My top 200 achievements

I could bore you with a list of everything I’ve achieved in my life thus far, but I’ll spare myself and my fellow readers the agony of reading such a painstakingly long list. Also, I think a list would be pointless, because everything I’ve achieved thus far in my life would not be able to fit into 200 lines.

Everyday that I’m alive and living my life is an achievement and also a challenge which I embrace and grab hold of with both hands. Because everyday I get to wake up and make up my own mind about what I want and what I choose to do with my life and even though, I may screw it up countless times, I get a fresh start everyday.  
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Letters to a young me…

The art of letting go

I’m letting go now, so so long, goodbye.
I can’t hold on for the pain is far too much for my fragile heart to bear.
I’ve loved you so long now, with my whole heart and  soul.
I’ve loved you more than I thought I was ever capable of loving anyone.
I’ve loved you to the point that I let go of all my preconceived notions, allowed all my walls to be broken down and given in to the sensation of free-falling into love.

I’ve given you all of me and all my love.
I’ve let you love me in return and now that we’ve had our time in the sun, I’m letting go and moving on as best I can.
My hopeless heart still loves you; my feet keep running toward you and my arms keep motioning to reach out to you.
These I can’t control. But my mind helps me with the rest.

My mind tells me that there are deadlines to meet, people to please, chores to be done, lessons to be learned and things other than love to think about.
My mind reminds my mouth that I know other words to utter, other than your name and naive ‘I love you’s’.
My mind reminds my mouth that there are messages to communicate, life lessons to teach, friends to comfort and family to appreciate.

My mind reminds my eyes that there are greater things to observe and appreciate, even in life’s simplicities.
Greater things than staring into your eyes for hours, or trailing the length of your naked body or following your movements when you think no one is watching.
My mind reminds my eyes that there is nature’s beauty to take in, that there are other faces to notice everyday, that there is empathy to express through these eyes.

And though I know that someday this longing feeling will pass and I will no longer have to remind myself of all the things I ought to do, other than loving you; for now I’ll take it day by day and go through the motions of letting go.

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What motivates me

I sat down to write this blog post, feeling a bit like I was sitting in an interview. You know the type, where the interviewee reads off  routine questions, from a list they probably acquired from some boring book with a title like, ‘The top ten questions for interviews’. Yeah, that’s the one.

And although I find it one of the most mundane questions ever, it’s still a tricky one to answer. There are so many things I find motivating, such as my alarm clock, which motivates (read: forces) me to get up in the morning; a freshly brewed cup of tea which motivates me to get on with the day (can you guess how much I love tea yet?); my studies and knowing that I have an obligation to work my butt off; getting a pay cheque at the end of each month motivates me to go to work everyday and my friends and family who keep me grounded and motivate me to push just a little bit more, when I’m all out of motivation.

These are just a few of the things that motivate me, but I think my biggest motivation is life. The fact that I get to get up every morning and see a new day, breathe in fresh air and experience life in all it’s abundance and short comings. Being alive and getting the chance to make a difference and a new start every single day is my biggest motivation of all.

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New Tenants

I’ve got those butterflies again. Those little bugs that seem to creep into my system and shake me to the very core. I find myself day dreaming and shivers running down my spine at the most inconvenient times. I really wish they would behave, or at least practice a little more restraint, as they arrived ever so suddenly without any formal notice or even so much as a telephone call.

They always seem to drop by when I least expect, to complicate my very organised routine. They consume my every waking hour and I find these new tenants rather intrusive, fluttering about. I find myself scribbling meaningless notes and drawing little hearts on tiny pieces of paper. I’ve had many guests before, but they are by far the worst and every time they leave, they tend to disappear without so much as a ‘thank-you’ or a postcard.

I’ve had it with these darn butterflies! As far as I’m concerned they may as well fly up a tree and climb back into the cocoons they came from. Everyone thinks they’re so pretty and adorable, completely ignoring the trail of destruction they leave behind with each visit. I really wish they’d go away and find a new landlord to bother. Find some place where they could afford to pay the rent and all the extra breakages they’re sure to cause , instead of free-loading at my heart’s expense.

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”D’you know what happens when you hurt people? Ammu said.
‘When you hurt people, they begin to love you less.
That’s what careless words do. They make people love you a little less. ‘
A cold moth with unusually dense dorsal tufts landed lightly on Rahel’s heart.
Where its icy legs touched her, she got goose bumps. Six goose bumps on her careless heart.

A little less her Ammu loved her.
And so, out the gate, up the road, and to the left. The taxi stand.
A hurt mother, an ex-nun, a hot child and a cold one. Six goose bumps and a moth.”

Source: The God of Small Things (Arundhati Roy)

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The 10 most unexpected consequences of being online

1. Having full-on conversations with friends on Twitter, that you’ve never even met.

2. Finding answers to random things you’ve always wondered about and even more fascinating is the fact that someone out there in the universe, had the exact same random thought. e.g. How does one get birth marks?

