-Sirish Oruganti, 3rd Year, ECE, Anjali Bhavan, 1st Year, MCE
8:00 AM: Wake up to a blaring alarm. Unlock phone. *208 new notifications*; 203 messages on a group in which I hardly know 5 people by count, 4 asking me to invest in various Ponzi schemes, and one from my driver wishing me ‘God Morning’ instead of ‘Good Morning’, with an attached picture of Lord Krishna. Gosh. It isn’t even funny!
FOMO. Wannabe-ness. Insecurity. Overthinking. Egocentricity. What do all these terms have in common? Simple. They are ways in which the world usually classifies my feelings, my actions, and brushes them away.
Truth is, I’m trying to reach out. The conspicuous complainer, the one who sends a hundred messages in response to an unsuspecting ‘Hi’, the kid who just tries too hard… It’s all an effort to fill a deep wound in my heart. Something that’s been cut open and left to bleed freely so many times, it makes me wonder if the world would ever let it heal.
My childhood has been shaped by the homes I inhabited – different, swirling, changing ones. We used to move around pretty frequently, and I sometimes remember going to sleep in one bed and waking up in another. Coming from a frequent traveller and adventurer, home is something special, and I daresay, a mysterious element of my life. Because I have never really known what it means.
Have you seen a homeless urchin on the streets, scratching his foot mindlessly and folding up his worn-out rug? Ever felt bad for him?
I’m homeless too, believe it or not. My expensive clothes and lavish lifestyle would suggest otherwise, and yes, maybe that chap asleep at 2 AM outside the Metro Station evokes (and deserves) more pity than I do.
But, homes aren’t concrete structures! They’re a boy’s shampooed hair and sinewy arms, they’re a girl’s smiles and breath under your neck, they’re quiet fingers caressing your hair, telling you everything will be alright while you’re pretty sure it won’t.
And I earnestly long for one.
I tried buying one by giving up my dignity and emotional stability, thinking it would all magically fall into place – but apparently, one has to be so goddamn lucky to experience all those things. In trying to find a home, I’ve turned myself into a utility. I’ve put on so many masks that I’ve forgotten how my face actually looks like.
People came to me. For once, I felt secure. I felt like I had a home. And then, they left. Just like everyone else did, after their purpose was served. I rained like desolate moors and wintry landscapes on the people who did stay on, and drove them out of my life by my own deeds. And I was left alone, misunderstood, used, and in my own misery.
A child weeps beneath that stoic facade. Would you care to look beyond the superficial? Would you offer a shoulder, a handkerchief, an ice-cream?
It’s true, the idiom ‘History repeats itself’. But my history, while repeating itself, is asphyxiating me slowly and painfully until today, when I have finally given up.
But even though I hate my life beyond limits at the moment, I still love myself enough to hold on tight, until the trying times pass. And so, with a despondent hand, I decide to write my feelings out, to get some form of a release.
So here’s to us – the ones with childhoods locked up in bedrooms, innocence stored away in sock drawers, and grief placed on bed stands. Here’s to us, living another day on this miserable planet where not one act is selfless. Here’s hoping that we’ll finally find people who would not ridicule our innocuous desire to belong. People who make us forget what FOMO means.
Here’s to us trying to compensate for it all by capturing those little moments of sunshine that life stingily throws at us.
Here’s to us all.