Why I Write//Modern Love

A week ago I submitted a story on the theme of modern love to the New York Times. It was a series of fictional letters between my sister and I about our various relationships. I was the one grappling with letting go of past screw ups, and my sister the one who is reluctant to let anyone in. The story ends with the gesture of release and gratitude for all types of love: I send my sister a scarf that I knit since leaving Ireland, a scarf meant for a guy who I met and dated in Ireland and proceeded to fixate on once I left. The relationship decayed with distance but I wanted to cling on to it because we had no dramatic incompatability. Logistics seemed like a fallible reason for allowing collapse.

But once I wrote this story out of me, I felt better. A weight disappeared from my life and I worried less about what that relationship was or how I could regain it. I got a Facebook message from the guy that was so boring and lacking substance that I didn’t feel the need to immediately respond. I let go of trying to make things work out which I almost never do. I like holding on till the bitter end. The space that my writing opened up left room for new people to come in. This week has been filled with restlessness, frenetic energy, spring solstice/new moon ceremonies, red wine, and rivers (more about those later). I realized I’m inhabiting the same open spaces of myself that I dwelled in while travelling.

A Cloud Cult song, Breakfast with My Shadow, says “Can you fall in love with things you may never touch? If I truly believe that things can chage will I wake up to something different?” For me today, the answer is yes.

“That’s why I write, because life never works except in retrospect. You can’t control life, at least you can control your version.”
Chuck Palahniuk, Stranger than Fiction


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