Road Trip

Life became a lonely journey with emotional pitstops. They began appearing a little too frequently. Maybe I needed them, maybe they needed me. But I know that there were a lot of them. I would have to make several stops along the way to refill my deflated tyre of happiness, to refuel my will to carry on. The four wheels that carried me appeared to be spinning, but what spun faster than them were stories in my head that I concocted about myself. I polished my body with scars that shined, and learned to wear my flaws on my sleeve. The wheel that steered my life on sometimes drove me crazy. But I still carried on, despite the seat belt alert resounding towards impending danger, despite the fuel-empty light flickering to grasp what was left of my attention, its blinks spelling disaster in morse code, I carried on.

I still do;
As I wait for the destined halt I will permanently hit at a pitstop one day, and for the vehicle that will crash into me and burn all that I am; putting this troublesome road trip to an end.
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Story #40: An Anonymous Note (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

Dear you,

I know you are suffering in your own, unique way. I know you have a story, a history and something that gives you pain. I know you have happy moments that you never account for, and sad moments you never forget. I know sometimes you hide your pain and mask your insecurities.
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Because I do, too.
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But I want you to know that you’re the writer of your own story. All the characters, living or dead, are the people you chose to be with, at that moment. Every episode you experience is influenced by the words you say and the things you do. Just like every turn adds on to you successfully getting to your destination, every choice adds onto making what your life is or will be.
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That being said, I don’t want to turn this into a sermon. We all know our choices make or break, but still, sometimes we end up saying and doing things that we shouldn’t have. Negativity fills us up. Things go bad one after the other, repeatedly, and everyone you’ve ever come to love seems to either not care, or be there for you.
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But in times like this, I want you to know that you have the power to change your situation. You always have the power to change the situation. I want you to believe that you do.
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Two years ago I had reached the lowest point in my life. I fell, hard; everything in my life seemed to be going wrong. I was sad, and I was sad all alone. To be honest, I still am. I haven’t recovered from it, but I’ve stopped thinking about it. I’ve learnt to focus my energy onto better things. I’ve learned to give into my emotions, but not too much. I’ve learned that emotions make you weak, and love makes you vulnerable. So I have tried to keep them both as far from myself as possible. I’ve come to know that I am alone, and that no matter what, friendship is, in the end, a beautiful illusion we distract ourselves with. Years spent in school together, times spent laughing, and sleepovers: they all dissolve into ego, selfishness and stop to exist. So I’ve just come to terms with the fact that no matter how much I may love people, they will never love me back as much. I will never be enough for anyone, and that is okay because people always have expectations, and expectations always lead to disappointments. 

This may appear to be a very pessimistic view of life, but I swear, I’m a very happy person and a self proclaimed optimist. Although, I believe now I’m turning into a realist. A realist who knows her flaws well; a little too well to hate them. A realist who for quite a long time didn’t look into the mirror because she hated the sight of her face. Anyway, I’m telling you this because I want you to know how I feel better about myself. 

I try to spread happiness. Try to. There’s something very satisfying in seeing someone smile; more so when I’m the reason behind it. So I don’t really care if its over something silly, or a story I just concocted. I just want to make people laugh. Maybe, I think, making someone happy is my way of making myself happy, because I never seem to be able to do it directly. Also, random acts of kindness. You have no idea how wonderful they make you feel. Wish the person who guards your front gate, buy the balloons from the little boy selling them at the red light, compliment your friend who’s insecure about her looks that she is beautiful, tell your parents you love them; there are so, so many little things that you can do that can literally brighten up someone’s day. They feel good, you feel good: it’s a win-win situation!

I know this because these are the things that no one ever told me. I also know this because I know it works. I wish someone would’ve been kind to me back at a time when I felt weak. I was still in school. I’d been crying for last thirty-five minutes in the toilet; that’s how I used to spend my lunch breaks. I’d stopped washing my sore, red eyes because I knew nobody cared enough to ask me what was wrong. This happened again, and again over different time periods in my life so far (I’m big on public crying, lol.) I’ve had multiple panic attacks inside fully crammed metros, and not one person has had the guts to ask me what was wrong. My point here is, in situations like this, people are afraid of being kind. Why? I don’t know. I just hope the people who are reading this aren’t the ones to turn their heads away when something like this happens. 

