Story #22: What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I was in class 9 and preparing for my finals when I lost the person I was most attached to: my Dadu (paternal grandfather). This was an experience that had the most profound impact on me.

I had never experienced the sorrow of losing someone ever. I was devastated. I still get goosebumps writing about it. At first, I was heartbroken, but then I wanted to accomplish all the good things my dadu wanted me to accomplish.

I used to be quite a healthy child and he constantly asked me to lose weight, even though I didn’t really pay attention towards it. But when he left, I got a jerk and went on from being 84 to 60. I did it for him and wished so much that he was there to see it.

I studied with all my will, scored well and kept on motivating myself as if he was there to see me. I wish I could tell him how much I miss him; I just keep on working hard for him.
This experience took away a part of me, but then made me a stronger person in life!


For the most of us, losing someone we love is an experience that brings inevitable pain. More so, when that someone is family.

But sometimes, the things that give us pain somehow end up becoming the sources of our strengths. Pain changes us in different ways: it weakens some to terrible inaction, while it pushes others to take the chances they otherwise couldn’t. 

Use your pain to be a better person. Exploit it, make it your strength. Look back at the point in your life when you were inches far from giving up, at the lowest of you lows; realise that if you could get through that, then you can get through anything.

Befriend your demons, they fuel your strengths.

-:-

(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Advertisements

Story #20: Words I’ll Never Speak To Anyone (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

It maim so bad I just want either to talon out of my brain or pick and peel at my skin until I can uncover some emotion within.

It’s 5 am. There’s no sleep in my future, no release after consuming 80 mg of vyvanse and a few gallons of caffeine to study for exams. When your brain is this hyper-focused, it doesn’t take much to start thinking about the pile of bullshit that you are. It won’t shut off, it won’t ever.

Being this self-reliant and self-serving takes a toll on relationships. For a while, people think you’re just a free spirit. Eventually, they understand you’re just an emotionless block of ice. I can’t open up to anyone. It’s like I won’t let myself care for someone too deeply because I want to save myself from being hurt or scared or abandoned or used, treated right, appreciated, loved, counted on.

My fingernails are bitten to the quick.
All I want is for it to shut off.
All I want is to shut off.

Is being alone worth being unbroken? Or is being alone more detrimental? Any damage done is all self-infliction, the most shameful brand of injury.

It’s great at first. Being on your own. You are your own best friend, your own protector. For a few years, you’re confident in yourself and people like you. You laugh more; why not when you are the creator of your own happiness? She doesn’t care what people think. But then, she’s unreachable; she’s like a star that’s burning just a little too far away. Still dazzling, yet just out of reach. Just when you think you’re getting close, when you think you have her in your viewfinder, the clouds roll in. The thing about stars… The brighter they shine, the hotter they burn.

You can pretend all you want; you can put on a show for yourself and the rest of the world that everything is smooth sailing. Eventually, you either are going to drown in the facade or you let yourself be rescued.

These are words I’ll never speak to anyone. They would never come out. There’s going to be a day where I give up; I’ll throw all my hopes of actually being happy and confident and loving someone right down a wishing well. It will be bad for a while; there will be a lot of booze, strange men, and little self respect. I’ll finally treat myself like the empty shell I made myself.

One day, when it’s time to settle down, I’ll find a nice, successful man but not start a family. I’ll continue to smile always and care for my own, but by then I’ll be nothing. I will be another empty soul suffering through daily life because that’s what strong, respectable people do. My kids will grow up like me, non existential : good neighborhood, the means to be successful, plenty of attention, but with the detached love of a mother who really isn’t a person anymore.

Broken people always live the longest, most cruel lives. People of my kind are too proud to end it all, even when they are the burden.  I’ll live in a nice home somewhere warm, somewhere sunny. I’ll take my breakfast facing the west to watch the sunrise. Dinner, the east for the sunset. Watching the sun paint each and every day, wondering which one might be my last.


