When I Gave Up.. It Rained Glitter!

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Can you believe I have six versions of this blog post? Because there are just no words to describe my 2016 to you. It’s been a year of throwing my hands in the air with both frustration and excitement.

I started this year with something that was emotionally important to me.

I began focusing more on what I was doing. This life that had been forced upon me didn’t seem so bad anymore. I made friends I cared about. I met people who seemed out of my world. I identified ways that would make me better at work. I still wished I could have had the life I’d wanted. But I no longer felt like a failure.  So I gave up hope.

My new work and my plan B didn’t give me enough mental energy to blog though. My writing style began to change. I neither had the time nor the ability to write. I considered pulling down my blog. I thought it’s time to give up writing.

The idea only grew stronger with every draft I couldn’t finish, with every thought I couldn’t put into words. I remember that night. I was sitting by the window, staring at my computer. I didn’t want to hit Publish. The article was so cheesy, so romantic and so girly. It seemed like the worst thing I had ever written. Maybe I need to edit it a little, I thought to myself. Maybe I should just delete this article and this blog and admit I can no longer write! After an hour of arguing with myself, I finally published “To The Girl In Her Mid-20’s.”

You know what they say about taking chances? Letting that article stay was the best chance I ever took because “It went viral” is an understatement of what happened to me that week. It wasn’t the platforms that shared it, it wasn’t the BuzzFeed feature. It was that email. The one that gave me goosebumps because I had done this to someone’s life. This…

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That blog wasn’t representative of what I normally write. But it reminded me why I do. The emails, messages, comments and love that poured in were each a reminder of why I started this blog. And I know for a fact that I’ll never forget again.

It was almost the happiest week of my life. Almost.

I was at work, just another day of life, when my phone rang. I knew what was coming. But sometimes, it’s better to not let your heart believe until it happens. And so the moment it came, I broke. With joy I’d never known before. One that made me run to the closest room and sob like a child. Because, so many people in this world continue to live life without one shot at chasing their dreams and I’d just gotten my second.

The moment my dad said, “It’s done. You’re going back.”

I could live to be 100 and never forget how grateful I’d felt in that moment. Grateful for the opportunity. Grateful for another chance. Grateful for a father that never gave up. Because I did. And if he had too, I wouldn’t have the ability to now tell you – After having to quit university half way, struggling through depression, battling suicidal thoughts, watching everyone I’d grown up with graduate, trying to be okay when my sister got closer to her degree – I AM BACK AT UNIVERSITY, FINISHING WHAT I BEGAN.

I am crying when I write this because nothing I ever say will do justice to the feeling that rises within me when I think about it. And I’ll say it a thousand times over – It wouldn’t have been possible without my father. And if we didn’t live in a very dysfunctional family, I’d probably hug him ‘thank you’ everyday of my life.

My classmates, unlike my last ones during degree year, are not rude. They are very nice people. We have fun. We all like cute cat pictures. And besides when criticising my apparently unreadable handwriting (jokes), there is never a dull moment.  But going back and absorbing so much information after a long break is quite difficult. I’m no longer a straight A student. But that’s okay. I know I’ll get there.

And to think, I’d given up on everything that had come back to me, better and happier.

I’ve gotten to know who I am this past year. I’ve had the ability to choose and I’ve made choices that were both logical and also, at times, emotional. Some of the choices were right and some weren’t quite. And I know the consequences of it all will come back to me next year. When every choice I make will define everything my future will be. Work, location, love. But I feel good about it. Because I’m waking up on the 1st day of 2017, exactly as who I am. No hiding, no pretending. Just me. With a smile on my face.

And I’m hoping it’s on yours too…

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To The Ones Who Are Afraid

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I wanted to be a writer when I wrote the lamest poem I’ve ever known and held it up with pride. I wanted to be a writer when writing a letter I’ll never send to him brought me peace. I wanted to be a writer when I started a blog to shed light on my darkness. I wanted to be a writer before I even knew what it meant. I wanted to be a writer.

