For Thy Best Friend!


Tick tock tick tock. The clock is running never losing its time.

And you try to adjust according to the heavily anticipated timeline in Life.

The world is pacing at a rate never before.
Thy neighbour is happily married to the love of her life.
Thy classmate is successful in her chosen career and has a great job.
Thy cousin is traveling the world and living the life of his dreams.

Look around and you will find so many such examples.
Everyone is achieving everything.
And here you are were you were before. And probably even before that.


And to some extent Peer pressure, social media and the unwanted societal botheration do their jobs wonderfully, only to add salt to the injury.

But a fighter in spirit that you are- You definitely chose to gear up!
You strived hard. You failed.

You strived harder. But you aren’t there yet.

More than the battalion to be won before the world and to manifest your desires,
Now there is an equally challenging battalion waging a war in your mind.

The fear and the uncertainty of the how’s and when’s in life rummage your being.

Whoosh! Ta-da -gone away is your mental peace.

And then you naturally seek comfort. Probably from a best friend?

Your literal best friend will surely go beyond his reach to help you out in any way possible.
This could be your friend, your sibling, your parent or anyone whom you look upto.

But have you tried reaching out to thy figurative best friend.
None other than but You!

No other person can ever fathom the volume of emotions you feel in happy or sad times except of you, yourself.

Your struggles, your failures, your inhibitions and your dreams are only as face value to the world.

But you know the value of your hardships.
You know the casualty behind your fears.
You know the gravity of your denuading situation.
You know the desperation for your desrires to come true.
You know your longing to get something , to do something!


The past few months were surely a reality check for me!
Yes, I am truly blessed with a very supportive family and some amazing friends.
Not undermining their presence and help of my loved ones meted out to me, but gradually I felt that it’s on me how to deal with a situation.

It’s on me whether I want to learn from a life changing event or despise it.
It’s on me whether I want to react to someone/something negative or to simply let it go.
It’s on me whether I want to look at the bigger picture in hand or keep pondering over the past.

Many may have had these happy realizations long before owing to their own life experiences and are living life according to their terms and conditions. Kudos to you!

But some like me keep getting these much needed friendly reminders in life- time and again!

As cliched and as rhetorical it may sound- but there is no denying in the fact that YOU ARE YOUR BEST FRIEND.

We seek help only to forget that our biggest help is within us.
Within our minds.

Why not nourish it?
Why not mindfully revert back to it whenever needed rather than seeking here and there.

Like I mentioned, the past few months were challenging enough for me and because of a suggestion from a school friend I resorted to meditation.
Only to spend some time with my ownself and to look for answers that I yearn for.

You may have other means to nourish yourself!
If not, then look for them.
It could be art, music or any leisure activities that sooth your mind and make you more adherent to yourself.

And then with the help of your best friend in you , let the serotonin work its magic and help you farewell in everything you do.

There will be tougher situations ahead and I may lose my balance. But untill I stumble, untill I reckon upon myself, how will I rise up?

Now My mind is my happy place.
So this one is for my best friend!

Who’s yours by the way?

One Day At a Time.

Currently, Quarantining in a hotel in Calcutta and looking at  the rain pouring outside my window (as philosophical as it could get), I reminisced all my days that passed by. And then flashed all the memories both sweet and sour. 

Traveling miles away from home, my family and my comfort zone and shifting to another country is something what my dream asked me to do.
Taking the biggest leap of faith of my life so far, I decided to go for it. 

I went to Philippines, welcoming everything that laid ahead with hopeful eyes.  

My pre- med course was B.A in Psychology which nearly seemed like it took a decade to finish. May be because I was desperate for medical studies to start.
Only missing out to live and enjoying those days.

Medicine proper started giving me no time and chance to complain owing to the vastness of the course. So no cribbing there because that’s what I actually wanted. 

To name a few, Fallout with friends, peer pressure, cut throat competition in the college are some of the problems that every millennial goes through. And for me it started with  pondering over the past and ended with being constantly anxious about the future.

