The Difference Between Then and Now

But the truth is, we all learnt it somewhere, in our own ways.How to be brave.How to not give up. How to appreciate the tiniest moments. (1)

Its always hard to sum up how much you have grown,

or how far you’ve come over the past year in words.

Think about it –

By now, you’ve learned so much more about yourself.

The things that matter the most to you.

Those that make you happy.

Where your passion lies,

And what your next goal is.

You seem to have it somewhat figured out already. You have a new plan.

A new vision.

And you’re ready to do whatever it takes to turn that into reality.

So you start to take a mental note.

Scribble on your board.

Re-focus all your energy.

Nothing can stop you now.

You can feel it.

And you start to believe in yourself,

a little more than you used to.

Because only you know your story.

Your journey will always be your biggest secret.

Because we as human beings never really find it easy to share

What we truly feel.

Or all that we have been through.

The world that surrounds us sees only a glimpse of it all.

They see your strength.

Your courage to take risks.

Your willingness to work hard.

Your gratitude for all that you have.

But the truth is, we all learned it somewhere, in our own ways.

How to be brave.

How to not give up.

How to appreciate the tiniest moments.

And as we did, we felt all kinds of emotions-

Happiness, pain, love, hope, and despair.

But you stand wherever you are today, because of one simple thing-

A choice.

To try harder. To challenge yourself.

To push through the times when days felt too long.

And nights where your thoughts kept you awake.

So when you look back and try to measure

The difference between then and now,

Remember this-

Maybe you’ve traveled a lot further from where you began.

Maybe you’re still taking baby steps and you haven’t made it to where you want to be.

But whatever it is between the two,

You made it here, and that’s all that matters.

And that’s what always will.

Advertisements

The Mad Run

Screen Shot 2018-10-06 at 7.20.27 PM

Let’s face it –

We’re constantly running.

Either toward something that we just need to achieve,

Or away, from everything that scares us.

It’s the unfamiliar things that make us think.

That keep us awake for hours.

That drive us to make new plans as we try to predict what they can lead to.

 

We wonder why we ran into them in the first place.

Trying to use reason to help silence the questions in our head.

I mean, of course, there has to be one.

Because isn’t that how destiny works?

 

But that’s not the hard part.

Because eventually, we learn how to make peace with all of that and move on.

Playing along, one day at a time.

The real struggle begins when we want to decide.

 

We want to decide to stop.

To hit pause and hold on to what lies in front of us.

Because somewhere deep inside,

Underneath all the walls that we surround ourselves with

We want to build something.

 

But how do you know when or where to do that?

After all, we spend so much time focusing on going from one thing to the next.

Afraid that if we don’t, we’d be left behind.

In this game, this madness that all of us built together.

The chase to reach a finish line that no one has ever seen.

 

It’s simple really.

All it takes is acceptance.

Accepting the fact that there is something that

Makes us feel different.

That lights us up in a way like never before.

That defies all logic.

And sometimes seems a little too crazy to be true.

 

It’s when you wake up knowing

That you want to stay.

Because, that something – that place, that memory, that person

Makes you happy.

It makes you feel safe.

Like you can count on it for longer than most things.

I would say forever, but of course, that’s just a myth.

 

Yes, it’s that easy.

No rocket science really.

All you need to do is give yourself a chance.

 

Don’t be afraid to slow down.

To look around and appreciate

All the things that you come across.

Because you never know when

You’ll find that one thing that will make you think twice.

About running. About fear. About how stuff works.

It never announces itself.

It just appears.

Knocking on your door.

So, make sure you’re ready when it does.

 

Choose to welcome it.

Choose to stay.

That just how it is.

Remember that the one who really wins the mad run,

in the end, isn’t the one who comes first.

But the one who creates something beautiful along the way.

 

The Butterfly that Danced Under the Sun

Screen Shot 2018-10-01 at 10.36.07 PM.png

The butterfly was afraid to spread its wings for the first time,

For it had long forgotten what freedom felt like.

Wrapped in a cocoon and hanging for what seemed like forever.

Counting the days till it would be strong enough,

to break the walls that held it back.

From the world that was full of light.