It was a late night phone call. He silently sobbed. “I hate my job you know? I can’t sit there anymore. But I have no choice.” It broke my heart.

“Why can’t you quit? Why can’t you go do what you want?”

“It’s not as easy as you believe it to be.”

How many times have you heard that? How many times have you said that? Chasing your dreams is not an easy task. Sometimes, it’s impossible. In my world, it’s exactly what it’s called – A dream.

I find myself laughing at such statements.

Tell me, what is easy?

Learning alphabets wasn’t easy. Learning multiplication wasn’t easy. Passing high school wasn’t easy. University wasn’t easy. Finding a job wasn’t easy. Dealing with your nightmare of a boss wasn’t easy. Marriage. Children. Grandchildren. Old age. Sickness. What is easy?

I’ve woken up in the morning unsure if we’d have something to eat. That wasn’t easy. I’ve studied for an exam while dealing with family drama. That wasn’t easy. I’ve limped my way to classes after my first foot injury. That definitely wasn’t easy.

Nothing in this world that is constantly at each other’s necks is ever easy.

But if there was something that could make those days better, worthier, would you do it?

Because I’ve been where you are. In that moment where it’s all about a choice. There is the road that’s been taken and proven. And then that road nobody knows of. The one you hear stories about. “Her daughter’s friend took the road not taken. She is now a drug addict on seventh street,” or “His son is now homeless at central station because that’s where the road not taken leaves you.”

It is everything your heart desires. It is everything they don’t want for you.

It is everything I hope you’ll choose.

I have to warn you, it’s not all bed of roses. The roads your heart leads you to are filled with thorns. Ones that hurt. Ones that make you bleed. Ones that will make you want to give up.

So is the path he took.

Because nothing in this complicated universe is ever easy. Every path you take has darkness in it. It has chaos. It has drama.

No, it won’t be easy at all.

But that moment when you wake up, knowing in your heart, that in a day filled with things that are meant to drag you down, you are about to go chase the dream they all told you you couldn’t – it will be worth it.

 

quotes-talent-courage-erica-jong-480x480Yes, they’ll tell you differently. “Not everyone who tries makes it. What if you spend the rest of your life living on granola bars and four roommates?”

Tell them, with your head held high and a look of pride, “At least I’ll wake up happy.”

I woke up in the morning, smiling. A sense of satisfaction with no achievements. It wasn’t the world they’d dreamt for me. It wasn’t a world they wanted for me. But it is mine. It was what I chose. It was a dark path that brought me here. But it is mine.

I live with my parents still. No time for a love life. No money for a social one.

But I wanted to be a writer. And so I am. Happily.

 

 

To The Girl In Her Mid-20’s

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Photography – Ravi Roshan

 

You’ve spent so many years looking forward to this phase of your life. And it always looked so cool. So glamorous. So filled with love and laughter.

Yet here you are. With knowledge that it’s anything but.

It’s messy buns and messier lives. It’s baggy shirts and overflowing laundry bags. It’s a lot of work and never enough money. It’s freedom with responsibilities. And life is no longer what it seemed.

Different people are doing different things.

Your best friend’s getting married. Your old classmate is killing it with success. Your ex is happy in love. Your old mate is drowning in drugs. Different people are doing different things. But not you. You’re just existing. You’re getting through everyday a little better than the last. But then you have days where you can’t get up at all.

You spend your Friday evenings holed up in a corner because you’re too responsible to drink your night away. Too control freakish to lose yourself to someone else’s tunes. But somehow, this isn’t enough. This life you’re living doesn’t feel complete. Loneliness wraps around you like a blanket you love and you wonder where you went wrong. Why you became different to everyone else.

“Did I do too much too soon? Did I not do enough? Was there a reason why it was never me? Is this going to be the rest of my life? Alone? Unsuccessful? Filled with dreams that never come true?”

And your hands reach out to your phone. One text. One call. To that someone who might make you feel pretty. Who might make you feel important. And your need takes over.

The need to feel accepted. To feel appreciated. To feel adored. To feel loved.