Being a critic to myself, yes I could have taken it easy. Now with a bird’s eye view if I look at all the things that weren’t in my favor, I believe that my getting apprehensive over small things only worsened it. 

Rather a little patience coupled with some clarity could have helped me.

Easier said than done, but as a reader don’t you agree to it too?

I think you will have guessed it by now- “Live in the present“, is the motto of the blog!

You may ask, what is the point of elaborating it? 

Because I believe it certainly will help me and many others in the long run. 

Patience is a virtue and clarity is something that only the calmest of minds can attain. 

And how do I get both?
By taking life one day at a time.  And if anyone of you could relate to it or feel the need for it, the purpose of this blog will be served.

Taking it day by day means letting it loose and reducing the degree of control we’d want to excercise over everything. I am here to argue that you should be neither living your life in the past or future , but present. And yes, I am still working on myself to be able to do so.

The people who knew me 5 years back and are still in touch with me will probably agree to the fact that I have undergone drastic changes. And if that’s the case, I definitely attribute it to my stay in Philippines.

26th June was the said that of my graduation and I would have been with my parents. Dad probably fixing my graduation cap and mom fixing my hair, before my name was called out to go to the stage.  But alas, I could possibly never live that dream. Neither could my parents. COVID-19 hit us all. Hit us hard. When the lockdown was announced in early March, I was not that paranoid thinking things will straighten out. But as days passed, our hopes became blurry only to die. Throughout the lockdown, all I did was spent it in despair. But whilst quarantining, I realized I could have done much more.

 And then a sudden flight back to India hastily made me pack all my 5 years in just 5 days. 

This is probably not how I wanted my chapter in Philippines to end. But only when one chapter closes, can one open another. Finally biding a goodbye to Philippines and welcoming everything that lies ahead using one life hack – One day at a time.

Hence, I disclose my biggest regret throughout my stay in Philippines – I didn’t live life one day at a time.

Hence, I  also disclose the life hack that Philippines taught me- Live life one day at a time.

Honestly, I probably received much more than what I bargained for. So instead of repenting over  what all I didn’t do or get in the past or going crazy over the uncertain of the future, I will enjoy what all I have now. Memories to hold on forever, friends to lean on forever and a prefix to be attached to my name forever.

Boon or a Bane ?

Back in the month of January, when I was posted in the department of Ophthalmology, all I was worried about was my case presentation. I dreaded the consequences I would have had to face if I did not examine my patient properly( followed by the senior doctor reprimanding me). Life was black and white.

Yes, COVID-19 had begun creeping everywhere in the world.
Back then all I cared about was finishing my internship, graduate and head back home, oblivious to what was lying ahead.

Little did I know that not only my but also possibly everyone else’s life would become topsy-turvy.

Exponential that its power is, the virus was multiplying in a hundred fold in almost all parts of the words despite all the major precautionary measures being adhered to.

But let’s give Corona the due credit it deserves.
1)boon for the nature- Nature is now breathing in fresh oxygen owing to the lesser human activity.
2)A boon for the world- The entire world is now united against one common enemy, bridging the gap between the rich and the poor, caste and creed.
3)A boon for those working from home- Spending more time with loved ones, saving time and money of the daily travel and also possibly beating down food expenses.
4)A boon for our grandparents/ elders- As they will have entire family bound together with the grandchildren’s beaming around them in the house .
5)A boon for our selves- To be able to spend more time in solitude away from the daily hustle and explore our long lost longings.( For me it definetly has been cooking ranging from momos to pizza parathas, from baking cakes to making srikhand).
6)Last but not the least a boon for humanity- As now we respect our front liners more than ever be it doctors, nurses, police,domestic helpers and the delivery personnel.

But then now that we acknowledged the silver lining, let me address the elephant in the room.

Initially it began with unruly bed for days, crumbles of food on the floor, overflowing laundry, binge watching movies and just hoping for better days to come.

Doing my laundry on time, cooking my favorite delicacy, a neat room almost daily, not really binge watching but still watching movies are some of the changes that happened, except that now I hope for better days like never before.