I find this piece written out so beautifully, laid out like a rhythm my ears are growing fond of, yet it is impossible to ignore the pain lying latent beneath these words. This isn’t an anecdote: this is an account, a converging point for the authors’ past, present and future. Its again one of those stories, I think, that has too many lessons to teach, and a different meaning every time you read it. You can’t gulp it down in one read, no. 

I, for one, read it several times and couldn’t help but relate. I just realized how I could relate to some or the other element in every story- it’s funny how we all experience almost the same things; the same kind of pain, only  dressed differently.

From the need to be self-reliant, to eventually throwing all our hopes down a wishing well; from sleepless nights to nightmares about the future, we’ve somewhere experienced each one of these things.  We all have things that give us pain, experiences that weaken us; for most people it is a battle with their own selves. What makes the difference is how you fight it, and if you give your weaknesses enough power to win or lose. 

-:-

(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Story #19: One Drunk Afternoon (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

It took me numerous days to decide which story to tell. Not that I had a lot of them but yes if you think deep and metaphorically, everything does seem pretty. Even your own shadow, though it is dark. Not being a racist. Damn. I am a soul flipping sides from dank memes to poem porn. So first I thought to tell about the nights I cried myself to sleep about something and when I woke up, it didn’t even matter. Or about the partial heartbreaks, partial because I don’t have one and also the ones about existential crises. But then these are the tough ones. Life will teach these to you at the right time, if it already hasn’t.

So my story is all about one late afternoon, I was chilling with my friends at a friend’s place. A few friends and chakna and a little beer. Now, a little turned out to be a little too much for me. I was put to bed by all my responsible friends. They left. Now it was me and the ‘owner of the place’ friend. Stop it if you are thinking of a gumrah plot. I almost slept but just then an annoying music hit my ears. It’s my friend playing some stupid game on his phone. I couldn’t resist. We had an unimaginably enormous fight. So I leave. He didn’t stop me either. I climbed down the stairs and because I suck at direction, I didn’t know where to go. Left or right. This means I went in both the directions one by one. Until I took a public transport to my place. I stopped the vehicle at the park near my home. Bought a lemonade. Sat in the park. For no soul searching but for getting sober. I reached home. Safe.

That would be the end of my story.

My story wasn’t about how my drunk friend was, still is an irresponsible video gaming freak. It’s about something I am never gonna forget. Something I would like to remind you if you have forgotten. ‘In the end, when worst comes to worst, it is you, just you. I had a lot of people to call, to take me home. To take care of me. But metaphorically it was my fight. And also I was afraid they would take my lemonade.


Some experiences give us a lesson in life, no matter how stupid or funny or sad they might be. Here is a lesson that has been focused upon in so many stories, and I’ve begun to feel that it’s the central concept in today’s teenage philosophy: finding the comfort in being alone, and coming to terms with the fact that its completely okay. And it’s so true. 

There will come a point in each of our lives that we may feel terribly alone. In that moment, how we can make ourselves feel will make the difference. Can you talk yourself out of a downfall? Can you get back up, all by yourself?

-:-

(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Story #16: Woman Of Her Words (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I have always been the type that believes – how hard is it to keep you words? I mean, you said it, so now value your words or who else will? But I think, the other type, supposedly those, who in the heat of the moment do as their heart guides, are the happier ones. Not that I’m saying that it is too difficult to keep your words, always. But these days, I see no wrong in not being able to do what you said, you will. I believe that the first group isn’t as liberated as the second and sometimes, we make ourselves a slave to our self imposed restrictions, even when the intention or emotion behind the words decreases in value.
 
I have lately stepped into the category of second type of people where my actions are not as well explainable as they were before. However I, as a person I am a lot more happier than what I was before. I have surrendered to the truth that we are all mere puppets in the spell of our emotions.
The realization to how I have been evolving as a person has been here, all this time. But it recently popped up when I read this- “Bitch, if you want to rant about how that asshole of yours betrayed you this time, then grab a diary before we judge you for getting along, again for a 100th time.”
1. How does that make her a bitch ?
2. Why would a person talking about her life bother you, regardless of whether or not she is going to so as she says? Why can’t we ever be a listening ear to people, without judging them in any way?
3. If she chose to get along, again, isn’t it again totally her choice ?
 
