Who are you?
We so often define ourselves as what we do or where we come from, that we don’t even know how to truly answer the question of who we are. Doctor, painter, student, mother. Age. Gender. Ethnicity.
Is that who we are?
Sometimes when I meet someone, I ask them to tell me one thing about themselves that is not their name, age, ethnicity, profession, or hobby. And every single time they falter. Taken aback. Confused. “But what else is there to say?” “But that doesn’t leave me anything to talk about!”
And I invite them to tell me about the time they got lost and discovered something beautiful. About themselves, about the world, about life. And slowly, people emerge out of the boxes the world puts them into. And I hope they take one step towards finding who they are.
Over 3 years ago I asked the question “Why must you take flight?” And at some point, without having realised it, I found my answer – that once you begin to look beyond the horizon, you find all that you can be.
I’m flying today. Albeit with an anchor, because I am still afraid. But I am flying. Over and over again. And each time, I feel a little less fear and a little more joy. And each time, the chain gets a little longer, and I get a little further away from home.
And I wonder if the other end of the chain is an anchor or just a rock. Or something I imagined.
Not the giddiness of a crush, rather the calm comfort of a love that has blossomed into friendship. The arm loosely wrapped around you. Toasty feet to warm up yours. A light kiss on the tip of the nose. Scrunched up. Pout in place. And you burrow – into the bed, into the blanket, and into the body that is more comfort and warmth than the night can take away.
The tiniest of sighs that whisper love to one who can hear, and you slip into smiling dreams of light.
It’s odd how out of the 100 or so photos I have taken in the last month, this is the one I keep coming back to.
Something about this heavy, immovable, stone structure speaks to me of possibilities and freedom.
It’s the same old place again. An ending, and a beginning. And the question of how to break away.
I’m lost in a maze – darkness and shadow, doorways wrapped in mist, deceptive paths that vanish even as I walk them. Endless possibilities. And yet…
There is hurt, and fear, but the hope hasn’t woken up yet.
Its the same old place again. But this time, I want to make it into something new.
It is liberating when you stop caring. Have you ever stopped to think how many of your decisions, every day, are driven by a fear of consequences? Because you are afraid of losing something that you value? Money, health, life, friendship, or even just a bit of pretend peace?
But what if you weren’t worried about what you might lose?
The thought tastes of freedom.
With just a hint of recklessness sprinkled over it.
It’s the time to look back on the year that was. There is nostalgia in the air as people talk about what they loved/ hated about the year, or simply what made an impact on them. Yesterday I went to an event where a group of people got together to share the things they were grateful for in this year. And I sat there and thought about what I was most grateful for. I have a few select friends who I know will be there for me no matter what. And I am grateful for that. I have a decent job, and the financial security that comes from a regular salary and a habit of saving. And I am grateful for that. Loving parents about whom the biggest complaint I can make is that they worry about me too much. And I am grateful for that.
When I started writing this post, I was sure I knew what I was most grateful for. I was sure of my answer as I sat in the park yesterday surrounded by people and their stories of strength and learning and love and fortune – the things they were grateful for. But I am not sure of my answer now. What seemed so significant yesterday, that I was, in essence, willing to define my year around it, seems trivial tonight. What is an entire year compared to a day? Actually, the memory of a day that brought joy only because of its absence?
15th December 2017. What should have been the 3rd anniversary of my wedding, had things gone as planned. The first 15th December since “the incident” that I didn’t even remember the day or what it was supposed to have meant. And that, I thought, was the biggest gift the year had brought. Now, I don’t feel I can give it that importance. And my wish for next year is that I don’t care whether I remember it or not. That there is not even a moment of confusion about what I am most grateful for in 2018.
Skimming through my blog, remembering who I was. Am I still the same person I was 4 months ago? 6 months ago? 3 years ago?
How much does one have to change, how quickly does one have to change, to be considered a different person?
Someone told me I had evolved. Grown.
Is evolution always a good thing?
Watching the red blossom. Trickle down skin. Slow.
Blood is thicker than water you see.
Is it warm? Feels cold to me.
Hide? Or run away? Always the question. But where?
Naked. Exposed. Broken. Just the blanket of red to keep you warm.
A kiss. A brush of fingertips. Fire on your skin so you can’t breathe.
How long can you hold your breath?
Melting happiness, wrapped in a shroud of hope.
Wait. Don’t move. Don’t breathe. Don’t blink.
Wonder. Is it worth it?