#StartANewLife: The Leap

It was three hours away, this new world I was going to move into. I had no idea what it looked like. I’d only heard about it, through a senior. And I was going to do my Masters degree there, after much deliberation of the pros and cons of various other places. It was three hours away, and I was going to live away from home for the first time ever.

There was apprehension, but there was also excitement. I had heard different stories about hostel life: the lack of privacy, the need to be careful, but also the feeling of family, the fun and the independence one got. Actually living it was a whole different thing, though. Nothing could’ve prepared me for it. There was so much freedom, hidden under the belt of responsibility. There was so much freedom, I wanted to use it well. There was so much I learned: from cleaning my room, riding a cycle (I’d never taking off the training wheels as a kid) and from the people, people who were so different from my friends back home.

I learned to trust these people, and when I got to know them better, I didn’t regret the decision to let them in. I loved the cycle rides, the extra classes we signed up for ranging from Spanish to Taekwando… I loved the feeling of the wind in my hair as I learned to let go, and just be. Without the context my previous life gave me, I started to discover who I really was.

Towards the end of my second year, we went beyond the campus. We started exploring the city, its gazillion amazing eat outs and craft shops. My room felt like my own, as I’d hung up a poster of a tree that I could lean against; a poster my senior had passed on to me. My roommates knew me inside out, knew every triviality of my life, and that didn’t fill me with a fear or insecurity that it might’ve once resulted in. I started having opinions. I started thinking for myself, though there were also moments when I got so tired, I did go with what everyone else was doing.

My two years are nearly up, and I’ll be out of this campus soon. This apparent rosy picture has had its black spots, but it’s still been great. I can recall a hundred happy moments and perhaps more here. It was a leap, moving into a completely new place, but it was a leap that changed me in a way I’ll never regret. The people, the places, my room, the trees and the cool breeze and the burger shop on campus: in each of these places, I discovered a tiny part of who I am right now.

#StartANewLife

This post is a part of the #StartANewLife activity by Housing.com

Sleep, rhythms, melatonin, hypothalamus

I don’t want to sleep.

Every word in my textbook tastes like pressure.

I don’t want to sleep because then I’ll have to wake up and I would’ve lost another day to junk food and television, attempts at a first chapter of a story that never turns out right, calls I never make and deadlines that wait in dark corners…to chase me.

I don’t want to sleep because I’m probably working for the wrong goal or staring at the wrong affirmation. I repeat it to myself again and again and again when the truth is there, right there, clasped by a clip that’s as light as day.

I don’t want to sleep because I’ll wake up to another day, then another, then another and expectations will outshoot progress. Expectations that turn a problem into a complicated equation.

I don’t want to sleep.

It’s better to stay up, reading while the heart of the issue is still numb from its time in the freezer and I’m still a part of the carefree day that is yet to end.

On knowledge and attitudes towards nuclear energy and more

As the Final Sem comes nearer and nearer to ending once and for all, there’s also so much work that needs to be done right. I’m still undecided on my case study but I have gotten started on my survey. The survey is supposed to be environmentally related. Mine is on Knowledge, Awareness and Attitudes Towards Nuclear Energy.

Given the two completely different takes on the Kudankulan issue (CLICK HERE and HERE for more details) which seemed to stem from people’s attitudes, opinions and associations related to nuclear energy, I decided that was what I would be doing my survey on.

I would really appreciate it if you took the time to fill my survey if you fit the target population; the target population being:

17-35 years old and Indian resident/NRI/any resident aware of current issues in India

If you fit the criteria, here you go:

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/viewform?formkey=dDBqb2Y4X0dxcjIzUWtfNDdSdHBRcVE6MQ#gid=0

Thank you so much for taking the time to fill my survey. Happy holidays, everybody!

want

Walk to my face
And I’m spent
From all the want
Want
want

It erodes me
The lack of reason
The shiver of ambition
And worse
The sliver of hope.

Walk to my face
I don’t relent
From the taunt of
More, more
more

And there’s not a dent
Of the nonchalance I claim
My eyes devoid of water
It’s a shame
it’s a shame

They stare straight ahead
Chilled by the shiver of ambition
And worse
The sliver of hope.

Introspektshun: Dear 13 year old me,

hi. -__-I’ve lived the past few years knowing I’m not what you quite thought I would become. I haven’t,

– magically turned into a swan (though my braces are off and everything. weird!)
– somehow gotten my act together and gotten admitted into oxford… or hogwarts.
– managed to meet mr.fantabulous who reads amazing books and just ‘gets’ me
– suddenly become ms. sociable
– had it all figured out

In a way, it’s more because you, 13 years old and naive, assumed things happened “magically” “somehow” “worked themselves out”. They don’t. They require an enormous amount of doing. I learned this from a bubbly, overly enthusiastic junior of mine in school (I was in twelfth, she was in eleventh)… through observing her from a distance.
I neither liked her nor hated her or even knew her. she annoyed some, she was revered by some but most importantly she DID. she did not cower under the false facade of indifference and pretend everything came easily to her. she didn’t think of enthusiasm as shameful or cheap. she actively DID and that’s one thing from my two years at that school that stuck with me more than anything.

19 (20?) year old me is still socially awkward. fumbles over the ends of her sentences. interrupts at the wrong places. trips over anything solid. dances around things and gets so freaking anxious. she’s even more neurotic and competitive and perfectionist (in a messy way) than you. imagine that. but she’s also stood for college elections and done other things you never imagined you’d ever do… not necessarily the awesomest of things. but DIFFERENT things.

no, things didn’t go smoothly from there.
in fact, they lead to stickier spots, lonelier roads and moments of claustrophobia…
but you have learned far more this way than through the life of smooth nonchalance and unjustifiable privilege you dreamed of.

if we bump into each other, you might think, what is with her? who is she? what is she even doing? where is she even headed? i know you will. things are so different from how it was for you.

i’ve forgotten how to laugh off a bad grade. eat chocolate and watch fluffy or high-on-angst movies every.single.day.

i’ve learned to take the bus. do things on my own. love solitude.
i’ve learned to keep away.
i’ve learned to get what i want. scratch that. you taught me that when you were at your brattiest.

i don’t manufacture sadness like you did. i’ve cried with my heart. broken down. started over. and over.

i’ve learned to take NO.
i’ve learned that some things happen because they need to happen but that’s okay. nothing has more than a 15 minute impact.

But you won’t stick around to understand me. At least I don’t think you would. You would take one look at me, my hair in an unmade bun and my rumpled blue kurta and… probably not even notice me. I don’t think I’d even make it to your awareness. I wouldn’t even make it to your sensory memory though if I did, we might be okay friends.

That hit me the most.

And that hits me the most.

Indifference in the eyes of your thirteen year old starry eyed self is worse than failure. Your thirteen year old self is at its judgiest- always. 

I’m twenty now and it’s funny how nothing anyone says will matter as much as your approval does. Nothing hurts more than not falling in line with your unrealistic expectations. But I don’t hate you or anything. I love you the most. Isn’t that weird?

Love,
me

PS: Happy birthday to you. And me.