Updated: Dec 1, 2021
It's a Saturday morning. Your elder sibling woke up early to go to school, or perhaps to prepare for a viva while you ran into the other room and snuggled in beside your mother. The following Monday, your parent(s) pick you up after school, make a quick stop to your regular grocer to buy you your favourite snacks, and after getting home you plop down on the sofa with your beloved Frooti and Peppy and tune into Tom and Jerry (our original old version thankfully, not the new lousy animation).
But now, now we're stressed out.
For some of us, it's the looming placement season, where friends are pitted against each other for the benefit of mammoth MNCs. For others, it could be anything from bills, to loss of a loved one, or, and this is a personal concern, the new cartoons and their deterioration by the second. Whatever the underlying reason may be, the consequence is the same - we're all royally screwed up in our heads.
I see kids today, huddling over mobile phones, or more focused than my 21-year-old self on dressing up fashionably, or, and this is the worst one, growing up too fast. Oh, what I wouldn't give to get dirty in the rains without a second thought, not caring to be mindful of the lascivious eyes trying to see through my shirt. And yet here I am, in my home, procrastinating doing my assignments and longingly sitting by the window as the showers pour down.
Back then, any fight with a friend could be resolved by sharing half a candy bar (or giving it away completely if you did something major like calling them a poopyhead). But now, amidst bruised egos and apathetic attitudes, arguments never actually conclude, do they? Grudges and accusations, which the innocence of childhood tends to let go of so effortlessly, are constantly bubbling under the surface, waiting to break free at the first sign of an altercation.
You lose your curiosity as you grow old, they say. It's only natural, they say. Loosely translated, they're trying to tell you - sorry you made another trip around the sun, you're allowed to be more boring now. If you go jump in puddles, or merrily lick your ice-cream on the swings, they tell you to act your age. What the fuck is that, act my age? The ocean is old as hell, and it can still drown our asses with vigour.
So, don't be afraid to be terribly real in a terribly false world. The world doesn't have to lose its magic just because you lost your toys. Demand yourself back. Burn brighter, laugh louder, love fiercer. Do whatever it takes to feel a little more alive, and a far less lost.