Rain. Has rain ever turned you on? I mean, not the erotic turn on, or maybe yes. As they say, there is a rush of dopamine during physical intimacy. This same rush is felt in me when I see it raining . Those drops of water, like chilled diamonds, falling on the leaf blade… When I try to enjoy the downpour, each drop touches me like passionate kisses, with a whisper in my ears “everything would be great, I’m here for you”!! Ahh… That very thought itself makes feel happy. Whatever might be on my way, opportunities or obstacles, I get the enthusiasm and strength to face them through this sheer sight. It’s strange that everyone doesn’t feel the same; but yes, we all think that the things we love are the best!
It was such a day, heavy rain and thunderstorms. There was darkness all around. I sat down and lighted the candle. I opened the book, or as some call it, the personal diary, to pen down my thoughts.
I was surprised that I thought of suicide an hour ago. Had it not rained this heavily, I’d have been dead by now. No. It’s not my sense of humour. Before writing, I cleaned my table and threw away the blade that I had kept ready. I hate blood and getting injured, but, when I had hated to survive, would this matter?
It continued raining, as if it would never end; it felt as if the nature was tensed about my decision and it never wanted me to die, and hence it continued raining so that my mind would be away from the idea. Nature, coincidence or whatever terms we would call it by, I feel that there is always a force that makes things for us. Follow that force, you might end up being the best. When we go against that force to hurt ourselves or others, we invite disaster.
Nah! I ain’t a preacher or a philosopher. I’m a simple, ordinary girl, a 20 year old stupid human. As most of my friends, choosing to be a medical student was my parents’ decision, not mine. I’m not happy, but I’m not sad either. Life goes on, so is my study. Ordinary, plain, and nothing exciting. But, last week, something happened that changed my thoughts and stirred my mind. Who ever knew that Anamika Malhotra, or as everyone calls me, Anu, the first bench nerd, would even have the guts the think about suicide. But then, if those things which took place in my life happened to you, you too might think to end your life; or you might just slap me and hug me to whisper in my ears, “you’re silly, Anu!”. Hehe… The reason I say this is, life is a journey on this vehicle called earth, and we are all co-passengers. Let’s talk, support, create happy souls and have a beautiful journey, till our destined stations reach… Till then, let’s enjoy this beautiful journey!
College was just an excuse, a reason that helped me remove the monotony of life. I never had any interest in the classes that were held here, I always wanted to be an artist, a painter. In fact, the irony is that my parents thought I would do good at biology because I drew the anatomical figures very well. And at a point, even I believed that I’d be a good biology student because I enjoyed drawing well. But, we always realise things after we make a mistake. Truly said, the most string people aren’t the ones who have always seen success, failure helps you be strong. My failure at selecting the way of life I needed helped me prepare myself to be strong. Somewhere, I found Gul in this pursuit of deviating my frustrated mind, the spoiled soul because of the struggle it had to face everyday.
Oh! I’m sorry. I didn’t introduce Gul to you all. Gul, is the one of those reasons of the smile I wear. I found Gul on the first day of our college, the ragging day. I was angry, sad and afraid, and hence I needed a place to hide and cry aloud. I found this giant gulmohar, or the may-flower tree. He was magnificent with his crown of foliage and red flowers. And each time when the wind blew, he would drop his little, red flowers on me, indicating his care and touch. And yes, those flowers made me smile, mended my heart and fixed my soul, and reminded me of the beautiful things in my life which many kids were deprived of out there.
I would always talk to Gul. He is my best friend. And yes, he would talk to me , he would reply. Our language wasn’t the same, but there was a communication that exceeded the limits of words made by man. Whenevr I needed support, he’d drop me a flower, and whenever I was stupid, he’d drop a branch or dried leaves! Last month Gul started shedding his leaves. I was so used to his presence that I ignored his shade, the shade of his selfless love, sometimes.
I’ve always thought about this. Shade and relationships, there is a connection. We humans, we find a person, we love those presence, and during the initial days of our interactions, we are so involved in them, that they occupy our spotlight. But, we get used to their love and care, and we might unknowingly ignore them. It doesn’t mean that we don’t love them, but, they aren’t our priority.
Just like the tree and the shade it provides us. When we first find the tree when weary , we are totally happy. And then, it becomes a routine to be under this shade and we never care. But, the winter comes, and this shade is no more as the leaves are shed. We terribly miss it. We feel bad. But once the tree starts to leaf out, we rejoice. We have seen the similar leaves coming, nothing new. But, we missed it and we are happy at the fact that finally we get it back, after so many days. And this cycle continues.
