Friday, 12 January 2018

Life Lesson 2017!

I've already talked about the men 2017 brought along - the good ones, the bad ones, and the absolutely disgusting ones too- all of them. But what's more important, is the life lessons 2017 decided to bless me with. In the past so many years of my existence, never has an year taught me so much. And as per my policy about life lessons, I've decided to share them all with you.

You already know about the numerous ones Mr. E taught me in the past year. So let's talk about what life taught me this year!

Dressing up in red for my New year's Eve celebrations, as suggested by mom (she says- wear red as you ring in the new year so that you'll get married this year)- my mind drifted to the past few months and I started to think of how none of my plans have fallen into place- including the one to wear that black dress tonight.

All of 2017, I planned extensively, not just about my career but also about my personal life. I had plans to move to another team at my organisation. I had plans to meet Mr. Right.  I had plans to go on a trip to Thailand around Christmas and that's where i was supposed to be ringing in the new year- of course on a beach and in a black dress- but who had other plans? Destiny.

This, as I like to put it, is the biggest lesson I've learnt in 2017- that no amount of prediction and planning and elaborate detailed layouts of how things are supposed to be, in my head would do me any good. Fighting with the universe and trying to change the course of my destiny or wanting something or someone that clearly doesn't belong to me will only lead to wastage of my efforts and an unappreciative attitude on the part of the other person and the universe in general.

To be honest, in the past year, I've had the best and the worst time of my life. It has been such an amazing contradiction of sorts. For instance, I lost a great deal of weight- but at the same time, had to give up on my first love- french fries. I found a better job, but had to move to another, less likeable city to pursue the same. And of course, I met someone I genuinely liked after years- but that doesn't seem to be going anywhere. But it's all destiny's plan, I'm certain.

I can list 3467589 instances if I have to where things have happened as per destiny's choice and not mine- the move to Bangalore, falling for someone I didn't intend to fall for, the sudden trip to Delhi in November and so on. In fact, when Thailand didn't work out for the holidays, I decided to spend some time back at home, in Delhi and I planned my dates keeping in mind that I'd want to steal some time to spend with Mr. E but well, as destiny would have it, that didn't quite happen.

All in all, 2017 has been the year that I realised that no plan has been or will be more elaborate or more workable than the one destiny has for me. No matter what I think, say, or invest my efforts in- in the end, Destiny and the universe are going to work things out on their own. And all this will happen at it's own pace.

Having said that, I don't think this means that I stop putting in efforts in the things and people I want to pursue. Because, as the saying goes, god helps those who help themselves. But it just strengthens my believe in Destiny and it's plan and I'm more at peace knowing that I'm not the planner- just the part of the plan. And of course, I believe in Karma- but can Karma change my destiny? Slightly, as I like to believe. Good Karma can maybe, to an extent negate the effects of Bad Karma and positively alter my destiny a bit maybe? I'd like to hope so.

So as I step into 2018, I'm leaving behind anxiety, and I'm leaving behind planning- I'm adopting a more 'go with the flow' attitude- while still pursuing with extreme passion the things and the people that I truly want in my life- because "Even the Universe is known to fall in love with a stubborn heart!"

Wishing you all a very Happy 2018! How are you stepping into 2018 like?

Monday, 25 December 2017

2017- The year in men!

Now now now, before you judge me, you should know I'm just another girl with an ongoing quest for Mr. Right and an incorrigible heart that refuses to give up. 2017- my quest and hunt reached another level- as I encountered a different man every month- yet as fate would have it, the quest is still on, and Mr. Right is still out of sight.

January, I met Mr. Cute Smile- who said I'm too caring for his taste! Needless to say, that didn't last.

February, even without having met him, I developed this liking for Mr. E. Not my usual type, but he seemed like he was more than just some boxes on my checklist, so I made up my mind to leave everything else and pursue him.

March, I met Mr. Self Absorbed, who could only talk about himself. I also met Mr. All Rounder who had all the talents but still bored me to death.

April 2017, an arranged marriage proposal came my way. This time, I thought he was Mr. Right- until he asked if we could have a trial run to see how compatible we are sexually before we decide to get married. Men and their sexpectations- ugh!

