2020 was a difficult year in many ways. But when I look back in retrospect, I see it as a year of learning.
It was the year I learnt I could live away from the city. It was the year I learnt to adapt. It was the year I learnt to let go. But most importantly, it was the year I learnt to incorporate positive changes into my life that led me to become a happier being.
I can’t specifically say what spurred these changes. Maybe because I was in isolation for so long that it gave me an un-interrupted introspective view of my own life. Or maybe because when so much bad happens in the world that it gives you perspective on the important things, that the unnecessary burdens just melt away. OR maybe I was just tired with the monotony of my own existence – that change was inevitable. I don’t know.
It was first wonderful and then disastrous. (Say that with a CAPITAL ‘D’.)
I’ve never really been distinctively shy of my dark circles, but come September end – when my insomnia was at its peak – I found it hard to dismiss the idea that I had started to – as my mother put it – ‘mildly resemble a raccoon’.
I had the face bone structure for it (not kidding), and the fact that a large part of my wardrobe is dominated by black, only happened to reinforce my mother’s above-mentioned hypothesis of my rapidly developing appearance.
There’s a vase of wilted flowers by my bedside that I refuse to throw away. Outside my window, there’s a tree the colour of the setting sun; its leaves are hanging so loose like they’re about to fall. After a minute or so, a light breeze sweeps one of those leaves right past me. It takes a mid air twirl before gently falling to the ground.
A butterfly is fluttering around the potted plants; there’s a jingle in its flight, but its wings are mellow.
I’m sitting in the NSCI library – one of my favorite places in the city. It is still early in the day, the library is so quiet and my chair is so comfortable. People around me are engrossed into their laptop screens.
My laptop too, is switched on, staring at the keyboard, I’m thinking ‘what should I write?’
I turned 24 on a Friday of the previous week, and for the weekend that followed it, I found myself celebrating with friends, feasting on basil dumplings, marveling at the deliciousness of my pizza, posing before my camera and laughing at every joke I heard.