Sunday, August 28, 2011

Will the suffering ever end?

With passing time newspapers are overflowing with incidents related to woman abuse. Despite the presence of many organizations like UN Women, Amnesty International, conditions are only worsening. Many of these cases are a consequence of cultural practices persisting in regions like Asia and Africa. Regardless of it being a criminal offence, authorities have not been able to curtail these inhuman transgressions. Seven terrible abuses suffered by women all over the world include:

- Bride Kidnapping:

A tradition practiced in Central Asia and parts of Africa, bride kidnapping is a form of forced marriage. Owing to customs, the desired girl is kidnapped by the prospective groom and persuaded to accept the marriage proposal. In some cases the girl also becomes a victim of rape- an act on the kidnapper’s part to prevent rejection from the girl’s family. It has been estimated that up to a third of all ethnic Kyrgyz women in Kyrgyzstan may have been wedded in nonconsensual bride kidnapping.

- Honor Killing:

It is murder in the name of honor carried out on a female member of the family who is believed to have brought disgrace to the family. “A woman can be targeted by (individuals within) her family for a variety of reasons, including: refusing to enter into an arranged marriage, being the victim of a sexual assault, seeking a divorce—even from an abusive husband—or (allegedly) committing adultery.” (Human Rights Watch). According to UN, honor killings have been reported in Bangladesh, Brazil, Ecuador, Egypt, India, Israel, Italy, Jordan, Morocco, Pakistan, Sweden, Turkey, Uganda and the United Kingdom.

- Bride Burning:

Every hour and forty minutes an Indian woman is lit on fire. This domestic violence is practiced in the sub-continent, where the bride is burned to death by the husband’s family, primarily due to disputes on dowry issues.

- Acid Attacks:

It is a form of violence prevalent in Cambodia, Afghanistan, India, and Bangladesh in which the perpetrators throw acid at their victims. This act leads to scarring of the face or body and potential blindness, ruining the life of the victim.

- Female Genital Mutilation:

FGM refers to several types of deeply-rooted ‘traditional’ cutting operations performed on women and girls. It is mainly practiced in Northeast Africa and parts of the Near East and Southeast Asia where the victims undergo procedures that involve partial or total removal of the external female genitalia. For more info regarding FGM visit: http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs241/en/

- Human Trafficking:

Despite number of resolutions being passed by the UN, trafficking in women and girls has become one of the fastest growing enterprises in the world. The United Nations estimates that over two million women and girls are taken from their homeland into other countries under false pretenses for the purposes of forced labor, domestic servitude or sexual exploitation. The major destinations include Western Europe, the Middle East (Turkey, Israel, the United Arab Emirates), Asia, Russia and the United States.

- Ritual Servitude:

In regions like Ghana, Tongo and Benin, virgin girls are handed over by families to traditional religious shrines as atonement for alleged misdeeds or in order to pay services. This happens without the consent of the girl (also known as fetish slave) who is then bound to serve the priests as a sex slave.

DISCLAIMER: This post has quotations from different sources, which have been mentioned and was written only for the sake of spreading information (after being inspired by another article on the same topic).

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Pakistan- a country with tied wings

Roger Tory Peterson said: “Birds have wings; they're free; they can fly where they want when they want. They have the kind of mobility that humans envy.”

Thanks to Red-bull, the concept of humans having wings has turned into some sort of a reality. But if we look at it metaphorically, do humans have wings? And if so, what does the ability to fly signify?

The answer is simple- To be able to fly, is to be free.

Pakistan is a country with great untapped economic resources, a lot of talent and definitely, uncertain political conditions. At this instant, when I’m here practicing the so called- ‘Freedom of speech’, this very country stands at one of the most important crossroads of its brief and tumultuous history. A country which was founded on the notion of ‘freedom’ for all, tolerance towards each other’s religious, political and personal views- is now dieing a painful death.

