When I am dead, I hope it may be said:
‘His sins were scarlet, but his books were read.’
When I am dead, I hope it may be said:
‘His sins were scarlet, but his books were read.’
I was sitting with my cousin and my aunt in their house, munching snacks and having a relaxed time over a cup of tea. We were having a blast, my cousins who have come all the way from Gujarat are really chirpy and can make you feel instantly at home anywhere, even if they are themselves not at home, and my aunt surely enjoys their company. Whenever they come over it is like the house is full of people, despite them being only two teen girls.
One of them just went upstairs to bring something to show me and that was enough for my aunt to start on me. She definitely likes to know everything going on in my life, and I on the contrary hate telling her or any one for that matter everything going on in my life. I can tell you just the thing you know but not every petty thing. So somehow we landed on the topic of girls being educated which made her say that she wants a “Beautiful, educated wife for her son who would stay at home and look after everyone.”
I could have made 1000 jokes on this and let it go but I could not, just as I am never able to let it go. I tried to make her understand what she was asking for and yet I could pass nothing into her chained minds. For her education is important but when it comes to utilising it, girls aren’t meant to do it. I mean do these people even understand themselves what they are asking for? They want an engineer homemaker for an engineer man, a doctor for a doctor, a management student for a manager? They want a girl to spend years and years educating her, working so hard to bring her to certain level and when the time comes to marry, they want her to leave it all behind and shove her degrees in the store room.
I respect completely stay at home moms or wives who choose to not work for their families, but the respect only extends to those who CHOOSE it, it turns to pity for them and disgust for their family members just the moment I get to know that the decision was forceful.
I know this brings us to another statement put up- ‘FIGHT FOR IT’.
What do you think? Women don’t? Of course they do, but somewhere down the line, there are many boundaries, emotional or otherwise which she just can’t cross or is forced again not to cross. If a man says he understands all this, I am sorry I am not going to believe it. I think you do not understand a person’s feelings unless you have been through them.
So there I was trying to justify myself but it was very clear that I was speaking Latin to a person who understood only plain Sanskrit.
Before the discussion changed into a heated argument my cousins took over and there was no further chance to discuss anything else, but my aunt’s curt replies and behaviour made it clear that she didn’t like my presence anymore, so making some excuse to my cousins, I left bidding them good bye.
I could not stand being in the wrong. I could not help being there, feel disgusted. The fact that I was trying to explain my point, talk up to my aunt made her feel that I was in the wrong then how are we supposed to make them understand things that are beyond their understanding?
We think that we can change these people, these circumstances but I don’t think so. We will fail until we have such people (MEN AND WOMEN) in our lives.
I don’t care if she doesn’t like me, now that I have raised my voice, put forward my opinion in front of her; what I care about is I like myself. I know I didn’t change her mind, but had I just taken it all without even trying, putting a little bit of effort, I would have hated myself. I failed but at least I tried. Well, that is what I am trying to say to myself and keep calm.
It breaks my heart every time I see him and I still have no idea what to do about it. I thought he completely forgot me, I did not even existed for him but then he just comes in front of me and is gushing all his charm on me and I the instant fool, am all over his flaws.
‘Oh I am all good’ I say, but inside, my heart is piercing, shattering into pieces.
What do I do?
But my heart never wants to.
So I stay and talk despite all the impossibilities.
“I am all good, how are you?” I really want to know. I want to know how has he been? How has life treated him? How is his work? Is everything okay at home? Above all, I want to know why, just why it took him so long to acknowledge my presence? I had been around for quite a time now but it didn’t seem to matter to him. I had a lot many questions but I kept shut, we smiled and talked about general stuff and after a while I say good bye. I knew, this time I had to say it first, I didn’t want to be left back again. I can tell from his ways that he has to go now, and I have to accept it.
“Good bye.” His smile went deeper into my heart.
It was easy for him to come and go and return after even declining my existence for so long.
But it wasn’t for me, just wasn’t for me.
What is the meaning of our life?
Who are we?
Has anyone ever thought about it? I don’t know, I keep thinking and questioning our existence but of course have no answer to it as yet.
To satisfy myself I came up with an explanation just to quench my thirst of these questions or at least to make peace with unanswered questions.
