Because You Left!

Baby, come-a back-a, come a-back, come-a back
To the lips a wanna kiss you!
Baby, come-a back-a, come a-back, come-a back
To the heart that learned to miss you!
You never shoulda gone away,
You never shoulda gone away.

– ‘Baby Come-A Back-A’ by The Chordettes.

Have any of you seen Marvelous Mrs. Maisel?

The girl can talk and cause a road rash.

I wanna be like her.
I AM like her!
Only, in my life, there’s no half-wit secretary to steal my dumbass husband away.
My Joel, or Benjamin, or whoever is too busy wiling away aimlessly on tinder, cribbing about smart sexy funny girls being non-existential while swiping on half-wits with big tits himself.

Too much trash talk? Yeah, I’m gonna detour from the classy for a little bit.

My life completely fell apart today… When my prince charming told me he wasn’t interested in seeing me anymore.

Am I angry? Hell yes! Am I sad? of course (a little bit). But most of all, I’m hell confused!

As I re-watch Mrs. Maisel and type away angrily in my pajamas, I remember each date I’ve been through. The good, the bad and the ugly. Some boys were charming, some seemed a little sleazy, but most of them looked like they had NO IDEA what they were doing. The men I’ve met seemed to have this innate drive to chase me till I’m interested or spin the cobwebs of my brain manipulatively, hoping that I’d fall for them. If only was that dumb, maybe I’d be happier! ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

The issue with me, of course, is that I don’t understand today’s dating culture. Not that I understand any other age’s dating culture. In what seemed like biblical times, people used to trade cattle and land and property for support and survival through relationships. Love was a transaction. An act of convenience and financial security. I’m sure it’s still the same for a lot of people. But today’s day and age of dating is absolutely absurd. All the chummy rom-com movies have filled every young adult’s mind with a distorted version of what relationships are supposed to be. ‘Happiness is not a gem tucked under a mountain somewhere, left for you to find’, I’d told a friend once, wisely. I don’t know if he still remembers it, but I certainly seemed to have forgotten my own musings. What frustrates me most though, is that after the chase is over and their ego is validated, their interest in me seems to simmer down significantly.

I have heard all kinds of excuses such as ‘you’re too much’, ‘If only I wasn’t still hung up on my ex’, ‘If only I didn’t have a girlfriend’ (I obviously didn’t have any idea about the last one until I was told so). I’ve even heard ridiculous stuff like ‘You’re charming and amazing, but I think you’re too good for me!’. What?! Just. What?? If I’m so pretty and funny and smart and sexy and everything extraordinary under the sun, then what is the fucking problem? Is that intimidating? Does it put pressure of high standards on the other person? Is it too good to be true? But clearly, I exist. I’m not a unicorn now, am I? When two strangers meet, people seem to think that they’re supposed to magically click while cupid sticks them with heart-shaped arrows and sings love songs. But nobody thinks about what this seemingly perfect precious person is going through every time they’re turned down.

Rejection may not be my fault, but it brings out in me a deep-rooted feeling of being unloved and unaccepted. I’ve always felt like the loving and adorable person I am. I truly have. But due to certain environments, I did not receive the love and affection I deserved. And that left me feeling quite hurt and alone. It sucks to feel like the one who is more expressive in a relationship. It sucks to be so passionate and empathetic and loving, that you want to be nurturing towards everyone you love in your life. And it sucks to not receive that nurturing back. Love is not easy… I understand! But does it have to be so damn hard?!

So when prince charming told me he wasn’t interested anymore, I went into a spiral of anguish and rage. Why? I did EVERYTHING right!
I looked pretty on the date.
I cracked jokes that were funny.
We talked about intimate things that were close and personal.
I empathized with his hardships while he empathized with mine.
Not to mention, he made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside!
I liked him. And I SHOWED him I liked him!
There were scriptwriters from rom-com movies gushing over the adorableness of our first date. And yet, he left…

So, I demand to know! Where would silly men like these find a spectacular girl like me?

Mum’s The Problem.

