by Namya Naresh
When people say the world works in mysterious ways, my inner voice laughs out loud. Yes, it very literally laughs in my head vibrating throughout my body. Because I do not believe that is true. At least I didn’t.
I’d say it took me on a journey. But that just sounds stupid doesn’t it? Like we live in an ideal world where everything eventually works out. But we don’t.
No. It wasn’t a higher force that I can’t comprehend. It wasn’t supernatural. It wasn’t a self help book.
It was me.
I did it. I changed.
I opened myself up and turned hope into reality. No. It was always reality. I just let myself see it. Acknowledge it. Believe it. Trust it.
I walked out of my apartment that morning and found myself paralyzed by the sun. It had been so long since I felt its warmth on my face. One of the things I took for granted I guess. I had spent my whole life hating the heat. I spent my time cribbing, crying and wishing for it to cool the fuck down. Except it wasn’t just the sun, it was my life. I wanted everything to just take a beat and chill. I was over heating and slowly drying up inside. Now I was standing on the other side. I got what I wanted didn’t I? Moved to a cold country and slowly froze into an ice popsicle. The sun became a distant cousin who almost never visited and I became stale.
But that morning, I was warm.
After I recovered from my momentary paralysis I refocused on my day. It was late and I had to run to class now. I hated running. I hated sweating. Dolled up in all my layers that were meant to protect my body from the cold, underneath them I was hot and sweaty.
Just my luck.
I suppose I could have run through the streets, stripping off layer by layer as the people around me wondered if I was having a mental break down. It might have been liberating. But liberation wasn’t in store for me. Not yet. I walked at an even pace, melting inside. By the time I made it into my class I was late and stinky.
I brought it on myself. No one else to blame.
It was a normal day and I was sitting in a normal class. I had sat through that class all semester, bearing it. And it was always the same. Average. Like me.
You know those moments when you pretend you are listening but really you are dancing in a meadow in New Zealand? That was me. Except it wasn’t so much of a meadow but my garage back home where I sat and aggressively applied to college. I was so determined back then. I knew exactly what I wanted.
I wanted to become a writer.
So there I sat in class, months later getting exactly what I wanted. And yet I was not fulfilled. I sat there going over all my failures. I had failed to get a decent job, I had failed to enjoy this city because of the cold, I had failed to write as much as I thought I should have been writing. And yet as these rants invaded my brain I was scribbling down ideas on my book. Ideas to turn into proposals for jobs, ideas for pieces of writing, ideas for what I was going to go home and cook. Half way through the class I realized what was going on. My body was literally rebelling against my inner voice’s annoying and depressing verbal onslaught. The scribbles on my notebook were exactly what made me who I am.
I am an ongoing battle.
The very battle that made everything I have done in my life possible. As long as I had my scribbles and my ideas I was succeeding. My ability to constantly come up with new ways to get a job and new things to look forward to, was my success. I was a success because of the simple fact that I hadn’t given up yet. And I wasn’t going to. In that moment I looked at the students around me and realized that I had always been a girl who wanted to become a writer.
Now, I was a writer.
Simply because I had decided that I was. And no one, not even life could take that away from me.
A huge weight was beginning to lift off me. I found myself squashed and breathless underneath. As I caught my breath I wondered, was this my moment? Was London my city? Was I going to bloom into the flower that I was always meant to be? I sound like my mother. I wasn’t a flower or even a bud. I was the London sun. The sun that’s always there but is shadowed by the clouds who reign over it.
The clouds, my fears.
I was the sun that you couldn’t always see but when you did, its brightness and warmth would paralyse you. It would stop you and make you admire its rare brilliance. I was always told that I was brilliant. I was always told that I was beautiful. That didn’t make me brilliant or beautiful, it made me dark and bitter. Being told what I was, only made me see everything I was not. That day I saw myself for who I am. I am made up of moments of brilliance that don’t come along very often. But that doesn’t mean that they are not there.
It’s a start.
Namya Naresh is a writer from India, taking on the city of London as her bottomless source of inspiration. She writes short fiction, poetry and is working on her first novel. She strives to create a beautiful blend of reality and fiction within the pages of her writing