Then came May, and brought along Mr. Maggi Noodles, who fell in love with me in 2 minutes. Surprisingly, he hadn't ever heard about the term 'consent'- probably he was living under a huge rock.

June brought along the most handsome foreigner that I had ever laid eyes on. Younger than me, but with the most chiseled cheek bones- he had 3 amazing qualities- good-looks, good-looks and good-looks. But when he knocked on my door- being the pseudo prude that I am, I turned down a hook-up opportunity.

July, aah, well, just when I had decided to make it a now or never thing in the pursuit of Mr. E, he finally decided to come out of hiding and meet me.

With August, came in Party guy, who with his charm and cute looks, definitely grabbed my attention. If my focus hadn't been on Mr. E- maybe party guy would've gotten a chance to be Mr. Right. Also, since I had to move to Bangalore, I told him to hold his horses as starting something new wouldn't have made any sense.

September was the month when I met Mr. Perfect- he was the epitome of how I'd like Mr. Right to be. There was chemistry, attraction, and a lot of flirting- yet I had to pass because even though he was perfect, he wasn't Mr. E.

October brought in another version of Mr. E- one that I was unaware even existed- almost too good to be true. From a guy who didn't respond to texts for days- he became this guy who would text me before I'd even open my eyes. He exuded appreciation, care, concern and love- and I thought here is Mr. Right- I should definitely stop looking- but fate had some other plans, as October's effects didn't last till November.

Sweet November- unlike the movie, my November wasn't so sweet- there was lot of emotional turmoil and confusion! But November brought back Mr. Perfect from from September, who seems like he doesn't want to give up on trying here. He even invited me to his party, and wanted to introduce me to his friends as the woman he wants. If and only if, I wanted him too. But well never say never!

December has essentially been about 2 men- with me meeting Mr. Dreamy on the flight and Party Guy making a comeback from August! Spoilt for choice December- as I'd like to put it!

All in all, it has been a pretty interesting year- but did I find Mr. Right? No! Did I come close to finding Mr. Right? Yes! Would I like to relive a month? October- definitely. Would I like to erase a month? May without a doubt. So here's hoping next year there's less men to talk about- In fact let's hope I get to talk about only 1 of them- Mr. Right. And may next year be more blissful and happier than October 2017. What was your favourite month in the past year?

Wednesday, 20 December 2017

Happiness and Mr. Dreamy

Just like everyone else, I too had a feeling that I'll meet the love of my life on a plane- where luck would have seated us side by side. Maybe we would strike a conversation, fall in love in typical meet-cute fashion, and then meet each other's families once we get off, get married, have cute little babies with cute little names and then live happily ever after!

Every single time though, I'd be disappointed to be seated next to an old lady, or a new mother with a crying infant, or a middle aged man with gastric issues. Next to a handsome man? Never. But this time, on my way to Delhi, as I boarded my early morning flight, I had no hopes or thoughts about being seated next to a hot guy- yet there he was!

"Excuse me, Is this bag yours?"- he asked, picking up my bag from his seat. For a minute there, I got lost in his dreamy eyes, and though I could hear his completely erotic voice- I couldn't get a response out of my already parted lips. "Yes! I'm sorry"- I muttered after getting back to reality. As he handed over my bag to me, and I got to touch his soft yet strong hands- I knew the next 3 hours were going to be oh-so-amazing.

Once the flight took off, I started thinking about how to start a conversation with Mr. Dreamy. Before I could make up my mind on a conversation starter, he asked me if I stayed in Delhi or Bangalore. And if you know me, you'd know I never answer in sentences- I answer in paragraphs and so I began! We discussed both the cities. I got to know he was essentially a Delhi guy and was in Bangalore for work. I told him about my situation too, and his next question put me in a fix.

"Where are you the happiest?- Delhi or Bangalore?"- He asked. I took a minute to think; because Delhi had family, friends and an amazing social life; while Bangalore had the job that I love and of course, a pleasant weather. But in all honesty, and this is what I told Mr. Dreamy too- I'm the happiest when I'm at 35000ft above sea level. Yes, I'm the happiest on flights. With no connect to the outside world; and the excitement of going to a new place, or the comfort of getting back to the familiar- is what makes me the happiest.