All of us know the impact our parents have on us. More often than not, their needs become our needs, their insecurities become our insecurities and their baggage becomes our baggage. In this whirlwind of emotions, it is easy to forget that parents themselves have learned these behaviors and are empathic human beings who may be willing to unlearn it for the sake of their children.

kidsaregifts

Recently I have met a Professor of Psychotherapy, a Consultant Psychiatrist and a GP – all parents of children lost to mental illnesses. Here’s what one mum says:

“Whenever I have seen a therapist, they have gone straight to my childhood, my up-bringing, my parents and their parents. All my behaviours and feelings seem to be explained and understood based on their behaviours, however ‘normal’, for their times. I am encouraged to think of all the ways in which they could have directly or indirectly damaged me.

By that principle, all of my child’s behaviours and feelings should be explained and understood based on the behaviours of his parents. Half of them is me. I agree. I must be part of the problem. My profession is perceived as a bigger problem. ‘High achieving Asian’ parents are assumed to put a lot of pressure on their children. So much so, the…

View original post 123 more words

What Does It Mean To Be A Wannabe?

I don’t know how many of you really remember what it was like to be in high school, but I’m sure most of you can relate to this: Remember the times in school when kids used to want to be a part of the popular group? I bet the popular kids themselves had their own insecurities to deal with. Now that I sit back and think of it, I’m realizing how influenced we were by our self-image and the labels that were attributed to us. I remember being different labels at different points in time. I believe I transitioned between the loner, the nerd, the sweet kid, the popular one, the distant one, the friendly/charming, all at different times. And I’m comfortable with all of them; Because, of course, I felt like that at different points in time. There were kids that were popular- kids that I liked very much because, irrespective of the status quo, they were nice people! I remember not caring as much about wanting to be a part of the label- I had issues of my own. Depression and anxiety are exhausting to deal with! But I remember struggles around the same issues of self-esteem while I yearned for a sense of acceptance and belonging as well.

Adolescence is the time children need the most amount of validation in their life. They are most vulnerable, everything’s changing, that their need for acceptance is the highest at this point. I remember destructive labels such as ‘desperate’, ‘wannabe’, ‘lame’, ‘easy’, ‘slutty’, ‘bitchy’, ‘creepy’, ‘needy’ being used to describe people. tenor.0I kinda feel bad for being a part of it 😬 Anyhow! Those days are long gone behind us! We are all mature adults now. Right? Or, are we? 😅  As I and my roommate got into a spirited discussion about what being a wannabe means, we uncovered a very amusing trail of thoughts! Her point of view was: “But everybody is a wanna be right?”
“Wut?!” I blinked confused. This woman clearly had no concept of what a wannabe was or what it meant to be called one.
“Dude! A WANNABE is Someone who wants to be something they are not. Like they try to act famous when they’re not or they try to be cool when they’re not.”
Then she says:
“But nobody’s famous until they are. And how do you know they are not cool? In their minds they are! So how can you be the judge of that?!”
I blinked some more. This was getting ridiculous.
“Dude… You’re not getting it!! A wannabe is someone who does something because it is trendy. They are only into it because it is popular. They don’t know anything or know very little, about what the trend is. At the same time, they will talk a big game and make it sound like they know what they are talking about. That’s lame right?”

She casts me an annoyed look as if wondering why I’m this shallow while I frantically rammed my brains to understand what I was getting wrong. Then she slowly says “Dude. Everybody’s a wannabe, right? You may think that that person has no fashion sense, but in their mind, they’re doing their best to learn about makeup and explore their own style, and there’s no rule against that. Is there? And that kid who’s trying to be a social media influencer- maybe at this point he doesn’t seem to be gaining publicity, but he has his own ideas and innovation. How can you propagate individualism and creativity when you cannot accept that fact that there are going to be people better than you or worse than you at the task that you are trying to achieve. And till the time that you don’t achieve it – that title, position, career break, whatever – you will be a wannabe, right? A wannabe athlete, a wannabe model, a wannabe film star, a wannabe artist. You’re also a wannabe writer, aren’t you?”

I stared at her open-mouthed as words refused to escape my wannabe face.

