Bon Voyage, Rory

My tears have almost dried and the sinking feeling in my chest is subsiding to numbness, slowly and steadily, although my heart feels as hollow as ever. The jar of peanut butter (because I was out of nutella) didn’t help me as much as I thought it would. Gilmore Girls ended. Rory left for her first job. Logan was left brokenhearted. Luke kissed Lorelei. Now what?

That’s the question that has been haunting my life over the past few weeks. It is ironic that I finished Gilmore Girls at this close in my life, this ending of a chapter, this dawning of an era. Gilmore Girls has taught me so much about love and life, about family and hope and every other thing that matters. I fell in love over and again with Dean, Jess, Logan, Luke, Christopher (until he left Lorelei), Sookie, Lane, Jackson, Zack. I fell in love with the complexity of Emily Gilmore, the complicated relationship she has with Lorelei and all that it brought with it. Richard Gilmore taught me about pursuing what you want and not letting go of opportunities. I partied with Logan and the Life and Death Brigade, fell in and out of love with him, swooned at his grand romantic gestures and most of all, appreciated him for becoming the man he grew up to be. Rory taught me that even the best of the best can have a melt down and not everything they touch has to turn to gold all the time. But getting back on track after life pushes you down is what defines the strength of your character and it is what I wish to possess.

I was at Yale with Rory, my favourite place on the planet, walking those streets of New Haven with her as I did last summer, the best summer of my life. And Lorelei taught me that sometimes the unexpected can grow to be the best thing to ever happen to you. Gilmore Girls gave me hope and courage and now that it has ended, I don’t know what to depend on anymore. Where do I run to when I want to escape?

I’m forgetting all of it. I’ve forgotten everything. Life is taking its toll on me. Lately, all I feel is the piercing hollowness of everything. The superficiality of relationships has been gripping my soul. Nothing has meaning anymore. What is anything even worth if it is just a mode of convenience for everyone, bent according to their whims and fancies and desires? My biggest problem is that when I reciprocate the same behaviour, the same fakeness they subject me to, guilt eats me alive, for that is not who I am. That is not who I want to be, although the alternative brings me pain.

Life is a conundrum I do not understand. Nothing means anything, and looking for meaning in people’s actions and the universe’s will is pure foolishness. Expecting reciprocation for your sincerity is stupid. The world is grey and I no longer have Gilmore Girls to turn to. Everything seems bleak and blank.

 

© That Girl in the Fray, 2016. All rights reserved.

How You’re Not the One

There you go, a caterpillar in a cocoon of narcissism and arrogance. Vain. Egotistical. You smile a smile, showcasing your artificially whitened teeth and utterly high cheekbones on your freshly shaven face. Your cologne chokes people to death because you bathed in it, rather than spraying it on yourself like a normal human being, after you hit the gym to maintain your oh so precious abs. If only you valued humility and compassion as much as you value your abs. You park your uselessly expensive car taking up two parking spaces, not because you’re scared of someone scratching it but because it satisfies your humongous ego. You assume that every girl is in love with you. You assume I am in love with you. But oh my dear half-witted simpleton, I would rather stick pins in my eyes than even think of the possibility of us.

Maybe you’re not all that I’ve described. You’re chivalrous. Gallant. Your polished soul resonates your debonair. You serenade the birds and paint the flowers. Maybe you’re not all that either. But you think I’m falling for that faux charm and my heart is in your palm. Because that is what gives you joy. Or maybe not. But honey, you couldn’t be more wrong. I’m not a fifteen year old. Or an imbecile. Neither are most creatures of my sex.

You see, had you been the one, I would never have been able to speak to you coherently. My awkwardness would have baffled you to the point of doubting my sanity. You would have, numerous times in fact, caught me gaping at your face dimwittedly. While stammering and stuttering, and possibly literally going weak in the knees, I would have asked you if you love travelling. Or books. Or long walks in the library. Or if you believe in destiny. Or if you see the stars as evidence of the existence of magic. Or made you a mixed tape of my favourite records. I never did that, did I? Hate to burst your pristine bubble, but you are so not the one.

The Art of Letting Go

And anytime you feel the pain, hey Jude, refrain
Don’t carry the world upon your shoulders
For well you know that it’s a fool who plays it cool
By making his world a little colder

Even though this song moves my heart and makes me feel alive, as I lie in the grass looking at the stars and the rainbow shimmer of the moon kissing the clouds gracing the magical sky, I cannot help but disagree with these words. For what I’m doing to save myself from the sting of the lacerations (something that I attribute to my gift of blind faith due to my naivety and downright daftness) is stoning my soul and making my heart colder. I’m trying not to allow myself to feel anything. I’m building a home on the shore of a sea numb to the pull of the moon, swaying and crashing, rising and dropping as it is meant to; it has no command over what happens. The sea cannot help but fall and flail.