And why so? Because the ideology which built it up was abandoned 64 years back, sadly. The Quaid decided to get rid of the British Raj which ruled over us, which had limited our very own freedom. But was he really successful??? I have my own doubts.

Right now, Pakistan is indeed a country with tied wings. It has no ideology of its own, no free will, and no authority to exercise its sovereignty. It is struggling in the clutches of:

a) Sectarianism,

b) Ethnocentrism,

c) Lack of ownership

The wings which we were supposed to have after 1947, were never used to soar up high. Our aims always remained low- Look back at history, what were we aiming for so far???? Weren't our rulers trying to strengthen their own political parties? Were they not in the midst of attempts to make their own so-called leaders look like messiahs? Did we work to build our future, or did we just crush it under the feet of our nostalgic passions? We were and still remain a slave to the world’s super powers- We don’t make our decisions, THEY do that. And who gave them the power to do so? No-one… but us.

Rumi said “You were born with wings. Why prefer to crawl through life?

Yes, each and every one of us has wings. And aren’t we the ones who make Pakistan? Then why aren’t we aiming for the sky? Why have we tied our own wings in non-existent chains? If each and every Pakistani starts owning Pakistan, starts working for it, starts realizing their responsibility- this country would no longer have tied wings. Look at Libya, Egypt, Yemen- These countries too had a similar situation as ours, but who released their wings afterwards? Not a messiah, but the very own Libyans, Egyptians, Yemeni.

How long will we wait?

The Founder of Pakistan, Quaid-e-Azam Mohammad Ali Jinnah said: "If you change your past and work together in a spirit that everyone of you, no matter to what community he belongs, no matter what relations he had with you in the past, no matter what is his colour, caste or creed, is first, second and last a citizen of this State with equal rights, privileges, and obligations, there will be on end to the progress you will make." (11th August, 1947)

Tied wings or not. Wings do exist. And that gives Pakistan the ability to soar up high. For how long will we crawl when we have the ability to fly, that decision depends upon us.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Seven Reasons Why You Wont Say 'SORRY'

We all make mistakes- it's like an attribute of human beings. But then (most of the times) after committing those mistakes, you feel like undo-ing them. Though life doesn't provide you with an undo-button, for your convenience it has given you one word to make use of to partially erase your errors. And that word is 'Sorry'.
Despite it's availability, people often avoid using this word. Why?? Following are the seven reasons why might be you wont prefer saying 'sorry' to someone:

  1. You're conscience has been brutally murdered by your very own hands. Yes, the 'Mother Teresa' of your soul kept on telling you that you are responsible for the havoc in your life and the other person's life. It kept on insisting how utterly wrong and foolish you were. Finally, labeling it as a traitor, you made it your victim- silencing it forever. No more reality checks.
  2. "Why the heck should I say sorry??", says your ego. It's the monster which has invaded your heart and mind, and has instilled anti-clear conscience feelings in every muscle of yours. With such a heavy dose of 'insensitivity', all you want to do is kill all those culprits (read innocent people) and make THEM apologize. You're the Hitler of your time, and the rest should stick to their role as the Jews.
  3. You're a part of the 'not wrong, just misunderstood' group No matter how hard you try to be good, your good-ness is always mistaken as 'hypocrisy'. When all of your 'sorry's are deemed as a conspiracy, you give up all hopes and decide to stay shut. 'Sorry no longer matters to them'- is your excuse.
  4. You are plain scared. Yes, you are scared to admit your mistake. You have no ego; your conscience is fully awake, but YOU are frightened. You worry that the world might point fingers at you and make your life hell due to this small acceptance. Being mocked at is the last thing you want.
  5. You're least bothered. "Did I hurt anyone? Oh well...they'll get over it."- this is your justification. Sorry is not in your Dictionary and neither is it a part of your vocabulary. Unfortunately, your mind is too occupied with other stuff, or... you're too lazy to make the effort.
  6. You waste a lot of time analyzing situations. Your habit of calculating possibilities to resolve problems though other means, prevents you from saying the five-lettered word at the right time. All the effort of your amazing brain goes to waste as the main thing remains unsaid.
  7. 'Sorry' is so last century. You prefer doing things your own way- why not wall the other person something sweet or dedicate a status to them to 're-establish' your bond. Even alternative words and phrases like 'Peace', 'No hard feelings, right?', 'Cheers :)' work. But 'Sorry'......no way!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Bottled up Emotions