Our life is a game, a race where the result is unknown until we cross the finishing line. We have to walk, run until we cross the finishing line, keeping in my mind all throughout that it is a run where our competition is with ourselves, not with someone else. We cannot know the end result before playing the game; similarly we cannot know the true meaning of our life unless we have lived it. We may not even know until the end, may be our lives imprint on someone else’s without our knowledge. We might just not know it. But surely it does have a meaning. We just have to go to the finishing line.
So till then we should try and live our lives to the fullest. It is almost impossible to have no regrets and live like we want, there are twists and turns on the road and that is the game we are playing. So we should live with regrets and fulfilments, with happiness and laughter, with tears and sorrows, with positivity and negativity, with failures and success, with friends and enemies, with love and hurt, with everything that life showers us with. We should live our life with everything in it, because once we cross the finishing line, we are not to come back, at least not as the same person anyway. So why not live it, play it rather than constantly trying to figure out everything which as mortals clearly are unable to?
Let’s just not focus on the finishing line and for once try and play the game. May be the game would prove more exhilarating than we’d thought. May be the finishing line is not worth so much of concern. May be this game is all about finding answers to our questions and by the end of it we’d get them all. Just may be.
PS: It is just a small way to try and satiate my unending curiosity, to make temporary peace with these questions and get along with the ‘game’ so that I can concentrate on more important stuff.
I’m nobody! Who are you?
Are you nobody, too?
Then there’s a pair of us -don’t tell!
They’d banish us, you know.
How dreary to be somebody!
How public, like a frog
To tell your name the livelong day
To an admiring bog!
Click clock, click clock I was walking on my extremely high block heels. Not a fan of them but it’s a big plus when you have to dance with a partner who is considerably tall. As always late, I was almost running in them when my foot bended sideways and I just stumbled and gained back my posture just in time, not to fall. I had a big laugh on my stupidity, I am not a perfectionist in walking them, let alone run. What was I thinking? But then I was not the only one who was laughing at me. There was a bunch of ‘boys’ who were enjoying my fall too.
I didn’t care. They were just boys I did not know, I did not care for and who clearly weren’t worth giving a thought. I might not have given them another thought too, hadn’t they passed a comment on me.
“What does she think of herself, is she some model or something trying to flaunt her in dresses and heels and glasses? Is she trying to impress us?” (This is just a sophisticated version of what they might have said) I mean who are they? Why would I have the need to impress some random boys standing and laughing and showing the least courtesy? I was just in a hurry for something clearly way important than what they were doing, smoking.
I was in full fury when I walked towards them despite the shortage of time when my partner came towards me and stopped me from doing or saying anything. I didn’t even know what I was going to say or do to them but I was just walking when I was literally carried away from there.
I was about to run away as soon as put down but then the time did not permit me to do so and we rushed to the stage for the performance. It went all good, we danced and we were applauded, and we left the stage. I was all calm by then but then there he was, my partner leaving the stage with me, hand in hand, escorting me out. He knew very well, I just danced in them I could manage walking out too but it was his way of showing that he cared. That he was different from the boys who just laughed at my slip.
I might not have given this small incident a lot of thought, but then the two contradictory actions made me think. There are always two sides to something. There may be a bunch of men who do not know how to behave, but there are men who do know a lot apart from riding, stunting and trying to impress women.
Seated at the study table I booted my computer. The empty page blinked at me when I typed ‘Writer’s block’. That is what we call it, don’t we? I kept staring at it, the brightness blinded my eyes but I kept ogling at it anyway trying to decipher what to write. My mind worked out nothing. Precipitously, I shut it down and emptied another cup of coffee.
I opened my journal, thinking that may be pen and paper wouldn’t blow me off. I scribbled a few words again and then just before I would edit it, I scratched it off. I scratched I all off. It had made no sense, neither the writing nor my feelings.
Just before the thought of writing it all down, my heart and mind were racing through thoughts, they had wanted to scream out each and every feeling, to drain out all negativity, to refill with a little optimism and just when I accompanied them neither the pen, nor the computer assisted me. So after another hour of empty journal and yet another cup of coffee I stood up and went out in the fresh air.