But now that the time had come,

It thought twice about revealing its wings that were a royal blue.

Thinking about how it would be admired by all those that set their eyes on it.

Being held in different hands, even though

All that it really wanted to do,

is to sit on that one flower that had been its companion since the start.

When it looked nothing close to beautiful.

When it had nothing much to offer.

When all that it could do was crawl to places that were nearby.

Now, it had the power to fly.

It could go wherever it wished to.

Limits had been redefined.

A new life stood before it.

One that it had always dreamed of.

Yet, ironically, it was now in doubt.

Was that really what would lead it to happiness?

Time was limited, it knew.

And destiny worked in mysterious ways.

Even though it seemed so hard,

the butterfly knew that it must embrace this new beginning.

For it was always meant to be just this.

A magnificent little creature that fluttered around,

giving all its admirers a memory.

And in return, it knew that it wouldn’t get much.

But then, that was its purpose.

To spread joy. To dance under the sun. To make the world a beautiful place.

And so, it decided to take the leap.

All within the blink of an eye.

I saw it spread its giant wings and bravely choose to fly…

Dear Traveller

Dear Traveller,

I know you get really tired sometimes. Of all the unexpected destinations that you end up on as you follow your path.You question yourself as you look up at the sky. Or across the ocean. Wherever you are.

Sensing the limitlessness of it all. Realizing that you may never know everything, no matter how hard you try.

Now I really can’t give you any advice on how to make that possible – after all, it is my essence. My secret formula. It’s what makes me so special.

All I can say is be grateful. For the ones you meet as you discover incredible things.

Actually, the ones who stand by you when you fall and don’t think you have what it takes to get back up and move on.

Make a conscious effort. Stay in touch. Don’t let time get into the way of things.

Because the truth is that you will never have enough of it.

Be wise. Realize that sometimes what you’re searching for is really something that has always been there. Right in front of you, with you all this while.

Keep your mind open. Be humble.

No matter how successful you become.

Because giant houses and cars are pretty amazing.

And so are all the other fancy things that I see everyone wishing for so often.

I see them do some crazy things, like read horoscopes.

Or believe in fortune cookies.

But trust me, at the end of the day,

Its all about what you’re coming home to.

That someone who waits for you to knock on the door.

The neighbor who smiles at you every morning.

Your favorite spot, where you like to escape to sometimes.

Happiness. The simplest kind.

The joy of eating a bowl of popcorn as you binge-watch your favorite TV show.

Putting on that one song that you’ve listened to too many times and singing.

Dancing in the shower.

Cooking. Reading a good book.

Whatever makes you feel like all the effort is worth it.

I know. I know.

You’ve heard this so many times.

But I thought it might be just what you needed to hear.

At this moment. As you sit and wonder.

Right before you sleep.

And make new promises to yourself about tomorrow.

Be fierce. Be unforgettable.

Be the kind of person that I can talk about for eternity.

I believe in you.

From Life

Admit it, Your’e Afraid

Aren’t we all a little afraid

of admitting the truth?

 

Maybe we have no idea why we are doing what we are doing.

Maybe we should have said what was on our mind.

Maybe the second option should have been our first.

Maybe we should start over.

Maybe tomorrow won’t be the way we pictured it to be.

We think about it all the time.

All this stuff.

And it keeps us awake.

It makes us spend hours trying to gaze into the future.

Trying to make sense of the uncertainty.

Trying to eliminate the risk.

Trying to draw up a plan of some kind.

Trying to make a list of rules to follow.

Trying to come up with a formula to succeed.

 

And then, all of a sudden,

We feel at ease.

Because we think that we’ve cracked that secret code.

The one that can set things right.

The one that is the key to that door that we’ve

been trying to open for what seems like forever.

The one that we think is perfect in every way.

But maybe we’re wrong.

Because things might take a totally different turn.

Life as always has other plans.

Then what?

Was making that plan a waste of time?

Or were those questions that we asked ourselves a lie?

What then, is the best way to live?

 

I have no idea, I have to admit.

I am a little afraid.

And that is the truth.

But then, aren’t we all?

But what if we follow our heart in the end?

Maybe we could fly.

And yes it’s true, we could fall.