I am sure like my dad all the fathers will have become more restless by staying at home until now (only adding to every moms workload- sorry dad).
For every house wife its worse because now they have to do the same old household chores without any leisure outings (My mom so misses the panipuri of the streets).

People dying, loss of jobs, all savings being exhausted, hospitals and their staff being overworked, economy suffering the worst, migrant workers in desperation to relocate to their homes and mental exertion for all are some of the prices we are paying to in this desperate times.


I often end up chatting with my dad about our finances. All he says is that 2020 is not a year of profit or loss but a year of survival, for any middle class businessman.

All of this hits me hard and I start brooding.

Nearly a week away from my graduation,had everything been normal, my parents would have probably been by my side to witness my graduation.
I am not sad per se, because this is a situation where I don’t have much a-do.

The mighty turn of events that have taken place make me wonder if Corona is a boon or bane? As of now, the cons definetly outweigh the pros, but they say Hope has magnanimous strength.

We will rise above this. Soon. Till then let’s do whatever is in our power to better the situation and help the needy in whichever way we can.

Namaste, Corona.

I’m barely three months away from the said date of my graduation.
But what seems to have captured everyone’s attention is definitely the Coronavirus.

No, this isn’t a blog on the do’s and don’ts or the myths and facts about the virus per se. Thanks to the overwhelming WhatsApp forwards that are doing their job pretty well.

There is no denial in the fact that this novel virus is spreading at the speed of light. Even our planet has never witnessed such a gripping-cum-tumultuous event before.

Scientists are doing all in their power to find the antidote,
Government officials are immobilizing everyone to contain the contamination,
Military forces are deployed on the street to ensure that people obey the quarantine,
Doctors and nurses are turning days into nights to save us all.
In short, everyone is doing their part.

I’m just there, yet just not there.

I feel like a soldier who has not been called to fight the battle, since I’m still an amateur. Considering the fact that I am just an intern, I have been asked to stay safe and at home.

Since the time COVID-19 has been declared a pandemic and all the countries are buckling up, I could see India taking it as a joke, not even being aware of the repercussions, like just any other meme to be shared around.

My family and friends for that matter, were simply oblivious to it and I had to scream my lungs out for them to take all the necessary precautions. Either they were ignorant of the current scenario or they did not want to take my advice seriously enough since I’m not yet a licensed doctor.
Not until the rising death toll, an exponential increase in the number of cases shook the entire world, did they realize the gravity of the situation.

On 22nd of March, at 5pm, sitting miles away from India, staring at my laptop screen, when my dad video called me to show everyone clapping hands and beating thalis, it made me tear up.
I so wish I could have been there and be of whatever help to my country, to my patients.

Not only did the Janta Curfew highlight the immense potential that India has to combat the threat but also showed that no one but only Modi ji could have made it possible.

On one hand, I was tremendously happy on seeing almost 130 crore Indians abiding by the curfew while on the other hand, I was frustrated seeing that some of the Indians on the streets in huge groups as if India had won the World Cup.
Earlier this morning, when I opened my eyes to an Instagram post which read that some doctors somewhere in India were asked to vacate their houses because their neighbors feared that they will spread the infection further, i was furious.
I wish common sense was being sold somewhere for them to understand that if tomorrow they fall prey to this Corona, it will be these forsaken doctors who will be the frontliners in saving their lives.
Well, I guess now Modi ji should hold a General Knowledge and Moral Science lecture for them.
Jokes apart – mass education is what we need!
While sitting at home, and utilizing my only weapon- social media, I urge everyone to obey the rules and stay safe, because certainly Gaumutra or Prasad is not fortified enough to beat the virus.
Also, let’s just thank Israel for propagandizing the Indian way of greeting one another by joining your hands instead of a handshake.
Our country needs to appraise its own culture. Let’s shoo this monster away, our way, “Namaste, Corona!”

Hopelessly Hopeful!

Only a few days left for 2020 to ring in and I am feeling a million emotions all in one. For some it may be just another year and for some the New Year will be an herald for dreams.