3. The realisation that anything you say or post online can be used against you in a court of law or in the office tomorrow morning. 

4. Getting in touch with people you’d long forgotten or would rather avoid in real life, thanks to Facebook.

5. Realising that the average stranger could find out all about you in a matter of minutes and is entitled to his/her opinion online.

6. A sudden addiction to online shopping. e.g. I’ll just pop onto eBay for 5minutes to see if they have that pair of shoes I was looking at in my size and while I’m at it I might as well buy a milk frother, I’ve always wanted one of those and a mixer, since it’s only £7.99.

7. Knowing that no matter where you are in the world you’re never alone as long as you have Internet. Aaah, the wonders of the net.

8. Keeping a relationship going via Skype, even though you’re 5979 miles apart from your significant other.

9. Avoiding unwanted queues at banks, post offices, grocery stores or even shoe stores by doing everything electronically and getting whatever you need delivered to the comfort of your home (except for ADSL, you’ll have to go into a store for that unfortunately).

10. Realising that your entire life would ground to a halt, if the Internet were to suddenly die for even just an hour.  

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The elephant in the room

She sat in the corner and listened, listened as they spoke in heated tones, about her future. Round and round they went with their words forming circular stains around her heart. She had become so accustomed to this scenario, being an only child all her life her parents had always known best and always believed that their decisions would shape her future.

Although she knew this was true and she was grateful to them for providing for her all her life and putting her future first, she knew that things had changed. She was no longer a little girl and they no longer held the key to her future. She’d flown her parents nest and gone off to the big city with bright lights to work and explore.

In the process, she’d made some miraculous discoveries about the world, she’d fallen in-love and she’d finally figured out what she wanted. She no longer needed her parents to hold her hand or pay her bills. She’d returned home to tell her parents what she wanted and what she’d decided and they in turn proceeded to tell her what they wanted and why they were in charge, in an attempt to regain some form of control over their now grown up daughter.

They all sat there, her listening, her parents raising their voices and all the while everyone ignored the elephant in the room. Although her parents knew that they no longer made the decisions for the adult sitting in their living room, letting go of their only daughter seemed far too much to bear. She sensed their fears and hesitation and being the well-raised, respectful daughter that she was she waited until they had finished airing their views.

When the air seemed to settle she told them that she loved them, that she’d always be grateful for the role they have played in her life and that they would always play a part in her future. But that she was now a grown woman, ready to make her own decisions, make up her mind about what was best for her and suffer whatever consequences her choices dealt her. All she asked in return was that they respect and love her, as she did them.

Then she picked up her cane, kissed them goodbye and walked out the front door. As she stepped out into the bright Summers day, she felt the sun warm on her skin and although her world had always  been dark, she felt something she would never see, she felt a new dawn approaching.

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Damaged Goods

His sign read: ‘People for Sale’.
He said they were just odds and ends that he’d found in the back of his closet or up in the attic, that he’d been collecting for years and needed to get rid of.

I browsed through the bargain bin, found a tall blonde with a broken heart and a scruffy looking young lad with some battle scars. There were some others too, which had been marked down due to some wear and tear. A boy with a missing tooth and a domestic violence t-shirt, a priest with a missing collar and some sexual scandal staining his robe, a college graduate with some crushed dreams  and even a house wife bearing some scars from self inflicted wounds, but the man assured me they were just oven burns, nothing a good scrub and some bleach couldn’t fix.

A woman approached, eyeing a particular item on the sale rack; a sweet looking little girl with some spare change in her one hand and child molestation in the other. ‘How much for the girl?’ asked the woman. ‘£40’: said the man in a stern bargaining voice. ‘£40 is preposterous for that, look at the state of her, I’ll give you £10’, she said without flinching. ‘£15 said the man and we’ll call it even.’ They both nodded in agreement, exchanged some paper and the woman walked off with her bargain buy.

I turned to leave and as I walked away from the damaged goods, I couldn’t help but think that £40 is a bargain, even if all that girl had was some spare change and some child molestation, she was worth a whole lot more than that.

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Everyday is a good day

There once was a young boy full of hope and promise.
A top academic and a star athlete at his school, he’d made his parents proud and all his peers looked up to him. He was a cheerful guy, with a care-free spirit and a joke at the ready. The type of guy you’d want to bring home to your parents.

Then one night it all went horribly wrong when he headed home from a raucous party with some friends of his. The car collided head on with a 4×4, carrying a young family of four and killing all the passengers in both cars, all except one. The young boy had miraculously survived the crash.

The crash had left him paralysed from the waist down, half of his face had to be reconstructed and he had minimal use of his left hand. In an instant his whole life had been ripped out from beneath his feet and what once was a promising sports future was now non existent.

A news reporter interviewed him a few days after he was released from hospital and asked him what he had to look forward to now that his life had changed so dramatically. He looked at her with a knowing smile and the wisdom of a man four times his age, as he said: ‘I look forward to life. Everyday that I’m alive is a good day. I look forward to everyday.’

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