Excuse me, Life- The Art of Letting Go

This is an anatomy of the process of letting go of a part of my heart and returning to normalcy.

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The past never sleeps. It keeps following you till you are dead. It’s like that Pandora’s box filled by each person with the memories they make with you. The fact that in every moment of our life someone or the other is making marks in the box makes the drill difficult because it implies that you cannot easily shut the box and dispose of it.

We all lose a lot in life. Be it the wrapping paper from the twelfth birthday or the favourite pencil box from fourth standard or even people; we are used to losing. In some cases, despite the best of efforts, letting go is inevitable. There are so many mechanisms we deploy to cope with losses. However, there is a difference between losing material objects and losing people. In case of the latter, the realization of having lost is gradual. This is what makes the process all the more excruciating.

To be the most candid and the least metaphorical, I would say it sucks. The feeling of becoming a lesser priority absolutely sucks. I really have no better way of expressing it. Having recently lost someone I once thought I could not live without, I can freshly recount some of the strategies that I used in a rough chronology comprising denial, hankering after attention and withdrawal.

Denial

Alright, so infinite number of may-be-she-is-busy-elsewhere’s, I-should-show-that-I-exist’s (this is your needy worst), am-I-asking-for-too-much’s later, you begin to come to terms with the fact that you have been relegated to a place less important than the one you used to have.

During this time I used to listen to ‘I Forget We Where We Were’ by Ben Howard on loop without even realizing. Looking back at it, I feel like I was being that teenager with an unrequited love passing through my Christina Perri phase, but I also know that it is just all right to love and expect someone else to love back. It really is one of the most human things one can do.

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Hankering after attention

Now we plunge into the second phase of hankering after attention (read love) from the previous one which can somewhat be called denial. This period is a new low you hit in terms of your self-esteem (well, at least I did). This is an extremely foolish self, trying to remind the other about its existence. Two things can happen- the person may reconcile for a happily-ever-after out of a fear of losing you or they may simply deny you further.

What makes this part significant in the scheme of losing a person is that it ascertains the future of the bond. I think reciprocity in relationships has been highly undervalued. You may feel that there is nothing wrong with loving without expecting to be loved back. A gentle reminder I came across on the internet: If someone loves you, they wouldn’t put themselves in a position of losing you. This should bring you to the next phase.

Withdrawal

This begins in misery and ends in wisdom. The moment you realize that you deserve better emancipates you to the point of knowledge that come what may, you can make your emotions a priority. This is what makes letting go so much more impactful than sticking around. It makes looking back at the coping mechanism worthwhile. This is when you feel like saying, “Excuse me, Life.

I am not sure if I should call this a reality check but it definitely helps one come to terms with what has actually happened. The fog is now out of your vision. There is no obscurity. You begin to value relationships, personal talents, books, metaphors (and beverages) you had earlier belittled. This is not an escape from the Pandora’s box of memories- there is no evading it; it’s an attempt to learn how to share space with it.tumblr_maf5h0trei1rp3n0ao1_500

Writing it out, I feel, is not an act I would relate with sitting at a busy crossroad and whining about the scheme of things. I feel writing about it is a way to tell yourself- I am more than the grief; I am above letting myself down, and most importantly that I can make an anatomy of my feelings to never repeat this self-rejection.

Who am I kidding? I am certain to cry buckets the next time something like this happens, albeit with a monster called retrospection fitted in my eyes.

A Rainy Ride through Memories

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Raindrops accumulate on the surface of glass like metaphors abandoned by poets for eons- unwanted and intimidating because they disclose more about scattered pieces of miracles than you ever would want to let out. The little you can discern from among the raindrops is all that the city lets you see. The ellipses between parked yellow cabs really are the words that were shushed as soon as thought-parachutes were released up in the air. This city under its colourful everyday hides heaps of dusty grey rags in its drains and when it gets waterlogged, the freshwater and dirt, dirt and freshwater are hard to be distinguished from each other. It’s pretty much the same with memories.

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The rain-washed streets are testimony to all that you have shut out of your senses. The glass window of your car does not let the past drench you. As you traverse the city that you like to call your own, the air conditioning blows hard on the commonplace odour-remnants of your past, so as not to make you cringe anymore. What is the loud music that you are playing, but your desperate attempt to pick, choose and thrust memories into the trashcan of make-believe stories that you have been concocting ever since an undelivered letter was mashed in the heavy showers of what seems like a bygone era? You keep playing the song that has enmeshed itself to get trapped in a particular situation, merely relying on those poor auditory nerves to recreate the pathos of a past moment. You speed up your car more than ever, without realising that it is not the empty avenues you are crossing, but actually your past that is haunting you to pace up.

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You have been a conjunction amidst sentences that Eternity has been pronouncing since forever. These sentences have punished you enough for all the mistakes you are yet to commit. You have not felt a lot of emotions, just as you have felt a lot of them. Rewind a bit. Have you not waited as impatiently as a writer does for that one email from a publisher? Have you not, in the hopelessness of rejected fantasies, hovered like an aimless satellite in a galaxy of unicorns? Have you not felt that all the persons whom you have ever bumped into were cities- each having their most happening areas alongside the darkest of alleys which nobody prefers to inhabit; have you not wondered once they outgrew you as to where you did go wrong, and racked your brain in search of an answer later on? If you could embrace this series of infinity, you can combat all that lies ahead in this city which is nothing but a simile for change.

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Who ever loved that yearned not for miracles thinking of the sky as a wish-granting factory while sitting by the window during heavy showers? Get out of that comfort zone. Immerse yourself in the clichés that you have been hell-bent on avoiding. Go, get drenched in the rain. After that, as you gaze at the paper boats of childhood, the dream-loaded cargoes of the decades when they wanted you to be an adult, and the scattered mud pools of hope which nobody ever wished to take back home, let your past to the rain. You will know why this city never lets you die with dilemmas unresolved.