I wrote this last year (2011) but wanted to re-post it 🙂
In recent, I have begun to believe in the superstitious powers of the universe: karma, destiny, fate, signs and omens. I have come to believe that things happen for a reason- good or bad, often out of our control; I have come to believe that events occur to serve a purpose- a way that God communicates with us; I have come to believe that we will eventually reap what we sow; and finally, I have come to believe that our decisions and actions may reveal more to us than we could have imagined.
The year 2011 has taught me well, however cruelly. I began the year in a celebratory, cheerful fashion. “Happy hormones” were generously being excreted throughout my brain as my heart pulsated rapidly in my chest – it was great. The future looked bright and full of promise. I had recently stepped out of a bad chapter of my life and entered in to a newer, more exciting and, what seemed to be, a more rewarding one. I had finally rediscovered a social circle that I had previously been barred from having any interaction with. The lack of stressful factors and responsibilities that night was something that I had not even considered thanking God for because the feeling was something I had continuously taken for granted for a very long time. I remember being in a “good place”. It was all too good to be true. I still remember standing on my friend’s roof that night and looking out at the glittering Karachi night-view that was so graciously provided to me and thinking, “Tonight’s going to be the start of a better tomorrow. And the tomorrow after that. And the tomorrow after, after that.
Today, I have 27 days until 2012 pushes its way in to the limelight and it all seems too soon. Too fast. Too different. My environment and life circumstances have changed- in both, good and bad ways. I feel like I’ve matured and grown over the last 12 months in a collection of spheres of my “self”. I have made mistakes which have taught me more than any “How to Get Through Life” book could have ever taught me; I have taken innumerable faulty decisions for which I have had to pay hefty prices; I have experimented with and tried new things for which I am, both, regretful and thankful for; I have learnt to forget myself for the betterment of others; I have learnt to accept things that I had to concede were out of my locus of control; I have learnt the importance of certain people who are a part of my life which I previously ignored; and most of all, I have learnt to treasure the good things in life- my family, my friends and the bounties that God has blessed me with.
However, this road to enlightenment has not been the smoothest. In the midst of this ruckus, I fell off the path I had once chosen for myself. A path full of goals, codes, aspirations and glittering stars. I had always had a certain picture in my mind which had kept me focused in the past and directed; however, when things did cease to go the way I had planned them out to be, I realised that my energies were being channelled into a relationship which, now looking back, didn’t deserve the care. Time was spent trying to improve the situation, precious concentration splashed in to trying to rationalise every little ill-intended act that- it slowly became a ritualistic behaviour pattern of my personality. In addition to that, my mother was diagnosed with breast cancer during the mid-summer months- which was a mixture of perfect icing on the cake and a tough reality check blended into one sour drink. “This is not what I’d planned. This is not what I had ever imagined”, I thought to myself. In a short time span I found myself becoming this ungrateful, pessimistic monster- someone I, somehow, could not identify myself with, but also a demon I could not detach myself from. My daily habits deteriorated, my performance in my day-to-day activities was a near zero. I was angry. And sad. And happy. And confused. All at the same time. I thought it would never end. But as I sit here looking back at the chain of events that occurred, I can confidently tell myself that I was wrong.
Monsoon clouds pass over once they’ve done their job; and although they may wreak havoc wherever they pause to relieve themselves, those who suffer as a consequence learn to cope. They may mourn and grieve at their losses for some time but in time they realise that, in order to continue living a healthy life, they must clean up the mess and move forward. So they take a breath of renewed strength and energy, stand up and begin the dreadful deed. They rebuild the homes they had once lived in happily and work towards making themselves financially sustainable in order to repair their lives. Although it is a mind-shatteringly tough feat which requires, both, psychological and physical strength, they may come out of the experience as stronger individuals. Similarly, in time, as I was able to overcome the shock of my mother’s health and face reality in the already-doomed relationship I was duelling with, I felt myself learning more than I felt I had learnt in the past year. I realised that life may throw dirt on your face, but unless you don’t make the effort to wipe it off, things would not change. I was able to foresee the implications of my negative stance on my future- I knew that the decision was up to me as to what I wanted to do with my current situation. My youth could either be wasted or utilized efficiently. It was hard to make the first step, to walk away from unhealthy habits, from relationships I cherished but could no longer make excuses for, distance myself from things that weren’t in my best interest and most importantly and most importantly- to put innate grief and fear in the background.
The road is rocky. It always will be. That’s life. But I’ve come to realise that there are events that we feel are out of our control when, in reality, they can be harnessed only if we want them to be. I believe in karma- I believe that whatever happened this year has repaid me in kind and will continue to do so. I believe in fate- things have a reason for playing out the way they do, however much we are unable to explain their occurrences. Lastly, I believe in signs- every event holds a significance that should not be overlooked or ignored.
However much I have hated this year, I feel like I have gained the most out of it than any other. I have come out a stronger, a more mature, and more grounded person than I was on the night of 31st December as I looked out from my friend’s roof. I look forward to what 2012 will hold for me, obviously in hope that it will be better than what this previous year brought forth. I cannot predict or control what God has in store for me, but I can only have faith in my credentials and belief in karma, for what goes around comes around.