And it is so strong, you forget your sanity for a few minutes of flattery. You lessen your worth for dishonest words. The hurt in your heart, camouflaged. If only for a few seconds.

But it’s never enough. And when you wake up, it’s worse. The hammering of your heart so loud in your ears. A memory of last night frustratingly haunting. Yet another mistake. Yet again.

You scream hateful words to yourself. When will I ever learn? You go over those messages. Those conversations. How you fell right back into a ditch when you knew better. Just for a moment, you wish you weren’t yourself.

And in that moment, read these words:

Breathe. It’s not so bad. You think I don’t understand. But I do. Because I’m there, too. I’ve made that call. I’ve texted that wrong person. I’ve woken up with regrets. I still do. I’ve felt the need to be held. I’ve felt that silent green monster towards a friend in love.
Yes, we all make those mistakes. And we all think nobody else does. But they do.

So please, don’t hate yourself. And don’t stop. Don’t stop loving with all you have. Don’t stop wishing on every shooting star. Don’t stop dreaming of fairytales and being as amazing as Malala Yousafzai. You might not always get there, but don’t stop.

You have so much left to do. You have a world filled with life waiting to happen. You have books to be read. Steps to be taken. Places to see. People to meet. You haven’t lived half your life yet. There’s so much ahead. And in ten years, when you look back, you’ll wish you were here again.

So don’t waste it wallowing in your own sadness. Don’t lose yourself to your self-pity and non-existent boundaries. Use everyday. And I don’t mean spend thousands of dollars and visit the North Pole. I know how you’re struggling to make ends meet.

Do the simple things. Stop procrastinating. Take a walk with nature. Go to the gym. Read your favorite book for the millionth time. Watch a movie. Write your novel. Sketch until you’re better than the best. Eat like you’re dying tomorrow. And most importantly, make mistakes. Your heart will heal. But today will never be back again. Don’t live with “Could-have-been’s.” Take chances.

And ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS remember – It’s okay to be alone.

There is time to let your life revolve around someone else. But today, let it revolve around you.

Not because you can’t find someone. Not because you can’t be loved.

But because you deserve to wake up with a smile. You deserve to live life. To make memories so wild, you’ll be the coolest grandparent they’ve ever known.

Breathe. It’s only your mid-20’s.

You’re going to be alright.

 

 

 

My Reason To Write

I’ve been feeling a little lost lately. In a sea of tones and styles I adapt everyday to take on my career as a writer, I feel like I’ve forgotten how to sound like myself.

On a local blogging community, when I asked for help, someone said, “Think about why you started writing.”

I was 6 when my cousin walked in and said she’s going to be a journalist. I was not sure what a journalist did. I didn’t know how to pronounce it. But at that moment, I told myself ‘This is the dream’ !

Over the years, the idea of a journalist didn’t seem so appealing but I never stopped wanting to write. I failed every class in high school, I always passed English. I began writing my first book when I was 14. A cheesy love story about the girl with a dream. I still can’t believe I let my friends read it.

When I was upset, writing became my mental health specialist. It healed me in ways that people couldn’t.

When I was happy, it became my secret friend. I could pour out everything for hours and not have a care in the world about judgemental behaviour. When I was a teenager, writing was my one true best friend. If my parents didn’t understand, if my boyfriend didn’t text, if my friends were being bitchy – I could just always write about it. When I saw the man, who I believed was the love of my life, with another girl on his arm, words became the shoulder I leaned on.

It’s almost ridiculous to think I gave up. For a while there, I told myself it wasn’t for me. That I was meant for something more conventional rather than creative. But life caught up with me.

At my worst, I turned to words again. This blog became my sanctuary. The people I got to connect with. This is my world away from my world. This is where I am true to myself because social situations may fail me, but words never did.

I began writing my thoughts, troubles and tales. It was supposed to be my personal diary on a public platform.

But along the way, something changed. Something inspired me. I started hearing people tell me how they’d needed to hear what I’d written. And I felt something. It made me want to be a writer again. It reminded me about my first poem. It reminded me about something very emotional. It reminded me why I began.

