a wide-eyed freshman in college surrounded by strangers who would eventually become friends. I was dating a British boy back home, saw my parents every month or so, and thought I was going to become a biochemist. My first entry was made in playful angst as I fidgeted with my new life.

As this journal ends, I am 25 years old. A girl standing on her own two feet looking back and knowing how she got here, in large part to this very place where she could watch it unfold. This place took my experiences, often too close for me to see clearly, and let me take a step back and examine them to see them for what they were. Seven years later, I have a domestic partnership, a new group of friends, and a career in forensics. And my last entry is not in angst, but rather in wonder. This is to have succeeded. To end better than I began.

I didn't write everything here. There are a lot of things that happened to me, or I happened to them, that will never grace these pages. But what's here is my truth nonetheless. What's here was for me, and that makes it real.

I am not done writing forever. This has become ingrained in me and I had to make a conscious effort not to do it. Not because I have some sort of fantastic life that the internet needs to know about, but because life is something worth documenting even if just for myself. I will be found elsewhere, when I'm ready.

I am going to open back up a few of my last entries to give a sense of where I left off. These last two years had more loss, in the sense of people, than I have dealt with in the rest of my life combined. My life has undoubtedly changed because of it.

But in the end, thank you to the friends in Michigan, friends in New York, Jason, family members, a few coworkers, and a handful of strangers who read this. Thank you for finding this interesting enough to even have read it just once. Thank you for embracing yet another cell floating in the endless sea.

October 18th 2003 - October 18th 2010

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