Once that person who showered us so much of care and affection stops it, we terribly miss them, and their love for us. We feel lost, as if we never knew what to do. But then, after few days, or a long time, when we get a small gesture of their attention or affection, we feel in top of the world. That person becomes our world. It might be in any human interaction, or a relationship, we feel this! Somewhere, I feel it’s good to observe nature. Another evidence to support that plants were our ancestors, we have this trait in common! Haha.. funny, yet I feel it might be true.
I enjoyed Gul’s company. He meant the world to me. I came to college only to meet Gul and talk to him. I felt that his friendship was far better than my interactions with my fellow beings, the so called human beings. This was selfless, soothing and peaceful. Last month he wasn’t there to respond, and that’s when I faced this tough phase in my life. I was sad, and Gul being absent, I felt lost. Hence I thought of death. Oh, how stupid I am. If I had ended my life, I’d never see Gul, being groomed with his new crown of tender leaves now. Such a dumbass girl Anu is!
I never wanted to write down about this folly of mine in the diary. But, what’s an interesting painting without the colours of a rainbow, but just black and white. Hence, I thought I would write about this. I spoke a lot to Gul. He was happy too. I got few of his freshly blossomed flowers. And I opened the diary. I wrote,
“I tried to end my life. Yes. It is true, because my belief in life was shattered. I felt lost. My while existence seemed to be a lie then. I felt I was not worthy of living and hence I prepared myself, mustered the courage to cut myself with the blade. Yes, I believe for althese years that my….”
I hear a gasp and a laughter, few seconds later.
“What the hell! You tried to commit suicide. That too with a blade? You lack creativity , girl! And you want to be an artist? What an irony!” He was laughing so hard that I felt embarrassed than shocked.
“Who are you? I’ve never seen you before. And I’ve never heard your voice too. Why do you comment in a stranger’s actions?” Though I tried to be angry, he was a charming guy. His eyes melted my anger.
“First things first. Why did you try to kill yourself? Less grades? Boyfriend issues? Or worried that you aren’t gaining weight?!” He laughed so hard, that for a moment I wanted him dead. I wanted to break his jaw.
“You are such a misogynistic person. Get lost. Whoever you are, my personal matters aren’t of your concern.” I got up, picked my bag and started to walk away from Gul.
“Hey, take it easy baby. But don’t go without giving me a reply. Why were you so interested in making yourself a cadaver in the college you study in?” He wasn’t in a mood to leave me. I was thinking about him though. He must be some resident. Nobody else is allowed inside the campus. He appeared to be some 25 years old. But his clothes never matched with that of a doctor. Messy hair, a full grown beard and moustache, and clothes were too casual, exactly resembling a hippy.
“I don’t know who you are, then why should I speak to you. You might be my senior, but that doesn’t mean in obliged to answer all your questions. If you aren’t happy with this reply of mine, go and file a complaint against me with the college authority, I’ll see you there.” I was totally angry, but I didn’t know from where I got the guts to speak so. I wondered that was it good to be angry, because that gave me so much guts. Funny.
“Oh God! Chill my dear girl. I’m a resident here. And yeah, don’t go for my appearance. I’m a special resident with .any privileges. And I have heard you speaking to your “Gul” everyday. Hence, thought that the reason might be something really deep. You are a bold girl, brave, beautiful and brainy. You won’t take such decisions over silly issues. Hence, just curious to know! Be comfortable, don’t tell me. Good day!” He winked.
I wondered how he knew so much about me. And he overheard everything that I spoke to Gul. I felt good, actually I felt something special. His words were really soothing, to be frank. I felt that he was a genuine person.
“My parents… I’m not their daughter. I was adopted. And now, they’re going to get separated. I just feel that I’m dead. My whole existence has been a big lie, a big story. I felt that it was better to end my life. They both have been thinking about this from past 7 years. Just for me, they’ve stayed. Now they feel that I could be on my own, and I could accept this fact. Hence, they’re getting a divorce.” It was hard for me to control the tears in my eyes.
“Hmm… That’s strange. Very strange. They loved you so much , that despite their struggles to be together, they’ve made it till here just for you, so that you get a good upbringing and be bold. You must be their support at their tough time. Imagine this, if they see you dead, will they be happy? Will their issues be solved? Won’t they have this regret that their efforts were a waste?” His eyes spoke to me, it seemed.