There are times when you have a lot to say, but words alienate you. Words are sometimes a person's best ally and at times a big traitor. These very words can do wonders and on the other hand even have the power to wreck the things that matter to you the most. But at this instant, I think they're going to be my refuge. Like (almost) always.

I always thought I was special. Not because I was exceptionally talented. The only thing that made me feel different was my determination. I believed in the fact that I could do everything without being especially gifted. By the grace of God, I was able to do everything that for others was impossible. But unfortunately something went wrong in that process. I earned everything I wanted: respect, fame. Success was there at my feet. BUT, I had to loose a lot to get all of this. My friends shunned me; still don’t know why. It's funny that when you are happy, very few people are there who still remain as they were before. And when you're there in the gutter, everyone's there to shower you with their sympathies. Sadly, I was never accepted in my class as an equal because of reasons still unclear (not unknown) to me. I never made good friends...till the end (not including a few exceptions); never got the opportunity to feel that I have someone to trust, someone who won’t back stab me. I don’t know if I didn't deserve anyone like that, or I actually didn’t look hard enough for that friend. But then after a while it all became very simple. Living alone wasn't impossible. It was just ‘not easy’. From then onwards trusting people became nothing but a flaw close to me… Till the day I found this very special person...

This person had everything I wanted in my friend. Everything. We were quite close, and I guess the thing that tied us were words. Feelings were there too but they were a part of our ‘wordly’ world. Life was great. I was no longer alone. And I had planned my forever too! It was simply divine, I tell you. All those moments were heavenly, just as I had imagined. The people who hated me no longer mattered. I simply had no time for them. I was too busy being happy in the true sense- an emotion I had never experienced till I met this friend. But then like all good things come to an end; this friendship too came to an end.
For a person like me; determined, never giving up- life now seemed nothing but a mess. I didn’t want to give up on our friendship, on everything we shared. It was a simple, honest relation. The very words that ignited the souls within our bodies, bringing us close together became responsible for the fire that burnt everything. And now I’m left with nothing but a sinking feeling telling me again and again: Was trusting someone really worth it? Was I right when I accepted the fact that I’d rather hurt than feel nothing at all?
The feeling is so poisonous that every time it invades my body, it leaves a part of me numb. There are times when you end up doing childish things, out of nothing but the sheer insecurity occupying your mind. And then justifying your stance, explaining to the person for whom you did everything the reason behind the action turns out to be impossible. You can’t take back those words. You can’t turn back time. You can’t make things alright. All you can do is bear the brunt of your action, despite the pure intentions behind it. It’s so difficult defending yourself from a person whom you thought would defend you always when the world would turn against you. But I guess that’s just a part of fairytales. Stories based on nothing but words…with no link to reality.

And now when I have almost everything, for a moment I felt as if I have nothing. Why do things that your life abandons at a certain stage matter so much? Why can’t they be like every normal I-don’t-give-a-shit kind of thing? They say that forgetting someone important is like remembering someone you never met. How true that is, I don’t know. After all the attempts to save the relation, I feel as if it was bound to sink from the every beginning because its base was weak. Weak because it started with meaningless words, and ended with hollow words.

And so instead of being all sad for even a day more, I’ve decided to wipe away those memories and save myself from the pain. What’s done is done, and there’s no point in looking back. Right now, all I need to do is be happy- for no-one but me.

