Monday, June 11, 2018

Talk before it's too late!

There has been talks about depression like never before. People are coming out of their safe zone and talking about the much taboo-ed subject ‘Mental illness’. Now, when I use the term mental illness, I very much intend to emphasize on the word ‘illness’. Our body gets ill, likewise our mind could get ill too.

Celebrity like Deepika padukone, Bobby deol, Honey singh talks about being depressed and coming out of it. However, people only talk about depression when they have won the fight against it. When their mind is healthy again. When the sickness is gone.

I wonder, what would happen, if some of them could not get out of the trap? Would they talk about it in public with this much persuasion? Would they encourage people to come out and seek help while they are on their way to recovery? Or Does it always end like Anthony Bourdain, Chester Bennington, Jiah Khan, Pratyusha Banerjee?

When you see people like above, ending their life, most of us wonder, what it could be that would have been missing in their life? They had it all. Fame, Money, a fulfilled life. But do we ever wonder, is this all that makes one happy? That makes one understand the meaning of life? Or the struggle is not being able to understand life at all? Do you still think happy people could not get depressed? Or if the person is partying every weekend, he or she is not depressed? Does it only take a partner, a good job, good clothes, good food to be happy? What about the inner dilemma that a person might be going through? What about the void he/she feels all the time while he is taking holidays or eating out every other night or wearing the best clothes and has world’s best family for that matter?

I wonder, what is it that goes into the mind of the person who comes to the point of ending his/her life? How suffocated and tired and defeated he/she must be feeling. And then, we as people tops it by never paying attention to the symptoms. By taking their action as just another tantrum or call for attention. There are numerous help lines and help centres to support the troubled mind, but who cares if the person who need it the most is even using it? Many of us who are depressed might hide it under our paintings or writing or alcohol or anything that would help them to get some sack out of it. But is that a solution? Is that all? Why don’t we ask people (and mean it) when we ask them how are they? Why don’t we, for a second, stop judging and try and understand what the other person might be going through? When will we, as a family or friend, start taking care of each other? There will always be people who are ready to ask for help. But there will also be people who would never let you know what they are going through, atleast not directly. That how insane they are going with the sleepless nights and the tired body and mind. How withdrawn they are from the things they once loved. How taking care of themselves is not on the list anymore. And why they cry for no good reason.

And imagine, one of the day when you finally get to know, the battle they have been fighting. And that day, it’s too late to help them, to hold them and tell them that it is ok. It is ok to feel this way and that you are there for them and that you understand them. That it is ok to not be ok at times.

But then, it will be too late. Help them while you could. Be with them when you could. And tell them they are not alone. That life could be tough but they have you by their side. Tell them and help them, before it’s too late.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Not feminist, but just another human being!

I was scrolling through my facebook feed when I chanced upon a video of Meghan Markle. In that video, she was talking about her incident when she was 11 year old with a dish washer advertisement by a famous FMCG company. She talks about how even as an 11 year old, she knew her place and her right to be equal to any other human being on this planet.

This got me thinking about my journey to be a person I am today. I am not a beautiful girl appearance wise who would make the heads turn around. Honestly, I never wanted to be one. I have not achieved anything larger than life and nor am I an overachiever. I am a mediocre who came from a humble middle class family, left home some seven years back, came to a new place and made her way towards life and became a strong independent women.

I seek great pride in calling myself that. Independent. And this has more do to with my family. My parents. When I was growing up, my parents never treated me like a ‘girl’. They never questioned my believes, my ideas of life, my urge to be equal to not only man but to any other human being. They never questioned my zeal for education and my interest in books. My mom never asked me to leave books behind and help her in the kitchen. I did help her whenever I could, but so did my brother. My brother would make tea for me and dad while I sit with my dad helping him in his accounts. My mother would wake up after my dad and he would make her bed tea. This is a kind of environment I grew up in.

My parents are not highly educated beings, but at a very early age, they taught me the meaning of taking my own decisions and facing the consequences. They taught me how important it is to have my views and opinion about things and life and not get carried away by anyone else’s’ opinions.

While all my cousins were getting married at the age of 22-23, they never asked me any question about me getting married. I changed school, I changed my stream, I left my hometown for better education and job, and they respected my every decision.

I feel amused when girls or women today talks proudly how their parents got them married at an early age so that they do not get involve with any boy. This means, for them, not getting her daughter involved with a guy is more important than her education. Their parents ask them not to wear short dresses, not to party, not to have any guy friends and that they can do whatever they want once they are married, with the permission of their husband. At the same time, their sons can have all the education, have as many girl friends as they want, drink their liver out and still be the ‘Raja beta’ of the house.

I think the issue of equality arises from our very home. We are the people in the society and we made it what it is today. In every household, you can see women tearing down each other instead of supporting each other. It’s women like them who raise dependent girls and ill-mannered sons.

Feminism was a word alien to me till few years back, when it became mainstream. But when I look back at my life and how my parents nurtured my believes, I feel they were not feminist. But, they never took me and my brother as girl and boy respectively. They treated us like human beings. And treated us both equals. Despite being a very tough childhood, my parents gave me what most of well off and educated parents can’t give to their kids today, the freedom of being who I am.

