Unexpected Grief

When I recently gave the link of my blog to a friend of mine he was concerned to see so many sad posts in here. He wanted to know why I always write about depressing and melancholic instances of my life and not about the things that make me happy. After days and days of introspection I have realized that I am unable to write anything when I am happy. Writing is something that comes to me only when the sad realities of life weigh me down.  I write when there is no other way to relieve my pain and today is one such day when I need to blog again.

Today is the day when the evil called Cancer has struck my family. My mom called in the evening to tell me that my aunt (my father’s sister) is in the final stages of cancer. For a while I was unable to process that information. I didn’t know how to react. Cancer was something about which I had only studied in books, read in novels or watched in movies. I never thought that it could happen to someone I knew. How ignorant we humans are! No problem bothers us till our close ones face it.  What surprised me more were the tears in my eyes…unknowingly…just like that I was crying for a person I never really liked.

The moment when my mom told me that aunt doesn’t have much time to live… it was a brief moment, mere seconds passed by but a lifetime of memories flashed in my mind. My aunt ill treated my mom in the initial years of her married life. She was rude to my mom and her family members and never missed a chance to insult them. You know she was like those sister-in-laws they show in typical Indian serials. I grew up hearing all these stories and my hatred for her inflated each moment… but her pain is bothering me today. And I am more disturbed by the fact that I can feel bad for her. I don’t know…it’s so strange. I never expected this from myself. I am unable to sleep…I see her face every time I try to close my eyes.

What is it about death that bothers us so much? Why are we so scared to face that ultimate truth? Why is it that I am grieving for someone I never actually cared about?

I am disturbed. I don’t know how to explain what I am feeling right now. There is chaos… a storm in my mind and I am unable to figure out what is bothering me more: the grief or the fact that I am grieving for someone I hated all my life.

*****

 

This Feeling….

“Over the last couple of years, the photos of me when I was a kid… well, they’ve started to give me a little pang or something – not unhappiness, exactly, but some kind of quiet, deep regret… I keep wanting to apologize to the little guy: “I’m sorry, I’ve let you down. I was the person who was supposed to look after you, but I blew it: I made wrong decisions at bad times, and I turned you into me.” 
― Nick HornbyHigh Fidelity

This is exactly how I feel today. Sometimes, I feel terrible to see what I’ve become, to be a failure in my own eyes, not that people think of me as one but this feeling of helplessness makes me cringe with a pain in my heart.

Why is that the “could have been, would have been and should have been” hurt so much? Why do I have so many regrets in my life and why can’t I ever overcome them? Why is it so difficult for me to let go off the past and build a new future?

Lately I’ve realized that I’ve too many WHYs in my life…and I’ve answer to none.

The Excuses Writers Make

Ever since I joined college I didn’t write as much as I used to write before. I went for months without writing, and even though I regretted it I didn’t know what to do about it. And every time my friends or my fellow blogger’s asked me about my blog, I gave them different excuses. Well, they didn’t seem like excuses but genuine problems back then and now that I’ve started writing again I know that although writing is difficult but with some extra effort we can try to overcome our assumed writer’s block.

So, coming to the excuses I made, first and foremost was the classic “I am busy” excuse. Really, I don’t know why I never got the time to write those days. Yes, there was college but apart from that I spent all my time watching movies or some random videos on You tube. Trust me, You tube is a murderer of all writing ideas. When you are addicted to it, there is nothing else you can do. I don’t know what I got from watching all those meaningless songs and funny videos. Now, that I think of it, the time spent on it would have been utilized to do so many useful things. I am busier than ever before but now I keep some extra time for writing alone. Even if I write a 100 word poem I make it a point to post it on my blog. When I see people reading it and the stats going up, it automatically forced me to write more.

Now that I am writing from almost two years I know a lot many bloggers personally and I have even met a few of them. And that’s where the problem started for me. As I write a lot of personal posts, my real world started clashing with my virtual world. I was scared to post many things on my blog. I would always think, now that he/she knows me personally what would they think of me. I didn’t realize when this “What would people think of me” excuse became the biggest hindrance on my way to write. I couldn’t gather myself to write as freely as I used to write before. It all feels stupid now, as in my personal life I made it a point not to worry about what people think of me. I realized that  even if they criticize you it’s for your own good. Instead of worrying about my real life being affected by my blog life, I should have concentrated more on being a better person; to take criticism positively and not let it affect my writing abilities.

quotes-about-writing-writers-block-doubt1

The third and the most important excuse was the “I am such a shitty writer” excuse. It was like when I first started blogging I never expected the response that I got initially from my posts. I was new to blogging and saw people all over the world reading my stuff. I was overwhelmed beyond any measures. I wrote everyday, and waited to get those likes, comments on my posts. But slowly and slowly the response got fiddled. In the quest to write better posts I made mistakes, and lost my readership.images

I wanted to please everyone but that my friend is impossible. We can never ever please everybody. There will always be people who would criticise you no matter what. And as I have quoted Margaret Atwood before, “If I waited for perfection, I would never write a word”.

