Selfless rain


Looks like scattered glitter, but it’s really just the street light being reflected on a wet road. I like how rain emerges and gels with the dullest of things, and leaves them sparkling ever-so-brightly, even when it does not have a definite colour of its own. I especially love how it gives life to the lifeless and adds beauty to everything so naturally. I wish we could all be a bit more like that.

5 favourite quotes of the week (10/52)

1. Of all sad words of mouth or pen, the saddest are these – it might have been. -JOHN GREENLEAF WHITTIER

2. Everything has changed and yet, I am more me than I have ever been. -IAIN THOMAS

3. Dead people receive more flowers than the living ones, because regret is stronger than gratitude. -ANNE FRANK 

4. In order to love who you are, you can’t hate the experiences that shaped you. -ANDREA DYKSTRA

5. I think it’s beautiful, the way you sparkle when you talk about the things you love. -ATTICUS

Conquering the dark times

“Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt myself.”

Some people would tell me “You’d grow into a fine young woman,” while others only nodded in uncertainty. I did, too. Those were the dark phases of my life. 

I had no clue about who I would be in the near future, or worse, if at all I will become someone significant. Clouds of fear and anxiety wandered with me through and through; in school, across the streets, at events, and even crawled inside my bedsheet to carry me to sleep and travel farther into my dreams. “Why do I exist? Why am I here? Am I good enough?” These questions that I had no answers to were stapled right onto my back, and my hands, and my toes, and I think even my eyes. This is exactly what I reflected to and became a reflection of. Question marks. All over my body. Outwards and towards the inside. 

Even the loudest parts I held seemed too soft compared to that of others. I had always been a person of depth, but shallowness appeared to make its way outward to the world. I cannot recall all the wars that were fought inside of me, but I vividly remember the coldness, the helplessness, the attacked harmony of my senses and the lost hope. Sadness became a companion. It still visits time and again. I welcome it with my arms wide open and a smile that it prefers to infect within seconds. “So are you saying you jump from joy to anger to misery, and are constantly ricocheting in between?” Yes. All my emotions were valid to me, though, I reckon, not explanatory to other people. You know how individuals battle within themselves while ‘appearing’ to be extremely silent? One look, and their face is so calm, so relaxed, that you almost never ask them how they have been doing? Well, it’s time you start to.

Admist this mess, there were I times I gave in. Some days, I would come out of my little shelf and run right back into it, as fast as I could, without having experienced any victory. We are made to believe that emotional victories aren’t victories really. But I think winning over one’s emotions is the greatest of all triumphs. On the quest of finding my true self, when I often felt defeated by the weight of my own shoulders and couldn’t uplift my life from its shattered surroundings, I chose to believe in the good. I chose to believe in something bigger that existed which I had been oblivious to, something which I simply failed to recognise. I found within me infinite compassion and courage, the compassion to be someone better and the courage to move forward. And I did move forward. Now, some people say to me, “You’ve grown into a fine young woman.” The others? They say ‘fine’ is just an understatement. These transitional times, they made me convert even the minutest of my defeats and sufferings into badges of honour and pride, that I happily like to wear at all times now.

I want you to believe in that tiny light you hold inside. It may even be miniscule. But it is there, hidden somewhere, leaping with excitement and already willing to come out. Make it so great that it might make you want to gulp the entire universe at once. It makes me want to gulp the entire universe at once. It’s worth reaching out to. It’s slowly making you whole again.

-Muskan Lamba (24.06.2017)

5 favourite quotes of the week (9/52)

1. I don’t have a favorite season. I have a favorite feeling. It’s the windows down, silent back roads with dirty bare feet feeling. It’s when I can walk straight outside without pausing to fish out a jacket. It is curtains dancing around my room because of the cool breeze that pushes against its fabric. It is sunsets after dessert and grass as my pillow. The sound of lawnmowers, falling leaves, and rain against the window. Pockets of shade and walks along a gravel road. I don’t have a favorite season, I have a favorite feeling. -UNKNOWN

2. We suffer not from the events in our lives but from our judgment about them. -EPICTETUS

3. There are stars you haven’t seen and loves you haven’t loved, there’s light you haven’t felt, and sunrises yet to dawn, there are dreams you haven’t dreamt, and days you haven’t lived, nights you won’t forget, and flowers yet to grow, and there is more to you that you are yet to know. -GABY COMPRES

