Qualifying a life

I was reminded tonight that I have lived in San Francisco for three years. Years, it feels, that have escaped me as does a word on the tip of your tongue: you can vaguely describe the word, and you can remember how it feels to say the word, even some times that you have used the word, but the fuller meaning is lost until you recall the specific term and its context. It seems that it is easy to quantify a life (i.e. “I have been here three years”), but much harder to qualify it. How do you explain a year? How did you change in 2015? A full 365 days passed and how many do you remember? We tend to remember the sad moments and some of the happier ones, but the mundane living is lost to time.

One reason I started this effort to write every day was to encourage myself to better acknowledge passing time through daily reflection, whatever form that may take. Fiction, memories, poems… specifics of the medium aside, sitting down to write anything mandates that you draw inspiration from the daily events of your life. And through that practice we sometimes realize that the mundane memories of our days are the ones that set in motion larger changes that might take years to manifest in our lives. If these unremarkable moments are not preserved somehow, we end up mystified as to how we ever got from one state of being to another.

This year I’d like to dedicate some of my daily writing to examining my life year by year and trying to identify the events, monumentally large or infinitesimally little, that have cumulatively made me me.