Just another Monday morning!!

So, I woke up today with puffy eyes because of all the crying from last night. It is not like I have an exciting social life that I look forward to every weekend nor do I hate my job to hate Mondays, it is just a normal amount of reaction to the weekend ending.  Well, some might call it an overreaction but whatever. It is just the Sunday effect. And I hate it. It irks me even more than when I hear someone use past tense with didn’t or call a laptop ‘lappy’.

I am a weird person with very little control on my emotions. I cry when I am angry, happy, sad, and hungry. I usually try to avoid watching or reading anything that might trigger the Sunday effect even more, but sometimes I just give in and watch something heartfelt and then cry my eyes out and then regret it for like an hour before I fall asleep with a headache. I envy people who can turn off their data at night, who don’t overthink, who aren’t unnecessarily impulsive, and who have a considerable amount of control over their emotions, huge respect!!

Then, as if I haven’t had enough anxious and weird thoughts through the night, the Monday morning also starts with immense indecisiveness. It becomes a real struggle between choosing to stay in bed or going for a walk. Headache makes it worse and puffy eyes attract unnecessary attention from fellow walkers. But being out there with other people also gives a sense of security and calm. And frankly the staring doesn’t bother anymore after a point because crying makes everyone look cute. It doesn’t seem like a huge deal but getting out of bed despite being sleepy is the better decision, because once the playlist picks up and those endorphins kick in, it starts feeling okay again.

We keep seeing these posts like another day, another chance and maybe it is true. There are so many things that can be upsetting when they don’t go the way we hope, and it sucks. Ending of weekend sucks. But anyway, we eventually start feeling okay. Maybe Mondays are not so bad after all. At least not until anyone at work starts irritating you. Mondays even feel exciting when there is something to look forward to. And then just like that the day gets over. You can again go back to playing unrealistic scenarios in your head, overthink or be emotional about the feel-good social media posts.

There is always Friday night and Saturday to look forward to, so it is not that bad after all.

Timeout

Is it just me or did everyone get timeouts as punishments growing up? My mom often used to make me stand facing the wall whenever I did something which was not considered a good kid behaviour. I never took them seriously to be honest, so they never had the kind of effect on me as my mom hoped they would. I had a very short attention span to keep on thinking about one thing for long, and well, dad always saved me from these “self-reflection” times.

The current situation makes me feel exactly like one non-ending timeout. It is just you and your million crazy thoughts alone, trying to make some sense of everything. In a way, it has been enriching as well. No wonder we are all going to come out different and hopefully, a better person when all this shit ends. These last few months have been a real eye-opener.

Remember that famous dialogue from Baazigar movie, sometimes to win, you must be prepared to lose something. The real maverick is the one who ends up ultimately winning the end game (Umm brb… Must go and watch Shahrukh saying it 🙈).

Come to think of it, what kind of person we would be without going through those unpleasant situations, or those setbacks that defeated us? Or, how convenient it would be to never go through a difficult situation? But these many years of being a Potterhead has made me believe in magic and finding as many silver linings as I can in dark moments. Of course, this realisation takes a little longer to hit, sometimes after a ridiculously long period of moping and weeping, but it always comes.

So now, my take on all this is – Keep ‘em coming. More the struggles, more the number of stories and lessons I will have to bore others with when I am old!!

Moral of the story

It was a warm summer morning. I was pacing impatiently in our front porch. I had already checked the setting twice, it was perfect. The folding armchair was placed in my regular spot, frooti was in the refrigerator ready to be taken out. It was 10 minutes past 10:30. Just when I was about to explode with more impatience, I heard the bicycle horn. Phew! Finally, my favourite book had arrived. I ran back in the house to get my frooti, sincerely ignored my mom’s warning to not finish the book in one day and settled on the armchair with my latest edition of champak. As always, I finished the book in one day and as per ritual, bored everyone in the house with the stories I had just read.

Such was my craze for champak. It was my favourite book growing up. The memory of waiting every fortnight for the new champak and the feeling of finally having it still fills me with such joy.

It was all so simple and sorted when we were kids. I was always a good girl, scoring good marks, doing my homework on time, performing well in extra-curricular activities. Back then, the reasons to be anxious or scared were also so cute and innocent. My fears included not being chased by the dogs when passing through that infamous lane in our colony which was frequented by those wild dogs, or accidentally getting a peak of the snake on the T.V. despite covering my eyes, or saying something about the mean aunties from those serials my mom and grandmother used to watch and then fearing if after the telecast, they would come and scold me.

