Everybody is busy reviewing their year and as much as you feel like giving those reviews a cold shoulder, you cannot escape its despicable claws. As I was talking to a friend yesterday and discussing the year that went by, the usual remark of ‘I cannot believe it is December already!’ blurted itself out from my mouth. He disagreed with me and rather said that he could believe it was December, because he could trace his journey through the year. I stopped to think, and realised he was right.
This has indeed been a fulfilling year in a lot of ways for me. Jagriti Yatra to start the year, where I met half a thousand people, Teach for India selection, TISS interview, quitting my job at Fractal, working relentlessly even during the notice period, taking the tough call to teach and study at the same time, exiting MAD Fellowship and sadly MAD too, attending Semester 1 at TISS which was one of the most amazing experiences of the year, crushing myself at the Teach for India training in Pune, starting to teach in Malad to 53 lovely 6th graders, completing all assignment work in a week, clearing semester 1, visiting Ahmadabad to reconnect with why I do what I do, turning 24, attending Semester 2 which was even more amazing, and finally, today writing this.
It has been one hell of a year.
Till yesterday, I felt uneasy. I think I felt afraid that I was missing out on life. Afraid, that I am getting no time to myself, while I am in my “best years”. Scared, to think of the constantly changing future. Guilty, of not giving my best to my family. Guilty again, to not giving time to music. Guilty thrice, that I do not exercise. You can infer the way in which my thoughts were going.
However, what changed today is the fact that I revisited one of the few things I absolutely believe in.
Life is simple, let’s not make it so hard.
(There is an entire TEDx talk on this, by a wonderful man from Thailand whose name I cannot recall.)
While I agree life shouldn’t be taken as a joke, of course we are extremely lucky to have one. It’s a wonderful world.. and all that, yes. However, it’s completely okay to make it your own, to give it your own touch. Stop thinking about all the wonderful things happening with everyone else, fearing that you are the one, who’s left behind. Look at what you managed to accomplish, where you were and where you are. Have you grown? Have you laughed? Did you get your heart broken? Did you cry yourself to sleep; only this time, didn’t you manage it better? Did you travel and meet new people? Did you change opinions on some of your most rigid beliefs? Did you venture into something new just because your instincts told you to do it? If even half of the answers are yes, my friend, you have lived wonderfully.
Maybe things did not go exactly like you planned, maybe they did. It’s okay, you will make a new plan. You will be surprised again. If you made mistakes, instead of resenting them, accept them. Learn from them. Take a chill pill.
Sometimes I feel I want to rush through the 20s, avoid the confusing part and jump to the 30s. Not because 30s are more sorted, but because I want to get done with all the drama youth has to offer. I certainly feel we place a lot of undue importance to this decade, calling it out as our best phase. I feel my teens were equally exciting and so will be my 30s. It’s a smokescreen, and frankly, whichever decade you enter, you will have a hundred experiences waiting for you. However, let’s hold that thought because I am brewing a theory about overestimating the youth. If it goes through, shall definitely post it.
If you haven’t been able to reflect on the year that went by, I would suggest to not let Facebook do your review for you. Do it on your own. Take a couple of days off, thank Jesus for Christmas. I am planning my vacation, when are you? Oh also, do enjoy the shaadi season. Don’t cry because yes, everyone you know is getting married. It’s fine. Nothing can beat free food, however predictable it might be. So get stuffed, and enjoy the invitations.
There are no conclusive thoughts to offer, no concrete take-aways. Kuch tha kehne ko, keh diya. This has been one of the most productive conversations I’ve had with myself in a while. Cheers! 🙂