Sundays are my lazy days. Not always, though. Today however, was the ‘laziest’ of all. I woke up late. A late breakfast followed by a movie and then a very late lunch. Of course, this is not the ideal N speaking. Sometimes, taking a break from habit does wonders. Like, I had a long chat with my best friend from college S with whom I have shared some of the loveliest and adventurous chapters of my life. We reminisced some of the comic moments we had, which primarily covered our unforgettable addiction to the highly unhygienic and heavenly tasting pani puris of Vallabh Vidhya Nagar (Anand). It was like those small fried balloon like puris filled with tangy water and mashed potatoes and chickpeas cast a vodoo spell on us, and we ensured we had a full year presence in the register of the panipuri wala! Both of us, being foodies of the highest order relished every street food in and out of our mess! Needless to say, both of us took a serious liking to eggs and, frequented the city’s Egg stall once a week at the least. Considering , both hailed from strictly vegetarian families, such forbidden pleasures gave us a kick! Those were the days……Sigh!
Anyways, am digressing by habit. So, it is almost a decade since we left college. Both of us are married now and, have kids. She has an amazingly beautiful daughter, a year younger to my son. And as we talked, she quipped, “N! Don’t you feel we became engineers by force and not by choice?” Knowing her creative side, I knew exactly how she felt while voicing her feelings. I had undergone the same phase too, where I had felt stuck in a professional ennui doing something that was not my primary source of happiness. Although we excelled in college, scored well on our projects, got recruited in multinationals later, the whispers from within never ceased– “Is this what you want to do for the rest of your life?” My whispers grew obnoxiously loud about 5 years back and I took a sabbatical to escape the tug of war, only to realize that writing and teaching gave me peace and happiness I had craved for! (I, for one could relate extremely well to the Ved character played by Ranbir Kapoor in the movie – Tamasha! Yes, we discussed the movie as well!) And, when I had shared my news of quitting the IT 5 years back with S, she was one of the very few who had shared my joy, totally understanding the reason for my switch when the world around was convinced that, I was mad. And today, when she asked me, “Don’t you think we just whiled away all those four years on subjects we studied only to score marks, when we were more interested in other things like writing, narrating stories et al.? May be we could have become something else had we pursued something else! N, we are never going to force our goals on T and A. They should blossom the way they are destined to! What say, N?”
If she were sitting across me, I would have given her a bear hug. She spoke my heart after all! And that, reminded me of two of our batch mates who were forced to study electronic engineering when those creative minds were destined to fly high in the field of music and fashion respectively. It was only recently I came to know that despite having struggled hard to get that engineering degree after prolonged attempts did not deter them later from pursuing their dreams. One of them is a budding Bollywood composer and, the other is flying high with fashion magazines like Vogue. Of course, who ever said you can’t pursue your dream after a degree? These blokes have given a message to the world – It is never too late to take the plunge and pursue your dreams.
Sometimes, we all need a push.
Sometimes, we need our bums to catch fire.
Sometimes, we need a pressure cooker environment to get into action.
Sometimes, we need the ‘salt on the wound’ rub to fight our own insecurities, fears and noise that generates from the sentence – Log kya Kahenge?
Frankly, there are countless Ved Vardhan Sahnis (See Tamasha) who struggle with identity crisis everyday, because of family and financial constraints. Killing the desire to bloom into something niche is a murder of art. Which is why, we need to go insanely adamant to seek our strengths, fan the flames of passion and, push ourselves towards reaching the destination where the soul intends going.
After all, a life fully lived is the best tribute to the creator! Isn’t it?