So for all those who bothered reading this, I learnt a few lessons which I’d like to share:

- Don’t rely on anyone. It’s difficult handling your emotions alone. But trust me, you can do it. Don’t show any one your weak side. No-one’s as innocent as you think they are.


- Don’t underestimate the power of words. Weigh them a thousand times before letting them out in any form. They can break and mend hearts at the same time. They can even be an indicator of a person’s personality, so use them wisely. Just don’t fall for flowery praises. Look for the truth behind each word. I know that’s difficult, but then life was never easy.


- If to anyone your life seems like a ‘drama’- make it very clear to them that they’re not invited to watch it and can leave as soon as possible. No-one’s life is a drama. Everyone has problems, and even if they are very tiny, they’re still present there. You’ve got to eradicate them instead of letting others demotivate you by telling you that your life is nothing but a pointless stage show.

- You don’t need anyone who doesn’t value your tears. They’re precious. But to some they are nothing but a solution of Sodium Chloride. So you better clean sweep these people from your life, or you’d have to uselessly suffer from a deficiency of minerals.

- Hardships, pain, suffering, mistakes- all can either take you a hundred steps ahead or a hundred steps back. It’s your choice which path you take; whether you decide to go forward or backward. It’s this route which determines who you are- not the people responsible for the hardships you had to bear.


- And no matter WHAT people say you’re beautiful and unique the way you are, even if people shun you from their groups. Mind you, I didn’t say perfect- there’s always room for improvement. Keep trying to be a better human being all the time. Ask people why they have issues with you. If you do not get a proper response, understand that they are jealous of you. And jealous people should be left alone. Soon they’d realize their mistake and regret what they did.

- Never think you’re not good enough to have companions. Friends are not made in this world; they’re destined to be with you and will definitely find you at the right time. Still if you feel you’re lonely; remember someone up there is watching over you, all the time. And to Him, you’re a VIP :)


- Last but not the least, remember: Somewhere over the rainbow, skies are blue and the dreams that you dare to dream really do come true :)

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Agnes- Despicable Me



"It's so Fluffy...I'm gonna die."

Two Kinds of Intelligence

There are two kinds of intelligence: one acquired,
as a child in school memorizes facts and concepts
from books and from what the teacher says,
collecting information from the traditional sciences
as well as from the new sciences.

With such intelligence you rise in the world.
You get ranked ahead or behind others
in regard to your competence in retaining
information. You stroll with this intelligence
in and out of fields of knowledge, getting always more
marks on your preserving tablets.

There is another kind of tablet, one
already completed and preserved inside you.
A spring overflowing its springbox. A freshness
in the center of the chest. This other intelligence
does not turn yellow or stagnate. It’s fluid,
and it doesn’t move from outside to inside
through conduits of plumbing-learning.

This second knowing is a fountainhead
from within you, moving out.

From: Essential Rumi

A Short Poem by Rumi


Only you

I choose among the entire world.
Is it fair of you
letting me be unhappy?


My heart is a pen in your hand.
It is all up to you
to write me happy or sad.

I see only what you reveal
and live as you say.
All my feelings have the color
you desire to paint.

From the beginning to the end,
no one but you.

Please make my future
better than the past.

When you hide I change
to a Godless person,
and when you appear,
I find my faith.

Don't expect to find
any more in me
than what you give.

Don't search for
hidden pockets because
I've shown you that
all I have is all you gave.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Confessions of a Confider

Sometimes when you've got a lava of emotions building inside you, you just need someone to confide in- someone who would only listen to you, who won’t pity you and who won’t be judgmental. However wrong you might be, you want that one person to accept what you are saying as a holy truth. Not for a moment does it strike you that once you start confiding, you would cross all your limits; you won’t weigh your words before depositing them in front of your confidante. Later on, you might label it as a mistake or a peaceful escape- depending on the consequences that follow.