And it wasn’t a lost cause. It wasn’t random or silly. I didn’t write just because I needed an outlet. I didn’t write to make memories unforgettable.

I began writing my first book when I was 14. It was a cheesy love story about the girl with a dream. She struggled. She fought her way through life. She chased her dream with all she had. And she made it. I wrote that book because I wanted to give hope to those who didn’t have it at that moment. I wanted to let people know that if you fought hard and refused to give up, you’d find your dreams, no matter what. I wanted to inspire someone to chase their dreams.

This is my reason to write.

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I began writing because I believed that words can change the world. That it can change lives.

And I wanted to prove it.

I will.

I Feel Like A Failure

There. I’ve said it. I’ve said the words I’ve been afraid to say for weeks, months now. This is what I feared. This emotion that I do not know how to process. This emotion that I do not know how to rise from. This emotion that I can’t make go away. This emotion that consumes me from the moment I wake up. The one that keeps me from sleeping at night.

We all make plans. Long term plans. I made a five-years’ plan. I was going to graduate university, get a job at an advertising agency and work my way up to one day be the Creative Director. Get my own apartment. Call my mom when I missed her food. Have this life that was so perfect and filled with flaws that were sprinkled all over it like tiny little snowflakes. I was moving forward and there came a point when I could see everything I ever wanted right there in front of me. All I had to do was grab it with both hands and never let go and I almost did. But then..

..The Universe happened.

I can be naive and childish about a lot of things but the very big decisions, I put a lot of thought into and I insist about sleeping on it because I believe you always see things more clearly after a good night’s rest. So that’s what I did. After a lot of thought, I made the decision to drop out, not because it was the right thing to do for myself but because it was the right thing to do for my family. I told myself it was a temporary situation. What I’d forgotten was that my five-years’ plan didn’t have enough wiggle room for that break. Because when I made that plan, I told myself it was all or nothing. I aimed for All. Life gave me Nothing.

In two months, it’ll be two years since my life stood still. When everything around me came to a screeching halt.

I’ve written five versions of this post. Nothing sums up what I’m feeling. I have no words to explain this thin line I’m standing on. This feeling where the smallest of pushes will turn me into a crying mess. I have lived all my life with insecurities that I locked deep inside me and some time over these past few months, they’ve been set free. I avoid conversations. I ignore successful people. I refuse to acknowledge happiness. Not because I’m jealous or negative. But because I long for that. Because it was so close and now it feels like a faraway dream that I might never have. I am the Titanic right after it hit the iceberg. Filled with chaos. Falling apart.

The most success I’ve had today is that I swallowed my tears. I didn’t let myself cry like I wanted to. And that’s not ok. Not by a long shot. This cannot be my life. I have made so many mistakes but the biggest one so far was the moment I let myself sink.

When talking to my father about a potential groom, I always said – “He has to be the kind of person that started his life from scratch. He can have the smallest apartment and we could be saving not more than $10 a month and I will still be proud of him because everything he has came from his hard work. I will remind him everyday that he’s worth it. Because he is all that matters.”

This was the mistake. I had so much encouragement and pride towards someone I’ve never met and yet, I didn’t have it for myself. I didn’t tell myself it’s ok to fall. I didn’t take pride in having the strength to live through that. I didn’t encourage myself enough to want to rise from this and make a life for myself. I didn’t value my life enough to do something about it. I just let myself go.

When I started this post, it was going to end right here. But as I pour these thoughts out, I’m starting to see things with clarity.

And now when I look back, I feel like I’ve paved the way to my own depression and I’m afraid that if I don’t do something about it, this will be the rest of my life.

So this is where I will start. Today, right this moment I take an oath to myself that I’m going to turn this around. I’m going to pick myself up and dust myself off. I’m going to find a Plan B and leave enough wiggle room for a Plan C. My cousin is getting married in March. When that wedding comes, I will not hide behind a fake smile. I will not avoid conversations. I will not find excuses to not go. Because right now…

I feel like a failure. But it’s not who I am and I won’t let it be.

