Sands of Time

Image result for withered hands

My run of good health came to an abrupt end a few of weeks back and I have been in and out of the hospital. The recovery is on but I have been left with a barely functioning right-hand that bemoans at the thought of heavy movement (Blame those IV injections). The thought of typing is painful but today is my blog's third birthday and of course, I wanted to butt in and wave a hello with my left hand!

And also leave something to ponder that has been doing rounds in my head.

This happened to me at the pathology lab I frequented for my medical tests. It was still very early in the morning, and particularly rainy – only a handful of us sleepily making our way pricks and pees. I was as far from dwelling on ageing as I peed in the cup as I am to landing on Mars, but I did!

The lowdown of what happened –

There was a lady, a very old lady seemingly unaccompanied who was there to take some tests.

She had to enter her details in the system before they could take her blood. It seemed that she was a little short of hearing, so they asked her for her details, ever so slowly – repeating every key word. Her answers were apologetic and laced with regret as she asked them to repeat their questions, visibly fretting over the "inconvenience" she was causing.

When I looked around the room, every person wore the same gentle, patronizing smile. The lab guys also somehow assumed that she will not know what a cellphone is let alone remember the number, and proceeded to mansplain it. They also preferred to overlook her remarks at the tests she had to take and just refer to the prescription.

Because she was old, and frail and apologetic?

She was impaired of hearing, but she was evidently of sound mind! Her answers were crisp and clear, her command on the language clearly showed that she was well-informed. But yet she was denied of this control and the basic level of respect. Worst part is that she probably constitutes the majority – almost all old people I have met look at themselves as an inconvenience!

It has never hit me so squarely as it hit me that day – of the constant babying of older people. And I doubt we realize we are doing it – we stay in the delusion of being understanding and helpful. But on the flipside, I know for a fact that if anyone speaks to me like that, it will be an incessant blow to my dignity. It's a casual ageism that I need to contain next time I speak to anyone elderly – especially my grandma.



Thoughts? I apologize in advance for not giving a prompt reply – my hand will take a while to recover.

The Elephant Vanishes #SOCS

elephant-in-the-room

I used to avoid confrontations – a situation has to become the most precarious jenga formation before I started pondering if I should do anything about it. I would just steadfastly examine the shape of my toenails if the other person is around. I became a flight risk.

But of course, I became a part of the evolutionary cycle and I have started looking at people in the face to start difficult conversations. The elephant in the room becomes smaller and smaller before vanishing completely.

Which really makes me wonder, how many rooms are running out of space for elephants just because of the choice of remaining passive and just brushing the dirt under the carpet lest feathers are ruffled the other way. In families, in groups of friends, in colleagues…. There are always times when the tension is as thick as cheese. But we all bite our tongues, give smiles ranging from constipated to maniacal (depending on how well we can act) and continue talking about the weather. Isn’t it strange how gossip is always welcome as long as it doesn’t concern us? Why is it so uncomfortable talking about topics that touch a sensitive chord?

Why did I make the change? Probably because it helps me sleep better. Why fret over things and how they may unfold when you can take it in your hands? I admit, I have put people at a loss of words because they weren’t expecting me to bring it up? Especially the older generation who are so used to not being questioned! I admit, that makes it a little fun… I am one of those who doesn’t respect elders just because. (C’mon! You can’t get away with age all the time)

And other times… I like being a devil’s advocate. Dialogue is never bad… and with well-timed silences, have lead to masterpiece discussions that have opened my eyes about people and relationships more than anything!



Written for Stream of Consciousness Saturday – an interesting prompt of “book title”. The Elephant Vanishes written by Haruki Murakami is a book of short stories – Highly recommend reading “Sleep” which appeared in the New Yorker. Mind-blowing!

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Tomb

Related image

I was dreaming of a ship, or perhaps a raft in disguise.

My eyes never looked up, my vision stayed tunneled in.

So focused on the horizon, I forgot to look beyond.

I was scared of getting lost, so I held tight to my spot.

I wasn’t the captain, or the passenger.

Nor an engineer, or even a wage worker.

I could have been a ballast to keep the balance.

.

But when they found me from the shipwreck,

I was written off as dead weight.

No memories of the oceans sailed remain,

The course of the journey unknown.

Left without a base to build on, there was no future to look.

When the quest for survival takes over the living,

Thankless was the death that refused to relieve.



The fear of dying before you are ready. The fear of dying before you have lived. The fear of dying before you understand what death means.

Flight #writephoto

It takes a lot to fight gravity,

The first law of nature that we adapt to.

To keep our feet firmly grounded,

Lest we crash and fall.

But oh, the exhilaration of jumping in the air,

Of the innocent abandonment of playing on a swing,

A leap of faith, if nothing else.

Take the plunge to soar up,

Feel the gusts of wind bringing out wings hitherto invisible.

Don’t turn your back to increasingly piercing light of the sun,

Don’t shut your eyes and find yourself astray.

Try again if you crash hard,

And let the freedom of the flight be your guide.


Written for the weekly prompt at Sue‘s write photo challenge.

Transient 


Train journeys in India are my favourite. There is barely any scope for boredom or monotony. There is no telling what you may catch from the window – it could be a smiling child at a sleepy dusty station, or a boisterous family of ten people or a runaway couple embarking on an adventure. 

Landscape changes every few minutes, showing distant signs of abandoned villages or brimming towns, of fields run astray with weed and scrub or of clear lines of cotton. These images are flashing through your eyes, a never ending kaleidoscope that is almost meditative. Maybe you stumble upon a secret not meant for your knowledge but you can bask upon. 

A train journey in India will change you and stay with you as a palette of colours that you can never completely identify or count. It is never completely yours and is shared with hundreds of others. But you can be assured that for those fleeting breaths, it was wholeheartedly for you to consume and dive in.

Written for: Transient