I want you to do one more thing. If you absolutely hate your existence, or you’ve just been experiencing bad things one after the other, do this: when you lie down at night, close your eyes and just say thank you to the universe for everything that exists in it for you, or rather facilitates your existence. Start with twenty things. The list will expand, day after day and you will realise the thousands of things that you need to be thankful for. I do this exercise at times when I feel that nothing is working out for me anymore, and it just makes me feel that I have way, way more things than I account for, and that my existence is magnanimous. 

I’ve babbled for quite a while now. I just want you to know that your life will go on; you are a unique, wonderful human being who is here for a purpose. I want you to know that right now is all you have. Smile. You’re allowed to cry. Let it out. Love. You will find love, inevitably, but for once try letting love find you? Everything good that is meant for you will come to you in good time. 

I hope you’re happy, wherever you are. 
I wish you well.

Yours. 

P.S: I listened to this song when I was going through a very low point in my life. It made me cry, a lot, but I also felt really better. I want to add it on here, because, I don’t know, maybe if you too are going through something bad, this could help. I hope it does. 

A Little Too Much (Shawn Mendes)


I cannot believe this is the last time I writing this after-note!

We all at some point feel exactly like the writer has described in the episodes of their life. Sadness, dejection, disappointment and what not. But really, true happiness lies in making others happy- be it through lame jokes (if you’re like me) or acts of kindness. These words have really struck a chord in my heart, and I think I will come back to this story, again. I hope the words have resonated with you just like they did with me. 

On that note, I declare The Anonymous Anecdotes Project as closed! I’m so thankful to everyone who’s contributed and/or read the stories; be it one, two or all forty.

Loads of love!

-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedbacks and constructive criticisms are more than welcome. 

(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.)

 

Story #39: How To Restore Your Faith In Love (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I’ve always wanted to teach underprivileged kids. Their smiles have an unexplained magic in them. I found this to be a very inspiring idea since childhood. Unfortunately, I could never find an NGO that was good enough until one of my friends shared a message from an NGO she was part of. I really liked the idea and instantly filled the online form to join. Fast forward a month, I finally decided to go and teach. 

My first day was nothing short of amazing. I started teaching a very young boy who seemed pretty sincere. One hour into teaching, and random little kids start running here and there. One girl comes from behind, puts her palm around my eyes and says guess who. I didn’t know anybody’s names. I had met them for the first time. Yet they felt safe and comfortable enough to play with me. Kids would come and hug me from behind while I was teaching that little kid. They would play small games with me. I clicked some funny pictures with the kids and another volunteer too with the kids showering soo much love on me. I really couldn’t believe it. I have never felt this loved from complete strangers. I instantly fell in love with all of them. 

When I returned home, I couldn’t stop myself from thinking how kids can love so easily. How they are not afraid to love people. Until recently, I was the same. I have lots of love to give and I didn’t mind giving it to all my friends without filters. But due to some negative experiences, I realized one should not do that. Maybe I became too afraid to love again. So this was so shocking for me- how they could love, and express it so easily, without any worry about how the person on the other end is going to feel about it! I had become really bitter and I feel that small incident restored my faith in loving. 


Sometimes our own life experiences condition us into believing things that would otherwise seem absurd had we considered another perspective. We grow onto these beliefs, and mistake them for facts. Beliefs like no one can be trusted or one will never find love. But when we come across instances that no less than throw the truth in our face, or simply, another alternative to our beliefs, it feels like revelation; like an epiphany. 

I think that no matter what we do in our lives, we have to bear the consequences of our actions, good or bad. So nobility brings you back goodness, like in this story. 

This is not a chapter out of a philosophy book; just the things I feel, and this story resonates with a lot of my own philosophy!

-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedback and constructive criticism are more than welcome. 

(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.)

