There you are! With plethora of dreams and bucketful of courage to pursue them wholeheartedly!
And, here’s life! Amused, befuddled, agnostic, asking you to rip off that skin plum with prejudices, orthodoxy, fear and uncertainty.
Today, an eighteen year old body feeling like a twenty one freshly out of school is carved. There are websites and everything online advising you to travel the world and check whether it really ends at the two poles or something unfolds beyond that. To travel because you’re young, free and raring to go.
But I know you’re somewhere timid, restless and irresolute too. So travel the girth of your soul, circumference of your brain and create yourself first.
All your life, till now, you’ve painted sketches, played sports, orated, danced, acted and did what not.
But now tables might turn as your parents, friends, teachers, relatives and all, will ask you to take up engineering or law, in good faith and with all benign intentions.
Engineering is great and so is law, MBBS, banking and so forth. You’ll hopefully mint money, a huge pile of it!
You’ll slog at ridiculous hours of the day to build an empire of that sort, with janitors, chauffeurs all in plenty in your big mansion. For the early years, returning from work at anytime might give your sparkly eyes the quintessential elation of returning to a grandeur like that and call it ‘home’. But then you might feel that you’re so lonely for all such extravaganza!
And then twenty years later, you’ll have a wife, suffering from postpartum. You’ll fix for nannies to look after your creation, nurses to look after your wife and yet she’ll moan that she longs for you, caressing her tresses and singing lullabies. And you’re going to feel so shattered, petty and brittle.
Thirty years later, your kids will vie to have you in the front row when they climb up on stage for doing something breath taking. You’ll promise them that you’re going to catch up on that video recording of the event whenever you get time.
Forty years later, your parents will be in frail health, meek and tender, still praying like they always have to meet you once before they close their eyes forever. You’ll call them up and tell that you’re sorry, that things turned out this way and you’d to fly miles away. And they’ll just forgive you, like they always have.
Stephen Hawkins probably was initially reluctant to conform to the existence of black hole sucking this universe slowly and steadily, because he could see the fellow humans sucking their lives all by themselves, all the time!
Does that mean, you stop pushing so hard for this college admission, that job, those startup ideas or tournaments/theatre plays/painting exhibitions?
I’m quite supportive of the thought: one size never fits all.
This lifestyle might do wonders for someone that you know but that doesn’t always mean that ‘someone’ is you or even close. He might come back from his official tour after a few weeks to his newborn and wife and restore the normalcy within moments. His kids would gradually learn to appreciate their dad’s praises galore on phone after he’d watched the video and his parents will perhaps live a little longer until he returns to see them.
He’ll sew the oddities in order, make fluctuations in daily life the norm and quickly absolve to all whims and fancies that come in association with them.
You, on the other hand, might not have the passion and the conviction to commit, give in, surrender all your time, space and energy into that labyrinth. However, this doesn’t imply that you’re hollow, less of a person, troublesome, whatever…
Just like there’s diversity in religion, region, caste, financial background so are there vagaries in personality types, ways of thinking, passions, virtues and visions.
Money brings in food to the table, a school bag on your kid’s petite shoulders, roof to the four walls and opportunities to travel, to learn a new skill, aura in society and unmatchable healthcare.
But, anti depressants never guarantee a good sleep, accolades from next door neighbour are never enough to entice your own spouse, all new skill development courses don’t assure a nice humane personality, even luxury travel discriminates against an unhealthy lifestyle, more rooms makes family grow farther, mechanically (under nannies, tutors etc) raised children are abstained from childhood and more food means acidity, obesity, gym memberships and insecurities.
So here I urge you all to stand up and take charge of your life. Figure out what you can do for a lifetime without complaining, sobbing and what always makes you go curious; never drop it off! If that thing is academics, then right away follow that trail and if it isn’t, then always accompany it with your studies. Trust me, it never becomes too much.
In fact, this is the only way to find yourself. Life this way will eventually turn out different, there will be fewer dishes on the dinner table, a smaller car, a tiny apartment but you’ll be fulfilled from within. Withdrawing yourself from this sense of satisfaction is a grave, grave blunder. No one around you stays placid unless you’re.
Today, your parents will frown at you, neighbor might laugh over your dreams and friends will call you insane, but those who really matter will eventually understand. Travel this journey before you travel the world, it’s perpetual, personality enhancing and positivity-radiating.
You’re, where your heart lies!