Failure J.K Rowling

Great Expectations

When I was a kid, one of my cousins said she wanted to be a journalist. It sounded so appealing. So fancy. I wanted to be a journalist too. Then I wanted to be a doctor, an actress, a singer, an F1 racer, an astronaut, a movie producer, an advertising creative head.. A full circle that ended in “I want to be a Journalist.” It was my first dream as a kid. It is my dream as an adult. I also want to write a book but that’s more a desire than an ambition.

Many of you would know, writers don’t get paid much. I knew that at some point I was going to have to give up my ideas of living like the Kardashians (You can call them my guilty pleasure) . No private jets, no Bora Bora vacations and definitely no million dollar wedding. My luck was that I always told myself, If you’re content, consider it enough because, sometimes, even billionaires don’t get there. So it was not THAT difficult for me to accept it and I always thought that was enough.

Turns out, I was wrong. You accepting your life choices is the easy part. Getting everyone else to where you are, now that’s a challenge. I remember reading somewhere : When I picked up my kid, I realized my father would have felt the same way I feel now and it makes me wish I had been a better child to him.

I didn’t have to pick up a kid to know that my father had big dreams for me. I was the smart one. I would go places. The world would look at me and say “Your parents must be so proud” and my father would stand beside me nodding his head yes. Instead, I defied him every chance I got. I chose an industry he didn’t particularly approve of. I chose a lifestyle he didn’t enjoy. I now chose a dream he knows would never get me to where he hoped I would be. I became someone he didn’t understand and in all things short, I will openly say : That dream that he had when he first picked me up at the hospital and looked at my face – I crashed it. Hard. And someday, I might regret this. But today, I choose to be that rebellious kid that says “But Dad, I’m happy !”

I came across this picture recently.. If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know that I’m someone who believes one must always do what they love, not what they’re forced into. So it’s not a surprise that I automatically took to this picture.

 

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I’m doing what I love and what I believe I’m good at. Yes, I’m terribly broke but when I get up every morning, the only thing I don’t want to do that day is take a time consuming shower. I’m always so excited to go to my internship because going there means writing and I LOVE LOVE LOVE LOVE it. I realize that the #WIN is something that I might not get to. It is a space that only a few people actually make it to and maybe I will, but the chances are slim and I can accept that. But how do you convince the people who have raised you and loved you and dreamt big things for you that you’re going to be a normal working class person and you don’t mind and neither should they ?!

With great expectation comes great disappointment. It really is true isn’t it? I wish it could be different. As a kid, I enjoyed studying. As a teenager I hated school with every cell in my body. As a university student, I loved it again. And now, I just want to move forward. I want to find a job that allows me to do what I love. All through my years as a student, I never succumbed to expectations. Until now..

I want to say something to you.. Something that I am now repeating to myself, every single day of my life. People will always have their expectations. There are the ones who expect you to be better at what you do and there are the ones who expect you to be doing something better than what you do. Mute those voices. Some call them motivating but I think if those voices didn’t exist, you’d be more happy doing things your way. They always pressurize you with their great expectations of who you should be. And I believe in taking a stand for who you are. Who you are might change the world, might cure cancer and might even make penguins fly. But you won’t get there if you let others manipulate the way you think, constantly. Sure, you might still get to your destination with those voices. But the journey without them might have been a more peaceful one and it’s always the journey that defines how you feel about the destination.

Every time I send a resume somewhere, I remember my father’s face. I realize how he deserves much more than this. He deserves to be by my side as the world looks to me the way he wanted it to. I think of what the future might hold. The expectations the people in my life will have. The example I set for my siblings. How I wish I could mute them and do what I love like I always did..

As I write this, I can still hear people telling me this isn’t enough. This isn’t success. But I’m going to try and not care about it. Because this.. this makes me content. And that’s more success than I could ever ask for..

Life goes on..

Today, May 4, is the birthday of someone very very close to me. “Happy Birthday bro..” It’s been a while since I met him and when he saw me he said, “You look bright. Full of hope. It’s nice to see you like this again.”

