The thing that never fails to surprise me is how easy it is for my life to get stuck in a seemingly endless repetitive loop. I want the fundamentals like my relationships and career to be stable and predictable in the sense that you’re not living out of fear of it bidding you unexpected farewells.
But I’m also not one for living a mundane life.
As much as I absolutely love being a homebody (how does anyone live the traditional extrovert life is beyond me), I yearn to be able to break free and to be able to travel on my terms without the worry of a curfew, offending society at large (desi people love scandals, you guys) or just do things independently without overthinking.
I love adventures. I don’t mean I want to go skydive or climb Mount K2. Spending quality time doesn’t always need to be done in a grand fashion. But I do believe in cashing in on different experiences because that’s how memories are made. (Who’s up for laser tag?!) I don’t want life to ever slow down to an extent where I can’t do things whilst I have the chance. I don’t want to be swallowed up by routine and expectations. I want to genuinely be able to live a life that I can say I have chosen.
I’ve come to realise that when you have complete freedom over your choices, you automatically gravitate towards making those decisions that will have a positive impact on you. When I say complete freedom, I mean complete freedom. Controlling anyone’s life (in any form – whether it’s deliberate or emotional/religious blackmail) is always negative for both the people involved. (This won’t work for people who don’t have a solid moral compass, so please don’t start treating your 10 year old sibling or even your recently graduated son as though they’re adults).
I am always caught waiting for a time where things would be balanced – family, relationships, career, self-care, my hobbies. As if that would warrant any adventures one that I’ve earned. I know, it’s such a contradiction right? It’s because I’ve been conditioned to believe that waiting for the magical right time when your life is set will validate your experience. I honestly think this has something to do with the special effects and background music in movies, because real life has none of those.
But yesterday I told myself to stop making excuses and not wait for the weekend to indulge in something as basic as a caffeine boost that I needed for a simultaneous pick me up + to power through some further gruelling hours. (I changed the maximum limit to one cup of tea a long time back but the crappy tea-bag tea at work does nothing for me).
It was just before dusk. Outside my window, I can see high rise buildings and a line of trees in an S-bend. The murky waters of the lake have turned grey with the changing hues of the sky. It’s grey and moody, almost cloudy – but not quite. Everything seems to be winding down, moving into a slow, gradual pace. It’s calming. The caffeine shot powers me just enough to be alive – to be present in the moment. I stop to take it all in, and smile deliberately – my heart filled with gratitude to have been able to cement this experience within myself and find joy in my everyday.