But it’s the possibility that we need to look at.

And win against all the doubts.

 

Walk ahead.

Be brave enough to make that choice.

Speak your mind.

Move to a new city.

Embrace the flawed decisions that you may have made.

Because no matter what,

It’s never too late

And remember,

we’re all a little afraid.

Say Yes.

32597326190_8100f28bcd_o

 

If only we were able to fast forward things and see how they would turn out to be sometimes, decisions would be so much easier.

After all, it’s hard to deal with the fear of the unknown.

More so, overcome it.

They say it’s always amazing when you reach the other side, that everything great lies there.

So the question is, are you willing to take the leap?

To move forward knowing that things will never be perfect?

Do you believe enough to hold onto faith as tightly as you can?

Because the truth is, that tomorrow’s always going to throw you off a bit.

With its mysterious ways of challenging you over and over again.

But then, there is a certain charm in taking chances.

Because sometimes, if you’re lucky enough,

They can lead you to exactly where you need to go.

Say yes more often to things.

Stop overthinking.

Because if this was your one shot at happiness,

You wouldn’t want to miss it for the world.

Stop. Imagine. Go crazy. Make a deal with the universe.

And remember – The unknown is just something awesome

waiting to be discovered.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do you feel? That is the question

IMG_20180613_144921

So yes. I know it took a while.

To find an answer to what you had asked me.

But that’s only because there wasn’t just one.

 

“How do you feel now that it’s over?”, that was the question.

Honestly, I had no idea what to say back then.

Since I had just ended a journey.

Or should I say won a battle?

It was me against myself.

Constantly competing to be better.

To absorb all the great things that were going on around me then.

 

I felt like a ship

that had finally reached its destination.

After sailing across some magnificent oceans.

Surviving the rough tides.

 

I felt like a wounded soldier

Who had just returned home from war.

Carrying the scars of a battle never to be forgotten.

Whose eyes seek nothing but the embrace of loved ones.

 

Perhaps part of me felt like a bird in a cage.

One that had just been set free.

One that was ready to soar among the glorious sky.

To explore places that until now had only been dreamt of.

 

But the strongest feeling was that of hope.

Faith that tomorrow,

I would be able to face every challenge and succeed.

Because the woman who you saw after she had walked across that stage

With tears of joy in her eyes was ready.

 

Ready to wear her newfound strength as her armor.

To chase her next goal.

To start to build a life that she secretly envisioned a year ago.

 

You see. It wasn’t over.

In fact, it would never be.

Because as soon as I struck a pose holding proof of my victory, I knew.

There was so much more to come.

 

So, if I really had to give you an answer today,

Here’s what I would say –

I feel incredible.

But also a little afraid.

Because I have no idea what the future holds.

But in the end,

I know that I am now strong enough,

And that I will be just ok

 

So get ready to ask me again a year from now.

And I promise,

It won’t be the same…

 

 

 

 

The Little Girl Dressed in White

IMG_20180507_222238

A picture of a little girl dressed in white, sitting calmly on a tiny studio chair; with an innocent face, eyes full of curiosity and a faint smile – that’s what the world sees now.

But it isn’t the whole story. As she grew up, she was told a secret by her parents – that right before the moment that this picture was clicked, she had fallen. And she had tears in her eyes. Afraid of what had happened. Lying on the ground. Not knowing how to pick herself up. She was one year old after all. And there were many lessons that were yet to be learned.

But she was surrounded by people that she loved. She was picked up by her mother and made to try one more time. To give it one more shot. And that’s when she succeeded at it – smiling again, ready to strike a pose, observing everything that was around her.

She was a girl who needed very little to be happy – a glass of Cola, her mom’s gentle embrace, her dad’s piggyback rides and watching WWE with her brother. She was protected, just like a little princess.

Years passed by, and as she grew older, life became harder. She made a lot of friends but was able to keep very few. She had to travel all over the world and call a new place home every now and then. She had to learn how to speak in different languages and make change her best friend.

Change – that was the biggest challenge. It was like having to be a new person. It meant having to let go of things – sometimes completely and sometimes in parts. So, she learned how to say “goodbye” more than how to say “hello”.

