May 16, 2005

Strife

Well, it is that time of the year once again when a lot of things change all in one go. In keeping with the convention, every year, a bunch of people you know either get all grown up, start planning their lives ahead, invest in property, cars, bond markets or they just get married and move on. Of course, all of this is required for the so called 'foundation' of the society to move ahead and much more accurate descriptions of this process, from varying perspectives, have already been written about beautifully here and here. So, I won't torture anyone with more chatter on the same lines.

Last week, a good friend of mine (one of the very rare ones who do not criticize my often lunatic approach to life) was telling me about how someone she knows had finally hit the track she wanted to follow in life and is now leading a much happier, contented and clearer life, mostly travelling the mountains and teaching kids in a local school there. In stark contrast to that, two other friends of mine, who have been living a particularly glamorous, jet-setting and successful life, were complaining about how boring and disenchanted their lives had become of late. How many of you have the total conviction about the choices you have made or the choices that you are going to make? And what if you find out, later, that it was not the right one?

In writing all this down, it is for the first time that I have allowed myself to sit down and assemble the pieces that have been swirling around in the vortex of my mind. It is not just the lack of time or a particularly tough disengagement from the relationship that I have been in the past year or so that has made this process difficult. Most of the times, it is just the sheer terror in having to comprehend the permanence and the end results of the decisions that I am making now that has prevented me from doing this. But I must face up with them and now is always better than later.

As I have grown older, in the time that has passed since my 25th birthday, I have changed considerably. There is now a constant sense of tiredness, fatigue and the presence of a painful lingering feeling at the back of my mind that this is not what I want. Of course, the 'life is elsewhere' feeling is nothing new to me, but I have been asking myself if I required a complete and comprehensive deviation from the norm? Could I really afford another switch of my existing belief and value systems? Moreover, even more scarily, I have been struggling with losing touch with all of my innate contexts and concepts.

And yes, I have also wondered about my sanity and the alarming rate at which I am losing touch with it. Which is nothing compared to the fact that I am having trouble putting down an internal rebellion that wants to tear to shreds everything that surrounds me for its sheer vacuousness and pointlessness. I am truly disappointed with the parts that form the core of the life of most people, institutions and aspirations. I am tired of screaming into faces that there is more they can do, more they can achieve. But most of all, I am tired of screaming that at myself.

The fatigue, derived mostly from the disappointment, often pushes me into a corner. Most of the time I feel like I inhibit a mucousy bubble into which sound and light come in slow and confused, gradually rising towards a crescendo where I am forced to tear it all down and come out, screaming at everyone to just shut the fuck up. And this crescendo is what I am having trouble fighting. Going against the flow is something that is at my core. I do not know for how long I can pretend to be even a mock conformist. Have any of you ever felt the same way?

Sometimes I feel that it is just the stagnation that is killing me. For most parts, my mind has moved on to so many things. It is almost gone back to living by itself once again; even in all this noise there is not much else that registers in there beyond the 4x4 beat of the melody that is constantly playing into my ears; it has finally forsaken, for good, the relations or conventions it has never believed in; it is busy thinking up all sorts of interesting things to do and interesting places to go to. While, for all practical purposes, I am still here, living the same old life, resulting in a disastrous dichotomy.

There is also the realisation that at some point I would have to totally let go of myself and see if I can take it at all. In fact, I won't be able to know if I could not take it since I'd be gone for good if I cannot take it and such is the state of my mind that the only key to unlock it would be locked inside myself. Not a pretty thought, I agree. But I can't go on for much longer like this. Something has to give. In the absence of someone to share the monstrosity called me, I have grown weary and tired of carrying myself on my shoulders. If I have to fall and never get up again, then so be it.

You know, I miss the old me. I don't feel any passion for anything anymore. In my mind I feel more tired than what an 80-year-old man would feel like. At times I even think that I could happily make do with a crutch or a walking stick, only that, sadly, there are no crutches for the mind. I do not want to feel this tired. I do not want to feel this jaded. I want that part of me back that always had something to look forward to, a part that did not know the meaning of giving up. I want that person back who strongly believed that it would be much better to die trying than to give up, compromise and walk away into a dark corner.

Eventually, all of this is a result of the realisation of where I am headed for. I can't live with compromises. I have to live every moment in life at its fullest and if it need be, I will gladly burn in the process. I know that I have already started down this road, with the complete awareness that once I start on it there will just be no coming back, for better or for worse. I have no idea what it will do to me, but I need to push the line once more and do that dance with fate. This side of the divide is boring me, there is nothing new to see and there is nothing new to experience here. It is about time I had moved on.