Also, I am still not as liberated of my past to say that she may get along with him, once again because whatever he did is a thing of past. Also, I am also not as headstrong to decide, once and for all that I love him and it is just fine if I keep going back to him.
This whole thing is to say that I need him and this is what my heart guides me to do right now.
I’m trying to keep my principled self at bay and I look forward to change from being a woman of her words, completely, with all intents.

Our words are somewhere our reflections, I feel. But sometimes we all say things that we don’t mean, and mean things we aren’t able to say. Being someone who loves to write, I feel words empower me. But like the instance described here, words can be used negatively too: in judgement, in jealousy, and in hatred. 

It’s a choice, really. Sticking by your words, or living as freely as a stream of thought: without any promises to bind one’s actions, with room to go haywire. Both have their pros and cons, I feel. Some people treat the promise of word as gospel, and it enhances the mutual feeling of trust between people. The other side, however, allows as much freedom as the other one doesn’t. It lets you do whatever you want, without feeling bound to anything or anyone.
So it all boils down to choice, really; choose yours well.
-:-
(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Story #15: Whatever Happens, Happens For A Reason! (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I always used to believe in the idea of love. Love was perfect for me, always. But, you know! Nothing in this world is perfect. Disadvantage comes along with advantage.
People really take you for granted when you agree to everything they say. You should always have your stand. Never let a person dominate you. Each and every person has  self respect; an identity. Do not bow down when its not your fault. Never break your friendships because of this relationship idea. Because, I have learned that people come & go. But friends stay. They really stay.

Throughout these years. I have learnt one very important thing.

You get life once. Just once! Don’t waste it. You should handle your life yourself & not let anyone else handle it. Introspect. Look after what you neeed. And, one more thing. There were so many hurdles. I was such a weak person but maybe after all these things that have happened in my life! I am a much stronger person now. I can stand for myself. And, I can now speak & fight for myself.

I will always thank god. Truly.
Whatever happens, happens for a reason!


More than a story, this entry contains lessons so many positive lessons that each one of us need to know:
Fall in love, but embrace its flaws;
hold onto your best friends;
let your downfalls strengthen you and
live every moment.

Learn that everything happens for a reason in our lives. The good and the bad, too. No matter how the experience affects us in kind, its always a lesson, a learning in disguise. We just have to look for it.

-:-

(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Story #14: Lies, Drugs & Emotional Breakdowns (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

Honestly, somehow I always tend to tell people more about my exploits more than I write about things that actually matter. Because I have a problem with wanting people to like me. I used to be a compulsive liar. I actually lied about anything and everything one could lie about. After I entered my college hostel I made up stories so that people would think I was interesting. Obviously I ended up being friends with the most pretentious people of them all.

In the next months that followed and I ended up leaving the hostel and living in a flat with my seniors. There, i learned two things:
1) no one cares if you lie to them or not;
2) even if someone actually does care about it, they won’t stay long if you do.

A month after that I ended up with no friends and used to get high or drunk out of boredom. Soon it became an escape. I decided to go for counselling but couldn’t tell my parents about it and hence, couldn’t afford it. During this time I fell for someone and she was exactly like me with all the lies and the attention seeking. When it ended, the whole fiasco of drugs and lies and what not, I experienced two months of emotional meltdowns. I remember one day I started crying because I wanted to have ice cream but I didn’t want to go out of my house. I won’t say I don’t lie anymore. I do, but I try not to hurt anyone by doing so. And honestly, I am very proud how far I have come.


Our life is a journey through the course of which we encounter many things that appear to us as permanent, when in fact they aren’t. Our sorrows, problems and happiness too- everything is transient. We experience, learn and grow, ultimately to realise that we’re all on journeys with unknown destinations. We all get lost along the way. Sometimes, we want to stop, maybe take a break too. 

