Sitting here, wanting to type something out, to let the creativity speak for itself through me.
I began to start doubting myself, is it gonna be good enough?
May be write it, but am I sure I want to publish it? May be I am wasting others time?
I have no single answers.
Then I asked myself. Does it really matter whether I publish it or not? Does it really matter?
If its not, then what DOES matter?
I feel, what matters is the state of my mind in this moment. Am I doing it totally conscious?
Am I doing it, without even a trace of the ego? Am I doing it to become famous?
Am I doing it to build up my courage, by facing my fears?
My arms shaking a bit, I still typed out everything.
For few moments I prayed, cleared my mind and with utmost mindfulness clicked the publish button.
Let this be added into the great mysteries of universe.
Let it propel whatever it has to propel.
Or let it rest in peace, dying where it was born moments ago.
Now whatever happens, is beyond my understanding.
I am not sure how to start this topic. Everyone talks,shares and likes in social networking websites how loving their parents are and in my mind a question mark appears, Really?
I am not saying my parents never loved me, or they hate me or anything like that. They have brought up me well, fed me well, educated me well. They still care about me in their own way. Everything looks perfect. Then what is the problem?
The problem occurs when the kids grow up and form their own ideas about life. Kids realize that its their life, and they have to live it in their way. No two people think alike, and its the same case for you and your parents.
When we do something out of ordinary our parents are not able to digest it well. They start getting in their kids way. They act and talk like they are doing it for their kids sake, for their better future. But when you take your time and dig, you find that they are simply playing their role in society. Its not love, its role playing they do in order to look good within the boundaries of society.
I have started experiencing this, when I left my job to become a freelancer and when I took trekking and climbing as my serious passion. They never understood what its for me. For them it was out of ordinary, something which you don’t do in the life cycle defined by society. Society has defined a life cycle of study,job,marriage,kids,pension etc. Passion has no place in there. Doing something for the soul is alien to society, unless there is money or any other material reward associated with it. And our parents go strictly with this mechanical life style and ask us to do the same.
I have seen how you can ruin your relationship with parents and relatives, by trying to live your own life. The easiest solution to reduce the tension I found was to stay far from the family and relatives. This is the reason why I stay in Bangalore in spite of being a freelancer.
The same goes with my relatives too. One of my uncle don’t talk to me because of this. Initially he used to give me advice about why I should be serious about life and find a permanent job. I told him my reasons and my view point of living. This happened few times. Nowadays he doesn’t talk to me that much. The only thing I can infer from all of this is that, as long as you keep listening to people and act like a puppet they will love you.
I think we should always introspect before doing something for others thinking that we are helping them. We may end up hurting ourselves and others on the process.
This is the second part in the series.You can read the first part here.
As I mentioned in the first part, trekking opened a new life style for me. Mainly, I liked the way I could push my body limits. I loved it when I went out of breath and was still forcing myself to climb up, I loved running through the boulders, I felt proud sliding and running when descending down. On the rocks I wanted to mimic the monkeys as close as possible. When I think about those days, the statistics of the trek was an important thing for me.
I even used to judge the quality of a trek by how much total ascent I have to do, and how difficult the terrain(steepness,no trial etc..) is. I felt good about myself after enduring such difficult treks. Restlessness was a common thing in those kind of treks. Sitting silently somewhere, enjoying the view and taking the time to appreciate the beauty of nature and life felt to be waste of timing.
Those times, in CTC(Chennai trekking club), only Peter used to organize such difficult treks. I went for each and every one of his treks, and his treks were said to separate the boys from men.
CTC was life changing for me, and I felt I should give something back. This was the major reason why I co-organized a trek with one of my friend Arun Sekhar. I didnt like the idea of taking people to regular trials, so the trek was through trial where none of us hadn’t been before. Since I had the GPS I was confident about finishing the trek successfully.
To make sure that we complete it successfully, we even kept a fitness test for the participants. It was a small jogging test for 3-4 km. Out of 14 appeared only one qualified the test. But at the end I felt sorry for the other people and took everyone. That was the first mistake I did.
On August 6th 2011, on my birthday, we started our trek. During the initial flat walk itself, few people were lagging behind. Telling them to push themselves, we continued. The team had 25 people, including many freshers. I realize that, it was a bad idea to take freshers into a moderate+ trek. I was 10 trek old, and I didn’t bother to understand the difficulties they faced from a freshers point of view. I thought, “why cant they simply walk faster?”.
At the end of that trek, all most every one was exhausted. Despite starting the trek at 6 in the morning, we had to walk till 9 in the evening to reach a camp site with water. At one point, one fresher girl even cried in frustration. They complained I pushed them too much. It was true though.
In some treks, I took up the role of a sweeper(some one who comes last and makes sure that everyone is together). It was a frustrating job. Pushing the people who are mentally and physically tired, is like a moving a huge boulder. You get tired yourself in the process. Still I continued doing it out of some form of responsibility. When they said, “they can’t keep up any more and need a break” , I didn’t understand what they meant. I thought its just a mental thing and all they have to do is push themselves.
In December, I completed a 9 day mission in one of the best places in the world. It was named DFS(Death for sure). I felt proud. But I started getting more tired in the treks after that. I am still unsure whether its a mental thing or physical thing. But I realized that I can’t run in treks like I did before. I felt sad. It felt like losing some thing very important.
At this stage, I started thinking about the people I have been pushing in all my treks. It may sound silly to you, but I felt bad about myself, for not understanding my fellow trekkers problem. Since my stamina was getting(or feeling) low, I was forced to take frequent breaks during treks. That is when I started noticing the beauty around. When you concentrate on only walking fast and statistics of a trek, you fail to notice little things around you. Suddenly I was looking at treks from a different view point. I laughed at myself, for this late realization.
I think that freshers shouldn’t do difficult treks all of a sudden. I am not underestimating you. You may be able to finish the trek. But its not all about finishing the trek, its about enjoying the trek too. I remember people reaching a camp site and sleep without evening taking Dinner, because they are dead tired. For me, camping is one of the best part in the trek, where we slow down things, and talk to each other and have fun. You cant miss it. I didn’t mean pushing yourself is bad, once in a while its exciting to do some tough missions. But when every trek becomes like that, it becomes boring.
I have to end this article with an apology to all the people I may have hurt in my treks. I am truly sorry for what I have knowingly or unknowingly did. I am thankful to you guys because I have learnt something important.
Next in the series(part 3) – Keeping up the name, Is it worth?