Travel has always been my thing. I have such a love for exploring places, meeting new people, getting to know about different cultures, buying the local stuff there- it's true, I'm the happiest when I'm on a plane, mid air. When I turned the tables on Mr. Dreamy however, and asked him the same question, he gladly gave me my favorite and most used bollywood cliche - "Tumhaari khushi mein hi meri khushi hai"!

Could he be any more 'Bollywood'? Of Course i gave him my number when he asked.

The highlight of the flight was not Mr. Dreamy however- because I don't think we are so in love that the cute babies seem a possibility. Are we getting there? Maybe. But what was major about the flight incident was that I learnt where my true happiness lies- and it's in travelling. So here's hoping I can make 2018 the year of travel. And while I pursue that, if I can find someone like Mr. Dreamy, who makes me go like Rachel on friends, and actually "Get off the plane"- that'd be nice too!

What does your happiness lie in?

Saturday, 9 December 2017

Of Strong Independent Women

There's one thing you should know about me (actually 3 things)! I categorise the people I go out with into 3 Groups-

  • Group 1- People I'm not very comfortable around- I drink wine- there's something about sipping it slowly, looking like the classy girl I am- that has made people fall in love with me in the past. (This is when I don't speak anything non-sensical)
  • Group 2- These are the people I'm comfortable around, so LIITs are what I order. If they don't serve it with straws, I get disappointed because then I gotta put in some effort into lifting the glass. (This is where I can decipher the shit I'm saying, but I say it nonetheless)
  • Group 3- The set of people who I love and adore and have an unbreakable bond with- I mix everything without a care. I also try other's drinks, or sometimes finish them up too! (Who cares what I'm saying or doing?)

Now, neither am I an alcoholic, nor is my tolerance towards alcohol very high. However, when it was date night with Mr. E, I decided to be courageous enough to order LIITs and officially put him in Group 2! What was next? 2 LIITs down, and endless hours of useless conversations and overeating which he decided to be party to- I decided I'm the strong independent woman who needs no man to hold her hand and help her down the dark alley of stairs. Result? I fell and hurt my ass!

Luckily for me, he decided to help me out and firmly held my hand while my drunk-hurt ass decided to sashay down the staircase. Now before you go aww, this is not about how nice Mr. E was that night. This is not even about how the drunk me hurt my ass because of a whim. And it's definitely not about what happened later in the story. This is about what being a "strong independent woman who needs no man" truly means.

Being strong- I associate it with being emotionally stable, knowing how to handle your emotions and yourself, and not just in front of people, but in front of the mirror itself. It doesn't have much to do with your physical strength, yet has a lot to do with being self aware and knowing your shortcomings and constantly working on the same. It's about being secure in your own skin. It's about knowing that you can survive anything and everything. Am I strong woman? Yes, very much- yet I'm still working on my shortcomings- trying to keep anxiety, paranoia and skepticism at bay- knowing that no matter what the storm brings if it comes, I can, and I will survive it.

Being Independent- Well, what is being independent if not self-sufficient? It has everything to do with knowing that you don't need anyone at all- man or woman- friends or enemies- to get by in life; realising that you are the creator of your own destiny. The thing about being independent is that it's like an addiction- enjoying your own company, having a life of your own, and living with the freedom of doing what you like, as you like, when you like! Am I independent? Hell yeah!

Not needing a man?- Always remember, you never need a man. You always want him. If you need him- you're not a strong independent woman. And this was my biggest realisation that night- I wanted him. 

Being a strong independent woman doesn't mean you have to be 'Ms Know It All' or 'Ms On my Own' and be a feminist of sorts. It can mean that you're an emotionally strong woman who is happy and content in her life but loves her man and his opinions and support nonetheless, even though she can survive without him. For instance, every time I need an opinion on a dress, I hit up Mr. E- but that's because I value his opinion, not because I trust mine any less. And trust me when I say this, there's immense strength and confidence in being a strong independent woman, who wants a man, yet doesn't need him as a matter of survival.