Last year I had to give up almost everything I had. My plans changed, my life changed. I spent the entire year in depression. Everything made me cry. There was a point when I believed things will never change. That my life was over and all I have to do is sit and just let the end come when it may. Now when I say it, I realize how over-dramatic that sounds. But at that point in my life it seemed like the most logical thought process one can ever have at a time like that.

It’s funny how when something bad happens, we believe that it’s the end. I’m not talking about a fatal sickness or an accident but rather just incidents. When you quit / get expelled from university, when you get fired, when you break up with your loved one, when someone close to you passes away or even when you fail an exam or miss your dream university by 2 points. It seems like a life or death situation. I mean, I get that it possibly is very life altering but it’s never the end.

It took me one and half years of moping around before I decided that I have to change things. ONE AND HALF YEARS ! You know how much I could’ve done in one day? Let alone 500 days ! 500 days before I realized it’s not the end because it’s not happy. That in fact, all I had to do was accept that things have changed. Because the only thing constant in our lives is change and the best I can do is to make use of all that I’ve got. I mean, I’m sure I could’ve sat around another year and half dreaming of what could’ve been but that’s just another 500 days that I won’t get back.

In my life, I’ve learnt that there’s nothing better than dreaming big. Dream what nobody dares to dream of. Dream to fly. Like Peter Pan. To just take off to Neverland. But that’s impossible if you never put your feet on the ground. Even a flight has to hit the runway, move forward and only then can it fly. Sitting idle and wondering about would-be’s and could-have-been’s will never get you anywhere. You have to put one foot in front of the other and walk forward.

I’m not a settler. I’ve missed what many would call “incredible opportunities.” When my previous dream crashed, I had to get a new one. I wasn’t, and I’m still not, mentally prepared to create a big dream again. I’m afraid that it’ll crash too. So I set my goals a little lower. Instead of a big future plan, I set my eyes on simpler things. Things that are more NOW than five to ten years from now – A company that’s not really easy to get into. A publisher that probably won’t even take a second look at my manuscript. I told myself that I won’t take anything besides this. I will get into that company if it’s the last thing I did. I will send the publisher every story I will ever write and at some point, I’m going to write something they will publish.

Think back the years you’ve lived through. How many moments have you had where you thought it’s the end of the world and it wasn’t? No, I’m not talking about December 22, 2012. I mean, you’ve lived through tough times. You’ve moved forward when you thought you wouldn’t. You’re alive and present. When you think about it you’ll realize that all those bad experiences have only made you stronger. Brave. Never weak.

Two years ago, I had it all. I didn’t work as hard as I could have. I didn’t make use of the opportunities. Now I can’t go back. I have to look ahead and I feel stronger than I ever did. Positive that if I could live through that, then I’m sure I can live through the next disaster and the next and the next. Because.. Have you ever sat in front of the ocean and stared at it? You know how beautiful and mentally soothing a view like that is? The way the waves move and hit the shore. The salty smell that comes from it.. Now, imagine sitting in front of the same ocean but this time, it’s still. No waves, no sea salt smell. Just still water. It’s not as beautiful, is it?! That’s life too. It has to have its ups and downs. I promise every wave has something incredible to give to you. A life lesson, a person, a memory.. And when you look at it as a whole, it’s beautiful.

No matter sunny or rainy, draught or storms, the waves in the ocean never stops.. The way, no matter how hard it gets, no matter how many times you tell yourself it’s over, life goes on..

The Woman I Admire The Most | A Dedication

In our everyday lives, we are often upset by little things. A little downfall makes us lose all hope and faith. A failure leads to depression. But then there’s Her. Someone who has every reason to pull her hair out and scream at the world. But instead chooses to look at the world in the most positive way one can imagine. She finds joy in the smallest of things. When the world gives her a curve ball, she rises above it and says “Bring it on!” Through her life I’ve learnt that every problem has a solution. You just have to put your brain to work a little.

