Relate, Relative, Relationship
Isaac Newton's third Law of Motion states that "for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction." When things collide, there is an immutable effect on both the initiator and the reactor. In the same way, people are in constant motion, "colliding" with one another and irrevocably changing in the process. It was only when I had to live on my own at Boston College that I realized how much the people in my life had such a powerful influence in my life. They are the ones who guided me to evolve into the person I am today. Swayed by my scientific background, I had always believed that I was mostly predestined by my genetic makeup: who I will ultimately become was written in my DNA from conception. However, living in a suite with seven other women and developing close relationships with people who were so unique made me question everything: my beliefs, my approach, my reactions, my opinions. The first chapter is a personal experience I had with my mother in dealing with the cultural and language barriers we had to face. A great deal of our misunderstandings arose because I was the first generation in my family to be born in America and to pursue a higher education at college. Many children come to a point when they rebel against everything their parents tell them to do because they do not understand why their parents do and say the things they do. It is only after the child and the parents can come to a mutual comprehension of each other that steps can be made toward building a stronger relationship, a relationship that goes beyond the simple acts of obedience — or rebellion — and of giving commands. My parents had immigrated to America in their early twenties in pursuit of better opportunities for their future. It was not until I was older and when my relationship with my mother had deepened that I could begin to comprehend her side of the story, her journey, her past which had influenced her decisions that she had made for her children. In order to recount this experience creatively, pieces of conversations that I had with my mother are woven throughout my scenes and my mother's scenes, which, in their stark contrast, causes a palpable tension. Being able to recount the memories in retrospect gives the ability to compare each experience and to reach an understanding. The second chapter is an exploration of the ripple effect amongst strangers and how individuals are all connected in one way or another. Our influences are felt by those around us, even though we may not be directly connected with them. Opening with a dramatic scene, the reader is taken sequentially backwards in time, tracing the steps that the seemingly unconnected characters had taken, ultimately understanding the woman's motivation. Each individual's secrets and conditions all culminate into that moment where one person tries to take her own life. It is rarely one isolated moment that triggers action. Like a snowball that rolls down a hill, increasing its speed and its size over time, various facets of one's life and of other's lives collect together to produce a bigger consequence of which one is aware. The concluding chapter of this series explores the fictional world of a family dealing with the repercussions of their past actions. Each individual's decisions had ramifications for the rest of the family, which they struggle to deal with years later. Characters face guilt, anger, bitterness, and responsibility, as they are constantly reminded of the day when their lives came crashing down. Instead of telling these characters' story by starting from the past and proceeding to the present in chronological order, I decided to include pieces of information and scenes from their memories for the reader to piece together. In the end, the reader is left with having to make a decision: with whom will he or she ultimately sympathize? Will he or she even make that choice? This comprehensive and tedious project provided many obstacles and tensions throughout the year, but it was a journey and a journey worth taking. Before this year, I was never afforded the opportunity to pursue a goal I had set for myself after watching "A Walk to Remember" in high school: to write a novel. It has been rewarding to see the end product of constant revisions, of constant criticisms, and of constant growth.