Story #38: Beyond The Imperfections (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

I’ve had a privileged childhood. I’m sure it was better than what majority of children in a country like India get. I got everything I needed, had parents who loved me, who cared about me, and what not. And trust me, I’m very grateful for all that I’ve got. 
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But like everything else, nothing is perfect. And for me, it was my parents. My father although a good man at heart, very honest and has high morals, intelligent and knowledgeable but is also very aggressive and irrational at times; maybe it is because of the alcohol. He is not an alcoholic, I don’t think so, but does consume some alcohol on regular basis. My mother is a relatively simple person intellectually. She is not as intelligent and knowledgeable as my father, and this is one of the main reasons they don’t get along very well.
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When I remember this part of my childhood, I remember fights almost everyday. My father screaming; sometimes beating, mother crying, me and my sibling wondering what we should do and in general distress. My mother may make mistakes often, but nothing deserves such treatment from one’s life partner. A lot of times we were the victims to my father’s aggression too. Me and my sibling were slapped as children, shouted at, and what not. Somehow we grew up fine despite all of this happening. 
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There is this one specific incident that changed me and my family. Don’t get your hopes high as this does not have any happy ending, at least not at the time I write this. A lot of such “fights” happened late in evening, after my dad returned from office, and probably drank alcohol. I put fights in quotes because it wasn’t two-way, it was mostly my dad screaming and hurling horrible abuses at my mother in the loudest tone possible. I’m sure all the neighbors heard them. I would not go in too many details about this, because that’s not the point. 
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There were talks about being divorced. I must have been 14-15 years old then, and my sibling 12-13 years old. We were even asked pretty directly who we would want to stay with when our parents split. I don’t think a lot of kids are asked to make that hard a decision that young. It was devastating but somehow we got past it. 
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There was this night. I don’t know exactly what happened, but this was normal by our standards. Dad said something, mom said something. I am not sure. Me and my sibling were upstairs, and didn’t know what happened. Next thing we know, mom comes upstairs crying, and says, “I’ve called the police.” 
Our worst nightmare came true.. Police got involved in all of this, and I guess from this point of time, I could no longer not accept that this was the sad reality. Earlier if any relative asked about this, I said it was okay. Pretty normal. A few arguments here and there and that’s it. But I could no longer deny everything was wrong anymore. 
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I don’t think I should go into too much details about what happened then when the police arrived as I don’t think there is any point. In short, we played pretty chill. Since nothing significant happened that day, and no screams or abuses or violence was involved, there wasn’t much for the police to do. They thought that it was a case of wife getting upset at husband saying something, and the policemen started cracking jokes to make my mom happy. I guess the call was just the outburst of everything mother had to go through. Maybe someone advised her to do it the next time it happens. I don’t know. Policemen asked mom if she wanted my father to spend the night in jail, and thankfully she said no. Police left. Time to sleep for everyone. No conversation.
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I remember sitting on the bed, looking at the whole scene then, when everyone was talking of divorce, police being involved now. I mean, this was major for all of us. Earlier there were talks of divorce, mostly in a semi-casual manner, but after this, everyone was pretty sure something concrete would happen. Father could not believe this had happened to him, and I believe he was pretty sure he could not take this marriage anymore. Mother obviously could not take this, since she had called the police. I was wondering how my sibling felt, very young at that time. I felt bad for my younger sibling to have to go through all of this at such age. In that one second, I saw my whole family completely destroyed. I knew everything would change henceforth; how I would have to choose who to live with, no more usual family things. I felt a large building full of responsibility falling upon my tiny shoulders. I had to do something now in my life, for my sibling and parents. That one moment, It felt like everything froze, and I turned a man from a child. This was the moment that changed me, forever. 
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PS : No divorce took place, usual family again. Me and my sibling turned out fine, without any psychological trauma whatsoever. Of course everything still isn’t okay. There are still many such instances of shouting and cursing, in fact one right now as I write this. But I guess all of us are pretty used to it now. “Being happy isn’t about everything being perfect. It’s about seeing beyond the imperfections” Right? 
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Please don’t feel bad for me. It’s all okay. Things happen. I live an amazing life. I’m very grateful for it. No complaints. I have many amazing people who love me, and likewise.
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Love you all.
Thank you for taking the time out to read this.
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After reading some anecdotes, I felt like speaking to the writers of the anecdotes but unfortunately can’t. But incase anyone wishes to talk to me, my email is abd14789632f@gmail.com.
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It is tough to even talk about something so difficult that one’s family is going through, let alone writing it down. But this person did not only come to terms with the facts to talk about them, but also to write them down in a way that has surely resonated with me. 