With every adventure, she grew stronger. She was able to wipe away the tears by herself. Able to conquer the fear of failure. Able to fight to get back up every time she fell.

With time, everything around her became a little more different. The world became a little more complex. And she wasn’t protected as much anymore, because she stayed oceans away from the ones who had picked her up for the very first time.

But, there’s one thing that she could never forget – that one secret that she was told by her parents. It reminded her of how important it was to never give up. To always have hope in her heart. To believe in herself and also in the universe, even though it worked in the strangest ways.

And that’s what made her come so far. It’s what made her bold enough to make her own decisions. To make mistakes. To learn from them.  To know how to do the right thing. To dare to challenge the impossible.

They were still the true source of joy for her, those little things – the Cola, the embrace and watching shows. The only thing that changed, was how valuable they had become.

She realized how important being loved was. How fortunate she was to have something that great. She was now wiser, that little girl dressed in white. And she continued to wear it with pride – that faint smile.  She knew that she had come far from where she had started her journey. But she also knew that another adventure awaited her and that a new story had just begun.

Of course, life would knock her down again. But this time, she would be ready.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meant to be?

Screen Shot 2018-04-14 at 11.54.04 PM

 

We work so hard to make sure that they are part of our life – those things that matter the most. Then why is it that they are the first ones that we forget about, or choose to let go of when things get tough?

As time passes, or as we move on from one leap of faith to another, memories are built.Moments are captured and framed on our favorite wall.

But then, reality happens.

Fear starts to exist-

The constant thought that we may not be able to live up to expectations.

Or that we may not be capable of doing whatever it takes to keep those things.

We begin to question whether we are good enough.

Whether we will be able to do justice to everything that we have created till now.

The footprints that we left along the way-

Some have faded,

And some remain in the hearts of many, that have set out on their own quests of self-discovery.

Would we ever look back at them and trace how far we have come?

Or would we choose to give them up?

As we start to find reasons, good ones

For having made the decisions that we did,

A little voice whispers in our head.

The one more famously known as what connects us to the “Soul of the world”.

The heart.

Asking us to be brave.

Brave enough to turn around sometimes.

To remember just how much every part means.

To have the courage to question ourselves.

 

And that’s when we must stop.

Take a moment to listen.

And if what we hear brings us joy,

Then we know that it is indeed worth fighting for.

 

Whatever you think that you must let go of.

Don’t.

Because it might be exactly what you need to keep going.

And if you’re lucky enough, the universe will reward you.

By gifting you with something called “forever”.

It will conspire to give you whatever you truly want.

Because, believe it or not, it was always meant to be…..

 

 

 

Scars, Battles, Destruction and Beauty

Screen Shot 2018-04-04 at 11.11.33 PM

 

Every now and then, something will destroy you. Sometimes a little, and sometimes completely. It will test your patience. Push you to the edge. Challenge your strength. Demand your courage.

It will question everything that you believe in. And leave you thinking deep. About just how you were able to make all those decisions that made you stand at the place that you are at today. And why you made them.

You will break. Or maybe get scarred during the fierce battle between your mind and your heart. As you redefine your limits and push your boundaries. As you begin to realize that you are capable of withstanding so much more than you think. Of achieving what seems impossible.

You will fall. Or maybe bend a little. As you try to carry yourself through it all. Remembering exactly why you need to win. To get back up and move on.

You will hear all those voices. The ones that told you that you were not good enough. Or maybe that questioned whether you were the best choice and walked away.

You will face the fear. Of losing. Of never being able to be the same person again. Of giving away too much of yourself to someone.

But falling apart piece by piece isn’t really a bad thing.

In fact, it might be exactly what you need.

To see the beautiful mess that you can make.

To see how far you can go before breaking.

To get a chance to put yourself back together.

In a way, that nobody else can imagine of. Not even you.

Because when you rise after that something.

The something that destroys you.

Just a little. Or completely.

You will be a little better. Or maybe the best version of yourself.

And that’s when you realize that it’s all worth it.

The intense emotion, the unseen drama, the tough choices and the uncertainty.

So, embrace it. All of it.

And save it as a memory.

Because in the end, what once destroyed you will become a great story.