Lost in the Party!

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Source: http://www.gratisography.com/pictures/281_1.jpg

I was at a party last night. A party I gate crashed actually. I wasn’t invited even though everyone around me had received one of those glossy gold and blue invitation cards. I really wanted to be there, so I decided to cleverly make my way inside. I knew I deserved to be there and see all those people.

I fully expected to feel like a deer in headlights on my entrance; instead I was looked right through. No one noticed as I slipped between groups or deliberately bumped into them. There wasn’t even a polite smile directed my way. I had prepared some truly witty sentences that I could throw around and practiced my laugh at hundred times in front of the mirror (Remember, left profile is more flattering!). I wanted my troubles to finally pay off… and how dare not a single person acknowledge my presence. I was visible; I had double-checked my reflection.

Time to reveal a secret – I didn’t even know who was throwing the party. I barely knew the people there – two or five I guess. Don’t ask me anything beyond their names. But I had to be there! It was the crème de la crème! The numerous years I have spent in bylines have made me an expert at studying those upturned angles of the jaw. The delicate touch of fingers to mouth and elegant flick of an errant lock of hair from the eyes. The rich perfume that followed their steps – the luxuriant air of confidence and belonging. They thrive in that comfort and assurance; here they find a kinship that I have been craving and trying to cultivate.

This was my moment. It was time for me take the spotlight and make them notice me. I jumped into the very eye of the tornado and loudly announced my presence. My senses were on high alert to demonstrate my lines and gestures right on cue. Heard I was and seen I definitely was. I was also groped and tugged and pinched and pulled. Not that I felt anything. I had arrived and was basking in the moment. Did that cute guy just let out a loud guffaw over something I said? Oh my! Bring up a round of champagne please.

It was nearing dusk as I decided to make my excuses. I carefully matched my steps with other regular guests as we made our way towards the door. I happened to glance at the mirror and to my shock, I couldn’t find myself. I twisted and turned trying to find my reflection but it was not there. I asked someone if they could see me and they gave me a strange look as they replied “There is no you. There is only us now. Us!”

I didn’t understand and look! There was someone in the reflection who was wearing the same look of confusion. I realized it was my body. Just not the same one that had walked into the party. I could see a twisted arm, a forked tongue and glazed eyes. I saw faint rashes around my neck almost like a rope had been at it and a complicated knot weighing down my head. I was truly one of them – matching feature to feature. I was not me. I had left that me behind at the party probably cowering into a corner. I could see her at a distance, growing fainter in the rising sun and looking at me with grim accusation.

Until we never met again.

Because, idiots!

Everywhere on Facebook!
Everywhere on Facebook!

I have a problem. Fine – I have about a gazillion problems. But right now I am going to talk about just one and that is the image I have put up here.

I fall in the classic twenties age-group where life is moving ahead at the rate of ten “wheeeeeees” per second. That can roughly translate into getting married, moving overseas for a jazzy job and going on exotic holidays. Oh and clicking 19345967 photographs of the said holidays! (I am up for mine next month – more on that later). So there are a lot of “whees” going around or at least that’s what Facebook likes to tell me. They are paired with those Buzzfeed/HuffPost/Blah blah articles of “579380 things to do before you settle down” and “843823 rare places to see before you turn 30”.

The line was crossed when this image started trending. It is one thing to show-off your lovely travel and trotting lifestyle with edited photographs and unrelated captions, but it turns insulting when you put this up. You just made having babies and giving birth to new life into a trivial activity! You just made a couple who are learning the ropes of parenthood into a pair of lifeless bodies! You just made those magical nine months into a boring everyday task! I don’t know how many people really focused on the first part before mindlessly uploading and sharing this picture. Maybe the travelling part of it appealed so much, they just overlooked the secondary message. It made me feel really sick – why use comparison to highlight your travel bug? How are these two even related!

Is “settling down” really so bad to our generation that we have started pulling it down like this? Is it so “old-fashioned” and “boring” that getting married before 24 is suddenly a social crime? Is “living and learning” equal to “single and bohemian”? Last time I checked, it is possible to get married and have babies (not necessarily in that order) and yet lead a great life. We want to break free and fly but now it seems that freedom has grown some chains of its own! Because if I don’t abide by certain definitions of freedom and liberty, I have not really made it.

Let us take a reality check. First, not all of us have the means and time to do so much country hopping when even commuting within city is  cumbersome. Second, not all of us like travelling so much that we will be off every month to some odd place – adventure lurks in our backyard in the form of pesky monkeys. Third, not all of us care about where in seven hells you have traveled unless you are getting something for us. The irony is that a majority of those who put this up are so lazy that they can barely cross the street let alone cross the border.

Wanderlust is pervasive. It does not matter if you do it solo or you do it with a caravan of seventeen noisy children. Travelling is fun but then so is raising a family. You can have both – at the same time too. Just think before you post.


Thoughts? I know I did some massive generalization and there are still many of us with substantial gray matter – Yay for us!

No Excuses! Keep Moving…

I found myself at my creative best this morning as I struggled to wake up for my run. Excuses flew out of my system for exactly three minutes before I managed to jump out of bed and hit the cold roads. Minutes into my run, I was glad I didn’t give in to the temptation of my comforter.

I wasn’t like this until more than a year back. Before that, I was blissfully ignorant and living in the comfort that since I am slim, I don’t need to bother with exercise. Right??

WRONG! Like millions, I was disillusioned that zero weight issues signifies good health. Slowly, I discovered that fitness is the key and not your body shape. I understand that we face tremendous pressure to look good and achieve unrealistic photoshopped standards, women especially. But we cannot help the shape we were born with! And those fruits floating around defining them… They stay unless cosmetic intervention takes place. Shouldn’t we try to make the best of what we have got and make it a well-oiled, smooth functioning machine?