Why do we need someone to listen to us? Why can't man cope up with his emotions himself? Why are we so dependent on someone to attain mental peace- someone who might be having problems similar to ours and might be even having his own confidantes? Sometimes I think I rely too much on what others think about me and my life. I want someone to tell me whether I'm right or not, half of the time. But I'm not the only one out there. It's not being intimidated. It's something worse than that. It's letting others control what you think and what you do. That's what makes you vulnerable in the end. Not the secrets that you spill out, but the fact that you NEED someone.

During a discussion in class, I put up a notion that man doesn't need anyone to share emotions with. He can survive without friends (because they are nothing but a way to escape from reality), and rely upon his Creator. I was confronted by my classmates. My teacher said that you do need a person (read human being) to console you, calm you and soothe you. "You need someone who would understand your feelings; who would listen and respond to you; who won’t be mute.” she said. But God's mute. He listens and responds in His own ways. Not through words, but through other means. After all, He is the Giver of mental peace. Then WHY do we need someone to hear us out?

Can't we battle the war within us? Or are we too weak to confront our own self. Is it because it would prick our conscience when we realize that we are wrong, and then we would want someone with a similar thinking pattern to assure us that what we did was right? Or are we actually looking for angels in this human world, sent from heaven to show us the right way?

The more I resolve to keep my feelings confined to myself, the more I give in to the temptation of sharing the pain. Sometimes the mistake has a sweet reward in the end, and sometimes a bitter one. Sometimes the result justifies the deed, and sometimes... it's just another futile effort to make amendments or solve inexplicable mysteries. It's just the 'don't-tell-anyone's and the 'I-can-trust-you's that bind us to our confidantes, giving them their supreme position... till the moment when we realize that they aren't any angels, but humans who are bound to falter somewhere or the other. And that marks the beginning of a hate-relationship and the 'I-can't-trust-anyone' stories. But the question remains, do we really need to confide in someone to relieve ourselves from the excruciating mental pain? Or has the time come when we would face our own self and kill the source of that pain/anxiety with our very own hands? - vanquish our demons, our problems alone.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Harsh Realities


In about five days time I have my Language paper (for which I can not prepare now). So I decided to write a couple of essays (at least one daily). The thing I noticed while writing these was that most of the time my story revolved around a tragedy. There was always a gloomy environment set up in one part or the other. Sometimes the character's life was overshadowed by a close companion's death; ruined by the consequences of a bad habit like drugs
or spent in repentance over past mistakes.It shocked me to the core to notice that the optimism slowly evaporated as the story went on. And then this question arose : "Are we getting more and more pessimistic as time passes by?"

I remember the bubbly old side of me, when I would go chirping around exuding happiness wherever I went. "Optimistic phrases" were a natural gift that I possessed. But the more I got involved in my surroundings, the more I noticed the negative impacts of human interference in nature's working, the more I differentiated between right and wrong; the further I got confused. now it seems that writing about a sad event (which relates to me somehow or the other) is easier. Releasing the ugly lava of emotions in words, instead of spewi
ng it over someone else (who might be having his own troubles) is left as the last resort. I wonder how disappointed God would be in me. He created such a beautiful universe thinking that it might distract humans from their difficult chores for a while and give them that precious moment of realization. But now is this moment of realization playing any role in changing lives? We aren't getting involved in the phenomenal nature God bestowed upon us. Instead we are getting more involved in the havoc that surrounds us. Whether it be political turmoil, shedding of innocent blood, the random surges of jealousy towards someone etc all come down to one thing: making us pessimistic. What can we do? Every single thing in this world seems fake. Nothing is reliable: words, news, researches, the world's truth. Even people. And then it just strikes me, how can one be happy when they have nothing to build that happiness upon and to construct those castles of aspirations on. Nothing's stable. Nothing's worth believing, I guess. Except God.

As time passes by our priorities change. And that is where the fault lies. When conditional things turn into obligations, we are often betrayed. Mostly due to our wrong perceptions. And that is how the pessimism diffuses in, invading all of our cells, making us think of ONLY negative possibilities.

