It is in the chances that we miss

“I don’t know how I could not come to send my CV,” said a dear friend, in a recent conversation we had.

She shared how she had come across a job that caught her eye, but did not send her resume, and just like that the deadline passed.

I had been lurking in the same alley of not being able to bring myself to do the things I have wanted to do, to take the necessary risks and pain to stretch out. So many of my plans had all ended up in the drafts folder of my life, like so many write ups in this blog.

I began pondering over this very idea of missed chances. Big and small. I tell myself, you could have resumed the conversation with the nice person who began a conversation with you in the elevator at a conference, you could have walked over to the speaker and said how much you admired their presentation, you could have been a tad bit nicer to everyone. But no. My throat runs dry, my feet auto locks and my smile freezes.

But what can I do about it but wait for the next time by when I might have hopefully learned from the experience and could perform better as a human?

That is when the game of darts hit me. I was particularly worse at it. We only had magnetic darts to begin with, because the pointed one was deemed too dangerous, I was just a kid. But whenever I played, I remember the dart flying beyond the board. But the scores I had missed would make me want to try more. It was, in some way, about the chances that I had missed that made me pick up the instrument a second time. Here, I hadn’t picked up the instrument yet and the chances had still flown pass by, just like that. But maybe the shots I hadn’t taken would themselves also make the ones that I do, count.

I’ve had the opportunity to listen to many stories of ‘could have beens’ – the the exam they never had the gut to appear for, the instruments they never learnt, mostly the youth that went by without giving a tell tale of passing. But something interesting has been happening in my family. My aunt thousands of miles away, has been attending a poetry club. She has been tagging me in all of her poems. Another of my aunts has joined a singing class as she waits for her kids to finish their own music routines. In the past one and a half decade, my mother cleared two levels of music exams as she learnt to play the Sitar. We, the kids, have been coxing our uncle to join a music class as he waits for his kids outside the music school.

I cannot help but imagine, the chances they missed has a huge role to play in their current actions. We, the kids, are super inspired and super proud.

In my last year of undergraduate study, I walked into a finance class where the first line our instructor uttered was this:

We all meet here because of a big confusion.

We all meet because of the actions we take, and also equally (if not more) because of the actions we do not take. The chances we let go, for whatever reasons, do have a role to play in our lives.

It is perhaps impossible to live a life without regrets. Maybe we need them. Might as well own them.

It’s That Time of The Year

It is that time of the year when we say, shockingly, surprisingly or sadly, “It’s the year end already!” “How fast time flies!” And I begin to wonder how should I wish the world the start of a new calendar.

I do not understand what time does to us, or is it our brains? I can still remember the first week of 2018, I had a different job and I was performing poetry one cold evening surrounded by my lovely colleagues.

2018 was a year of change, of confusion, and of challenge. It was heart breaking at times, and other times liberating. At times it filled me with despair and other times it made be feel like a warrior. It taught me to plan, and then to let go of the plan when it failed. It was what literary books would call coming of age, at 25 instead of 15, a year when I came face to face with many of my values boiling inside.

It was the year I decided I need to go meditate and I spent 10 days aloof of the world, but so much enriched from within. It was the year I panicked and quarter life crisis was the major topic of discussion, literally everywhere. I bought many books to solve it, just as much as I tried to tie time by crossing off things on the list of life that should have happened, only to realize letting time flow is the most important thing I can do. It was also the year I realized how savvy I am at saving. I should hold on to this more often.

It was also the year I finally joined Toastmasters after 7 years of coming to know about the club(s). The year I socialized so much that the 15 year old me would be shocked.

It was also the year I came across some wonderful people and ideas, and learnt to map my life in ways I could not have imagined.
It was the year I felt more comfortable in my skin.

The year the vastness of the universe terrified me, and the year I became a part of the vastness.

As I spend the last day of 2018, I realize how my spelling and grammar have gotten worse, and I haven’t gotten past one paragraph without a single error as I write this. Auto correct! It’s a sign to write more longhand. Maybe it is time to gather the courage spread across all veins.

2018 was the year I expected to go to grad school, only to realize I have already been enrolled at the School called Life.

Happy 2019!

I Think of Summer

I think of summer
as autumn moves away
opening the doors to winter.

Strong gust of November winds
blow past my shell
ripping apart my safe house
just at the start of the cold.

Summer has ended,
a season gone
but work still remains to be done.

I’ve been lazy
dancing under the sun,
now I’ll shiver and run
at the sight of the beacon,
nature’s sign of change.

I think of summer,
but summer’s gone.
I think of the next summer.

I will always think of summer.

Blue Waters

Time,
is like a river
with strong currents,
and I am a rock
between it.

I wonder if
I will find
pieces of myself
eroded away
through these years
scattered unto
streams and lakes
and finally the ocean.

How will I
ever remember if
a part of me
reaches the
blue waters?

How will I know if
my memory
floats unto the surface
splashed by the
passing ships?

And a piece of me
still remains
where it began,
right at the rivers
waiting to be
carried away time and again.