He was staring at the ceiling for hours on end. He had nowhere to be. All he did was hang out with people similar to him, with no direction, with nothing that they wanted to do and anything that they could do they did not want to. In a world surrounded by brands, advertisements, startups, they just did not fit in. They were not meant to be here. All of them alien to the now that is happening all around them, but bonded by a togetherness that separated them from the rest of the world. A world, that just dove head first into things that made this world a better place.
He thought “What about the other worlds that these people do not see? The worlds that run parallel to theirs? Do they not see us? Is it just their way or no way at all? What about what I want to do? Do they even care about it? Or are they too blind to the fact that they are clones, aspire to be clones and are living in and creating a world full of clones?” They laughed at him. Laughter of depression, agony, frustration and well frankly the hatred towards their own selves. Helpless selves that could only be jealous of the truth that was being spoken.
Bubbles all around them, a world full of unicorns, all this happening right in front of them, they could just never fit in.
He was one of them. As each of the cigarettes that he lit, just came to an end with no purpose, so did his days. Lapsing time without meaning is not moving forward. It is not progress at all. It just creates an illusion of us moving by, while time runs amok and just passes by. Waking up with a hangover each day, hating every minute of what was ahead of him, scared about the hours that just keep passing by like clouds on a dreary evening and drowning in alcohol instead of sorrows by the night. He trudged along pledging all that had come to his mind. A fresh day for many, but just time that had to be tiresomely walked along for him. He hated his life, but had just enough energy left to not end it all at once. Energy that emerged from the group that surrounded him. Some of them conformed under pressure and did what they did not want to do, while some ran away to be at a better place because they could afford to do so. The latter never came back. Even if they did, it was to conform to the way that had been set by the society for them and not the way that they wanted to travel in. He could neither confirm nor afford the luxury to go away and disappear.
One day, he woke up and then it hit him. “What have I been doing all my life? For better or worse I spent each day trying to do what I never wanted do in the first place but did it anyway because I was scared of the overpowering, strangling love that was being showered upon me each day by my parents. But what if, just for today I do what I will to do. Would it make me a bad person?”
He said to himself “I never knew what I wanted because I was never exposed to rest of the choices. What if I just opened up to all that this world had to offer?
I know, I communicate poorly. My English is bad even for the most basic of the jobs out there. All this is definitely not because my parents thought it was a good idea that I concentrate not on how to communicate but on the Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry that I absolutely could not do.
It was because I never wanted to do them in the first place. Getting into the most prestigious institution of all time – is that all that life had to offer. It was prestigious according to who? All the people around my parents who my parents care more about than me, on the pretext that I would have a better life?
I keep hearing that getting into that “prestigious” institution turns out to be not satisfying for ninety nine percent of the people that do get in. That makes me happy.
My parents were not sure of my success, (in turn setting me up to fail). So, I had to appear for a thousand other exams. I did not do well in any of them. Not even the one that lets me into the “local” colleges. My parents had to buy their way into the course that made me an engineer. They invested their life savings into my education and what did it buy them? A place for me at an engineering college on the lowest of the lower rungs on the cone of engineering colleges in my country.
I hated everyday of it, but I had to do it. Lest, I break my parent’s heart. They invested so much in me. I never asked them to. But they did it anyway. I keep questioning myself – is that all I am to them? An investment they “had to” take forward? Distraction had now become a habit. After all that is what I trained myself to do the last four years in every single class. I am a champion at this. But, not running off to the side – What if I just opened up to all that this world had to offer?”
So, he did. A ray of hope entered his life in the form of a life changing idea. He gambled with all that he had. He became successful! He just faded away from the group. His parents were now ready to die and that is all he ever wanted. He joined the unicorns and rode the rainbows to the pot of gold at the end.
A newbie took his place and started staring at the ceiling. The group was happy to have new blood and it began all over again…
Go out, expose yourself. Feel vulnerable. Never worry about falling down, disappointing your parents or that discussion that you need to have right now with your parents because you cannot keep living your life for them. Gamble, fall down, get back up and realize it is all a mere game. The result of the game is not important. How you play it is, for that is the key to not having regrets and being happy.