One cannot be humble and aware of oneself at the same time.
- Madeleine L'Engle, A Circle of Quiet
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I was depressed. My mind used to be full of suicidal and afterlife thoughts because it was as if my life was a car and I was sitting in the backseat. My loving family was handling the steering one by one. But they didn't even bother to ask me whether I really want to go to the place where they were taking me to. The map was pre-defined and I was instructed only to follow.
Being a bright and hardworking student, everyone thought I will make it through that exam. I tried. But I failed.
You can see their faces. Laughing silently at my misery. Dragging me down when they should have pulled me up. Scorn took the place of support. It was hard to handle everything. The tiny little shoulders were aching with expectations that they couldn't handle anymore. I was giving up.
My parents were enjoying the snow. I was wandering far away from them. The pale white snow, the dark clouds, the chilly wind and the lifeless trees were ironically sketching my life's tale. The ice had cracks with depth up to fifty feet.
I looked down and thought, "what if...?"
"Hey, watch out!" Someone shouted from the back.
I was terrified and started running to hide behind a rock. I was a few inches away from the smaller one. Suddenly, I heard a crack and I realized my fate.
Next few seconds were the longest seconds of my life. I could hear the blow of the wind. My heart was beating fast and lungs were longing for air. The skin was numb from cold and I was going deeper. I felt helpless.
I was thinking about life, karma, parents, expectations and the so-called dreams. The dreams were not mine, it was theirs. I kept on thinking.
"Is this what I want? Am I going to die? Is this the end?"
After a very long time, I wanted to live. For myself.
Everything froze. I was still. Luckily, those ice cracks around the small rock weren't too deep. When one comes closer to death they realize the importance of life. There is more in life than what you think.
The man who was chasing me pulled me out of the cracks. He looked at me angrily.
"What were you up to?" He yelled.
I said nothing and kept staring at his blank old face.
I was expecting a long lecture from him and knew that it wouldn't make any difference. When you are castigated every day for the same thing, you evolve a thick shell around yourself. You stop getting affected.
He held my shoulders and looked at me in my eyes. "Be strong and trust yourself." That's all he said and left.
These four words were simple but they gave me a way out of everything. They still do.
"What the hell were you doing? " said my worried Dad.
"Searching what?" He was perplexed.
" Myself ". I passed a vague smile.
He hugged me and placed his arms around my shoulders and we left.
I resurrected that day.