I love the fact that despite the fights, despite the parents being so vulnerable, this person wrapped this story up with the words that they have an amazing life and no complains.
I, too, like the writer, believe that nothing is perfect. We all have, in our lives that one thing that constantly holds us down; it maybe a disease, a mental problem, or like in this case, family. But you know everything is going to be okay once you realise that you need to come to terms with your circumstance and accept things as they are. Only then, will you be able to make an effort to change the things that bother you. 
-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedback and constructive criticism are more than welcome. 

(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.)

Story #37: Past, Present, Future? (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

Past, present, future; the three things that define our lives.
Do they really?

People often ask me about me past experience. What all did I do in school? Was I a good student? What all hobbies I had?

If not my past, they are way too interested in my future. What do you plan to do after two years? What do you want to become? What’s your ultimate goal in life?

Each time, I feel, hang on, please. Let’s discuss our present lives. Let’s talk about where we are right now, at this moment. 

Our generation has just forgotten the meaning of living in the present. Either we are too sad about the past, or too scared about the future. 

This has led us to not value things in our lives, more importantly, the people in our lives. Nothing is permanent; that’s the biggest truth of life. 

The people you love, live with them in the present. Do not think about the past or what’s going to happen in the future.

You must be thinking, it’s not easy to have such a perspective about life. But trust me, it’s the best way. 

I had my experience which taught me this. I don’t want to talk about it much, because it’s gone, it’s in the past. 

I was about ten; very young to understand emotions and people, obviously. I had a brother; lost him when he was not even three months old. The most precious one in my life. At that point, I didn’t even realise what had happened. 

My family made me strong. So now, I realise that indeed, nothing is permanent. You never know what’s going to happen. 

So just love the people you really want to. Enjoy the moments now. Because really, life is just about the present; no past, no future. 


I’ve always seen the present as this, nothingness. The present, to me, is just a fleeting moment; always moving away from us just when we’re reaching to grab it.

But the fact that nothing is permanent forces one into action. Knowing that all we have is right now, even if it’s just a fleeting moment, makes you seize the moment. 

Appreciate what you have right now, because things will not be the same forever. 

-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedback and constructive criticism are more than welcome. 

(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.)

Story #35: Dealing With Difficulties (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

We all deal with difficulties, some are easy to cope up with, while a few take time. Well, that’s a fact, but sometimes they are vague enough to leave you at unease.

So two years back, I met an upside down where I reached the lowest point of my life that led me to lock myself with particular unwell feelings. I felt vulnerable. I was losing colours, with each passing minute, I was succumbing to the sense of being helpless, a state where hope creeps out. I was in oblivion.

So one afternoon, I picked up a sharpener’s blade and tried it running over my wrist. Because I was too anxious at the same time, I shook and failed to make any attempt. I buried my head in my knees and waited for things to get stable, crouched in the darkened corner of a room. I squeezed my eyes shut and heard my heartbeat that grew louder and louder. I stayed still, till the panic attack slowed down.  

Maybe I wanted to feel different or free but I totally ignored how much it appraised. That was a tough month for me and I realised something was needed to be done. I required change. This was the best possible bet with a chance of finding back my lost hope.

I took better and harder initiatives so as to channelize my self. I started to craft myself in the new hobby. I left home and travelled so that I could be free from closed dark room. I met the wise ones and learnt a lot about life. I studied harder so as to get in a good college.

Meanwhile, I felt balanced.

Well, events like these make you realise about yourself and the need for transition. You have to take initiatives for yourself. Life does have happy places only if you really look for them. 

