If you are a dreamer..

Thursday, 1 February 2018

Children's ward, 5th floor

I've started at a rotation on a Child Psychiatry in-patient unit 
Do you know what it feels like when everything you've ever wanted is in front of you, but you have no idea how to get it? In a different country than the one I've known all my life, I don't even know how to send a fax, let alone how to present a case to a doctor. It doesn't help that I have a phobia of authority figures.
I love so many things about being here. The beauty of this place, even though it is so cold all the time. I love the children I work with and sometimes I want to hug some of them and ruffle their hair, but that would not be appropriate; they have to learn ways to cope with their emotions without someone else doing it for them.
Some of them I don't understand why they do what they do; some I don't understand how to reach and they remind of painful times in my life.
I will be there tomorrow though, and everyday, trying something new everyday, trying my best to figure this out because no one that small should have to struggle with things that are so terrible within themselves alone and think that there is no hope left in the world.
With them, I am learning things about myself and the people around me that I grew up with and am still around. I don't understand fully but fleeting glimpses are what I am allowed.
My brain feels like a sieve with so many things to remember and I feel like I am filtering out the important stuff trying to remember the  details.
I sound so drab and dreary even to myself. I haven't been doing good things for myself or remembering them.
I shall try to remember them soon.
I was kind. I tried my best to help even when I had no idea how to. I played a game with one of kids. I smile at them and ask them how they are doing. I like Amy (name changed) and I see so much of myself in her; its easy to forget that she hears voices. I got her to talk to me and smile. And its a lovely smile and with so much energy but it fades so quickly its strange.
So much of what she is are things I aspire for, including the ability to learn new things quickly.
I'm learning the newest music from the children, what bands are popular now. What they do to pass time. I find it hard to identify with the gaming part of it; I grew up with no gaming access and they have the Wii and Playstation and I have no idea what those things are.
One of them has a very pretty blue blanket with penguins and a unicorn sweater. They color with markers that smell nice, like nachos and cheese and cinnamon and strawberry. They have stickers to put on chartpaper and magazines to cut out of. 
I miss those bits about my childhood. I miss compulsory art lessons and library time. I miss the corridor with Play Doh in the corner. I love the smell of Play Doh. I had a game with monkeys in it and a fake computer I could fake type on. We had a tiny library but we were small and there were so many books; it was a blissful hour-or was it half ? I miss not having to worry about grown up things. I was pretty unhappy though or so I remember myself describing my childhood as. Brief moments of joy interspersed in the middle of feelings of mostly sad, out of place in school and at home scared and angry and closed.
 I caught myself regressing. I wanted so badly to be let in the room with the books and re read the books I loved and still loved. Harold and the Purple Crayon, Dr Seuss and heaven knows what else.
Now I don't have the time for bookshops and my family was so against me reading and playing the piano and other pursuits that were not science or earned money or would make me a good wife I just lost sight of my creativity and I never got it back. I can't draw or write stories from imagination or even compose. I have no creative flair left in me. I suppose the only way to get it back is to exercise it.
I'm going to practise writing, for one.
And I bought myself felt tip markers and a notebook to draw in. I'm looking forward to that over the weekend!

Thursday, 10 October 2013


The reading of Tagore fills me with hope, paradoxically perhaps, that bleak hope which he writes of, that we cling to despite logic and reason.
It is not just hope; but also a remembering, a remembrance of beauty unsullied by human folly.
Tagore is one of the few Indian writers I love, and read over and over.
The newer stories, the ones that win prizes, I cannot appreciate, they are too unrelentingly dark.
I recently read The God of Small Things, and it say it plunged me into a blue funk would be an understatement. The next day I could not rise from the bed.
In Roy's work( Arundhati Roy), nature is ever present, painstakingly outlined, heart breakingly beautiful, but ever subordinate. It is a mere backdrop, so to speak, a foil for the humans that fall in love and are torn apart. Roy's characters are black and white to me, foolish, like moths that flutter around the flame and are singed for their foolishness.
Tagore works are slightly more optimistic about the nature of humanity, and his works are never devoid of a sense of beauty and respect for Nature herself, and her stunning glory. His stories are not all happy endings; but they are not bleak either. Childish though it may seem, his poetry renews that faith in me that was once so assured, so gentle and calm. A child's faith is one of the strongest there is.