But the journey remains. Life goes on. Inspite of the circumstance, inspite of how we feel.  So why don’t we take control of our situation, have our negative experiences contribute to our growth?

Because life goes on, and I hope yours is going well. 

-:-

(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)

Story #12: I’m Not Real (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I’m Not Real
 preee
They say that psychologically it takes 3-4 months to know a person.
But I believe that you know people
The very first time you meet them.
 p
The kind of words they choose
After all those permutations and combinations of all the 26 letters of the English language.
The kind of look they give you,
Despite of being unable to maintain an eye contact for more than 5 seconds.
The way in which they sit a bit aloof
Just to maintain “the space”
Without risking the fact that you might just know everything about them.
 p
People say that eyes don’t lie,
I believe it’s a lie
Because the only thing in human body that doesn’t lie
Is this patch of terribly tiny mountains on your flesh.
 p
But according to behaviourists,
Children observe and learn.
So when I was a child, I learned that truth is never rewarded.
That human beings have multiple layers of flesh
To hide away their goosebumps.
 p
So you know,
I became black-listed.
For people who too often searched for compliments.
For those whom I told they weren’t in love with me
That love isn’t a feeling that can be summed up in 3 words.
That the color of love is translucent and not red.
So that we could see each other
Destroying one another.
 p
On the days I’m myself
I climb stairs of sophistication.
And stumble and fall down
Whenever I have someone to hold onto.
 p
You see,
My hands do not quiver the moment I start reciting my poems.
Because I know I’m pretentious
And they are all broken pieces of different stories
Joined together.
And in their gaps,
I hide myself.
 p
That artists are nothing but clowns in disguise.
We paint our face white
With peace, paradoxical to the cyclones we could never survive.
We apply an extra layer of red lipstick to our smiles
So that we get an extra syrup of attention
Over the icecreams we binge eat out of loneliness.
Because you know,
Deserts have been my first love,
And stayed.
 p
And I just giggle about the way
People change the topics
As if they are standing at the sea shore
And I’m the tide.
 p
They say that phobia is an irrational fear of something
And that it’s ok for me to cry in public.
But whenever I try,
My eyes get stoned.
The windows and doors of my house close down
As if there is an automatic alarm warning me of an intruder.
And I’m the biggest miser of them all,
For I cannot shed my possessions.
 p
And I solemnly admit that I’m not real.
I fake my Hello’s.
I fake that I’m contended when I’m just holes
Into which people pour love
And suck it whenever they find a better place to invest it in.
 p
I fake that I’m strong
When I have these tiny mountains growing bigger and conical
Underneath the layers of flesh
That are like the chihuahua barking over a terrorist.
 p
I fake that I’m a child in this body of a 20 year old
Tired of people trespassing the line of control
Saying that they are refugees
And my empathy is a shelter for them.
 p
I fake that I’m fake
Whenever I mistakenly behave as the truest version of myself.
So, agreed. I’m not real.
Just as you all aren’t!
p

When we talk about stories or anecdotes, we rarely contemplate them in poetic forms. But here is a version of someone’s reality, so unique and laid out in this beautiful verse. 

I can’t summarize or enlist my learning from this poem because I know each read has lead me on to a different interpretation, a different conclusion. But that’s what poems are. Open for interpretation.

So all I’ll say is this: how many of us are ‘real’ anymore? Every day, we’re going farther away from who we are. Tell me then, how do we learn to love, and be at peace with our real selves?

-:-

 
(The Anonymous Anecdotes is a project under which anyone can send me a memory, a story or an experience from their life that had a profound impact on them. It requires people to write their respective experience along with the way it changed them or their perception of life. According to the project, these stories are being published anonymously, with the intent of spreading a positive message and a hope that anyone who reads, relates or learns. If you’re interested, you can send me your story at ratti.priya5@gmail.com.)