How would you define your 2019 to be? If you look back at it , has it been the way you exactly wanted it to be? Have your resolutions been meted upon?

Okay, then lets divide 2019 belonging to 3 different types-

The first category-For some, especially the ones in their mid-20’s, 2019 may have been a dramatic rollercoaster ride in the form of – friends drifting apart, lovers becoming strangers, heated arguments with siblings, disagreements with parents, death of loved one dissatisfaction with your current jobs or financial crisis.
One may have literally cursed the mishaps to the extent that it made them hopeless on what the new year may offer.
But then,
Let go of the anguish this year.
Let go of the dishearternment this year.
Let go of the hopelessness this year. And Let 2019 be your teacher and guide you through the upcoming decade full of hopes and sails.
For it is the in the darkest days that you discover the strength that even you wouldn’t know existed!

The 2nd category belongs to those for whom 2019, was just plain (probably like just any other year) .
Ask yourselves aren’t you least a bit excited for a new year.
Deep down there must be a corner that wants a new beginning to embark upon.
If not let a spark of hope enlighten in you.

For what is life without hopes?


The 3rd category is for those for whom 2019 was a year of achivements and celebration of love.
Be immensely thankful to the Universe for having brought to you what is truly yours and continue to remain hopeful about the what the new year will bring to you.

There is no denying that a New Year is like psychological trigger to start off anew, to venture afresh and to stack up new year resolutions.

But more than that the preceding year acts as a pivot over which our hopes revolve around.

Now if I talk about myself, I believe I fall in all the above mentioned categories.
My 2019 has not been kick-ass.
My 2019 has not been dreadful either.
Hence I find myself in a position whereby I am welcoming my New Year with open arms irrespective of the uncertainty or assurance that it may bring, for I know that hope never dies.

So, where do you think you are? Are you 2020 ready?
Are you hopelessly hopeful? Because I surely am!

Years come and go,
Hopes live and die,
Yet I am hopelessly hopeful,
Biding my 2019 a very good by
e.


Less Is More

That which is of smaller quantity is of higher quality.
That which is less complicated is often better understood and more appreciated than which is more complicated.

Thanks to social media and peer pressure, No soul is satisfied with what they have. I am no less either.
More accessorize, more gadgets, more clothes, more footwear compatible with my wardrobe and the list goes on. But if you ask me why, superficially they may say that its just for heck of it.
But deep down the agenda is to look the best, show the best, may be?
While it may not be same for all of us but for majority it is.

So recently I came across so many articles in minimalism. And I used to wonder why is it so promiscuous now? But the amateur I am, after thorough digging up, I realized it that the concept of minimalism dates back years ago.

To put it in a simple term -“Less is more.”
Do I follow it? Clearly,no.
Do I need to follow it? Absolutely, yes.

So why does the need arise now? Considering the mind set of today’s youth which is widely influenced by Instagram, Facebook and of course the modern day frenzy- It seems there is no full stop to one’s yearnings, especially materialistic yearnings.

Minimalism is the ideology if once attained and adapted to one is free from the passion to possess.
Siting an example of myself- I love getting clicked when on an outing. I love food. But more than that I love posting it on social media. But gradually I realized that so much of clutter stresses me out. Because I am under the constant space to get the best shot to be posted on social media.
While doing so, I miss out on the joy of an outing or the joy of relishing on my favorite food. Will the likes on social media compensate for the joy missed out?

NO, Never!!

Yes I am working on myself. Not by suppressing my desires but by prioritizing things that matter the most.
Why persist in a constant battle to do more, have more, amass more?
Its all about being mindful and deliberate with which we can accomplish more with less. Enjoy more with less.

This applies in all filed of life.
1) Work smarter not harder– Putting in hours and hours of work on something which still lacks substance is futile, Right? Instead be vigilant and work smartly. That way we will be able to squeeze out more time for ourselves,

2) Materialism– Our belongings should be thinks we like not the things we think that the world would like. Are you someone who never knows what to wear and ends up spending hours on deciding what to wear? Here comes the concept of the capsule wardrobe. It involves just the essential clothing that would be easy to combine and serve the purpose.