Over time, we tend to forget so many things from our past until they come back to us, most of the times without even trying. I haven’t read champak in a long time. I have even forgotten most of the stories but thankfully not their moral. In all of those, naughty kids always learned their lessons, hard work always paid, truth always triumphed, friendship, loyalty and honesty always mattered, and no good deed went unnoticed. Maybe that is why I am a believer and a hopeful person because in the end, in all the stories, all was well. Faith and hope go hand in hand. Even with probably a dozen of reasons to give up, all it takes is one good reason to hang in there. It is like how the saying goes- once you hit rock bottom, the only way to go is up. So as long as we are trying, we are halfway through. Things may still go wrong, but it will all be worth it in the end.

Right people, wrong time, right people!

Is there really any such thing as meeting the right person at the wrong time? Because if the person is the right person, they will not change or leave just because the time is not right. Am I right? I mean, no matter what, it all comes to this one point that the right person will always be there for you, no matter the circumstances, no matter the hardships.

But then another question is that even if the “right” person leaves when the time is not right, does this mean that the person is no longer the right one for you? It certainly doesn’t change the fact that you feel the happiest around this person who you know is the right one for you.

Right or wrong, maybe it doesn’t matter. Maybe all that matters are the choices that you make. Because even if the person who was right for you at a certain time in your life is not there anymore, it doesn’t imply that they are now the wrong ones for you. It depends on how you choose to view that person, and how you let their leaving affect you.

I haven’t been in touch with people who considered me their good friend at some point in their lives, and I have also been left by people with whom I share some of the best memories. I don’t detest the ones who left me. There may be a little anger and hurt, but not hatred. And I hope that the ones I left don’t hate me either. We still are the right people, we just chose at that time, to not make efforts to save our connection. Because sometimes things just happen, am I right?

The heart wants what it wants!

Being an anxious introvert, it takes me time to break the walls and be my authentic true self around people. It tends to get even harder if you are a major over-thinker, and an emotionally intense person. So, unless it is with someone that I am completely comfortable with, my source of solace has always been books, movies, and songs. I have always been a movie buff, so much so that most of the times I think and act like the stories and the characters. To be able to escape any time into someone else’s story, to the see the world and things from their perspective is nothing short than a blessing.

Countless times I have caught myself thinking about going to Varanasi to sit by the beautiful Ghaats, not only because of the serenity of the place, but also to feel the sense of calm Piku and Rana must have felt when they spent time there, just sitting silently. I don’t enjoy road trips much because of the motion sickness I get on those serpentine roads, which is kind of a huge bummer. I can and will only endure this uncomfortable feeling if I am with the people that I am comfortable with. But I still have road trips on my travel bucket list after watching and absolutely falling in love with the movie Karwaan. I don’t know if it even makes sense, but of all the places to visit in Tamil Nadu, the one place that I want to visit the most is the Mahabalipuram Shore Temple. I am sure I will end up crying there listening to Ullam Paadum Paadal song and thinking about how after all the struggles, Krish and Ananya made it at last. I want to visit the Golden Temple, not only to pray, but also because it was there that Taani realised she had found her rab in Surinder. I am obsessed with NewYork City (who isn’t, right!) mostly because I want to see all the places Ted Mosby and his gang loved to go to, for all the lessons and fun F.R.I.E.N.D.S have there. And this is just the beginning. I have a long list of places and stuff to do which is inspired by my favourite movies and characters. Sounds corny I know, maybe nonsensical, but hey, the heart wants what it wants.

My so-called self-declared cool English vocabulary is mostly built by the new words I hear in movies. The first time I accepted this publicly was when I was busy being myself with “my person” and we unintentionally confessed about how we both learned to use the word “spooky” in normal conversations from watching Harry Potter and the Chamber Of Secrets. Wow! How easy, underrated and at the same time rare to just be yourself with certain people is, without any fear of being judged. It helps so much to know the kind of person someone is based on the books they read, or the movies they enjoy. But to get over that same one person who shares the same wavelength as you (and of course, love) is painfully hard. One of the many things I hate about this feeling is that the stupid movie buff in me wants to travel to all these places with that one person only, the one who is no longer mine.

We think we know ourselves but hearing someone’s perception of you that is so different from your own hits differently. In a similar way, we think that we have healed from something or someone until it hits back, even when you think you are over it. So now, my long travel bucket list has the same places, only the reasons to tick them off the list have multiplied. Apart from the “filmy” reasons, I now also want to go to these places (or “our places” as the romantic in us would have called them) to feel the way it would have felt if we went there together. Now, Delhi is not just Delhi from Delhi-6 or from Love Aaj Kal’s chor bazaari song, but it is now the Delhi (your favourite city) that we were going to explore together.