“But I’m not their biological daughter. They’ve adopted me. And they never told me. They let me know this fact only whole presenting this decision. I felt lost, totally I was….”I started crying.
“Hey. Don’t cry over issues that don’t deserve your tears. Listen, if they didn’t love you, they’d have never been with you althese years. A relationship doesn’t work just because of blood or other obligations to be together. It works only because of love, affection and trust. So, they love you and trust you. Were you really sad for this fact that you aren’t their daughter, or because they you would miss them after the divorce?” He spoke with a different perspective.
“I think I might miss them. They’re the only friends I’ve got in my life. I want them together.” I was optimistic.
“Hmm. The fear of losing the happiness of your loved ones is something that makes us help them and do something crazy for them. It’s actually not the people, but the moments and bond we share with them, that makes us run for them. Let’s see, miracles have happened. Things change. Wait patiently. Let’s take this as an adventure. If they’re trying to separate over some silly issues, we’ll try to get them back. But if they are happy with the divorce, promise me that you would be good to both and love them like earlier.” He stretched his hand.
“Okay, makes sense. But, who are you? I don’t know you. Never seen you. What’s your name? Which department are you in?” It wasn’t normal for me to talk like this with a stranger, but he was something different, really different.
“Haha, why? To stalk me? To know the history of my past girlfriends? You’d fail baby!” He started his irritating laugh again. But, I wasn’t angry this time.
“What’s your name? Don’t you have a name? What do you do here?” I asked him in a serious tone.
“I don’t have a name. I’m just a soul, a happy, peaceful, smiling soul” he winked.
“Okay. I get it. You’re a ghost. Right?” my sarcasm was to embarrass him, as I was angry.
“Ahàan. Smarty pants! You got it right, beautiful! Yes. I’m a ghost. A happy, hippy ghost 👻. Nice meeting you, Ms Anamika Malhotra, or … Anu?” he was so cheerful and jovial, that his smile just melted my anger and it was vapours.
“Okay. Mr. Ghost. Nice to meet you. So, I’ve some pakoras, mind eating? I guess you people don’t eat, still, try these. Create a trend, break the rules!” Now it was my turn to crack jokes, atleast I tried to.
“You’re so cruel, little dove. Let me have them all, I’m really hungry. You know what, I thought you were a timid girl, but you’re smart. Good for me” he laughed, munching on the pakoras that mom made.
We met everyday. Every single day. He was a smart and intelligent medic, I had to admit. He made me understand the reason for studying the course that I was least interested in. And finally, I found out through him, that my parents were right. I was meant to be a doctor. I realised how deeply the subjects connected with me. Mr. Ghost, my new friend, is a magician. I achieved well in academics, professors appreciated me and everyone has great hopes about me now.
The best part was, I changed as a person. I made new friends, after Mr. Ghost. Yes, I never believed I could ever mingle with my classmates. The formula is simple, as he says always, “Stay yourself. Life is , after all, just a process… A process wherein your soul tries to get few qualities, that makes us a better human, perhaps the best version of ourselves”. His friendship was enthralling and exhilarating at the same time. Most of the time, I’d think that I was lucky indeed for my life. Just that, I was ignorant for all those days, until Mr. Ghost entered my life. Now, I have lovely people and a lovely life, my journey is really gripping now. Gul flowered again, and the journey with Mr Ghost has successfully finished six months, still going on. I hope this journey never ends.
I was worried about my parents though. They say, life isn’t the same constant thing. It is a balance. Now that I had althese things in my life going on in an amazing way, the only grief was about my parents. I stopped discussing about it once Mr Ghost told me not to worry too much about it, as things would be fine when the time comes for them to be alright. That’s called fate. True, if meeting him was fate, it’s true.
Today, class finished early. I had prepared pakoras for him. He loves them, and he is gluttony at times. I packed my bag and walked away from class, but then, someone called me from back.
“Anu. Please wait.” It was Siddharth.
“Hey, tell me. What happened?” He appeared nervous.
“I want to tell you something about the tree that you visit everyday. Don’t go near that tree, please don’t go”. Nobody noticed me going near the tree, don’t know how Sid discovered this.
“But why? What’s wrong? And wait, how do you know that I go near the tree? Do you follow me after I leave the class?” my suspicions grew.