Many people face issues in reducing sizes inspite of regular exercise and healthy diet. They simply cannot help it! But then you have this lot who claims to have embraced their curves and hence refuse to move a muscle.  Now that’s a whole lot of horse poop. A horrible excuse. It’s a slap for those who are giving their all towards a healthy lifestyle where weight loss is simply a by-product.

For a long time, my sister was happy with her overweight and didn’t really make an attempt to exercise. Now, with disciplined yet fun lifestyle changes she has become fitter, healthier and leaner. Is she a super-slender bombshell? No! Is that even important ? Hell No! Because she is healthy…

I am all for not giving in to stereotypes and be happy in the imperfections of my own skin and curves. But I cannot bring myself to support using this acceptance as an excuse to not exercise and eat unhealthy. I love my healthy lifestyle and the fact that now I am in a better shape even compared to my modelling days. Because, health!

So yeah! Stop whining and making excuses… Just get moving to feel the high of a healthy life!

p.s. Wish me luck for my 5k tomorrow. My poor nose gets cold!

Badge: Doobster @ Mindful Digressions
Badge: Doobster @ Mindful Digressions

This post is brought to you by Stream of Consciousness Saturday where today’s prompt is ‘excuse’ Come take a look 🙂

We Women, I swear!

We love. We hate. We talk. We ignore. We hug. We sulk. We support. We bitch.

We are the best of friends. We are the worst of enemies.

We are the biggest fans. We are the sharpest critics.

We give it our all. We take everything back.

We are women.

With the brain and heart not really working in tandem, I have been a giant dessert salad bowl of feelings, emotions, practicality and logic. It’s a crust of impudence, a fudge of flirtatiousness, a ganache of sensitivity, a sprinkling of caution all blended together in a fascinating sauce of womanly seasonings.

I was never a girly girl. It was never about pink frocks and beaded jewelry. Yes, I came up with disasters when I played with mom’s make up and made dad an essential part of Barbie tea parties… but at the end of the day, being a girl was never really my distinctive quality. And then came the thriving, terrifying teens and life was topsy-turvy! A nerdy introverted kid, I had a small group of close friends. I was a part of those girl gangs but never really in with my heart and soul. I was a spectator, a witness, an objective third party. And what I saw…

Why is it that it is our girlie gang behind many of those lurking misgivings, tiny hurtful sentiments and moments of self-doubt? Why are there unspoken words behind tags of partners-in-crime, female solidarity and sisterhood? We compete for the chic dress and funky hairdo. We compare our bodies and draw satisfaction when the scales tilt towards the other’s heavier side. We gossip like crazy about the sexual escapades of our fellow women and go mad over stalking the exes of our boyfriends to be assured “Oh! You are better! She is no competition at all”. We have a bunch of fake friends and a photo album full of groupies you couldn’t care less of! We dislike this one girl on sight and label her with every bad name we can think of (Okay fine! At times, she really is a cow… female intuition works here!) We subtly criticize when one of our own has an outstanding achievement. We have double standards – we demand liberalisation and unlocking the shackles but do not shy away from slut-shaming a promiscuous woman.

Nothing and no one is spared… boyfriends, wardrobes, jobs, paychecks, relationships with our moms, our cooking repertoire! I have been guilty of quite a few and have no doubt that I ain’t changing overnight. Why do we do this to ourselves? These crossed wires mazing around! Yes, I am doing some major generalizing. It doesn’t happen every time with everyone… but at one point, at one moment, it has happened.

Yet, it is impossible to live without our daily dose of female camaraderie. I love my girlfriends! I love exchanging clothes, gossiping over drinks, bonding over our mutual hatred of the period gods (I may dislike her, but it will never stop me from lending a tampon to my girl in need), comparing first times, swapping love tips, sorting family issues and be insanely crazy. At times, a comforting shoulder and a nice cuddle with our mates is our sustenance. We will be lost without each other and these quirks which are so uniquely female!

SATC quote nails it – “Maybe our girlfriends are our soulmates and guys are just people to have fun with”

Peace.

Prompt #75 Influence the Dark Side

Image Courtesy: Antonia Mora
Image Courtesy: Antonia Mora

You are lovely” they said “Perfectly normal, perfectly healthy

Why did my stomach roll? Why did my chin wobble? Where did the bulges come from?

I escaped into loose shirts.

A collage of super models, diets and exercises decorated my walls

The models frowned as I wolfed down a chocolate bar

One last time” I promised them every time amidst desperate tears

Shadows darkened the dungeons of my head, and I stole glances at the bowl.

It beckoned slyly, “It only takes two fingers

I didn’t feel my fingers ramming down my throat. I didn’t taste the bile.

But I was aware of the dark satisfaction of my emptied bowels

I was enslaved!

Cravings for cheese, butter and chocolates made way for the gratifying taboo.

Dry tears were shed every night with umpteen promises to stop.

All vapour. All flushed. With two fingers.

My breasts sagged and my love handles disappeared.

I dropped sizes.

Now they say, “What happened? You look ill. You look pale

The mirror laughed “A slimy green is their jealousy; can’t bear to see you slender”

It pointed out the various bulges and imperfections around my lower body.

Keep going

It was a waking nightmare. A dark, endless tunnel threatening to collapse on me.

Eyes shrouded with a black film, tongue burned like charcoal…

I didn’t know I was dying. I didn’t know I needed help.

All I knew was that I was fitting into the size two dress.

A blackout, a hospital gown and years of exorcising the demons… I breathe free!

Almost.


Written for mindlovemisery’s menagerie

When looking beautiful comes at a price.