Why I Write
I write to make space for myself. To slow down. To reflect. To rethink.
I write to work out an issue or an emotion that is consuming me. To express myself without speaking. To capture moments – those ordinary, everyday ones and those overwhelming, all-encompassing ones. I write when I feel great sadness or intoxicating joy but most often when I simply remember how valuable it is for me to come back into myself.
The below collection of nonfiction represents small glimpses into a life that I love. I wrote them mainly for me, but a little bit for you too.
In March of 2017, I left my home in DC and traveled internationally for five months. I brought a journal that my childhood friend had given me. I filled it up – writing almost every single day.
During my trip, I was in a new country, a new city, or a new town more frequently than ever before. Writing became the common element in all of these new and unusual experiences. It became the way for me to be more present in the place I was in.
Traveling can be a whirlwind. Writing grounds me and makes me feel purposeful when I need to feel that way. My travel writing captures some of my feelings and experiences when I’m away and I smile just thinking about it.
Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with awe and gratitude that I feel like I might burst. I can’t believe my luck. I’m constantly surrounded by so much love and support from my family and community. I’m afforded the opportunity to challenge myself and to purposefully inject uncertainty into my lifestyle, knowing with certainty that failing is just another way to grow.
I get overwhelmed when it feels like I’m not appreciating my life enough. When I’m afraid that I’m not adequately expressing how grateful I am for my life when I acknowledge how fleeting it all is. My short stories are an attempt to express my gratitude in another way, to describe just a fraction of the love I feel for my life. To share just a bit of it – the joy is just too much for me to keep to myself.
I often write poetry desperately. I will be overcome with a need to capture a feeling or experience and I won’t be able to get the words down fast enough. My whole body will tense and my hand will stiffen as I clutch my pen – language urgently, sloppily forming on the page. I rarely write poetry, but when I do it rushes out of me. Jolts of passion that leave a trail of words behind.
I don’t write poetry with any rules that I know of. Sometimes it looks like paragraphs, and sometimes it doesn’t. I don’t care what it looks like, I just care how it makes me feel.
This is for all the rest – love letters, songs, tributes, speeches, and whatever else spills out of me.