It’s Time For This Wayfarer To Create Another Map.
Questions. Aims. Goals. Ambitions. Future. Choices. Decisions. Opportunities. Regret. Detachment.
Who is to decide what are the right questions to ask? Attach a right before each one of those words above. Question yourself. So what should I choose? A future, or the connection I have with people I know?
Someone asked me recently if all the things I’m reading, and all the things I’m interested in, end in my distancing myself from a lot of people in my life. I mentioned that regrettably it has been so.
She then asked me to stay away from that. To try as much as possible to keep in touch with my past and everyone who had a role to play in it. Yet, by failing to do such things, by letting go, I’ve come to understand myself better. To understand the world better. To understand other people better.
Yet that, in turn, has led to more confusion. To a convoluted but interconnected web. It’s as though the thumbtacks were always stuck in my head, but now I’m finally connecting them with strings of wool.
It’s still tangled up, and my entire life will be this exasperatingly excruciating process of untangling it. I’m mortally afraid of that.
I don’t want to spend the rest of my life gnashing my teeth while mercilessly working my fingers to a bleeding pulp as I prick and poke and attempt to untangle with all tools possible. I want a part of the calm. Most individuals get to that calm through ignorance. That is no longer an option for me.
I don’t think my brain was ever wired for that. Don’t think the pins were placed exactly the same as it was for other people.
To get that sublime balance is barely tangible and elusive for an individual who is always embraced in a swirling storm of emotions. A functioning in chaos has transgressed into my daily being and shows in the sort of work I do. An ebb and flow in productivity, a crescendo and piercing silence.
This chaos is the root of my being. But can I use this excuse as a means to run away from a dauntingly prodigious challenge of reaching that long untangled string of calm? Probably not.
The very chaos that helps me function might destroy me. It might destroy me before I accomplish what it is that I’ve set out to do in life. To be remembered. To change lives.
Everyday, every single day, I meet individuals who term me as interesting and out-of-the-ordinary and ask me to continue being so. Yet, lesser so-called interesting beings are actually doing things, rather than just talking about them.
We try so hard to understand things before actually getting involved in them. Maybe I think so much because I’m painfully aware of the paucity of this phenomenon we call time, and wouldn’t wish to spend (read: waste) any of it doing something I’m sure I would not enjoy.
Then again, we talk about experiences. About how experiences shape us. Mold us. So why am I running away from them? Why?
Sorting out priorities is a phrase that you hear from my maddening lips as an answer to every problem. Yet, I seem only interested in hearing the sound of my voice, but not actually listening and inculcating the same. This brings me back to my first question. What are the right choices?
Should one stay ingrained in reality, or should one give oneself up to the arts and make beautiful things for the world to reflect upon? Or is it possible to do both?
If it is, I must create another map, a very physical and tangible map, a map with thumbtacks and wool and a course that I plan and determine myself. Pins placed strategically so that no one can ever again claim Destiny’s hand in place of mine.
People are important. But sometimes, we have to let go and see if they care enough to cling on and climb back up to hold you still on the rocky deck. Because as much as we wished otherwise, we are much too miniscule to the oceans of the world. But our ripples can change courses and tides.
We may dock on lands and we may discover islands. No one remembers how many other ships we traveled with if the ships do nothing but sail around a single iceberg. Stagnant mediocrity with close friends helps no one but that closed-off circle. I don’t want a circle. I want a point and a line.
A point from which several other lines emerge. To create a beam even. That’s what I’d want. That’s what I have to work for.
So I’m going to start working on this map of mine. Someone once told me that anything is achievable. We just need to keep it simple. Simple plans and several simple short-term aims that add up to the biggest one. I’m putting that in action.
It’s about time I stop preaching and get off my armchair.
Arathy Kushalappa is a 21-year-old Law student trying to find her niche in a world that offers too much. She spends her days sleeping, and her nights subjecting herself to too many hours of contemplation, (over)thinking, and imaginary epic fantasy battles involving mythical creatures.