So I slowly clapped at her instead!

tumblr_n7f7f2NL4E1t882v5o9_r1_250

Embarrassing Short Tell Tales

*And, oops, my heart went oops
It went into a spin of loop-di-loops
You must’ve thought me kin to nincompoops
The silly way I acted*Oops! by Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong

Cute, but annoying friend at school:
“Dudeeee… Your fly is open!”
I look down, panic, and get up to run to the bathroom
“Dude! You don’t have a fly, man! :’)”
Me: *rolls eyes*

I’m sitting and  daydreaming absentmindedly in the back seat of my Uber.
New passenger crosses the road and opens the door next to me to get into the car
Me: “hey can you please sit in the…”
New Passenger: “Holy mother of god, oooo shit!”
*slams door on my open-jawed face and rushes to the front seat next to the driver*
Me: “Dude! You just yelled ooo shit at my face! Am I THAT scary to look at?”
New Passenger refuses to acknowledge my presence and does not reply.
I continue to to throw dirty looks at him through out the ride.
A girl’s gotta maintain her reputation!

Cute, but annoying friend at school:
*Taps my ponytail to toss it and annoy me*
“Stop it!” I say.
*Taps it again*
“Stoooop”
*Again*
“DID I NOT JUST TELL YOU TO…”
“You’re looking really pretty today!”
Me: *blush. slowly melts inside*

Writing retreat ends. All paticipants make their way to their respective transports.
Our group of young bloggers comes together to exchange hugs and bid goodbye.
“Stay awesome” always quirky and ecstatic participant says.
“Stay corny,” I reply as I hug him. I turn to find everyone looking at me horrified.
“Stay horny?!” another participant whispers to me amused.
“Corny! I said CORNY!!!! @*$&”
Everyone bursts out laughing as I stomp off embarrassed.

Flash back to 8th grade when Avril Lavign was all the rage.
“Hey hey you you, I want to be your girlfriend! No way no way I know its not a secret! lalallalalala…” I strum along under my breath.
“Hey hey you you I want to be your boyfriend :p” guy friend next to me whispers.
*wink* *wink* *smile* *smile*

Got my hair colored in college and went to my uncles place.
“I don’t know what to say” he mutters.
“You can say it looks good!” I chime in.
*Shakes head and walk away slowly, leaving me confused*
*burn* :/

Writers retreat happening. Everyone is chilling around and socialising.
“You know! She’s just like my wife!” he talks about me to a participant chirpingly. “The way she giggles over the silly stuff and starts dancing around awkwardly! And she’s bubbly and sweet and…” trails off as the participant looks awkwardly at me and him.
“He’s my uncle” I explain. “He’s just very doting, is all.” I peck him on the cheek ❤

“I’m so nervous! I feel like I might spill my coffee”.
Date laughs cutely as if challenging my ability.
Mid way through the date, I knock the coffee over as I animatedly try to explain something. Date looks at me startled.
“I promised. And I delivered” I smile.

Walking to the watercooler during my break in school.
Strong wind blows and and tries to lift my skirt up so that I flash people.
I dive to contain it, freaked out and cross my legs while trying to keep my skirt down. I end up having a Marilyn Monroe moment, only mine was more awkward and less cute!
Guy friend crossing by says: “Ooooh my!!” *wink* *wink*
I shy away and slowly die inside.

One of my closest friends from college is from Kenya.
As we sit in her room to study, I roll around on her floor comfortably.
“Shruti! Look out!” She yells.
I freak out and look all around me.
There’s a slimy slithery bug crawling on a dozen feet towards me.
I stand up and scream:
“Ewwwwww! Purityyyy! Look! It’s BLACK and it’s creeeeepyyyyy”
Stone cold silence follows my exclamation.
“Shruti!” she whispers. I look at her horrified realising what I’d said.
She burtsts out laughing at my horror and walks around telling everyone the racist story we now call ‘black n creepy’ B-)

Realisation dawns on my dads face as we’re sitting across each other talking.
“Your hair is red!” he exclaims.
“I know. I got it streaked in college” I calmly explain.
He looks confused and awkward, then smiles slowly and says:
“You should’ve gotten blue! You know how much I like blue. Lookin’ good though ;)”
*Pecks me on my cheek as I blush slowly and melt inside*

I rush to my collegemate’s room to get help with my wardrobe.
I decided to change in her room as someone else was using mine.
Me: *changing awkwardly*
Friend: “Hey Shruti, I had to ask you something!”
“Yeah?!” I ask spinning around innocently.
*click* she takes a pic and yells “Ooooo so hawt!!!”
I jump on top of her and punch the crap out of her till she deletes the pic.
She’s insane but I love her ;”)

Are You ‘The One’?