I’ve come to accept the fact that it is me who breaks my own heart every time I’m let down and left like a fool in the midst of a storm sans shelter of any kind; I am the one who gives contemptible humans that kind of power over me. It is due to my own lack of judgment that I find myself at the threshold of my darkest sentiments every single time I ignore that little voice in my head that tries to stop me from trusting people. Every single time that I’ve pulled down the walls around the most sensitive parts of my soul, I’ve been proved wrong and made to feel foolish. The most fragile parts of me have been trampled into the mud by boots that don’t have a speck of humanity in them, let alone any fleeting concern for me. “Perhaps we all give the best of our hearts uncritically to those who hardly think about us in return.”

So I think it is wise to make your world a little colder and not be bothered to show people who you truly are inside. In my case, that has meant letting people into my heart and letting them matter to me. Not anymore though. I’m not letting anyone into my soul or mind ever again. I’m done with trying to run after pretentious illusions who will not stand up for me or care about me.

I’m going to be a mirror to almost everyone in my life. I will treat people in the exact way they treat me and swallow the guilt that usually threatens to engulf me in the process. I’m done with giving others the power to destroy my peace of mind and happiness; no one in my life deserves that privilege. So I will play it cool and not care about anything or anyone who causes me pain, whether it is intentional or not. I will not fight for anyone or pursue anybody for their regard, unless they do the same for me.

I don’t think we reach places because of the decisions we take; rather, it is the mistakes that we make that end up deciding where we end up. And I’m trying to be okay with the fact that I’ve always trusted the wrong people who have left me hating myself more than I can ever hate them, for it is my own stupidity that is to be blamed. And I hope and pray that all my mistakes lead me to my true self that is waiting beyond the mist, calling out to me in this dark battlefield as I wade my way through it. So, as of now, I’m letting go of all the people in my life who do not deserve to be there. I will not let my forlornness cloud my vision again. And if it does, I will make my world even colder and let go of that as well.

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People

Sometimes in life (almost all the time for me, actually) one goes through something I like to call the “Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde” phenomenon. It is characterized by those times when one really has two opposite opinions about something and the real test of the soul lies in the guess work involved. In recognizing the part of the split you that you should trust. Of my recent experiences, I can say that I’ve acted in haste, while being drenched in emotions and not seeing the complete picture. And I’ve failed at choosing the right way out.

What I’ve gone through, if I try and spell out those facts and circumstances in third person without any emotional involvement, it would actually seem like nothing too tragic or worthy of the million rain drops I’ve shed. In fact, any sane person would lecture me that people in the real world go through some real problems and my pain in comparison to theirs is like comparing the height of a sand castle to the John Hancock Center. But I’ve always felt that pain is subjective in nature. We measure the magnitude of our despair and cataclysms with reference to the things that we ourselves have gone through. We can empathize with the sufferings of others, but we can never truly understand the things they had to face and the monsters they had to slay and the beasts that almost trampled them. Or in fact did trample them. We can never truly fathom someone’s sorrow. So, telling someone that their problems really aren’t that big or worthy enough to get upset over is ethically wrong.

Pain has a definitive character unlike any other sentiment. It ends up deciding who you become. It defines who you are. When I am subject to pain and bleed furiously with battle scars that run deep and wide, I have the habit of shielding my soul and attacking back, even though the blows on my enemy take their toll on me too. I can never get over people who hurt me. I might forgive them as time passes and the memory of the pain fades a little everyday. But I can never forget, especially when the people who attack you were your own trusted friends. Why is loyalty so hard to find these days?

Another really important life lesson I’ve learnt recently is the dire need to get out of abusive relationships. Now, the dictionary meaning of an abusive relationship is “a state of affairs between two people characterized by wrong or improper action, either physical or verbal.” This very well includes abusive friendships. Holding on to people who have always just used you for their benefit while being malicious towards you. People whose conduct towards you has been laced with rudeness, sarcasm and taunts. People who have dragged you down, made you more depressed and darkened your soul with their apathy and cruelty. When I look back at these past months, I’m horrified at not realizing this any sooner. I had known their conduct towards me was wrong, but instead of having the courage to walk away, I started changing myself. Stopped being bothered by their snide comments. Kept my mouth shut all the time. Never shared any of my thoughts or experiences. I remember infinite instances when I began narrating some anecdote only to stop and realize that no one even noticed that I had left the story halfway. Because they treated me like garbage and had no interest in what I had to say. They were willfully committed to misunderstanding me and still are. And the honest truth is that I don’t hate them. I hate myself for ever putting up with those fiends just because I was afraid to end up alone.