3) Being frugal– Some may think, being a minimalist means saving money. But no, they are two different things. Yes, there is an overlap whereby a minimalist would buy less but of higher quality. It just means to live with less in order to have the time and space for what matters the most. And yes if with less, you are saving money, time and energy, it is a win-win!

4) Bye-bye, toxicity– Some people are simply toxic. Some relationships are simply toxic. Be in charge of what and who you want in life. Eliminate the negativity and enjoy the fruit that it brings along. Hello essential people, Hello essential living!

5) Decision making– I know it’s great to have options. But too many options will stunt our decision making process. That’s why habits are important. For example- meal plans or a simple make up routine or even a capsule wardrobe. Save time. Use that saved time where you like it better!

The bottom line of this blog is not to equate Minimalism with being perfect. Rather to have purpose and meaning. It is upto you to decide of what is value to you. But the value shouldn’t be at the cost of stress and mental noise.

Minimalism is not about dispossession or deprivation. It is about simplicity and clarity.
It is a conscious choice about intentionally choosing to live with less to give way to- More time, more space, more peace, more freedom.

Because Minimalism is not the lack of something, but the perfect amount of something!

A Cocktail of Perceptions

Do you ever feel misunderstood by others?
We all have had experiences in which our thoughts/actions have been perceived/interpreted in an unexpected way.Your intentions may be harmless.
Yet, you may be judged by some.
Yet, you may be misinterpreted by some.This doesn’t happen because that person is cold-hearted or selfish. It’s because people simply don’t psychoanalyze every person they speak/meet.What does one do then?
You’d have the following options-
1. Sulk away
2.Confront
3. Overthink
4. Remain tight-lipped and smile it away.Out of the three, the kind of option you’d choose tells a lot about your personality.Choosing option 1 probably means you prefer moody silences over getting openly angry/ even talking it out. The sulker chooses this method to get things done their way. By forcing the other person to mend things eventually, the hidden agenda is to let others make the first move to patch up. This is the defense mechanism adopted by a person who sulks away.Choosing option 2 holds both good and bad. Good because it allows you to vent out what has been stocked up in you and relieve you off the burden. Also it enables you to express your point of view and assert your thoughts.
Bad because it constantly fires the urge in you to explain or prove yourself right. To some extent it is fine but beyond that it serves as pointless loathing.
To sum this option up, Confrontation is good as long as your audience is receiving and welcoming towards your explanations.
And how does one decide that?
It’s Simple.
By confronting once and then deciding for yourself if it’s worth it or not!Option 3 is probably the most dangerous of all. Thinking and over thinking the if’s and why’s produces nothing but unrest and anxiety.
Why did he say that to me?
Why did she do that to me?
Why did they interpret my actions in this way with no harmful intention of mine?
Don’t such why’s haunt us? But if we think about what others think, then what will they think about?
Think about it!!Coming to option 4 which is the last but the most gratifying option is to remain tight lipped and wade it away with a smile.
I wouldn’t call this a defense mechanism but rather a way of living life that not many can conquer.
Only a person who is indifferent to what others think/say about him can actually practice this way of living.
And for this one needs to be content with oneself to such an extent that no XYZ’s opinion can penetrate his peace of mind.
Because you can’t really control or change the way people perceive you, it’s better to work for your better self.Given a choice, I’d definitely want to choose the fourth option. But considering my nature, I give in to confrontation way more easily with the urge to explain myself out. But I am working on myself with the hope that I will be able to exercise mindfulness and be oblivious to such perceptions that deter me.You know yourself the best.
After all, it’s up to you to decide how much to get affected and react to the cocktail of perceptions presented to you!People will speak. It’s their job.
Kuch toh log kahenge, logo ka kaam hai kehna!

The Grass is Greener Syndrome

This is one of my write ups that I am able to relate to the most. And honestly, I haven’t been able to come up with a full proof solution to it. But then there’s always a way out. Only if you try to find it.
For yourself.
From where does this sprout?
This is an era where social media rules almost all of our lives. Thanks to the internet, most of our complexity sets out from here.