Maybe it sucks for others to see us pining for those who have already gone, but hey, sometimes the heart wants what it wants, no matter how stupid it sounds and looks, and there is nothing you can do about it.

Confusion!

Does it ever happen to you when you read motivational quotes or articles, and instead of getting inspired, they scare you? You read about all the hard work someone has put in to be where they are today, at the top of the success ladder and there you are, contemplating whether you even have it in you to achieve your dreams. What do you do when this anxiety kicks in? Is this even real or is it just laziness or lack of desire that makes everything seem so scary and unachievable?

There is this one catchphrase that we often use – “This happens to everyone”. And the hidden meaning that follows this sentence is “let it go, move on, go with the flow or give it time”. How does this apply to all, when everyone’s situation is different, when everyone’s thought processes are so different? I have met people who used their trauma as a fuel to work on themselves and make their lives better. I have met people who have not been able to pull themselves back up after the setbacks that kicked them down. I also know people who have made a sort of compromise with the situation. The compromise being, not getting backed down by the setback but also not accepting the reality fully. It is somewhat like being in denial, not wanting to know certain truths to destroy their illusions. I feel like I also belong to this third category.

At the start of this year, I sat down and told myself – It’s a new year, another chance to work on stuff you couldn’t (rather didn’t) do last year. So far, I haven’t been able to tick off a single thing from my to-do list of 2021. I am not big on New Year resolutions, but there sure were some things on my mind to accomplish or at least to start, when the year started. After a lot of thinking and brainstorming sessions alone with my million crazy and confusing thoughts, I got to the conclusion- either I am being too lenient with myself or I am being too hard on myself. But this is scary too, right? I mean, what if this confusion never gets solved? Sure, my bio reads self-motivated individual, and most of the times I am. But there are certain moments when everything makes me question this. Then again, I don’t want to destroy few illusions I have about certain people or situations. They have shaped my way of thinking and help to keep me grounded. Without them, I am not sure and not yet ready to know the kind of person I will be.

Maybe right now, the best thing to do is to keep on pushing and taking steps towards achieving the goal. After all, even a small step in the right direction counts. Also, these crazy thoughts are not going anywhere, so hopefully one day there will be clarity to all this confusion.

EMOTIONS! PAST! EMOTIONS!

Are we ever truly free from our past? Every time I feel like I am finally moving on from something or someone, some random thing just pops up and pulls me right back into the spiral. I wonder is it because I feel too much or is it just my naivety. I have often had my friends advising me that my self-respect has got to be stronger than my feelings. But I just don’t function that way, I have zero self-esteem when it comes to those I love. I have lost a lot because of this, but I have also learned a lot by making mistakes every time I let my emotions get the better of me. Of course, if those lessons were apparent to me earlier, many things would have been different by now.

Sure, there are quirks in me like my overthinking, being too honest, sometimes being extremely moody, my indecisiveness, but mostly I am a happy person. I don’t like to sulk, nor do I like being in the company of those who do. I am not grumpy, but sometimes, life throws such curveballs that you are shaken to the core. “Give it time, everything will be alright”, they say. And I will be honest, it is getting better. But, to think that we can outrun our past is utter foolishness. Knowing myself, I will probably master the art of tricking myself into believing that I have moved on from stuff and that I am happy, in the hope that one day it won’t feel like pretending anymore.

I wonder if it will be easier to not let my emotions get the better of me and leave the part of taking decisions to the logical entity, my mind.

Balance

Sometimes, someone on the outside can never understand what goes on between two other people. And sometimes only a third person, someone on the outside, can truly comprehend what goes on between two other people, when they themselves are unable to figure it out.

Most of the time, it takes a setback or an emotional upheaval to put things into perspective or to gain a fresh perspective. It is not like you ever get over something that once meant the world to you, it just moves behind other things instead of in front of them. And I think that is one of the most beautiful things in life, that the heart always finds a way.

We strive hard every day to become the best we can be. Out of all those things that we work on, one of them should be to train our brain and our heart to be in sync with each other. Because, among all the battles there are to fight, the one that goes on inside us is the worst. It doesn’t matter who wins, the heart or the mind, eventually it is the person who loses something valuable in this war every damn time.

Well, if only it was that simple! It is most certainly impossible to achieve this insane amount of balance overnight. This is so deeply rooted that half of the times you don’t even realise you are choosing one over the other. But like some things, this can only be learned over time. All we can do is be true to ourselves, and always try to do the right thing. We may or may not achieve this perfect balance, but gradually we will be a better human being. And isn’t this what we all want in the end, to be a good person and at peace with the kind of life we build for ourselves.