So, the best thing is to just let go, and write whatever you wish to write, even if it seems stupid, foolish or illogical to you, there might be someone in the whole wide world who would find some logic in it. The key is to never give up, and keep trying, not to please others but to keep your passion of writing alive.

time concept, selective focus point, special toned photo f/x

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Images from 1, 2 , 3.

Crushes and Confessions

I did it. I confessed my feelings to my crush from school. I had never imagined I would do this; it was a brave thing for me to do, given that he’s a friend of mine and is in a relationship with another girl since many years. I was talking to him after almost a year, and the more we talked, the more I felt like telling him about the cute little crush I had on him. Lately I have been on a mission to confess my feelings to all my crushes since school and he was the second one on that list. This mission was the outcome of an article I read on the web which listed the 25 things one should do before turning 25.

I never knew accepting my feelings would feel so good. I had always imagined the confession to be a little awkward but it wasn’t like that at all. In fact I am smiling ever since the moment I told him about it. The biggest surprise was the way in which he reacted to my confession; he literally had no clue about it. I told him about my weakness for thin, nerdy guys and how he filled that criterion completely. I told him about his test paper which I had kept with me as a memory of him.  I was too ashamed to confess that I always waited for him to talk to me and about the horrible feelings I had for not talking  to him during our 2 years at school. When your crush doesn’t even know that you exist, it hurts a lot, especially when you are in your teens. We actually started talking/ chatting when we met in Orkut after joining college and that’s how our friendship started.

I remember that I used to share everything about my life with him, most of which was really depressing stuff. I have really irritated him with my sad stories and like a good friend he advised me whenever I was down. I don’t know when my crush changed into a deep meaningful bond of trust and friendship. There were times when we lost contact in between but after those short breaks I always connected to him in ways I never felt with anybody else. Without even thinking that he might not be interested in my senseless chatter, I used to tell him everything. He was that one friend of mine who never got old, and in those times of distress, when he advised me over love or career, I started respecting him.

Last night as we talked I realised that there are some bonds which are greater than friendship and purer than love. I understood that sometimes we want to see some people happy, no matter what. Sometimes we listen to depressing stories of our friends to make them feel better, even when we have our own problems. And that sometimes high school crushes lead to lifelong friendships. I am lucky to have one.

Now That You Are Gone

I check my phone a million times a day,

Hoping for your texts or a call,

I wait anxiously from dusk to dawn,

But there’s nothing, no sign of you,

Now that you are gone.

I relive old memories of us,

That rainy afternoon when we first met,

To the stolen kisses on that overcrowded bus,

Teary eyed I inhale the smell of your absence,

Now that you are gone.

I dream of you sometimes,

Far away in a distant land,

You walk away, leaving me alone.

I flounder to meet you even in my dreams,

Now that you are gone.

***

I wrote this poem in response to this week’s writing challenge in which we have to take inspiration from any of the 50 word stories that are been given there. I have written it in response to the story “Regret” by A lady in waiting:

“Gazing at the quaint street below, Nick watches couples come and go. Kids are playing with a soccer ball. He remembers the flea market open for the weekend in Long Island City. He lazily says “We should go.”

Nick turns toward the empty bed. He remembers now, that she’s gone.”

Homecoming

Climbing down the bus I saw my old uncle walking down the steep valley to receive me at the station. As he walked towards me he said, “ Mahadevi, you still look the same like you were eight years ago, you are exactly like those 14 year old girls I used to teach at school. Why haven’t you grown up? You still look like a kid to me.”

And I realized why I travel long hours to visit that almost forgotten village to see my uncle and aunt, a village without internet and mobile networks: It’s because of the way I get to feel like a child again. It’s because I relive the life I had almost a decade ago, to see the beautiful sunrise between the mountains, to roam with my old uncle in search of our dog, to have the fun of shooing away monkeys from the fruit orchards, to sit and watch my aunt milk the cows, to be away from the busy real world, to live a life filled with beauty and peace.

In those two days I spent there, I realized how my village is my favorite place on earth. How it is the love of my uncle and aunt that calls me back there every time. I realized how love is what makes us do things….beautiful, crazy, stupid things.

Home...sweet home.

Home…sweet home.

{ For a reason that I don’t know, my uncle calls me Mahadevi since I was a kid. He’s the only one who calls me by that name. Mahadevi was the name of a great Hindi writer, and somehow my uncle thought that it suits me the best}