constellations #52: a year

Hi again.

This is the fifty-second edition of constellations, which means, if I’m doing my math right, that I’ve been writing this newsletter for a year. I feel so lucky! One year ago I was living in suburban Massachusetts (this is once again true), befriending two goats named Sonny and Cher (we are still friendly), and feeling unsure about what I would be sending out into your inboxes (also still true). Since then I have written about Taco Bell and loneliness and Rilo Kiley and Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings and moving out of DC and traveling alone in Stockholm and then Sol LeWitt’s wall drawings again and The Art of Cruelty and being a late bloomer, among other things. My dear dear friends shared poems about photography and reflections on vintage clothes and a love letter to spring.

And while some things are mostly the same one year later, a lot has changed. And so I am grateful for having been able to carve out a consistent place to write, which has made me fall back in love with writing, and reminded me constantly how good and clarifying it feels, like tuning into a clear, bright frequency, like turning a corner and being able to see for miles. (The writer Haley Nahman recently answered an advice query about feeling confident enough to keep writing a newsletter; she said: “I keep going because I think it’s worth it. Writing has always been therapeutic to me. It suits my brain on a level I can’t control. Through doing it repeatedly, I’ve become more acquainted with my own thoughts and values. … There are also times when my writing utterly humiliates, frustrates, or drains me. Sometimes I feel like it says the totally wrong thing about me and I want everyone who reads it to forget I ever existed. But ultimately my life is fuller because I keep doing it.” Sorry to quote her at length, but this is precisely how I feel; it was so lovely and radiant to see it articulated like that.)

I am grateful to have committed to this, grateful to have kept it relatively regular but formless, grateful to have trusted that there is always something to say or share. Even more than all that, I am grateful to be reminded that writing can connect me to people, and grateful that this newsletter has connected me to you. Thank you for reading and thank you for caring. I mean that sincerely.

Until next time.