It was a regular exam day. I, as usual, was running late and was hurriedly revising my formulae during the last ten minutes while frantically searching for my socks and looking for my hair band. Mom barged in my room and asked whether I had breakfast. I blabbered irritably,”No mom! I don’t have time.” She was in my room ten seconds later with a plateful of gobhi ke parathe and a glass of milk. I whined, “Moooooooooom, I’m studying.” She just said “Am I asking you to do anything? Just chew!” In 5 minutes, she fed me the most appropriate mouthfuls of hot, yummy parathas with chutney and butter; breakfast was done and off I went to college.
I finished my exam early and as I let a guy sitting next to me copy my answer, I just thought about that wonderful, loving gesture. How selfless it was! And how I just took it for granted. How I just hurried out without so much as saying a thank you or giving her a hug. Breakfast is ready every day, clothes are washed and ironed, the scooty is refilled and cleaned. Everything is so easy, right?
These are still bigger things. Recently a movie made me think about how we take everything in life for granted. The beautiful mornings, the birds, the flowers, the moon, the breeze. We’re all too busy to take notice of such things. I read in a book that if you’re sitting in front of a lake and you don’t notice the rippling water, the patterns of light in it, the soft touch of the grass you’re sitting on, the gentle bend of the branches of the trees, then boy, you’ve got problems.
The movie that I saw was Awakenings. First thing, it was based on a true story, and I knew before even watching it, that I was going to like it. It was a story about a nervous, self-conscious and a kind doctor, played by Robin Williams, who comes across a drug that could cure patients who have been in a coma for over decades. It showed how he actually made a man, Robert DeNiro, who was practically just a vegetable, come to life after thirty years and how he adjusted to his new world. It was heartening to watch the lifeless patients awaken and experience the simple joys of living again. Robin Williams has convincingly played the part of the doctor while Rober DeNiro was simply astounding. Plus, he has the warmest, most amazing smile anyone could have.
We don’t ever think about these things. What if we didn’t have limbs? What if we had a debilitating disease? What if we were crippled for the rest of our lives? What if we can never walk or run or see again? It’s like how the boy’s mother says in the movie, “When I gave birth to a healthy baby, I never asked God why was I so lucky to be blessed with such a beautiful baby. But when I got to know he has a disease I screamed over and over asking why he had to do this to my son?”
Instead of being thankful for what we have, we’re always upset because of something we don’t have. A broken relationship, a past incident, a big fight, misunderstanding with friends. If you think about it, problems are relative. Fine, we all have 'em. Pfff big deal. When I'm feeling low, I talk to someone depressed and it makes me feel so much better! The thought that everyone goes through shit. It's okay. Laugh it off! Have fun with them! Use swear words and cuss all you like! It’s your thinking that makes all the difference. (Oh and never, ever forget to listen to some great music)
But we still find it easier to crib about our problems. Basic human nature. I do it all the time. But I also make a point to count my blessings, feel grateful for what I have and just feel lucky. Life is too short, I’ve realized, to cry over what’s already happened. And we only get one life, and we should make the best of it. ONE life! Can you believe it? And after that, you’re just gone. Before we die, our life flashes in front of our eyes, we need to make sure we like what we see, right?
I read this somewhere, ‘If you start taking things too seriously, just remember that we all are talking monkeys flying on an organic spaceship through space” :)
P.S. I’ve been continuously and increasingly experiencing enormous and gigantic spurts for Chee. The ones that break through the ceiling and make the stars wet. I love being silly with him and listen to his stories of how his stomach wall gets eroded. I love his retarded high pitched laughter and how he calls me a bird. I love planning about having a plant called ‘Melancholia’ which will grow on our tears and we will cut onions and think of dead puppies in order to sustain it. I love how he sends me text messages which make me want to jump off my roof with mad joy. I love how he scolds me and asks me to study.
Which reminds me, I have an exam tomorrow and I haven’t started studying and I haven’t slept all night. But I just had a delightful midnight snack of cheese sandwiches, potato wafers and coffee. Boy. Life’s good! :D
P.P.S. I’ve been thinking whether obsessing over one person can be a good thing. Probably not. Oh well, too late.