4. So many memories come to me in black and white, except yours. Your colours refuse to be silent. -UNKNOWN

5. I will continue to find beauty and poetry and music in the most shunned places. In the cracks and corners and marrow of all that exists. It’s there. It has always been there. -CHRISTOPHER POINDEXTER

5 favourite quotes of the week (8/52)

1. Just like the lotus, we too have the ability to rise from the mud, bloom out of the darkness and radiate into the world. -UNKNOWN 

2. I love the rain. I love how it softens the outlines of things. The world becomes softly blurred, and I feel like I melt right into it. -HAGUMI HANAMOTO

3. That is happiness, to be dissolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep. -WILLA CATHER

4. And when at last you find someone to whom you feel you can pour out your soul, you stop in shock at the words you utter— they are so rusty, so ugly, so meaningless and feeble from being kept in the small cramped dark inside you so long. -SYLVIA PLATH, The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath

5. What is more brave and honorable than loving yourself no matter the cost, so that you can give that love away to others and become the change, the difference? -CHRISTOPHER POINDEXTER

A list of things you need to start appreciating

(Feel free to add on in the comments✨)

1) The first rain of autumn
2) Stepping on crunchy leaves
3) Meeting new friends
4) Beautiful sunsets
5) Cookies
6) Singing to your favourite song when it comes on the radio
7) Collecting shiny, pleasant things
8) Birthdays
9) Reading before bed
10) Travelling to new, faraway places
11) Touching the lives of all those you know
12) Hugs
13) Compliments from strangers
14) Smiles
15) Hearing a good song for the first time
16) New beginnings
17) Re-reading excerpts from your favourite book
18) Smell of coffee
19) Coffee
20) The shelter you live in
21) Late night/early morning adventures
22) Finger painting
23) Petting dogs/cats
24) Healing
25) Long walks and deep talks
26) Seeing rainbows
27) Freshness of winter
28) The food you eat
29) Full moons
30) Crescent moons
31) Finding something you thought you had lost
32) Singing while alone
33) Kicking old habits
34) Taking naps
35) Improving yourself
36) Finding the perfect pair of shoes
37) Standing up for yourself
38) Feeling proud and accomplished
39) Inside jokes
40) Receiving compliments
41) Taking days off to do nothing
42) Starting to see the good again after bad days
43) Being a part of the good in the world
44) Realizing that you’re never truly alone
45) All the people you’re yet to meet
46) Winning over your emotions
47) Finding a balance in everything
48) Creating new dreams to conquer
49) Balloons
50) The nature
51) Sunshine
52) Your parents
53) Learning to love yourself
54) Overcoming fears
55) Being forgiven
56) Inside jokes
57) Getting a step closer to your dream every day
58) Talking to an old friend
59) Ability to read and write
60) The sky
61) Sunsets and sunrises
62) Being appreciated by others
63) Setting goals
64) Diaries and journals
65) Good music
66) Your friends
67) Cats and dogs
68) Getting through another year
69) Paints
70) History
71) Kids who make you smile
72) Your favourite singer
73) Glitter and colours
74) Harry Potter/other fandoms
75) Good health
76) Weekends
77) Learning from your mistakes
78) Good hair days
79) Tiny yet significant victories
80) Making someone smile
81) Wishing someone well
82) Having a well-wisher
83) Your favourite movie
84) Pizza
85) Sunny winter days
86) Taking a holiday after following a long, hectic schedule
87) Massages
88) Hot water bath
89) Chocolate
90) Not having to set an alarm for the next day
91) Cozy scarves and socks
92) Soft fur blankets
93) Alone time
94) Chirping of the birds early morning
95) Pyjamas
96) Sharing a smile with a stranger
97) Being understood
98) Flowers
99) Cold side of the pillow
100) Your favourite scent

Forgiveness is for you, not for them.

Recently, I found it hard to forgive a person and each time I tried, my mind would throw numerous why(s) and how(s) at me, leaving me wondering, “Is it worth it? Does he deserve my apology?” Even worse, he didn’t ask for one. And when people don’t feel sorry or justify their actions, does it not get annoying to the extent that the thought of it interrupts you every minute of the day, appearing in the weirdest forms possible? After a series of failed attempts, feelings of anger and disappointment kept coming back to me. No amount of advice seemed to work out, not even positive self-talk.

