I wasn’t back to a blogging hiatus after writing this post. Instead, all this while, I was busy digging deeper with my bare hands, trying to unearth the facts, the truth, the reasons that had led me to land in a situation like this.
I won’t pretend and state that all has been going well with me. Let’s reserve all the goody talk for other places and get down to the real deal here.
I have been in a mess for a very long time, at least I feel so. I shared a glimpse with you here, but that is definitely not the whole picture. The whole picture isn’t very clear to myself either, but I am frantically trying to rub the steam of confusion off. After the many very helpful, reassuring comments on my last post, I sat back to think what had been the real cause of the unrest in my life.
” I used to spend so much time reacting and responding to everyone else that my life had no direction. Other people’s lives, problems, wants, set the course of my life. Once I realized it was okay for me, to think about and identify what I wanted, remarkable things began to happen in my life.” ~ Sye Wells
On one such occasion, I chanced upon reading the above lines and things began to change for good. What has been the real cause of unrest, isn’t actually Pari, but my own attitude. I have nurtured this habit of giving too much importance to everyone in my life, but myself. This has on countless occasions lead me to lose much more than my peace of mind but I have yet not learnt my lesson well.
In the three decades of my existence *gosh, did your jaw just drop?* I have done very few things for my own happiness. In retrospect, I can see even those handful of things were dictated by the wishes and liking of my forever controlling-my-life, parents. It is amazing that they never had to force me to do so, because my mind is programmed to let it happen as a ‘default’ function.
I have spent many days reflecting, digging deep to know when it actually started. I wished to reach the roots of the menace that is now standing tall like a beanstalk, threatening to steal the joys of my little princess. I might have let many wrongs happen with me, but ever since Pari walked in my life, I have gradually learnt to draw the line. I have learnt to say ‘NO’ and mean it.
Dawn of realization, that it is my habit of letting people dictate what I ought to be doing, thinking and how should I be reacting in every situation has been the real cause of my agony. These non-stop, unwanted, unasked for advises have been conflicting with the very loud and clear voice of my conscience, creating imaginary arguments in my mind. The noise of which has been driving me crazy over the years I have returned to live with my parents.
Sometimes you don’t realize, you are actually drowning when you’re trying to be everyone’s anchor.
But, enough is enough. I had to put my foot down for my own sake. For the good of my well-being and my sanity. The very fundamental rule of life is, till I am not happy as an individual, I can never ever be a sane, sensible, responsible parent to a child. It was this realization that had me take up the herculean task of breaking the (bad) habits of the other residents in my home to shove unwanted advises down my throat and worse still, making sure I acted on them.
From how should I treat Pari to what should I buy for her to how should I bring her up to how menial my earnings are. The blabber has been endless. I am well aware, changing people in their old age is impossible. But, making them see, what behavior is acceptable and what is not, is my responsibility. Even if it means waging a war at a mental level, I am up for it.
There is no force equal to a determined woman.
It was a given that I had been preparing to plunge in fire where the road to reclamation of my very being and my voice lay miles from the start point. But, I had to do it, if I wanted to lead the rest of my life on my own terms.
The resistance I initially faced, was purely directed to break me emotionally. There were days at length when my parents wouldn’t speak to me despite living in the same house and even eating all meals together. Then came the most dreaded phase of confrontation. It was when my parents with my daughter in their lap chose to confront me and hammer in my head the feeling that I was ‘no good’.
I was told in plain, clear words that I was nothing but a dependent woman with a child whose only responsibilities were to look after the child, take care of the house and ensure its smooth running.
As raw or blunt it may sound on this blog, trust me when I say, it felt like someone had poured molten metal in my ears. I was scalded. So was my soul. I bled and wept for days at length. Food was no longer a necessity for my existence and I had no memory of the times when I ate any meal properly for months at length. No one, yes, no one seemed to care either. But as the anger cooled down, the molten metal inside me, cooled to replace my frayed nerves and broken spine with those of steel.
It was a point of no return. After having endured so much pain, I was no way going to return being the docile, obedient weakling. Not anymore.
All this while, I had been resisting to declare an open war, but my parents had made it easier for me by starting it. Now that the tough part was done, all I was to do, was as my conscience dictated. Life isn’t a movie where at the end of three hours we come to know where our decisions would take us. Nevertheless, in due course of time, life hints us in many ways, if what we are doing is the right thing or not.
Cutting the long story short. In the past many months, I have continued to sustain on my earnings, bearing all expenses of my and Pari’s needs myself (like always), have successfully adopted a healthy lifestyle, learnt to love myself, sleep much better than I have in the past decade, have seen Pari obey my instructions better than ever before and most importantly, feel peace fill up my life, slowly but surely.
I am far from done in uprooting the many weeds I have let bloom in the garden of my life, but the results thus far have been very encouraging. As I continue to dig deeper in my heart, I am amazed to see myself reaching unseen heights at a steady pace.
The song on my mind: Ye kya jagah hai doston ~ Umrao Jaan