I wonder, how different this world would be, if we could teach our kids how important it is to treat everybody as equal. And we can teach them only if we follow the same rule. If you expect your wife/mother/daughter in law to be in kitchen and man belongs to the world outside, you can never teach your kids the importance of equality.

On the lighter note- ‘Women belong to the kitchen. Man belongs to the kitchen. Basically, everybody belongs to the kitchen because kitchen has food😊 ‘

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Where I belong?

We live in a troubled world. With all the terrorism and inflation and intolerance and corruption. People have so much of anger and hatred inside of them, that it has become so difficult for us to even smile at another person walking beside us. I see that every day. In metros or trains or even in the cars. Every eye looks tired and every face looks angry. People are running for something they cannot see or even know if that exist. This is mostly in the cities. Big cities.

I belong to a rather smaller city and whenever I get a chance to visit my city, I could feel the low pace of life there. Most of the people run their own small businesses. No offices to go to except for private banks and some small call centres. Off course the government offices as well. But whenever I visit my city, without even any effort, my mind feels so relaxed. Not because it is my hometown or something. It is. But today, I feel more of someone who belongs to Delhi rather anywhere else. These 7 years have made me a rat running in an unknown rat race.

There..People wake up early..have time for morning tea…go for a walk or just read newspaper. Pray. Get shower, get ready, have breakfast. Pack lunch. Talk to neighbours or people around.. and get to work. Now, this is what we all do. But the difference is, they are not doing it just for the sake of it. They drink tea but do not think about just gulping it down and running for another errand. They take time and enjoy everything they do. They smile at each other. Greet. Stop by to have a little chat, if required. Of course, they all have their own problems and things to worry about. But for those moments, they are happy and relaxed. They come back home on time. There is hardly any hour long traffic and people abusing each other at road. They come back..spend time with their family or friends, have dinner, watch TV and sleep. A good 8 hour long sleep, or even more.

No their life is not any easier. No Sir. But I feel atleast they are living their life. They might not have big malls to go to or Zara and Mango lined up in every other mall. But they have time and their money is not going to pubs and doctors to make them live. They are fine with their life. They are mediocre and they are happy with it. Unlike people in big cities where everyone is just a rat..waiting for the weekend to arrive to just gulp down the alcohol and spending grands to make them feel better for few hours.

Sometimes I wonder, how different my life would have been, had I done a regular graduation, got married to someone in a small city? How things could have been, had I been a little less ambitious. Settled for something which could have allowed me to stay there. In my city. Would I be a better person then? Or would I be wondering how different life could have been, had I been to a big city?

Wednesday, January 31, 2018

2017 and the year ahead

2017 was a bad year. So bad that I want to eliminate every thought of it from my memory. Alas, if only I could. It drained all my energy and my self-believe. I became a person I could not recognize. There was so much negative vibes around that I could do nothing but fight. And at some point of time, I gave up. I gave up coz all I thought was not to hurt people around me. I stopped thinking about myself, my well being, my mental status. It was tough not only personally, but professionally too. I was in a constant battle to prove myself. I never believed in gender discrimination in office environment because I never faced one, until last year. I had to prove myself at every step. I started hating my job and to be honest I was doing it just for the sake of money.

2017 made me a person I never wanted to be. Infact, I hated myself for being who I became. I became a victim of many diseases. Both mental and physical. It drained all my health and mental peace. Nothing gave me peace. Food, travel, holiday…nothing. I thought I could not fight anymore. I had no energy left with me. All the rules and principles that I followed all my life were mocking me for being such a person. I am not a person who give up easily. I am a fighter and a survivor. But I broke down. In front of anyone and everyone. I am not someone who look up to people to support me…emotionally, financially and physically. But that time, I was so vulnerable, that I thought I could do nothing and capable of nothing.

I thought I could not survive it. But I did. I did survive, fought and took myself out from that aura that was dragging me down. They say every incident changes you. Some makes you better and some bitter. I thought, this one year made me bitter, more that I could think of. And no matter how hard I hit myself for it, I know I am not responsible for what happened to me. When you get hit by the people you love….when they let you down and break your trust time and again…there is only anger that is going to come out of it.

This year…I want to work on myself. To stop caring about people and live for myself for once. To vent out the anger no matter how much hurt others would feel, coz I don’t want to be this person. I don’t want to fight with myself anymore. I want to do whatever I could to get myself back on track. Because this? This is not who I am. I am better and I deserve better and I will fight for it…till the end…till I will not become the person who I really am. This year, I hope, I could do justice to myself and give myself back the pride and love and care I lost last year!

Friday, January 12, 2018

Save yourself. Be your own Hero!

I have been binge watching Grey’s anatomy again. I have already watched 11 seasons and after a gap of about 2 years instead of going back to 12th season, I decided to re-watch them all. I have been quite an addict of this sitcom and I would give up anything to watch even one episode of Grey’s. I remember I started watching it in 2013 when I was going through an all-time low of my life. And every dialogue uttered by the characters gave me a strange high. It, along with couple of other sitcoms, gave me lot of courage and support to come out of that phase.