Looking back…

2020 was a remarkably awful year. For someone who gets overwhelmed even by the most trivial changes, I consider making it through the year a pretty big victory. The year sucked at so many levels, and on top of this I lost something (or someone) truly important to me. So, I guess feeling extra-overwhelmed right now is kind of justified.

I went on a nostalgia trip today while clearing out my phone gallery and stumbling upon some childhood pictures. I consider myself so lucky for growing up in a house with my grandparents. My most favourite part of this is the infinite pampering I received and the wisdom. Even today they have a lot of influence on my way of thinking, my belief system and of course, the crazy happy memories. There was this one picture in the gallery probably snapped by my dad, where I am sitting on my grandmother’s lap engrossed in a book, and she is just looking at me with adoration. The picture brought back so many memories, the pancakes she used to make for me, the warm hugs, her way of explaining things to me. You know you have the coolest grandparents when they watch your favourite movies with you, listen to how your day was, jam with you on your favourite songs, basically bringing out the best and the happiest in you. While I sat there smiling and deep in my thoughts replaying all those happy moments, my phone rang bringing me out of the reverie. We all used to be so innocent, full of life and hope and all the good things until life happened. This last year has been so damn hard, so many big changes, so much of loss, hurt, pain, anxiety, you name it and it was there. But we somehow made it through, and that too with the hope that this year will be better. All this time, I have been consumed to a troubling extent by just the thoughts of the person I lost, the one I hoped I will have for the rest of my life. Losing that person has changed me in so many ways.

I don’t know whether this year will be better or not, but I know one thing that if I could make it through the shittiest year of my life, I can handle pretty much anything, and maybe that is true for all of us. Then there are always those who love you to help you out, your favourite books, movies, songs to keep you going, and most importantly your mobile phone. Don’t know about others, but god knows how thankful I am for my phone. One of my friends suggested me to try setting up some quotes as reminders and in some ways, it really helped me a lot. The one that speaks to me most is –

“Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end, if not always in the way we expect”.

And I am sure it will all come back, the lost smiles, courage, all the good that is lost. It may seem rather irrational that I am still hung up on this one person when there are hundreds of other things to think about. But we can’t keep a tab on how much to feel for a certain thing. All we can do is to tap on our inner strength and hope that it all works out in the end.

P.S. 2021 please be good. If not better, at least be bearable!!

To trying…

You know all this year I have been obsessed about how I should have done things differently and if it would really have made any change. I used to think that I tried my best, but after this one year of contemplation and learning, I realised that even though I did try my best, I was not at my best that time. Why does it always have to be this way, that you learn and grow through suffering? If I knew then what I know now, maybe things would have been different, maybe I would have acted more gracefully than I did. I was petty, and jealous, so much so that I threw away the only chance of keeping you in my life by staying your friend, just because I was not sure if I was strong enough to see you with someone else.

Even after all this time, I am scared to accept the fact that I need to let you go. I can’t stay stuck there, just playing different scenarios in my head. So yes, sadly this staying in denial is not working out anymore because you are long gone. You have started another chapter of your life with someone else. I remember how skeptical you used to be, you had this thing at the back of your mind that people always leave in the end. I wish there was some way that I could let you know that my feelings have not changed even a bit. I have kept my end of the deal- it was and will always be you.

Some things you learn over time and some things get kicked in your face. You don’t even get a minute to process what has been thrown at you. And just like that, you need to accept it and move on because the reality has already changed. I desperately wish for us to have ended up together. There are certain moments of clarity in life when we know for sure what is right for us, and I know we were that “right” for each other. Even though I can’t change the things now, I do regret not having ended things in a different manner. Our relationship deserved an ending as beautiful, as was the beginning.

I know I am flawed, my way of dealing with hurt and grief was bad. I haven’t forgiven you yet for not believing in us. But I wish there was some way to let you know that I am trying my best to become a better person. I want to bring back the girl that you fell for, I want to be the good person I was when I was with you. The thought of accepting the reality and moving on scares me so much, but I have realised that I cannot hold onto the pain forever just because it feels familiar. I have got to accept this now, I have got to face my fears and dilemmas. And I promise you that I will try my best.

Does it all sound too lame? Probably. But who cares, I am a hopeless romantic and I don’t regret any of it. If I had to do it all over again, even after knowing the outcome of this, I would still choose you over anything and everything else.