Bookmark #853

It seems I have been terribly blind. I have thrown blame like chump change. I have downplayed and diminished all the ways people have lifted me up in this life. It seems like how some dishevelled gambler knee-deep in debt talks with a sort of unfound bravado, I, too, have done the same. What I owe those around me, I will never be able to repay, and on this winter night early in January, I have realised this, and not just the night, but the day, the many moments I ignored earlier have lit up bright, as if a spotlight hung from a star far away in the purple sky shined on them. But now, I see this life for what it is—an overdrawn cheque, a loan I could never repay, a tab that has run for as long as I have walked. So many hands have pushed me forward, only for me to look back in disdain. But this, too, is an error. It is up to us what we do once we spot one. I shall try to be better. That is, after all, all one can do.

Through guilt that has sprouted with an onslaught in the middle of my heart, I have begun to be grateful, not for just a cup of coffee, not for this view, not for the life I had in this city for all this time, but for the people, for every single one of them. It has all started returning to me: the many favours I never thanked people for, their patience for taking my crass criticism head-on, without as much as a cross word. It seems I have been fast asleep with my eyes wide open. I am awake now, of course. And now, I see the aftermath of this state of limbo, of being too caught up in a web of my own design. No person can brave it alone—me least of all. All my confidence is borrowed. All my intelligence is stolen. All my patience is imitated. There is nothing in me I could claim as entirely my own. And all this time, I have not spent as much as a minute bowing in front of those who made me who I am. Today, of course, I lay my sword down, I lay my pen down. There is nothing else to feel but awe, yes, awe, for those who have looked at me and called me their own.

There is nothing else to feel but shy embarrassment: I have rejected all the warmth I was given on a platter only to howl in the night about being cold.

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