I am not a happy person. I am an old school. I believe in relationships, commitments and words. I believe in romance and letters and stars. But I am not a happy person. My heart always goes towards melancholy than the bright chirpy things. No, I am not a sadist. Before I knew this thing about myself, I was in constant battle. Battle to be happy, to be a part of society, to please people I care about. But I was never at peace. I was totally unaware about who I was. And then, with time, with age, with phases and thanks to sitcoms and books like these, I realized, I am not a happy person. And it is okay. It is okay to not be okay at times. To not pretend happiness when you are not happy. To feel rush of emotions. To love letters more than messages, hand made cards than expensive archies or hallmark. To sit and just look at the sky for hours, to love roaming alone than with bunch of people who just pretend to be with you.

While watching Grey’s again, I realized how much I am comfortable in my own skin today. Few years back, I was battling to be a part of someone else’s’ life. And today, I am just doing fine. Not shouting or jumping in happiness, but just sitting, looking at the world outside my window and writing this. I have realized that I am not a people person and would rather like to be alone at times. I am still not a happy person. No sir. But I am satisfied with that I have made of my life. Whatever I am doing for myself and my people on my own. I am fine that I do not have to look for some to support me in any way…financial, emotional. Whatever comes to me today is an added gift.

I understand people better. I know who care and who just pretend to care. I have made my principles and I abide by them. I value words and I value morals. And all that because I know myself better today. I know what I want and from what things or people I need to distant myself with. I know where I am and where I want to go. And that’s the greatest thing you know. When you know where you are. And you know where you want to go.

I think, to be fine with yourself (not happy, but fine), all you need is to know yourself better. And be true to yourself. Anything and everything else is just a phase. Nothing is constant. Only you are. And as Meredith said once “"I think you can’t wait for someone to fly underneath you and save your life. I think you have to save yourself." See? Be your own hero!”

Monday, October 23, 2017

Of Age and Expectations!

Growing up is never easy. Being an adult, we ought to give up so much. Not to anyone in particular. But to life. The dark circles of an inch size, wrinkles caused due to constant worry, pale face with not an iota of natural glow. Grey hair. Permanent state of tiredness. I am always tired. Tired of work, of travelling hours in metro, of worry, of thoughts and anxiety, of complaints. Of fighting with myself and my thoughts. How much an exhausted person could fight anyway? I feel I will give up. Very soon. This world consumes a lot of my energy. And I am not ready for it. Maybe because I have no energy left, with all the struggle and the fights with the world. There is no progression in my thoughts. No broadening of perception. No moving forward. My energy gets waste in things that hold no value. That shouldn’t hold any value. This is the least I expected from life. Could this be because of my surroundings? Coz I am not surrounded by people with whom I could talk about life, about something productive. I don’t look at the moon anymore. I look at my face into the mirror. And I feel, I feel nothing. Numb. I want to ask myself where I am heading towards. But I don’t. I can’t. Coz my mind is not healthy enough to ask such questions. I feel with age, I am not learning anything that would help me to grow as a person. I am tired of all the negativity around me. Usually, I just step back from such people and surroundings. I maybe a loner. But I have been a hopeful person. Not enthusiastic. But a little hopeful. That life will be fine. If not good or best, it will be fine atleast. Now. Now I don’t claim any such thing. I cannot think about life anymore. Or maybe, I do not have the stamina left to think about life, myself or anything else. Do you think it’s worth it? A life like this? I want to read though. Read and travel. I wanted this year to be full of books and travel. And I could do none. No explanation. No excuse. I just couldn’t.

With this year coming to an end, I am not hoping anything bright and beautiful next year. I am not. Coz this burden of expectation ruins a lot of things. I just one want thing. That may this year never repeat itself, not even in bits and pieces.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

October Sky!

October in Delhi is not so October-y. Mornings and Nights are comparatively breezy though. But days are hot. Feels like June. However, there is this strange emptiness during the afternoons. Like the day loses its soul during the afternoons. I feel a strange void. Sometimes I feel a sense of shiver down my spine. My hands feel cold. My legs feel weak. And my mind….my mind feels numb. Numbness is the lack of feeling though. I could feel the numbness. I find it hard to type, to see, to speak, to hear. And this anxiety. This anxiety of what is going to happen next. The uncertainly. The excitement. The rush. The scary feeling.

Last year this time, I was busy shopping for my wedding. And I remember feeling the same thing that time too. Does this happen every year with me? I don’t remember. This is the third year when my life is undergoing a major change during this time of the year. Do you think this maybe the cause?

Last night I couldn’t sleep. I twisted and curled but I just could not sleep. Could this be a kind of hangover for last night? My mind feels restless with no sign of calming down. I just need to calm down. Sit quiet for some time and think nothing. Is it that tough? To calm your mind and your body for few minutes?

Is it because of the hormonal disease? Or is it just psychological? I want to believe in the former. I could treat it atleast. I have to. People may not understand the changes I am going through. The havoc this disease is causing in my physical and mental being. But atleast I know the reason if it’s not psychological.

What else could a person like me hope for? A reason to know the insanity within.