In the most difficult of times, she finds a reason to throw her head back and laugh. She is the woman every man dreams of marrying someday. Yet her own husband has no idea what she’s worth. But that doesn’t stop her from loving him. She stands by him no matter what. When he falls, she’s there to catch him, to help him up and give him all the energy he needs to rise again. They’ve been through three divorce attempts. I say attempts because every time they get close to one, something stops it. She calls it fate. I call it her love for him.

So many of us talk about how our life has been full of struggles and difficulty. She lost both her parents in the same year. She was only 14 then. Growing up in an over dramatic family with 7 siblings, she found joy in her closest sister. She found a reason to laugh when the rest of the world would have cringed and sunk.

She’s absolutely beautiful. Her laugh infectious. You can be so angry about something and her smile will melt your heart and make you want to smile with her. She’s the kind of person that will never say “No.” She’ll love you when you’re at your best. She’ll love you more at your worst. If you tell her about her incredibly amazing heart, she’ll shake her head no. Not because she’s modest or humble. But because she’s clueless.

Sure, everyone has flaws. So does she. Her flaws being – she can never be disappointed with something. She can never say “I wanted to go to that place, but I couldn’t.” She’ll never argue with you because she’ll always value your relationship and you as a person more than anything in this world. You can betray her and she’ll still give you a second chance. Sometimes, even a third or a fourth. She can handle anything with a smile.

I’ve heard so many people talk about the saying “Be happy with what you get.” I’ve always wondered how many people in this world can actually live like that. Then I saw her. She lives like that. She can be homeless and she’ll find happiness in it. Someone who believes in the small moments rather than the big things. She has the innocence of a child. Everyone she meets is her best friend. If she ever tells you that she thinks of you as family, consider yourself the luckiest being on the planet because life does not get better than being loved by her.

When she loves, there are no bounds. She’s the one with the heart twice the size of the Universe. She’s the one who will be there for anyone who needs her. She’s the one who puts every ounce of energy she’s got into every one of her friendships and relationships. She’s the one that will always look at the one good deed you do instead of the million bad ones. She’s the one that will believe in you when no one else does. She’s the one that will always have a smile for you on a gloomy day. She’s the one that giggles like a child and cooks like a genius. She’s the one that can do anything she puts her mind to. She’s the one that will never depend on you to make her mood better. She’s the one that blows my mind with the amount of strength she finds in herself. She’s the one that picked me up on the day I was born and said to herself, “This is my daughter and I will love, cherish and protect her till the end of my life and maybe even after,” and has lived by those words.

If twenty years from now, I can be half the woman you are, finding a reason to laugh everyday, having the strength to fight not just your own but everyone’s battles for them and having the heart the size of the Universe but never realizing what an incredible human being you are, I would consider myself a blessed person, dear Mother.

Thank you for all that you do to make my life better everyday.

2013 Going On 2014

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As I sit here, listening to songs from Sound of Music and sipping hot tea, I realize, the year 2013 has been the most trying year of my life. I have never cried so much. I have never been so depressed. I have never felt so hopeless and lost. But it was also one of the best years of my life. I have never been happier. I have never felt more need to do something with my life, to give my life meaning. I have never learnt so many life lessons in such a short period of time.

It’s true what they say – Experience is key. Sure, you can learn from others’ mistakes. But some things in life, you learn only through your own experience. In 2013, I had to give up something I absolutely loved doing. For no fault of mine. I was trapped in a corner. I thought my life was over. I had hit bottom low. There were days when I felt like I didn’t have a reason to wake up. I cried myself to sleep. I refused to walk out of my room. I felt like I was having an out of body experience. I was watching my life flush itself down the drains and I couldn’t do anything about it. I was pissed with everyone. I hated the world. I was drowning in an emotion that I didn’t know or understand.