It starts in my soul, and I lose all control
When you kiss my nose, the feelin’ shows
‘Cause you make me smile, baby, just take your time now
Holdin’ me tight, wherever you go

– Bubbly, Colbie Caillat

All of us have grown up with the concept of the one- the one person we connect with and are meant to spend our lives with. The one person who walks into our lives like the spring we’ve been long waiting for. They send our heart fluttering and make our knees weak – every time they’re nearby the sun’s shining, the birds are chirping and we’re grinning like a fool at this miracle that has dawned upon us.

Sounds familiar?

I’d think so.

All of us have been there. Silly and stupid in love. Curled in bed with our eyes glued to our phones as we text this amazing guy or girl we met that made our toes curl ❤ That’s the fun of it, right? I love the feeling! heheheh… *butterflies*

Growing up with these expectations from romantic relationships I felt like I put a lot of pressure on them. I used to walk into a date with a checklist. I’d concentrate on the fact that he’s well read instead of his body language or how he makes me feel. I pressured my self to be the funny one- cause it’s okay if it’s disappointing that he doesn’t have a sense of humor. I can make anybody laugh! Another defense mechanism. When I met someone I liked, I’d project all my desires and fantasies on them, as if they’re a demi-god that can fulfill everything I want. It’s SO MUCH better now to be able to get to know someone and enjoy their reality as opposed to trying to live in a mirage. It’s a happier and more sustainable relationship. People are wonderful and I think it’s exciting to try to understand them better the way they are.

I’ve been so heartbroken in the past over guys that have left me even when there wasn’t enough chemistry or content because I was so in love with the idea of being loved. I was brainwashed. And I wasn’t the only one! I’ve seen friends mold their partner’s personalities around their own expectations. The idea of what their ideal partner should be like is so deeply ingrained in their minds that they’re ready to torture the one their with to avoid leaving them, growing through the pain and finding someone who fits better. And I don’t blame them; breakups hurt. All of us are those kids inside who want to be loved and appreciated. And we deserve it! I have such a loving family, I can’t even begin to fathom how the child inside me would feel without them.

As we move from date to date and jump from relationship to relationship to find the perfect fit, we are on an endless conquest of the non-existent. Have you seen the movie called Isn’t It Romantic? A chubby girl with wonder-filled eyes grows up deprived of love while hearing constant jabs about her possibilities of a romantic life; She bumps her head and stumbles into an alternate universe where New York is clean and pretty and everyone is nice to her. Also, there’s a hunky billionaire who’s head over heels in love

 

with her and is persistent in showing his affection. She tries to do everything to get out of this absurd world. Tries to dress up, fall in love with the billionaire, swing to cheesy dance songs, everything she thinks the universe wants her to do to get out of the place! Only in the end does she realize that it was herself that she was meant to fall in love with. Because she alone is enough. Don’t get me wrong! All of us need loving and nurturing relationships. But how do we love someone else when we aren’t in love with ourselves? How do we lose ourselves in someone without getting lost if we don’t know ourselves? How do we accept love if we don’t truly believe we deserve it? It’s tough.

It’s so important in this day and age of booming technology and over communication to take a few steps back and be a little old school. Take it slow. It’s important to know that there is no ‘the one’. It’s a myth. There is no perfect person or perfect relationships. People are flawed. they come with their own insecurities and baggage and that’s okay. It’s okay to be imperfect; It’s beautiful even. Cheesy as it sounds, our imperfections are a part of us and our experiences do make us unique. A little empathy for the people we love would really take us a long way in our relationship. I smile as I remember my aunt telling me that.