Thursday, 28 March 2013

Seeing and learning

I'm at that point in my life where you gotta learn to change, to adapt, cause you can see with your own eyes what your habits, your old traits are doing to your life. It's funny how you expect change from other people, but when it comes to changing the littlest thing about yourself, the Stages; denial, depression, anger and finally acceptance, kick in.
You make up every reason you can think of, to justify that one thing. 
"It's part of who I am!"
"It was justified under the circumstances"
"It's a much better way of coping than what she does!"
Blah blah blah.
Change is inevitable. Even without me trying, I've changed over the years. The way you perceive things changes, the way you react to stimuli changes; in your head, the principle is intact. But your emotions to it change. And the strongest sorts of belief run on emotion.
  Some of the pieces I wrote less than a year back, which I was so proud of, now seem melodramatic; they always, were, I just never saw it. Some of the things I said, thought and did, surprise me now. In a way, I'm glad, to know that I managed to change my perspective.
 I was in a hurry to change, once. It didn't seem to happen fast enough. I did things that are embarrassing to remember now. Some memories are funny, now. Most are still mortifying. Some have faded over time and lost their sting.
I was reading posts on my school's confession page, and I realize how hard it is to let some memories go. I wonder if the people who act like they've changed, really have. All I remember school by is a vague fondness, some pretty trees, memories that have faded over time. Children are cruel. 'Tis a fact of life. I experienced that first hand. I saw them change with age, most for the better. Childhood and children aren't always innocent happy and carefree. Learning what the real world is like, and what it requires of you, was a check that I felt a lot of them needed. Some of them genuinely changed; some learned to mask themselves beneath a veneer of polite socializing and attempts to act like everyone's friend.
I got a lot from leaving school, but I learnt a lot from being in it as well. I learnt what it's like being surrounded by people who are all, mostly above average intelligence. I see that stress might get you through a school exam, but in the long run, it does more harm than good. I see that it's better to talk through situations, and walking away isn't always a good thing. I see that it's better to take decisions because dawdling over them can do more harm. I see that it's not always a good thing to not vent.
 I see, and now I must learn.

Monday, 4 March 2013

Jogs and food.

Hello there. Happy new year.
This is about new year's resolutions.
These are resolutions that I didn't intend to make, but my subconscious  subjected to years of festive propaganda, went ahead and made some anyway.
Happily I think they are in the hopes of being implemented. Sigh.

I lost a lot of weight in 2011, rather drastically. Not to mention unintentionally; I was so caught up the whirlwind of my life that discovering an unexpected granola bar in my bag was akin to manna from heaven, no joke. I spent half that year in a half starved state. 
So when I shifted back home last year and suddenly had a well stocked kitchen at my disposal and didn't have to travel as much, or stress as much, I gained pounds at an alarming rate. The numerals of my weight inverted themselves, and I am now the possessor of the body of a typical Greek female sculpture. While that sounds wonderfully Attic and voluptuous, I find that I admire the flat abdomen of Mila Kunis more than the love handles of Aphrodite. So, in consequence I decided to lose weight.
Now, I love food. Period. It is my antidepressant when I'm down and out, my friend in need, the only thing I can look forward to in a day of weary hospital posting, lectures, practicals and trains. 
So,I can't give up food, no Sir, I've been deprived of it for way too long to regard it disinterestedly.
Hence follows the only possible conclusion; exercise.
I made a pact with myself to make myself take some sort of exercise till I build up a sweat everyday, and the trudging to and from and in college I do is not counted.
Currently, I've taken to jogging just a little, everyday. One round of the track next to my place and and two rounds of brisk walking. I'll build it up slowly. Don't want to wake up with cramps in my thighs from over exerting.
That's all for today, I'm tired,lazy, grouchy and have a great deal of hopeless swotting ahead of me. Good night!


Life is divided into neat little compartments. No, we divide life into neat little compartments. To help us deal with Life. Everyone's compartments are different. It's a girl's job to be tidy, because men won't be neat. So when a boy chucks his pants on the floor, he's told not to do it, without really expecting him to follow it. Maybe it's laughed off. A girl would be told off till the words go till how she won't be able to manage getting married.
 They can even be misused. A male ticket collector cannot check a loud mouthed brash woman refusing to pay the fine for travelling with a wrong ticket and forces her way out without paying. Women cannot be touched. He will lose his job.
Compartments help us deal with the world around us, to simplify things, to make them easier to understand. A boy who speaks couthly, must be better to deal with than a loud mouthed one.
 Make a compartment for girls who criticize , call them bitches, stay away from bitches.
I am being compartmentalized. I am compartmentalizing myself into a person that will be easier to be, it seems. I am forgetting a different person I used to be. Forgetting what it is to do something because you enjoy doing it, you enjoy being good at it, you enjoy working at it. Not because being good at it is important for your future.
The world will always compartmentalize you. Because it isn't everyone's job to understand you. But I never liked being restricted. I always tried breaking out of the mould. I wanted to be different. I wanted to be somethin' else. I wanted to be a surprise, always.
Lately, I'm not surprising anyone except myself, today. When I woke and realised what I'd been doing.
It's such a cliche, Don't Let Yourself Be Ruled By Cliches. But sometimes you think maybe, the cliche is what the real thing should be like.
Life is short, too fluid, too malleable for cliches.

Sunday, 9 December 2012

Procrastination and hence derived rants.