When a person has SO much to ponder upon, when there are thousands of stimulae present in the environment waiting to instigate that Pituitary gland of yours causing it to release the adrenaline which makes you go bonkers- How can one focus on peaceful, happy things?

I hope I end up writing a good, cheerful essay in my paper. Pessimism never helps. NEVER.
And this reminds me of one very beautiful quote, which is dedicated to all those pessimists out there:

"Never cut down a tree in winter time.
Never make a negative decision in the low time.
Never make your most important decisions when you are in your worst moods.
Wait. be patient. The storm will pass. The spring will come."
Robert H. Schuller.

PS: SEE. I again wrote something pessimistic!
PPS: If you're sad, listen to Bruno Mars! <3



A Different Perspective



One day a father of a very wealthy family took his son on a trip to the country with the firm purpose of showing his son how poor people live.

They spent a couple of days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family. On their return from the trip, the father asked his son, “How was the trip?” “It was great, Dad”.

“Did you see how poor people live?” the father asked.

“Oh yes”, said the son. “So, tell me, what did you learn from the trip?” asked the father.

The son answered, “I saw that we have one dog and they had four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of the garden and they have a creek that has no end. We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night.

Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon. We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight. We have servants to serve us, but they serve others.

We buy our food, but they grow theirs. We have walls around our property to protect us, they have friends to protect them.”

The boy’s father was speechless. Then his son added, “Thanks Dad, for showing me how poor we are.”

(Taken from Paulo Coelho's blog- this was posted as a comment by one of the followers, Sangeeta)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Silence

‘Silence’ is the most oft-repeated word in a teenager’s life. Teenagers are bubbly, full of enthusiasm, chirpy- while this word is a killer for them. We often get to hear sermons from our parents and elders on how important silence is in one’s life, which often start with the typical silence-shows-your-good-and-womanly-personality statements and end with it-saves-you-from-trouble declarations. But is silence only and only linked to ‘The Greater Good’? Personally, I don’t think so.

A teenager like me might not be totally acquainted with the true meaning of ‘silence’. Those who have suffered by the hands of this very silence are the handicapped ones of our society- the deaf and the dumb. How utterly difficult it seems remaining silent, controlling your emotions and knowing that you would never be able to phrase the lava of feelings bubbling inside you into words, is a question only they can answer. For them, silence is the thing which separates them from the world outside.

Words are the easiest way of communication, and I guess people who are blessed to use this medium do not really know the pros and cons of it. Silence can kill. Yes, physically and mentally. While in old times silence was accepted as a holy trait, nowadays it is deemed as the biggest flaw in any person’s persona. It is labelled as a weakness. And this weakness paves a path for others to take advantage of any person. Silence might be indicating innocence, but does this world value innocence? Innocent people are crushed as easily as those rose buds which die instantly when a person tramples on them. A life of silence is not less than a life of misery. Is such a life worth living?

In the subcontinent, marriages serve as the best example of how silence can ruin lives. Girls are forced into marrying someone they do not wish to marry, while their opinions (which are rarely expressed due to the fear of social stigma) are also not taken into consideration. In such cases, silence becomes a cage for them, snatching away the freedom they would have attained if their feelings would have taken the shape of words. Not only this, but silence also promotes injustice. A bloody picture of silence was painted artistically by the Sialkot incident in which two young boys were brutally beaten to death while the people around just stopped and stared. Their silence took away lives, and murdered humanity.

But silence on the other hand can also be a weapon. Debates in which everyone is busy fuming over small issues, a successful debater remains silent, and observes. And when finally that person speaks, everyone is forced to seal their lips, because such a person is more rational, and has more valid and concrete points which have been accumulated from the minutes of silence he spent preparing his rebuttal.