But every now and then, although, all us strong independent women, want to be reminded of the love and care and attention that we deserve; not because we need it but because it's a nice feeling to be loved, cared for, and appreciated. Sometimes, we would like to be kissed on the forehead (because let's face it, those are the best), or we'd like our men to hold our hand while crossing the street, or just tell us how beautiful our strength looks on us. So here's putting out feelers for Mr. E- and hoping for all the women out there, to be strong and independent- yet never hurting their ass in the process. And having said that, love your man, take the hand that he's giving you to hold- but love yourself more, and remember that when someone is being nice to you, it's not because they doubt your strength or independence.

Thursday, 9 November 2017

Could I be wrong about Mr. Right?

As I stood on the rooftop of a popular bar in the city, with brooding eyes and endless thoughts about how currently things were going with Mr. Right- I couldn't help but think what the catch was! Finding myself stuck in a sort of 'too good to be true' situation yet again, I began to wonder if history was repeating itself. Was it possible? Could I be wrong about Mr. Right being Mr. Right? Or was it just my overthinking brain that was reflecting too much on the past yet too little on the present?

Contemplating sharing my concerns with Mr. Right, I wondered if I even had a leg to stand on when bringing up these so called 'concerns'- or were they just fragments of my brain working overtime to accentuate the effects of the past- just looking to fuck things up with Mr. Right?

Talking of the past, however, my 'too good to be true' situation was pretty typical of sorts. Girl meets Guy. Guy sweeps her off her feet- talks about the future and can't stop showering her with compliments. Girl falls for the Guy. Guy thinks of her as a won conquest- gives excuses about being busy at work hoping the Girl would be smart enough to get the hint- doesn't really have balls to man up and say he's done. Girl finally gets it. Slaps him. Gets over it. Moves on.

Did it hurt? Very much. Does it still hurt? No. But once bitten, twice shy. They say, the first rule of any relationship is to never let them change you. I concur. But what if it wasn't them, but the relationship that changed you? Those couple of months with 'Mr. Too Good to be true' not only made me a more cynical person, but also made me doubt even the sincerest of efforts made by Mr. Right. I started to look for motive behind each and every move Mr. Right made.

For instance, when he brought me presents!- I should have been happy because he's probably the first guy to do that for me- instead, I was doubtful. "Did he get the same ones for his other girlfriends? Is he trying to lure me into sleeping with him? Is it just the stuff that someone else gifted him and he just doesn't like it enough so wants to pass it on?"- Endless thoughts clouded my mind, yet I hugged him and thanked him because I honestly loved it all- but it was just hard to believe.

As time passed, I started to rubbish my disbelief and thought to myself if it was actually possible that he liked me? Sure, i could ask him directly, but Mr. Right isn't one to express feelings or give direct answers- so one's gotta let his actions do the talking. Yet as days passed, Mr. Right started to get extremely busy with work and that took me back to the past within no time.

Don't get me wrong- I'm all for people having their own space and I'm pro 'work first'. And anyone who knows me and my equation with Mr. Right, knows that I have an unrealistic level of faith in him so I know he won't lie or wrong me. But in that moment, all I could think of, was that one guy who used work as an excuse to bail on me. And as anxiety and PMS got the best of me one night, I decided to ask Mr. Right if he was done with me. He was probably surprised about my sudden outburst and didn't know what hit him.

How he responded to that isn't really important because like I said, he never gives direct answers. But what's important to note here is, that I put across my feelings and told him my past was the reason for my paranoia and anxiety. And I'd want you to know, that like me- you, Mr. Right and everyone else out there has a past too. And the fact of the matter remains, that no matter how hard we try, it will continue to haunt us. We all come with a baggage of our own. We all need someone to help us with that baggage. But no one can help you with your baggage unless you tell them it exists. Maybe Mr. Right will help me with mine. Maybe I'll stop being so cynical and trust his actions more. Maybe I'll understand that he's not that guy from my past. Maybe he's that guy who's genuinely into me and there's no 'motive' behind his efforts- like there's no 'motive' behind mine. Maybe with time, and a little bit of more reassurance I'd know about what baggage he brings, and I know I'd want to help him deal with his.

