One fine day, amidst the humdrum of life, I stumbled on the book “One’s Own, Yet Different” It’s a miracle how the universe serves as a messenger for when you need ‘that life-changing message’ the most. I have always believed in equality of living beings, irrespective of their form, and in the motto – free, fair and fearless. It has not been one easy to follow, and neither easy to motivate others to always respect it, but try one must.
So, as I retrospect, the beautiful illustrations of the book dancing in front of my eyes, I recall some journeys that I have been a fellow traveller to – a journey of a mother, bringing up her four children, along with a nondescript, permanently drunk ‘father’ of sorts; or that friend trying to strike the ever-elusive balance between professional and personal lives – the latter witnessing her metamorphosis from a daughter to a mother for her bed-ridden parents; or, perhaps that old lady who has parked herself next to a building, seemingly now one with it, chucked out by her sons, just craving for a kind word and a meal of sorts; or that other woman who plays ‘other woman’ to a man, so that her children can be more than just fed; or… life throws up many contrasts, and we have been brought up to be rather judgemental, unless we become part of the same story, which is when it seems like an awakening.
What eludes us most of the time is ‘balance’. Anything in a wee bit more of quantity tips the balance, and the ‘balance’ is lost and the questions pop up – Am I a good daughter? Am I good wife? Am I a good mother? And the list never ends, neither do the questions. In each question, the ‘I’ remains, but is still so lost. It seems to come at the end of a line of duties that never seem to end. What about the duty to the self? What about the love towards one’s own – the body, mind and spirit? What about time for the self? Yes, yes, we know all of that, but how much of it can we implement? Can we stop beating ourselves because unrealistic goals could not be fulfilled? Yes, we can, but do we? We do, perhaps, but does it become a habit? Perhaps not. The humdrum of life takes over, yet again.
I look at the book, and its simple words, and beautiful illustrations, and wonder…wonder about my life, and I struggle, each day, to maintain my core…the being I was, and strive to be…do I still hold the right to hold ambitions and desires, as I once did? I wonder; I look at myself in the mirror, and wonder…yes, its time to shake off the dust, to stand up for me…for free, fair and fearless…for what I am, and what I aspire to be. I don’t wont to wither away into nothingness…no, definitely not. I was meant to be more than just somebody. Was I not?