I think that is the very reason people tend to stay in abusive relationships. The fear of loneliness. The fear that maybe what lies outside the relationship is much worse than the present torment. So we deny the wrongness. We justify their conduct by pointing out mistakes in ourselves. We change ourselves to suit them, to fit into their idea of right. When actually all we should have done was stepped away from such people. It requires tremendous courage to accept the truth and move on towards uncertainty and possible loneliness. But it really is worth it.

But not all of life is cruel and untrue. I really admire the people who stepped up and stood by me in my hour of self doubt. I am indebted to their help and kind words. I wouldn’t have survived this storm of my life without their love and support. Their courage and strength is a source of inspiration to me and I will do everything in my power to be there for them when they are in need of my tattered soul. It may not be much but I promise my loyalty to them.

I’m done with people who walked away at a time in my life when everything went haywire and I lost myself for a while. I’m glad to have gone through this ordeal because everything is so clear to me now. My troubles proved to be a litmus test for me and the people around. I have realized now that at the end of the day, the people who were left standing are the ones worth dedicating yourself to. It’s like waking up from deep slumber. There is just so much beauty around me and so much to take in. I may not have too many friends, but I will fight wars for those who helped me in my battle. I will ensure that from now on, my life is a reflection of the clear peaceful sky. It might take time to reach the zenith of clarity and peace, and I will  fall and stumble along the way, but I do believe that I will get there someday.

 

 

Funeral for a Dream

We are gathered here to say farewell to my dream, that as of now is dead, and to commit it into the hands of God.

Tonight I’m letting myself cry my soul out, I’m letting myself break down in the most grotesque way possible. Tonight, I’m not forcing myself to be strong, to hold it in, try and bottle it up. I’ll do all of that when I have to face the world tomorrow. But tonight I take off my mask and within the confines of my room, I’m allowing myself to scream as I writhe in pain. Tonight I bare my wounds and let them bleed.

Tonight, the darkness isn’t within me, for I am the darkness.

Tonight I’m a mess, shouting my lungs out trying to stop these voices in my head. Tonight I’m all things vile, malign and inimical. Tonight I’m not brave. I never was anyway.

I really don’t care about the things people say about me. I never have. What makes me scream right now, the thing I’m most scared of is this part of me that hates me for giving up. This part that knows how weak and vulnerable I was when I took the easy way out and abandoned all that I cherished. This part that will never forgive me for letting it all go and not fighting until my last breath. Guilt and regret are the only things that scare me to death and as they engulf me, I scream again and fall to the ground as my legs don’t have the strength to carry me anymore. I fall to the floor and lie there, cold and broken in dystopia, with no hope.

My eyes are as dry as a bone and I’m empty now. I can’t summon the energy to scream anymore. I just want silence and stillness, to be put out of my misery and sleep in a peaceful perennial slumber, so that my mind stops blaming me. So that my conscience stops blaming me. I just want to forget.

But forget I shall not. I’ll remember this day for my entire life. The one day that changed my life forever. The one decision that has altered everything forever now. The one dream I let go of.

I therefore commit my dead dream, dead wishes, dead hopes and desires to the ground; earth to earth, ashes to ashes, dust to dust; in the sure and certain hope of the Resurrection to eternal life. Amen.

 

About Nothing and Everything All at Once

I sat in my favorite corner in the library, breathing in the magic and utter magnificence of shelves and shelves of stacked works of art waiting to be opened and cherished, veiling words endowed with the power to change life as you know it. I gazed at all those books, and as always I was overwhelmed by the legion of voices, thoughts and ideas that made it to print, that will be preserved in paper and ink forever. And then slithered in a thought. My exuberance was shadowed and I felt sad as I thought about all the wonderful books I’d never read. I thought about all the stories I’ll never know, all the voices I’ll never hear, all the feelings I’ll never feel.

What of all the thoughts I’ve had and never told anybody. What of all the wonderful things I’ve said when no one was listening. What of all the words in my diary that no one will ever feel. What if in one particular moment in the universe, had there not been a simple affecting factor and my words would have been heard by the right person exactly at the right moment, a life could have been drastically altered. What if that alteration would have been for the better?

