“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)