It was then that I came across a psychology blog and found an article with the title, How to forgive someone when it seems impossible” and saw a faint light of hope travel towards me. I went on to read it. This one line I came across has stayed with me ever since: “People have a misconception about forgiveness. Forgiveness isn’t something you do for the person who wronged you; it’s something you do for yourself.” 

Forgiveness is not an act of mercy, or pity, that ok, “I forgive you, now stay away from me, you (whatever you’d like to call the person).” It’s about knowing with all your heart that what happened, has happened and you are a fool to still hold onto it. People forgive to simply show that they are over a particular situation, but have they truly let go of their grievances and judgments about the person and allowed themselves to heal? 

What they fail to realize is, that, forgiving someone is not an end point. It’s the beginning of a new phase, a happy mind and a light heart. Whether the person deserves it or not, you deserve to free yourself from feelings of hurt and resentment or the will to take a revenge. Perhaps the hardest thing to do is forgive a person who isn’t sorry, who doesn’t feel even an ounce of regret or guilt for having hurt you. But, the sad truth is, you can’t change someone who doesn’t see an issue with their actions. So why not change your own perception towards the entire situation? 

The first step is to ask yourself: Do I want to forgive? Why or why not? This will help you analyse the entire situation once again. Do this with a clear and unbiased mind. Try to step into the shoes of the person who harmed you. Do you think they experienced suffering too? That could be the case. After all, if a person makes you suffer, it’s only because he’s suffering deep within himself. Even if that’s not so, whatever happened made you stronger and wiser. 

The second step is to know that by forgiving, you are accepting the reality of what happened and finding a way to be cool with it. You will still remember what happened, but no longer be bound or controlled by it. 

The third step is to just let it be, and let it go. Science says, “Forgiveness is important for your mental and physical health.” Of course! How relieving must it be to finally get rid of prolonged negative emotions! This is not for their benefit. This is for YOU. Then why not? 

-Muskan Lamba (27.06.2017)

Caught in ‘success’ trap?

How important is this! Questions you need to ask yourself: Am I seeking others’ acceptance of me or that of my own? Am I losing myself in the process of chasing credit? Do I allow myself to live freely, without worrying about what others think of my successes and failures? Am I giving up on something I truly want because society tells me it is unimportant or impossible? Am I truly contributing to my environment and creating value or simply pleasing others to gain appreciation and material respect? Do I live in harmony with my own thoughts, dreams and desires? Lastly, am I doing enough for myself and my happiness? These will help you evaluate whether you’re living upto your potential or that of others. And since everybody has a habit of limiting their potential and capabilities, that’s what they’re motivating you to do, too. I wonder, if we constantly try to validate our lives to people and live as per their choices and interests, are we even living at all? 

Ghosts are not scary

I’m sorry, but, ghosts are not scary.
They live inside me. They live inside you.
And without realizing, they consume us whole
Of course, they are here to destroy
But the destruction..? It’s so silent
And silence, so to say, is never scary.
These ghosts, they are not like monsters at all
Not even close to appearing evil or disastrous.

I am sorry, but, ghosts are not scary.
Once, they forwarded me their hand
And we ended up building a friendship together.
They told me their secret
Of being disguised as self-doubt, anxiety and anger.
And I told them mine; of being vulnerable.
Wish to know their hiding spot?
It’s beneath our skins, inside our hearts.

I am sorry, but, ghosts are not scary.
I think we have developed an in-depth understanding of each other.
They told me, “We ourselves are suffering
which is why we make you suffer.”
I sympathised. I think so do you.
And us being ever-so-welcoming, we let them in.
Ghosts of me. And ghosts of you.

I am sorry, but, ghosts are not scary.
Not to me.
I’ve been acquainted with them for far too long now
They’re as much a part of me
As I am of this world.
Though just a tiny speck,
but effortlessly infinite within.

I am sorry, but, ghosts are not scary.
Once, they forwarded me their hand
And we ended up building a friendship together.
I even told them my secret of being vulnerable.
They are.. not scary.
How can they be?
Yet I am afraid.

Muskan Lamba (15.07.2017)