Fundamentally, writing and science have the same pursuits. While one is definitely more romantic and poetic, they both seek to uncover something. The overall undertaking of science seeks out to uncover the basest reality of the world we are experiencing. Writing endeavors to uncover deeper layers of the human experience. All types of writing intend to make you think; fiction oftentimes tries to resemble reality in a way that we'd believe or in a way we wish existed; nonfiction seeks to teach, using words and sentences combined together to educate the reader.
I think this is why I'm drawn to both. Writing is the poetic side of my brain; science is the logical side. Since graduating, I have been trying to find different ways to blend these two seemingly divergent passions. Science can be mundane or awe-inspiring; writing can be cumbersome or inspiring. I feel both whenever I study both. There are times I have an idea for a piece and I'm ecstatic as I start writing, only to get more than halfway through and feel like I'm throwing darts at a keyboard and sounding incoherent. A benefit of this project is that I realize that the writing process is not always going to be fun, but to stick to it, and the rewards will show themselves.
Science is also that way. There are months that go by with zero progress in our lab; we all start to wonder if what we're doing matters. Then, suddenly, one day, it all comes together and it feels like we made a massive leap. In reality, those months are incremental changes that are harder to see. An interesting way to think about this is to think about a sunset; during the entire day, a minute doesn't change lighting much. 2:30 vs 3:30 doesn't look all that much different. But the last hour or two of daylight are full of interesting lighting and shadowing changes; the golden hour shrouds the grass and flowers and subjects in a beautiful golden hue. As the sun sets further, I'm consistently overwhelmed by the sheer beauty of our earth; a beauty that doesn't seem as magnificent when the sun is high in the sky. Science and writing can feel this way at times.
I believe part of the human condition is the desire to be a part of something bigger than ourselves; to be a part of something more concrete than just our internal mind. For me, writing and science are the two best ways of doing so. Studying science and biochemistry have provided me a unique feeling of understanding that is almost intoxicating; writing provides me an outlet to use my words, experiences, rhetoric, and passions to spread a message, to uncover the layers of our collective human psyche, with the ultimate pursuit to share in the feeling that I'm a part of something bigger. The feeling that I am bigger than myself by understanding what makes me the human being that I am and the feeling that I will live on long after I've expired through my writings.
It's a romantic feeling. It's a feeling that I am passionate about pursuing on a daily basis. One of the most fulfilling feelings for me is making people experience an emotion that transcends the moment. I most enjoy making people think and laugh and feel. Writing and science provide me that.