Moreover, when it comes to arguments with parents or your spouse, silence plays an important role as it prevents petty issues from turning into disastrous life-ruining decisions. In some cases (definitely not all), it makes the other person realize his mistake too (which is very commonly seen in movies and soaps). A person who argues a lot and is busy showering words upon the other person, often fails in justifying his stance. Less and meaningful words matter more, while the rest of the time silence helps in promoting a peaceful atmosphere. This is precisely why all the Prophets and saints believed in the power of meditation. Take the example of Holy Prophet or Gautuma Buddha- a major part of their life has been spent in meditation, not in arguments involving a hefty exchange of words. Saying the right thing at the right moment is what matters. While for the not-so-right moments, silence is a heavenly abode. This protective bubble saves you from exaggeration, lies and embarrassing moments. And this is precisely why people often say that when words are silver, silence is gold.

In the 21st century, however, unless and until one expresses his opinions, a person has absolutely no worth. His ideas, his creativity, and his originality- everything piles up in a corner which is shadowed by his silence. To flourish in this world and to leave behind a mark, one should strike a correct balance between silence and verbal expression. In this way, he can become a saint while being a billionaire.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Saying Good-bye

As I sit outside the emergency room, my eyes red and swollen, I envy the parents coming out of Room 21 with happiness spread all over their faces. Their hands are gently clasping the small creature as if even a slight pressure would deprive them of their recently gained happiness. A tear trickles down my cheek. Seventeen years ago, anyone could have envied my happiness too...

George and I were very happy. the extent of our happiness had no boundaries. The small blue eyes, peeping out at us, gave us a heavenly pleasure. We finally had a reason to live.

And it was Jamie.

Jamie was like a ray of light in my life which had been engulfed in darkness. Despite the way George physically abused me, I was contented. I was happy with my 'small family'. But soon I realized that there is no such thing as eternal happiness.

When Jamie turned six, our family no longer consisted of three people. Now it was just me and Jamie. Jamie never questioned why dad left, never cried in my presence, never shared the sorrow which was eating him from within. When I had seen the divorce papers, my heart had shattered into a thousand tiny pieces. But I still kept myself strong. That day I had realized, that saying Good-bye is not that hard, because after it life still moved on.

I watched Jamie grow from two feet to five feet. I watched him while he made those perfectly structured sand castles at the beach, every now and then glancing at the 'complete' families around. I helped him ride his bicycle, something he had dreamt of doing since he was two. I made him do his homework, often playing with his curly hair, entwining them in my fingers. I had seen him turn from a new born baby into a grown up child; but I guess he never saw me. He never realized that I was always there by his side, like his guardian angel. I didn't blame him. I might not have been the reason for his existence, but for me he was the sole reason behind every single breath I inhaled with my broken body.

Time flew by. Jamie entered Mount College, one of the most prestigious educational institutions in New Jersey. And what made me proud was that he did it all with his own efforts. He was the first student who had received full scholarship from the institute. I was happy for Jamie, despite the fact that I couldn't read his name on the Certificate of Merit. AH! I was getting old; white hair, fragile bones, weak sight... but within this old body I still had a strong will, to make Jamie reach the top; to see his own family flourish. I had hopes and before I said good-bye to him forever, I wanted my dreams to turn into reality.

But that was not to be.

A few months later, I could sense that something was wrong with Jamie. The dark circles around his eyes, the blood stains on his shirt, all made me really uncomfortable. Whenever I asked him about this, he just smiled. He smiled the kind of smile anyone could fall for, and then he would give me a tight hug. He was fine. Yes, fine till that day only, I guess.

Two days later upon entering his room what I saw made my heart ache. He was there, my Jamie, trembling from head to toe. His hands clasped a syringe filled with a yellow liquid. Without opening his closed eyes, he brought the tip of the needle near his wrist and within a second punctured his skin with it. I saw the yellow fluid, vanishing from the syringe, and entering Jamie's vein. His muscles relaxed, and a smile adorned his face. It was pleasure; satisfaction. Without looking at me, he pushed his body back towards the bed and dozed off. I was confused...my Jamie was in danger, but I didn't know what to do.

