Current mood: What the actual fuck. No really, why is this happening?
The past two years have been bumpy to say the least. An emotional roller coaster, which thankfully left me physically unscathed, but nevertheless has affected the way I think about the world around me. Irrevocably.
Let’s put my thoughts this way:
Imagine finding out that your favorite superhero is nothing more than just a concerned person with a sense of duty towards society’s wellbeing. Wait, Deadpool doesn’t fall under that category. Imagine discovering that the place and people you learned to love and respect have suddenly crumbled under the weight of their own faults – and there is very little you can do to help fix that. Or even worse: imagine that the place and people you have come to love and respect have shriveled into oblivion, and the values they painted you with are peeling away because it’s outdated, and your newly formed mindset repels these extra coats of Traditionalism and Rigid Worldviews? The pieces don’t fit anymore, because you aren’t the same puzzle anymore.
Exactly. Now you have an idea.
It hurts to lose parts of yourself that you thought were never going to go. Never going to fall apart. Never going to let go of your hand.
I grew up. I’m still growing, but I feel that I am growing apart from what I knew – you know, leaving the shores I knew and all. It’s a contrast, every time I encounter something new. The thrill of working as an editor is coupled with the apprehension that I don’t have enough knowledge about the world around me. The guarded happiness of a new love is shackled to the traditional ideas of what it is supposed to be and when it ought to happen. The excitement of returning to sports after the hiatus that was high school is restrained by time allocations drilled in by authority about how long I can stay and when I should be home. The desperate need to give up on toxic relationships? But why would you do that – stop this unnecessary drama, you need to be nice!
It suffices to say that these are all unspoken rules. Breaking them would be blasphemous, and certainly subject to every social sanction the authorities can think up.
The introspection over the past two years has ended in silent tears and chaotic thoughts. However, it also yielded the determination to stand by what I believe in. I’ve had to find out what I believe in the hard way: experience. Seeing as I’ve always prided myself on learning from others’ experiences, and not having made any mistakes and memories myself, I can now proudly say that I have my own set of firsthand stuff. Shiny, new, and all mine. Experiential learning is key to moving forward based on the theory one gets saddled with by the grown ups, right?
Being honest with others is uncomfortable at best, but it’s terrifying to be honest with ourselves. We’ve been taught to consider what others think about our appearance, our subject choices, friends, ideals, and even our hair colour before whatever we think about it.
This is the time when an experienced elder, hellbent on serving your best interests, comes in and says “Beta, you must be logical in your thinking. What is this choice going to serve? You cannot afford to make mistakes like this. Think about your image in society, think about what people will say about your upbringing?”
I used to think about what I would respond with. Would I succumb and say that I hold the family honor in my hands alone? Would I respond with my outwardly destructive rebellion, or stretch the boundaries set for me? It took me the longest time to decide that fear of social sanctions can no longer dictate my decisions. I live in a world where concepts of culture and ideology is constantly morphing into something only those with an open mind can recognize, entertain, appreciate, and even accept. My decision was clear. I came to the conclusion that transforming what has been set as the boundary so as to widen everyone’s horizons achieves more than opting to be a rebel.
Does anyone have control on who and what I choose? No.
Does anyone have the opportunity to support the grown up Me? Yeah, I’m sure the few people rooting for me would like some company.
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Introspection is strange as an adult. Especially so as a woman from a traditional upbringing. My two years of new, unsupervised experiences have lead to the conclusion that there is no time to care about what others may think. It doesn’t mean I ought to be reckless in my intent to prove how different I am, but rather a display of courage to understand myself as a person. After all, no one else can do it for me and I don’t want to miss out on myself: an organised chaos. I’m worth the time and the emotional and physical investment. As much as others may do it for me, there is nothing quite like the thrill of learning to love and nurture my mind despite its unruly thoughts.
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