I don’t have good memory, I just write things down a lot. Because of this tendency, I remember all of the things I want to remember and some of the things I do not. That in itself may be the single biggest challenge of being a self proclaimed writer: remembering things, the good, bad, and indifferent. A plus to this is that I get to relish in my happy memories, no matter how insignificant they seemed at the time they occurred.
It’s been proven by science that the sense of smell has a strong connection with memory and oftentimes certain scents are associated with different point in time. For example, while I write this just sitting in my bed at home, I can think of the distinct smell of my paternal grandparents’ bathroom in Puerto Rico. A scent made up of decorative soap, mixed with the Johnson and Johnson’s baby toiletries (for the cousins), potpourri, and a hint of those little decorative tiny spheres that are mushy and smell really good. (Hey, just cause I call myself a writer doesn’t mean I’m always great at descriptions. Let me LIVE.)
I just went really in on that explanation of what my grandparents’ bathroom smells like, when that is not at all the point of what I am writing. I don’t know exactly what the purpose of this post is, but it’s definitely not to talk about a bathroom.
What I want to say is that by writing things down I get to relive, reflect, and reevaluate a lot of things about my life. I find that to be pretty cool.
Of course the writing I do is not always pen to paper in my journal (the 50+ notes on my iPhone’s Notes App can attest to this), but it may be in the form of an ambiguous post via social media, a cluttered Google Drive, a post-it note stuck in between book pages when a line seems especially relevant, etc.
One such social media post was the following tweet “12:25 AM: POETRY HAS GOTTEN SO HARD TO WRITE EVER SINCE LIFE GOT GOOD AGAIN.” It was from July 23, 2015, about a year ago to this date. I don’t remember what exactly it was that made me tweet this, maybe it was a text message from someone or that I was trying to write and couldn’t find anything in my mind to pull from. After all, sometimes writing about sad things is easier. Or maybe I’m not good at writing about happiness because it can be so fleeting. But reading this a year after I originally posted was sentimental, which sounds incredibly stupid but it’s not to me.
With 365 days between typing that sentence and today so much has happened but I’m still me and I still struggle with putting my happiness into logical, rhyming, organized words. I like it that way. I like the idea of chaotic happiness, it keeps me on my toes and spontaneity is something I need more practice with.
In the time since this very tweet, I’ve finished a year of college, I’ve gained friends and lost, and I have learned a lot about my personal worth at the cost of something/someone that I was so sure of a year ago. That stuff happens, that stuff is life, it’s real and it’s grueling and it sucks at the time that it all happens but it happens and then it’s done. As Vonnegut would say, “So it goes.”
I am equally reassured as I am terrified in knowing that absolutely nothing in life is guaranteed to last. That fact is beautiful and frightening and reminds me of an F. Scott Fitzgerald quote that says in short, “For what it’s worth: it’s never too late to be whoever you want to be. I hope you live a life you’re proud of, and if you find that you’re not, I hope you have the strength to start over.”
I understand that quoting two famous writers in the span of two paragraphs makes me a tool, but I’m getting my thoughts down in the most piecewise way that I can, bare with it. This quote, however Pinterest-esque it may be is an optimistic look at the way life comes and goes so I totally dig it.
To cancel out the douchy-ness of referencing Vonnegut AND Fitzgerald, I am going to quote someone equally as inspirational and credible. My best friend, while battling a wicked hangover said to me (ironically, at the time) “With every end comes a start!” or something like that. She was probably still slightly under the influence. But through the poor grammar and word choice, it makes sense and the simplicity of it puts Vonneguts and Fitzgeralds all over the place to shame (kidding, kind of). Life goes and goes and things are simultaneously ending and beginning and it’s happening without warning and it’s awesome. Always remember and look back fondly at everything even if at the time, it was a bad experience. That’s a good way to do life.
Like most of my writing has gotten now-a-days, this was a total stream of consciousness all over the place kind of post where I, a mere nineteen year old that can barely cook a pancake without burning it, talks about life and what I think about it. Don’t listen to me, I don’t know anything. No one will ever be able to decode life’s complexities SO WHY DO WE TRY?
Probably because we are hopeless romantics for life itself. Life is beautiful and we want to know all of its secrets so that we can sweep it off its feet and do it right. There’s no concrete way to do life right, so we might as well do dumb things, pretend to know more than we actually do, and post about it on the internet for other people to read, right? So it goes.