This happens to me too. And I bet, it also happens to many of my viewers reading this post.
Seeing the king size life of your friend/acquaintances,
Someone holidaying somewhere,
Someone posting their inspiring weight loss journeys,
Someone getting their dream job and earning their first salary,
Someone buying and posting pictures of their extravagant shopping and so on and so forth.

Believe it or not, for most people it is difficult to not bat an eye to such things.
And for some especially me, it is a little more amusing that it should normally be.
These are the materialistic things that come in one serving of pros and cons of social media.

Looking beyond at a greater picture, there are some things that are more thought provoking like when we tend to feel that an XYZ’s life is better than us!

This I interpret as “THE GRASS IS GREENER SYNDROME”.
Continuous comparisons, prolonged self doubt and the unhealthy yearn to grab the better life- stem from it.
May be it is because we are unsatisfied with what we already have, making us restless.
May be we are susceptible to others influencing us, so much so that we always find that person in a happier state than us.
May be we can’t settle with what we already have, and desperately desire the next big thing. This is healthy only if we are trying to set benchmarks for ourselves.
But this is certainly unhealthy if we are self loathing after comparing our lives to others.

We tend to focus more on the things we don’t have. And in the process, we forget to nurture the things we already have.
For example, I compared myself too. I won’t lie but recently I saw my friend’s post on Instagram in which she got through a multi-national company, and her boss applauded her.
While I am still a student slogging it off in medical college.
I felt weird and sad at first that despite being of the same age, from the same class and school, there was such a huge difference.
But then minutes later, I saw my medicine text books and I realized that everybody is on a different journey.
I too am.
So what if it’s taking a while longer, after all it’s all something that I have ever wanted.

Coming back to the present is the key.
Getting carried away in series of comparisons will happen time and again.
But self realizing and staying rooted is possibly the only way out.

Grass will always be greener on the other side.
But it’s how we let that feeling affect us.
The cliched saying- ‘Life is 90% of how you make it, and 10% of how you take it’, does make sense here.
I agree, such things are good to the ear, but difficult to imply in real life.
And if something is affecting us in a repressing way, you have to do something about it!
We need to realize the importance of the bountiful choices we already have.
Accept your decisions.
Be in awe of the present.
Being mindful is the secret.
It enables us to respect and appreciate life the way it is.
Mindfulness brings us back to reality.
Brings us back from the seemingly pleasant world that we want ( which apparently others are already living). And rather work even harder to achieve that pleasant world.

No sooner did I realize this, than I decided to pen it down.
Like I mentioned earlier, it may not be a full proof plan, but at least I will be working on myself!

Let the grass on the other side be greener.
Continue watering your own garden and manifest a hundred fold enjoy the view!

Forever and Ever

IMG_20181217_194307_2

It feels as if 2018 passed by in the wink of an eye. But I am sure each one of us have had fair share of memories that make 2018 yet another astounding year.

We all may be having the same mindsets at this time of the year- new beginnings, new year and all resolutions up our sleeves. Having learnt from our failures in the year gone by, expressing gratitude we welcome the new year with great positivity.

For me, 2018 in particular was a year that made me confront the deepest of my fears -Thanatophobia.
Thanatophobia is an anxiety triggered by thoughts of a loved one’s demise. I was constantly terrified by these incessant thoughts.
Death is ineveitable. I know. But, 2018 bought this harsh realization to me in a way so quick that I still have to pinch myself to come back to reality.

I lost my dadi (grandmother)in December 2018.
She had been ill and on her demise people around said-“It’s good that she is freed from all the pain and agony.”
Yes they are right. But I have a different take on this. Why glorify her pain when we can celebrate her life!
A life that she lived on her own terms.
She was a woman of substance who stood up for herself and her loved ones like no other.
From eating home made pani puris in train to being a foodlover that she was,
From fighting off her illness with unparalleled courage to greeting everyone with brightest of her smiles,
From going against her in laws to get her kids to study in English medium schools back in the 60’s ( studying in English medium schools back then was not so popular) to pampering her grandchildren to the fullest- I will always be completely in awe of her.

