Hello Hello. So, I haven’t written anything in a month, I was so busy with other commitments. It is Saturday night, I am sitting on my couch with green tea, and it’s time to write write write.
For the past couple of weeks, I have been pondering about my life decisions and the ever-changing human behavior.
Exactly two years back, I was interning at a consulting firm in Los Angeles, when I was introduced to Liyu! She is in her mid-thirties, smart, single, diligent, hardworking, and has managed to pull off a great career. I remember myself vividly when I met her. I was 23, filed with excitement for my first real job in the US, and eagerly waiting to work on high-impact projects. Though she was my manager, it never felt like that. We became good friends, and the next three months passed by in a snap learning with her. One day we went out for lunch, and I shared with her about my career goals and plans. She seemed pretty impressed and told me something that I would probably never forget. It was – “You remind me of my younger self – feisty and a go-getter.”
For some reason, those words stuck with me. I just had one question for her – Why do I “remind” you of your younger self? Are you not ambitious anymore? I never asked her that one, but I kept wondering if the passion and ambition fade with age! To me, it was impossible to imagine myself not flooded with enthusiasm when thinking about the future. But, she seemed, for the lack of a better word – too “mature”.
If that is maturity, I would prefer not to be mature.
As you grow old, step into the adult world, make your own decisions, pay bills – you burden yourself with a certain set of rules. In all of that, you lose your playfulness. You forget to smile too often. You forget to cheer for yourself. You stop talking to yourself and build real relationships with the people across the table. While the career is certainly important to me, I don’t want to base my entire life trajectory around it.
About 12 years ago, I met with a tragic accident that changed my life. One moment, I was on my bike, the next moment I was rolling on the road for minutes, every second of which I remember distinctly. It was not an everyday accident, I could feel every inch of my body tear up. When I stopped rolling, I lay on the ground motionless, almost unconscious. The road was pitch dark. The car that hit me, fled the scene without even stopping to help. Five minutes on the road, no one, absolutely no one came. Five more inches and I would have stumbled down the cliff. Ten more minutes, and I would have certainly not seen the next day. Yes, I’d like to believe that I was a tad bit fortunate.
Just minutes before, I was thinking of all the pending school assignments, and now I was on the ground breathing heavily to survive every minute. I’d be lying if I say that the thought of not doing all the homework didn’t cheer me for a split second. And then someone came, asked for my parents’ number. My face was full of blood, I could barely speak, but I managed to share the number. The next thing I remember was me screaming and screeching. My whole body was damaged, I cried for hours before they finished cleaning, stitching, and plastering me. I was covered up with bandages, and my parents told me to sleep. They kept insisting as if that was going to help. That day, I learned the value of my life. For the next two years, I was exposed to the harsh realities of human society, when some people stared at me with disgust looking at my face, and some empathized with the wheelchair I was carried on. To help myself – I would make jokes. I used to smile a lot so people don’t notice all the sadness and anxiety. I insisted on sharing my notes and assignments with friends – you know to “belong”. Yet, I never felt like I belonged. I still don’t.
I’d love to be mature, but the kid in me who was forced to face the world quite early in her life refuses to go back to it.
It’s been about a year I started my job. Monotonous is the word. It’s difficult to sustain your passion when you are stuck in monotony. Yes, I am struggling. I make plans, and I cancel them. I get ideas and push them under the rug. But, I am acutely aware. Awareness does not solve your problems, but it highlights the issue and makes you think about it. And now that I am thinking about my problems, I can carve out solutions and tackle them one at a time.
PS: I don’t know who is reading this, but I’d love to hear your thoughts about my writing. Please feel free to ping me on my social media. I found some great friends in people who reached out to me. I’d love to continue growing my family 🙂