There is always someone who cares for you, you are not alone. 


When life brings you down, you have few options to choose from. You either fall, hard; or you realize that if you don’t get back up on your feet now, you might never. This realization, that change is what you need comes to all, but moves only some, I believe. 

Despite experiencing an upside down, despite reaching the lowest point, despite attempting to self harm, this person realized that something needed to be done; that there were better things out there. 

Getting yourself up from a low point, trying to channelize negativity into a hobby are things not everyone is capable of. People who experience low points are too afraid to get back up. They cling onto their weaknesses. But this story tells you otherwise; it tells you that happiness is a luxury you need to pay for with your strength. Have the strength to get up when you fall, because, as the writer has said, life does have happy places only if you really look for them. 

-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedback and constructive criticism are more than welcome. 

(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.)

Story #34: Where To Find Good People (The Anonymous Anecdotes Project)

Hey. I am not a priest, not a soul guide, not a spiritual guru, nor do I have any special power. I am just another human with a standard issue brain and heart. Although I am not so sure why they blame it on the innocent little organ which essentially only pumps blood in our body. But it’s okay, I guess it must be used to it by now. Hopefully. But remember, it’s an opinion. So, don’t buy it like you buy stuff from a super market, think about it and if you find any loopholes, be sure to contact the lovely author of this initiative who will further re-direct your opinion to me. Trust me, I’ll need it. 

Goodness is something which makes sense, because honestly we see enough bad to adequately differentiate it from the good. There is no degree of goodness, there is just goodness. It is not a methodical process which requires learning, maturity or even education. It is something which is inherent in us, engineered in our brain somehow. But unfortunately, a number of people are swayed away from it at a very early stage. It may be the upbringing, the nightmarish childhood or a traumatic incident. Whatever it is, it steals their ability to act good to others, it is as sad as it sounds. I am not trying to justify the wrongdoers of the world, just saying that they have become this way, reversibly or irreversibly. 

We often use our standard human categorisation policies to put our acquaintances into one of the two boxes called – ‘good’ or ‘bad’. But trust me it is not that easy. Goodness or badness is hardly apparent, often camouflaged by moods, environment, notions and experiences. So it would be easier to let down the judgemental walls down that we build around ourselves and let some goodness flow into our lives. 
Now where the hell is this goodness? 
It’s right there. 

We all see it, when a waiter is extra polite to us. We feel it when a random stranger lets us board the metro before him. We feel it when a random woman is carrying 6 bags, still managing to hold her daughter’s hand while crossing the road. We see it when a cow licks off the dirt of another cow. We feel it when an infant smiles at us for no reason. We feel it when a middle-aged uncle returns your phone which you forgot at the restaurant. 
Sometimes the goodness is strong enough to come and knock your door directly. But other times you have to keep an open mind and look for it around you. Trust me, it’s there. Not necessarily in people, not necessarily in nature, not necessarily even on earth, but it’s there. Let’s try to feel it, let it pass the layers of pains and miseries. Into the soul it will go and it will give you a purpose, a purpose to live, to be someone else’s goodness. 

Thanks for reading through. Smile?


This story made me smile!

Well. So much negativity asserts itself in our surroundings, and makes its presence very obvious in our lives.  Our brains have become so accustomed to immediately thinking of a negative situation, that most of the times we become blind to even the possibility of something good happening. 

We need a certain amount of negativity in our lives to balance with the positivity. But imagine how the balance will fall, if we don’t see the good; if we don’t be the good. It will inevitably pave a way into pessimism. 

A lot of things change when we try to change our perspectives; when we try to look beyond the squares and shapes we’ve cut out for ourselves to use for viewing the world. If beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder, then certainly, happiness must also be found by someone who looks at the world with optimism. 

So, look for it; if you cannot find goodness around, find it within yourself. Foster it, then reflect it onto the universe, so that it finds its way back to you.

I’m sure it will.

-:-

Any opinions, comments or ideas that you may want to put forward to the writer of this story can be mailed to me at ratti.priya5@gmail.com. Positive feedback and constructive criticism are more than welcome. 

(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.)