Until then, I'm going to keep my anxiety at bay. And I'm going to remember, just like I'd want you to remember- no two people are the same; just because some guy in your past was a douchebag, doesn't mean the one in your present is too. People who are cheated on in the past can get loyal partners. People who've been mistreated in the past, can find someone who thinks the world of them. And people like me, who've always been on the giving side of efforts, can find someone who puts in efforts for them- without an ulterior motive. So here's hoping Mr. Right isn't scared away by my 'baggage' and can help me unload it. And here's hoping all of us are 'baggage-free' super soon- because you can't get rid of the past but you can do away with the baggage! All you need is a little bit of help!

Saturday, 4 November 2017

Labels, Titles and Desires of the Heart!

Talking to a colleague about one of his married friends, I realised there are people out there who cheat without guilt. Somehow, I had previously been oblivious to the concept- so this shocked me.
That night, talking to a close friend Priya over the phone, I asked for her opinion too. She wasn't as surprised as I was. Maybe it was the difference in our way of thinking- or the fact that she's been cheated on one too many times to be shocked by it anymore. But all this made me wonder, if commitment in today's date even meant anything? Or had it completely lost it's value? Or was it just me who laid so much importance on loyalty, while for others, it was just overrated?

Talking of Priya- she had entirely given up on the idea of commitment or labels. So she started out in a 'friends with benefits' arrangement with her childhood pal Ashish. Ashish who had very recently broken up, made no bones about the fact that this was exactly what he wanted. As time passed, Priya found herself wanting to talk to him about 'defining the relationship'!

What was she hoping the outcome would be? - She was maybe expecting him to tell her he liked her more than he let on, or it wasn't just about the physical aspect, or that their relationship actually meant something to him. What happened instead?- He decided to ignore the talk, conveniently.

Maybe it was because to him, what was between them, meant nothing. Or maybe he was commitment phobic, or hated the idea of labels! Or perhaps it was because Priya didn't directly ask him anything by putting her feelings forward and instead just vaguely mentioned if he was still in the same state of mind as when they started out.

But that night, talking to her, I tried to understand why was she looking to label her relationship. As per Priya, she was unsure about their status, and if or not she could see other people- and if Ashish would be okay with that. She wanted to be on the same page as him. I began to wonder if this was only Priya's problem or were me and all my other friends plagued too?

Why are labels and tags so important? What's all the talk about 'Defining The Relationship'? To me, personally, I would want to define mine so I'm able to introduce my man to the most important people in my life without him getting creeped out! And of course, when you're so into someone, you want to tell the whole wide world who they are! And why not! Also, being on the same page, relationship wise is important. But more importantly, don't our hearts determine our relationship statuses and loyalty levels rather than tags and labels?

If you start out with an intent to define your relationship just so you can assess whether or not you can see other people- isn't that intent wrong in the first place? And even though being on the same page is important; isn't it wrong to expect to know the other person's feelings before you express your own? Why can't we decide what we feel, independent of what the other person feels for us? Why are we so scared to put ourselves in that vulnerable spot?

My advise to Priya and to everyone out there who's in a nameless relationship of sorts would just be this- don't stress too much on labels and tags- let your heart decide that for you. Yes exclusivity is important and so is being on the same page, so that of course you don't stay loyal to the guy who got married in 2015. But then again, define your relationship for the right reasons; not because you're just curious what the other person thinks! Don't be scared to put your feelings out there- that's the only way to love a person known to mankind.

Another piece of important advice? Don't mince your words when it comes to having the talk. Men, and even women, are not mind readers or magical creatures who would understand what you mean without you saying it. Dropping hints is so 2007- we are not teenagers anymore and straight talk is the norm of the day!

Also, remember that even some married people cheat on their spouses and people in committed relationships also sometimes stray and end up cheating on their partners. Labels and Tags don't determine a happy committed relationship where no one cheats- it's all in the heart! I know I'm loyal to someone who I don't have a defined relationship with. Why? Because that's how I feel in my heart; and because luckily he didn't get married in 2015! Loyalty is a state of mind, and a decision taken by the heart- don't confuse it with relationship statuses!