Maybe we shouldn’t burden ourselves with the concept of the one.

There’s someone for everyone. And of course, it’s a matter of finding them- cause they’re not going to bust down your door and barge into your place.

But maybe it’s great to just find someone who fits, you know?
With whom you have chemistry
Someone you love laughing with
Someone who makes you feel warm inside
Someone you trust

And it’s definitely possible to find someone like that! It’s possible to find MULTIPLE someones like that! Hell, there are 7 billion people on this planet! 😂

Crazy Plant Lady!☘️

Yes- I know the title doesn’t make sense.

No- I’m not going to make it any easier for you to understand :’)

An important thing that you should know about me is that I love decorating my room. I feel like it’s a representation of my personality and I love going creative with my space. I get attached to quirky things people give me and have a hard time throwing them away. That is why almost every decorative in my room has a story behind it. That’s for another time though.

As for the Crazy Plant Lady fiasco, It all started when I was in Little Five Points, Atlanta, walking around with friends. I was going from store to store to find cute decors for my room. In one of the stores, which was cute and creative, I saw a corner filled with small plants in tiny pots. There were all shapes and sizes of containers. Ranging from ones that looked like an elephant, a bucket, a rhino, a dolphin. My eyes fell on this rad looking flower pot. It was shaped like a black cat with piercing yellow eyes and was holding a tiny yellow plant. This cat looked so sassy- it was smirking at me as if it knew something about me that I didn’t. Having always had a thing for odd objects, I immediately made a dash for it and bought it without further ado.

Now, the next question was- How the hell do I carry this plant back to Jersey?! I shrugged and thought I’ll figure it out when I’m leaving for the airport.

*Two Days Later*

“UGHH! NAMINIIIII. I CAN’T FIT THIS STUPID PLANT ANYWHERE”.
“Areee, carry it. Big deal!” NJ rolls her eyes and says.
“Fine!” I frown. As I carry the plant through my cab ride to the airport and security, I notice random amused eyes glance at me. “Cool Plant!” A random person said. I smiled. “Why are you carrying this plant?”, another intrusive stranger asked. “I liked it, so I bought it and now I have to carry it back” I muttered. “Miss! you forgot your plant!” the Dunkin Doughnuts chick yelled. I scrambled back to pick up what felt like an extension of my arm by this point.

plant plant plant plant PLANT!! Ugh!

I kept trying to convince my self that my plant was pretty cool. I still couldn’t help turning an amusing color of crimson red every time someone asked me about it. To make matters worse, the security check took time and I reached the gate a little late. I showed my boarding ticket and the staff rushed me through the gate. I stumbled into my flight only to find it full. “Great!” I thought. Embarrassed I excuse-me-pleased my way to my seat. More amused eyes burned me with their constant staring. I swear, one chick lifted herself up from her seat to get a better look at me. If it weren’t for my plant, I’d feel flattered but I threw her an annoyed look instead.

As I frowned and sat down on my seat, this chill looking co-passenger smirked at me and said: “what’s the deal with your plant dude?!”. I let out an exhausted cry and said: “I liked it, so I bought it and now people won’t stop asking me about it!”. She sniggered and said “yup. you do look kinda odd carrying that around. The flight attendants have already thrown looks at you twice hahah”. I shake my head and say “I bet they all think I’m the crazy plant lady”. “I bet they do!”, she smiled. We laughed and started discussing ideas about how I could deflect people when they ask me about my plant. The uncle in front of me said: “Don’t you think it’s a bit odd that you’re carrying around a plant?!”. I looked to the girl, smiled and said “No Sir, I am a person with high anxiety and have a hard time managing myself on flights. I suffer from panic attacks and need constant support to keep my self calm. This flower pot is my support plant. It makes me feel like everything’s alright. Without it, I’m just an anxious and wailing 5-year-old in the body of a 25-year-old :)”. That’s it. From that moment till the time I reached home, I owned up to my new identity and became the crazy plant lady!

Twas fun 😀

2c10610b8ff6761b2589ad2672f8c16f-e1553743162381.jpg

 

 

 

Pretty As A Picture

Do you know what it’s like to paint?

For most people it’s purely meditative.