If someone asked me what the point of life is, I would say there is no point. Bad things happen to good people, innocents are slaughtered, hard labor isn’t rewarded, happiness is a mere fleeting chimera, a writing in the sand washed away as soon as the tide rolls back in. But in all honesty, I don’t know what the point of everything is. Lost moments, lost time, lost people, lost love, lost words, they can never truly be recovered in their pristine divinity. So what was ever the point in their existence? It’s like grabbing air in your palm and trying to hold on to it.

A million questions. A million worries. A million doubts. A million fears. A million regrets. How are you supposed to be okay with living in such uncertainty in an ever transient universe, with the ever increasing probability of a million things going wrong. Loss. Death. Pain. Grief. Injustice. Loneliness. Darkness. Rejection. Wrong Decisions. An unfathomable utterly endless infinity of dark prospects.

I truly am nothing but a bundle of contradictions. I’ve said this before, there is a touch of melancholy in everything beautiful, a shade of black in every colorful combination, a thorn in every rose. A million unread books for every one book that you do read. A million unsaid words for every word you say. A million bad days for every good one.

 

I Didn’t Want to be the One to Forget

“It didn’t matter what they wanted to see

He thought he saw someone that looked just like me

The summer memory that just never dies

We worked too long and hard to give it no time”

Those memories that are imprinted in your soul end up defining who you are and who you become in the course of your life. And these memories, most of the times, are nothing but an essence of the people you meet and the effect they have on you. What I do not understand is why more often than not these moments turn out to be nothing but sheer agony. The pain of knowing that you have to part soon and forever isn’t a privilege you’d have, that is what makes me question what the point of everything is. Why is it that we attach ourselves to people we know will leave us eventually? Maybe the Red String of Fate is what binds us to them, to people we feel an inexplicable attachment to, something I fail to put into words as I wonder at the sheer beauty of it all and my undeniable sorrow. It’s like looking directly at the brilliant Sun, you can’t help bowing before its pulchritude but it hurts your eyes beyond anything.

I’m nothing but a bundle of contradictions. I’m happy because of things that make me happy, but I’m also sad because I’ve lived long enough to know that all good things end. There is a hint of melancholy in everything beautiful, at the aspiration of wanting more, at the fear of losing it, at the realisation that maybe it never existed, maybe it was all just in your mind.

And it hurts to know, to realise, that all you can do, as the mighty universe stands against you, is forget.

(Quote: Lyrics to Instant Crush by Daft Punk)

A Message into the Void

I dedicate this to every soul on this planet who has ever felt like a misfit,

To those who have felt the coldness creep into the spine as they look upon the world, with no sound but the beating of their own heart and nothing to keep them warm but their own breath,

To every braveheart who has stood up for a belief so strong, pure and powerful that it scares the multitude, who is unable to grasp its beauty,

To every innocent soul who has trusted someone despite their better judgement, let down their walls and allowed someone to see their true self sans the inherent protective cavalry, but instead of acceptance found criticism, judgement, deceit and a crumbling wall of fake vows.

To everyone who has ever felt alone, judged, deceived, heartbroken, unloved, unappreciated, cheated, ignored, hollow, unwanted, misunderstood, awkward, weak, frail, broken, lost, I dedicate every word, every syllable, every thought, every idea to you.

No matter how hard it is not to believe in the goodness of people, the truth is that you will be let down by most of them. Then infiltrates the anger, mostly at your own self for ever trusting someone with your thoughts and secrets. And then comes in the determination to never ever trust anybody again, to build castle walls around your heart, to shut your soul off in the highest tower and throw away the key so that it can never be found and no one can ever hurt you again. But then despite all of the pain and suffering and tears, you open the castle doors after piecing together your shattered soul, sewing up your tattered heart, and venture out again, get hurt, come back, lock yourself up, cry, and the vicious cycle never breaks.

One thing that I’ve realised as I’ve had people rip my heart out again and over again is that in the moments I feel completely and utterly alone, like I’m the only person to ever feel so brutalized at the hands of cold, oblivious and inhumane antagonists of my life, I visit the darkest places imaginable, my mind drowns in the depth of the deepest darkest thoughts and I feel utterly lost. It is in these moments we need to hold on to the beauty and peace that seems like an illusion, a chimera, a mirage at such times.

As John Green says, “You don’t get to choose if you get hurt in the world. But you do have some say in who hurts you.” I do believe that there’s an exception out there, someone who is going to make me question every opinion I have and prove all my cynical perceptions wrong, someone worth all the pain and suffering, someone who will be the reason for me to break down all walls. But until the day I meet that noble soul, I refuse to be hurt by ungrateful fiends. I wield the shield of numbness, indifference and ignorance as I wander alone, my moments of clarity guiding me home against the forces of the wind and tide. I choose not being hurt.