Then one day, something changed. There was an incident when I did something without realizing what I was doing. I felt like someone slapped me awake. I stopped and stared at the mirror. Oddly, I had no idea who the person staring back at me was. Because that person was a bad friend, was a bad daughter, was a self-loathing, self-pitying ghost of a human being and I was not that person. I was never that person and I knew something had to change. I didn’t know what to do but I had to start somewhere. I told myself, I’m getting my act together. This is my life. I’m the only one that can fix it. I took the longest shower I’ve ever taken while I gathered my thoughts together. When I walked out, I knew. It was a new day and it was going to be better than yesterday.

I know people always ask you to surround yourself with loved ones when you’re going through a bad phase. But there are times in your life, when it is better to be alone. For you to sit down and map out your life. Make your decisions. Think things through. I started by making a list. Of all the good things in my life at that point :

1. I got a dog and he loves me the way I’d always hoped someone would.
2. I had a family to support me, no matter what I do.
3. I was healthy. 
4. I had a roof over my head and food on my plate, everyday, no matter what. 

I realized, I have more than most people in my country do. All I needed was the right attitude. And a plan. So I started with the small changes, a little bit every day. I did positive things. I talked to positive people. I took long walks and enjoyed Mother Nature. I started drawing and sketching. Finally, I started writing. This was my biggest step. I’ve always wanted to start a blog, but I never got around to it. If my life had stayed intact, I probably never would have started a blog. This may sound cheesy, but this blog is the best thing that has happened to me this year. It has given me the ability to do what I love and share it with people with similar interests.

I still can’t say that I’m completely happy and I don’t want anything to change. I would, of course, love to go back and do what I used to do. But I wouldn’t trade this year for anything, ever. This year, I’ve loved, I’ve accomplished, I’ve said goodbye, I’ve said “Nice to meet you,” I’ve let go of a memory I didn’t realize I was holding on to, I fell for someone after a very long time, I’ve had heartbreak, I have put my faith in hope and I have dreamt a dream bigger than any I’ve ever dreamt before. The lessons and values I’ve learnt are indispensable. The most important lesson, however, has been :

“No matter what happens, or where you’re stuck, don’t stand still. Put one foot in front of the other and keep moving. As long as you do that, you will get somewhere.”

So here’s my New Year’s Resolution :

  • I want to wish on a shooting star.
  • I want to dream BIG and chase those dreams.
  • I want to spend more time with nature.
  • I want to fall in love.
  • I want to enjoy the rain.
  • I want to save some money and travel.
  • And I want to fly…

On that note, here’s wishing you the most incredible year ahead. I hope you dream and that you dream big. And I hope all those dreams come true..

Happy New Year 2014 ! 🙂

(Pic Courtesy : Me and my incredible doodle skills)

Who We Are vs. What We Want

When I was 15, my mother cursed me, “One day, you’ll have a daughter that’s just like you. Then you’ll realize how much we’ve suffered as your parents.” Back then I thought ‘Suffer? These people don’t realize what a blessing I am. I’ll be happy to be my parent!’

When I was in high school, I wanted to be the most popular girl in my class. I sort of was. But not for the reasons I wanted to be.
When I was 16, I wanted to be a singer. Now I know, instead of selling out Madison Square Garden, I’d have cleared it out.

Sometimes, who we are and what we want aren’t always in sync. For example,

The times when we want to be the life of the party but we can’t because we’re too shy.
The times when we look at someone drinking wine and enjoying modern art and wish we could do that but we can’t because we don’t understand “Modern Art.”
The times when we want to go bungee jumping, but we’re not brave enough.
The times when we want to just pack our bags and travel around the world, but we’re not adventurous enough.
The times when we want to be – the classy Audrey Hepburn type people, the ones that lead an organized life, the ones who know how to eat a Subway without spilling the vegetables on the tray – but we can’t because – we’re too messy, we pick comfort over looks and we enjoy our Subways too much to care about spilling.

Our lives have always been and will always be a battle of Who we are vs. What we want. But with time and life experiences, we grow wiser. We understand who we are and our wants become more realistic, more of who we are.

Today I can accept that I was wrong while I pray that my mother’s curse doesn’t come true. Because today I know..

A blessing to my parents isn’t who I am.. It’s what I want to be.