The next day, an argument broke out between Jamie and me. It was the first time he argued with me. I cried but he didn't wipe my tears. He has not my Jamie and he made that clear when he stormed out of the room. This time, no good-byes. And that was when I lost hope. Not all, some. My Jamie had left me alone.

But deep inside I knew that we would meet each other soon. I just knew it.

However, the way we met again, sealed all my hopes of attaining happiness forever.

Two days later, Dr. Phillips called to inform me about my son's complicated situation. He was struggling between life and death. And so was I.

Just a few hours later, Jamie left me. Lung Cancer took away from me my most precious possession. I kissed his bluish skin, the swollen veins on his hand, his dry lips. If only my love had the power to bring him back. If only my love could heal his punctured skin, remove the abscesses from his legs, make his heart beat once again. I have said so many good-byes. But this good-bye never left my lips. Good-byes are said when you depart from someone but Jamie? Jamie was still there, right in front of me; playing a cruel game.

Everyone has left the hospital, but here I am, convincing myself that Jamie never left. I couldn't say good-bye to him...because I could never let him go. Life just couldn't move on without him. Jamie, if only you knew how much I loved you.

The next second, darkness engulfed me.
Good-bye world. Good-bye.

Idle Thoughts


I often wonder, what am I actually doing here? As every second passes by , I ponder over the things i did in the previous seconds. Time flies by, but where? how? why?

Life seems purposeless nowadays. With no community service, it really seems pointless. Studies, studies, studies. That's it. Where am I heading? Is getting a degree really the purpose of my life? Do my grades really matter that much? I don't know. Does an A* really define my potentials?

What if I die tomorrow...what then? What is the value of the breaths I'm taking in every minute? Suicide rates have rocketed upwards, natural calamities are greeting us every now and then, every other soul on this planet is restless. What is God planning up there? For me, for us.

Do ambitions really matter? Are they as important as the smile which we rarely bother to share?...Is it REALLY that hard, making someone else happy? Do we HAVE t o judge people? Can't we leave everyone alone...letting them do whatever they want to do? Where is this life heading?

Right now I'm sad. Daily I go for tuitions, I come back home, Face-book, eat, pray and sleep. I chatter non-stop throughout the day, trying to make people laugh, just trying to help them get rid of their sorrows. But does that really help?

Why do words hurt so much, when they just have a momentary existence in our life? Why do we argue to prove our points right? Why do we say 'sorry' when we know we're going to repeat the same thing again? Why do we share our secrets when they are 'secrets'? Why is it so easy to be sad when you're happy, yet so difficult to be happy when you're sad?

Is it strange if you don't have a friend?

Is loneliness a consequence of pessimism?


Sunday, January 23, 2011

Listen

Once upon a time, I read this somewhere :)

When I ask you to listen to me and you start giving me advice, you have not done what I asked.

When I ask you to listen to me and you begin to tell me why I shouldn't feel that way, you are trampling on my feelings.

When I ask you to listen to me and you feel you have to do something to solve my problem, you have failed me, strange as that may seem.

Listen! All I ask is that you listen. Don't talk or do - just hear me.

Advice is cheap; 20 cents will get you both Dear Abby and Billy Graham in the same newspaper, and I can do for myself; I am not helpless. Maybe discouraged and faltering, but not helpless.

When you do something for me that I can and need to do for myself, you contribute to my fear and inadequacy. But when you accept as a simple fact that I feel what I feel, no matter how irrational, then I can stop trying to convince you and get about this business of understanding what's behind this irrational feeling.

And when that's clear, the answers are obvious and I don't need advice. Irrational feelings make sense when we understand what's behind them.

Perhaps that's why prayer works, sometimes, for some people - because G*d is mute, and he doesn't give advice or try to fix things. G*d just listens and lets you work it out for yourself.

So please listen, and just hear me.
And if you want to talk, wait a minute
for your turn - and I will listen to you.