The World Has Been Broken into Pieces

“..The world has been broken into pieces. All this chaos, all this discord. And our job – everyone’s job – is to try to put the pieces back together. To make things whole again.”

“..Maybe it isn’t that we’re supposed to find the pieces and put them back together. Maybe we’re the pieces. Maybe, what we’re supposed to do is come together. That’s how we stop the breaking.”

Ever since I came across this quote from Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist and was acquainted with the beautiful philosophy of “Tikkun Olam” in Judaism, it has somehow stayed with me. They were words that don’t really reveal their true power the moment they hit you. They stay hidden in the recesses of your mind, at the corner of the thin dividing line between the conscience and the subconscience, and then somehow without actually knowing that it is actually happening, you start connecting everything that happens in your life to those words, to the powerful idea behind those words and somehow your perception about life, about love, about people, everything changes.

I believe our soul is scattered into pieces that are spread all over the world and our entire life is defined by us looking for and finding these pieces that complete us. It could be that perfect song that you hear playing in a store at the mall and suddenly, even if only for a second, life starts making sense and you’re transported to that parallel universe of utopia, a sense of completion prevailing over every dystopic sentiment your heart has ever felt. It could be a book that changes life as you know it forever, bestowing you with the elixir of a brand new perspective that you never knew existed. It could be that perfect moment when the stars in heaven are aligned in such a wondrous pattern that things that you fear have been lost forever find their way back to you in the most unexpected and magical way. Your favourite band, your favourite quote, your favourite colour, everything that in a way defines you, sets you apart and boasts of your uniqueness are all pieces to your soul that you’ve discovered in your life, as you’ve had numerous experiences and epiphanies.

It is the way I’ve come across some of the scattered segments of my own soul that enchants me. Somehow fate intertwines in my plans, or lack thereof, and sets in motion a series of events that make me stumble upon these pieces of my very own jigsaw puzzle. Or maybe it is my own subconscience that leads me right to the doors that hold my hidden self. But when this precious miracle does happen, all the voices in my dark mind quiet down, if only for a few seconds, and a glow of serenity and completeness that is utterly unmatchable to any other feeling in the world, consumes me. The world stops falling apart and somehow even the confusion in my own head makes sense. And this is what we end up doing all our lives, trying to make sense of this chaos by looking for those lost pieces in order to build our souls into whole again. Some people travel to do some soul searching, while others like me just look for signs everywhere. Every book I pick up has a story behind it and most of the times the truth is that it is the mortal book chooses me, while I stand awestruck at fate’s design.

This is also the reason all of us do not like the same things in all actuality. Our souls are thorough variants with such uncommon intricacies that at most there is one possible soul out there that does have lost pieces similar to our own. And we spend our lives looking for that special soul, who is also, in fact, a lost piece we need to complete ourselves.

So, the books I read, the music I love, the movies that inspire me, the places that give me solace, my odd habits, moments that truly move me, are all but parts of my soul. I do not care if people think I’m weird, unsociable or hate me for my lack of interest in things that are commonly acknowledged and liked. It really doesn’t matter too much that there is no one who actually understands the various pieces to my soul or shares them with me. I will always love what I love no matter how many times I’m told I’m wrong to believe in things that appear silly to the masses. I have my own universal task of completing my own soul and working towards the reparation of my own crumbling world. I neither have the time nor patience to change myself just to fit into this mould that has been crafted by the generalis that everyone seems to accept. I will not pretend and do things just to feel accepted while shutting off my own soulfulness in a metal safe and drowning it into the river. Until my last breath, I will wait for that insightful soul who will accept me for who I am rather than pointing out my imperfections and weirdness and trying to change me.

I may be wrong in believing in my beliefs and fighting against the multitude of opinions and perspectives of general conformity, but right now, exactly at this precise moment, in the midst of the ocean of all my ideas, all my thoughts, all the truths that I’ve been acquainted with, all the discoveries I’ve made, all the stories and voices I have inside my head and in my soul, as the sun sets turning the waves into molten gold, and its aurum rays sparkle at the zenith of my dreams turning the sky purple at this dusk of my life, as I hold my breath and imbibe this last vision I have before I let the water take me and close my eyes, amid all of this, I know that I’m right. And no one can take that away from me. In other words, anybody who doesn’t live inside my head has no right to say that I’m wrong.