I’d never had that experience before. I used to draw when I was a little kid- like most of us did. But after crossing middle school, it wasn’t something I took seriously. I wonder why.

My sister is a fabulous artist! That kid has an eye for the most intricate details. It amazes me how perceptive even a child can be. I think it shows that we absorb more than we think we do… She starting sketching with her Eiffel tower piece below. Me? I’m “different”.
img_4741

Have you ever had that feeling that you’re terribly bad at something? Like, significantly worse at it than others? Yeah, Me too.

I’m terrible at sketching. TERRIBLE.

My circles are ovals, my ovals are circular, I do not understand angles and my shading and sense of proportions is bizarre. It’s kind of funny Related image

I literally get nervous when I paint because I’m so convinced of how bad it’s going to be. Below are a few more samples that I really like from my sister’s collection.

 

Just like me,

Millions of adults around the world would break into a cold sweat if asked to draw a picture in front of a group of people. They’d deny any artistic talent, make excuses, and do whatever it took to avoid being on the spot with a pencil in their hand.

But ask a couple of five-year-olds to do the same thing, and within seconds they‘ll be drawing, explaining, and creating artistic masterpieces for all to see.

After a terrifying past with my attempts with art, I slowly mustered the courage to try to stop being silly and try art again. It took a lot of convincing from Namini, my college roommate, who kept egging me on to give it a try. WhatsApp Image 2019-03-16 at 1.01.34 AMShe has gotten into more ‘simplistic art’ recently where she uses watercolors to paint what she finds fascinating. And even though she keeps insisting that they’re nothing great, I think they’re quite deep and hence fantastic. This is a sample from her art collection on the right. She has an array of artwork but I really like this one best because I connect with it on a personal level. This piece symbolizes to me how the dolphin is appreciating the lonely starry night in its peace and calm. I find myself remembering times when I’ve been in the middle of nature during travels and have felt so deeply in love with myself and everything around me. It simmers on me a sense of calm and peace which is almost sedating in a way. Not that I’m trying to say I’m a dolphin, but you get the point.

So what happened between the age of 5 and 15 that makes me terrified to draw? What makes YOU afraid?

For many people, it’s when they first realize that their drawings look nothing like reality. They can SEE the obvious mistakes, but have no idea how to fix them; feeling that if they can’t draw something perfectly, then they shouldn’t draw it at all. I know I’ve felt that way.

Perhaps it came as a surprise when one of my classmates at school laughed at my art homework and said your “family portrait” looked like two giraffes and an alien.

That’s a tough critique for anybody to take, let alone a kid, but it doesn’t mean I’m not an artist.

Most people think artists have some kind of gift, and I suppose that some artists are born with a talent for art. But, if we looked at the childhood drawings of 100 professional artists, I’d bet you’d find that 99 of them made the same type of scribbles and stick figures that all of us did as a kid.stick-figure-blue-shoes

The difference is that they never quit making scribbles, and at some point, they LEARNED to draw, whether from books, videos, teachers, or just on their own with lots of practice.

So why would it be any different for us? In fact, in order to not fall into a few of the potholes, we could be a little more diligent by making sure that we pick a reference before we draw or paint something. This is because drawing or painting something from memory can be pretty hard. Our memories get blurred and obstructed over time and when we draw based on something we vaguely remember, it often turns out to look horrible on paper. This is why many beginner artists get discouraged as well because they set a high expectation of drawing something very close to their imagination. Another reason is that people often have an expectation of picking up quicker and not realizing that it takes time and constant effort to improve this skill like any other. We immediately jump to wanting to draw a caricature of George Bush or a tropical sketch of the mountains forgetting that good art doesn’t happen with the snap of a finger.

The thing is, there’s no need to keep thinking that you have to be born with some amazing talent to be an artist. All it really takes is for somebody to teach you, plus some time and effort on your part. And I think this applies to all form of creativity and skill, not just art.

So while we try to enhance our skillsets and upgrade ourselves or just nurture our talents and learn new perspectives, maybe we should also learn to go easy on ourselves.

Slowly and steadily, we’ll all get there someday 😊❤️