On Cherishing Our Past and Imaginary Selves

Can making sense of who we might have been help us understand who we are?

Marianna Saver
Big Self

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Photo by David Marcu on Unsplash

Once, in one of my unlived lives, I was a singer. It was the late 2000s, when the indie-rock phenomenon was having its commercial breakthrough and becoming popular enough for us novices to recognize the Smiths’ “How Soon Is Now” in the theme song of “Charmed” and most of the band names cited in “Gilmore Girls”, which I would watch and re-watch, unendingly, daydreaming about being a girl in a rock band like Lane’s character, or Kim Gordon, for that matter.

Sometime during my sophomore year in high school, I unearthed a dusty guitar my grandfather had gifted to me in lieu of a piano, which I had asked him for my sixth birthday. I started taking guitar lessons, learned about chord progressions and music notations and scales and notes, and Bob Dylan and Pink Floyd, whom I didn’t really enjoy as much as I enjoyed The Strokes and Arctic Monkeys. My favorite days became the ones when I was left alone in the house, the ticking of the wall clock in the kitchen the only sound you could hear. Then I would dash out of my room and crank up the volume of the large screen in the living room, playing MTV Rocks as loud as the neighbors would allow.

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Marianna Saver
Big Self

I write to understand what I don’t know. I also send monthly love notes: bit.ly/themorningair