 It's been a very long time since I felt like writing. There have always been words in  my head, spinning from memories, situations, descriptions, anything and everything. Sometimes I would put them down on paper. Sometimes I'd pull my phone and quickly save that one sentence that floated in my head and just resonated of power.Lately, the words have been scarce, fewer in between. Maybe it's because of the life I'm beginning to lead, so devoid of creative expression, of the joy of a beautifully written poem, the discovery of meanings within words, of songs that struck a chord.
  Learning medicine a magic in itself, but it's a dry sort of magic so far, because it's only magical when you actually begin to apply the science to living breathing people.
  Before I begin to write, there are dozens of half formed ideas and words that swirl around in my head but which all vanish as soon as the page is opened and the blank canvas, so to speak, is facing me. So I just begin to write, haphazard, mercy to the whim of the words that come pouring out of me as they will.
An idea will form, and I will follow it, born  and triggered by any random phrase that occurs. For instance, as I typed 'phrase' I realized how dependent I have become on technology to correct my spelling errors; my Android has Swype, which means that so long as I swish my fingers over the virtual keyboard in the general composition of a word, it will gather the information and present to me the words it thought I meant to type, or guesses wrong, and instead of typing the word out I just swish again hoping it will recognize what I was getting at.
   I could blame it on my system of schooling, where the computer lab was built in the year I passed tenth grade, and was available only for the Computer Science batch in twelfth grade; I was in the biology optional, far removed from the air conditioned comforts of the computer lab.  Hence my awkwardness with technology and typing; everyone who has seen me type finds it either hilarious or mortifying; I type like a awkward pianist searching for the next note by the score, on the keys.
However, I know a great deal of people with the same schooling that I have had who are not remotely as technologically challenged as I am, so it must be defective equipment somewhere in my brain; as far as I know they haven't identified the areas for technology, and therefore I don't know why my Broca's area, normally quite above average, should trip over itself and fumble simple spelling when faced with typing. Perhaps I will have to revisit Preparatory class and learn typing in the same manner I learn to write, painstakingly tracing the letters over and over again under the watchful gaze of my mother who would snap if I curved the small "a" wrong.
For another instance as I wrote the phrase 'song which struck a chord' it, well, struck me that I have an odd taste in music. I dislike the Beatles; I find most of their music a tad creepy and well, unpolished; I don't quite know how to put it. I had to make myself listen to their songs over and over until I finally began to appreciate it; I still won't voluntarily listen to a Beatles song, and there aren't any on my playlist anymore; I deleted the few that had found their way in after a relationship with a head over heels Beatles's fan, because I realized that I just wasn't listening to them anymore after the initial few times I had made myself listen to sort of acclimatize myself to their sound. I don't like much of the old music that most people swear by; The Doors, Pink Floyd. I didn't feel moved by their music.
 I'll admit I don't know much about music, despite learning the piano for a longer time than I'll admit, because everyone especially random family members expect you to jump at the nearest keyboard you see and belt out some flawless Mozart and Beethoven and when you say you don't really know the accompaniments to any desi song they know, they just look at you in a such way that causes you to call into question all those years of slogging away at the keys. All that learning to perfect a trill so it seamlessly blends into the next note. No one seems to understand that performing for any audience takes some kind of preparatory effort beforehand; in their eyes anyone who's been learning that long should have half a dozen pieces up their sleeve ready to be called out at a moment's notice.
I digress. As to music, I have difficulty appreciating the type of music that evokes fans en masse; I find Enrique's lyrics mindless and Barbie-dollish, though I wholly appreciate the man's looks! I find rap harsh and very few appeal to me. I balk at artists whose music starts sounding the same after the first few good albums.(Taylor Swift, ahem ahem) I understand that a lot of them put a great deal of effort into their music( not all of them do) and I respect the effort. Also, being a tiny bit of a snob, I involuntarily turn my nose up at  mainstream artists that anyone and everyone likes without even knowing some of the really great music out there, who say they love rock, and listen to Greenday.
Hence I don't understand the concept of a favorite artist; artists aren't perfect and if there are some songs that are great, there are some that fall flat. I have a great many songs that I love; but I barely listen to any of the other songs produced by the same artist.
This was a general rave for the purpose of procrastinating the great deal of donkey work that anticipates;
medical students have to spend a major part of their lives doing a lot of completely pointless copying out, in beautiful handwriting, pages and pages of journal work from a tiny cellphone screen.
 Or run around hunting for the manna from heaven that is a completed journal which can be copied from before it's time for the practical. I could write an entire post on journal work and how it gets done, or not. So forgive the typos and grammatical mistakes; I shall probably get around to correcting them someday and in the process attempt to wean myself from depending too heavily on Swype and autocorrect. My non existent readers, please keep in mind I am a unnecessarily stressed, creatively deprived medical student and kindly attribute the inanity of my post to my current lack of a life. Thank you.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Hiding my heart

Like everything I've ever known. You disappear one day. And I've spent my whole life hiding my heart away.
They said such terrible things about you. I didn't want to believe them. I wanted to believe that you had a little person hidden away inside that would fit with me. I wish I could've been close to you. I wish I could've known you better. Always wanting more, scared of taking it. Your world was so different. I felt like we had no chance together. And I was probably right. I found a boy who is perfect for me. I thought I had forgotten  that little ache. 
And one day so many things happened. Little things. That brought you back. And I guess I should get used to the fact that always, whatever happens, there's going to be that little question in my head.
What if.