Rise above the labels, and tags- but at the same time don't be fooled by a man wanting to have 'boyfriend' rights and privileges while not being man enough to acknowledge your presence in his life.

And anyway, till you find 'the one'- isn't defining any relationship just a little futile? Till then, just pay attention to feelings, and give the labels a rest!

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Grocery Shopping Saga

Life in the new city had more or less settled in. I finally stopped whining about not being able to make friends- by bonding with two fun colleagues, and making peace with alone time. Moving into the new house was 'challenging' to say the least- but the idea of setting up a household and staying by myself had appealed to me for quite a while now- so I had jumped right into this- with a lot of excitement.

Two days into the new house, I started to question myself. Why? Because the new house was smaller than my room back in my city! "Let's call it 'cosy' and make peace with it"- I thought to myself. Then came the weekend- and I decided to pay a visit to the supermarket to set up my house and kick things off! After loading up my cart with spices, utensils, buckets, baskets and all sorts of consumables; I picked up the most important thing- a bottle of wine!

After 5 hours of hopping around the supermarket, hunting for deals and discounts and stocking up on all the stuff that I convinced myself I needed, I finally proceeded to the billing counter. After seeing the billing amount, let's just say I was thankful for that bottle of wine I purchased!

Now, as fellow humans, you'd understand, that we only have two hands roughly comprising of 10 fingers, give or take. So obviously I needed a hand with my bags, which, were 6 in number- aside of the buckets and baskets. A really generous and helpful man decided to get creative while helping me and fit some bags into the buckets! I thanked him with a smile and he left while I stood there waiting for my cab which was 19 minutes away ( yes, that's Bangalore for you!). And just when I was hoping for the day to end without tiring me anymore, it started to rain cats and dogs (that's Bangalore too!). I moved my ass, and my stuff back to the covered area of the supermarket and luckily, 30 minutes later, the cab arrived.

There was no one in sight who I could ask for help with my stuff, so i decided to ask the driver- who was a doll and helped fit all my stuff in the boot of his car- barring the wine bottle of course- which I needed for the long way back home. After about an hour, I finally reached my new home- which is on the first floor. It was still raining and the cab guy, irritated by the rain, and the traffic- wasn't much of a doll anymore and dumped me and my stuff right outside our building in the rain- can't even blame him.

Let's just say, grocery shopping that night, cost me 1/5th of my monthly salary, 4 broken fingernails, a torn dress, few scratches on my arms and a major muscle pull in the leg that ensured I stayed home all day Sunday. What was worse? I had to organise and store all my purchases myself too.- The struggles of living alone no one warned me about!

As I went to bed that night, partly in tears, I wondered how nice it would be to have a boyfriend in the city- at least for the sake of shopping. Or at least a strong, manly friend, who can just lift the bags and take the burden off my delicate hands. So when one of my friends suggested I meet her friend Manan who stays in the city- I obviously said Yes!

But that's the thing with meeting new men- they remind you of the one you really really want, yet isn't here- and that makes living alone in the city even harder. But that's the stuff no one talks about- No one tells you that not many people will help you if you're a single girl in the city. No one tells you that it is difficult to be by yourself and have perfectly manicured hands. No one tells you that the loneliness sometimes might take a toll on you. No one tells you that you gotta manage it all on your own and still have a smile on your face. No one tells you how much you will miss people back home. And sure as hell, no one tells you that you'll meet men like Manan who'd want you to sleep with them in exchange for being friends.

So for all of you out there, who are staying alone, or multitasking- managing yourself, work and a household- all by yourself- kudos to you. You're doing something so amazing, so brave, and so bold- that I'm proud of you, as proud I am of myself. A little suggestion- stay strong, stay positive, keep that bottle of wine closer, and men like Manan- as far as possible. Life gets easier as it passes by- especially if you have someone who's willing to voluntarily go grocery shopping with you- men like these are hard to find; but hey, I found one who suggested it himself. Mr. E probably doesn't know what he's getting into- maybe he will find out 'sooner'!