This domain was registered in January 2009. That makes it almost 13-years-old. I did not even realize that and had to do a WHOIS to figure out the registration that. Has it actually been that long?
When I look back, most of my life feels like such an amazing experience.
When I moved to Delhi in 1999, I was very much that small town person who was punching above his weight and grade. But I always had this very binary and extremely strong sense of who I was and what I felt was right or wrong. It was all black and white and crystal clear.
How the recent years have changed all that. The last 13-odd years have been hard. The personal issues that a successful career helped hide came out to the fore. Multiple meltdowns, alcoholism, struggling to find good work are only a handful of the issues I have struggled with.
My sense of self that was so absolutely perfect and solid disintegrated into nothingness. That sense was my shield in the world. It helped me hide a dismal self-esteem and a thousand issues. It has been a hard slog learning to live without it.
Even before COVID-19 hit, the losses had been piling up. I was pushing harder than ever before and I was failing more spectacularly than ever before. The only way to not fall was to keep moving forward.
That said, life was tough, but life was fair. It always ensured that no matter how many times I fell overboard I never drowned. It is a distinction that I have become increasingly aware of in recent times and one that has helped me stay sane and grateful even when the going got really tough.
The pandemic years, particularly, have reinforced this perspective. The number of little blessings that go into making a very ordinary day is incredible.
My body, which is a miracle of so many things still managing to work together to keep it going in spite of all the abuse it has handled over the years, does its thing on a daily basis. This is a luxury that so many people don’t have and so many that I have known have had their bodies give up on them in the last couple of years.
That I am able to look after my people is because of the kindness and trust of so many people who value what I do enough to pay me for it. That the roof I live under stays functional depends on so many people having done their job well and the good fortune of some unforeseen event not destroying it.
There is not a thing that I see in this world these days that I feel is owed to me. I live on the kindness and generosity of the people I know and a million others that I don’t know of who touch my life every day without me seeing it.
That, every person that I care about, whether I speak to them or not, is around today is something I consider a blessing again. The people who have died in the last couple of years, I miss them dearly. I try to make sure that the ones who are still around I try to be nicer, kinder. It is a touch selfish, but if tomorrow does not have them in it or if I am no longer around, I don’t want my last memory with anyone to be one of unkindness.
That, I have done all that I could have done. That, I don’t regret that last interaction will be the only treasure I will take along with me when it is my time.
Life is not easy. It is tough. And sometimes, it is really hard. But it is still far easier on me than what it is for majority of the world. At the end of a hard day when I feel broken and nearly unable to keep going, this thought helps me stay afloat.
All this is a very unfamiliar place for someone who was 100% certain of their rightful place in the world and was acutely aware of everything that the world owed them. It also results in a massive conflict with a world that is increasingly tribal, where everything is considered owed and kindness is considered weakness.
I cannot find my place in it at all, but I can’t let that affect me too much.
Time is very limited, there is so much more to be done.
I am someone who in an endless rush to get to nowhere.