There is a Gujrati saying- “Mudi karta vyaz vadhare valu.”
The figurative meaning to this is that grandparents love their grandchildren more than they love their own children. It’s certainly falls true for me.
For 24 years of my life, she was a rock solid support always wanting the best for me. No matter what.
She’s gone but has set an example for me to follow for the rest of my life.
Forever and Ever.
That is -To be unapologetically me.
I feel I am strong-headed but at times certain situations become so overpowering that all I do is think about her and the way she would have acted. It’s all sorted thereafter!

You must be wondering why am I epitomizing my grandmother in a post on New Year?
Like I mentioned earlier, New Year is all about new beginning and resolutions and being grateful.

Look around yourself. Look upto someone.
I am sure there must be someone whose love mesmerizes you. Someone who betters you. Someone whom you think of in the worst of your situations.
Honestly, you don’t really need a new year to be inspired from someone. But a new year definitely serves as an impetus for those waiting for one. So why not make the most out of it?
And let that inspiration be your guiding light in whatever you do.
Forever and ever.
How about using 2018 as a means of drawing inspiration from people who have  influenced you the most?
And then let’s embark upon the new year with a bang!

P.S.- If you have grandparents, hug them or call them and tell them how much you love them.
Because they love you the most.
Forever and Ever.

 

Are you Diwali Ready?

Diwali, a beloved festival to all of us is one of its own kind.
Not only because everything around us is lit up with candles, diyas (earthen lamps) and fairy lights, but also because it brings everyone together like no other festival does!
I have been away from home and have been missing Diwali 4 years in a row now.

No, I don’t miss the firecrackers. ( Thank God for the realization that for a 2-minute fun of watching these crackers burn causing so much harm to the animals and environment is not worth it)

No, I don’t miss the lighting of diyas or making rangolis (colorful patterns drawn on the floor) because I can still do all of them here.
Of course the fact remains that I miss my home and family undoubtedly.
Honestly, staying away from home doesn’t really give you the Diwali feels.
But this Diwali morning was an eye-opener for me.
I fought with a friend terribly over a petty issue without even hearing him out.
He just uttered one sentence- “Kruti, It’s Diwali today”. And he left.
His words kept ringing in my head.

While sitting alone, I realized that had I handled the issue differently instead of being so volatile, I wouldn’t have hurt his sentiments and wouldn’t have felt so terrible about what I did especially on a festive day! I became so impatient and lashed out at him.
Haste does make waste.
It’s all about the choices you make. I chose anger to deal with the situation (only to mess up things further.)
While reading an article on Diwali online, I realized that I have always focused only on the superficial meaning of Diwali all these years.
The lights, rangolis, diyas, get-togethers, pomp and show.
Of course they add life to Diwali!
But what about it’s real sifnificance?
Indian mythology dates back Diwali to the day of return of Lord Rama from his 14-years long exile after he defeated the demon king Ravanna.
It historically symbolizes the victory of good over evil and celebrates light and life both.
On the personal front, Diwali is the time to repel the darkness and ignorance with the innate goodness residing within us.
It’s a time to reflect on and evaluate our thoughts, words and deeds.
It’s a time to acknowledge and negate your vices and begin transforming yourselves.
It’s time to explore how loving and respectful you can be towards others.
It’s time to shove the ignorance in you and act wisely and compassionately.
It’s time to burst your ego and be sorry for your wrong actions.
Just like one diya can evade away all the darkness, let not the shine in you dim.
Let it guide your thoughts and actions.
Let every Diwali be a source of happiness to you and the ones around you.
It took me a fight with a friend to realize the true meaning of Diwali (to be remembered for a lifetime.)
And yes, now I am Diwali-Ready!
Are you?

P.S- No sooner did I realize my mistake, than I ran to my friend to make it up to him. After a little bit of sulking, we were back to being as crazy as we are.
After all, Diwali is the festival that brings everyone together.
Happy Diwali to all of you.