Thursday, May 25, 2006

Broken, not Shattered

In everyone’s life, there comes a time when we feel that the whole world around us is crashing slowly but steadily and all hope of ever sustaining the precious is dwindling away piece by piece. It seems that there is nothing left to fight for, to live for and everything that seemed so important before suddenly dwarfs before the enormity of the grief of our loss. And suddenly all the sunshine, all the ambitions are clouded by this enormous shade of pain.

At such times, life becomes an antagonizing struggle to wrestle out all the memories, all the great times that keep coming back to haunt us. We keep wondering what hit me or how didn’t I see what was coming and how something that seemed so right suddenly go so wrong. It could be the separation of a loved one, the passing away of a close companion, the heartbreaking end of a dream, anything that we believed in and that was the closest to our heart. And then in our despair we try to hold on to the remains, the ashes, the carcass of the living that was swept away by the winds of destiny, now lost in the sands of time. But little do we realize that this very stubbornness to keep hiding in the shadows of the dead and the gone will one day make us question the stranger in the mirror. This very curtain of sorrow which we choose to hide behind will one day expose to the world an unrecognizable, mutated version of us, stripped of the vibrancy and spirit that made each one of us, a special “me”.

Even if we decide to get out into the open with the courage to fight our inner battles, it is easier said than done. For the fight that goes on within is the toughest to fight and the hardest to win. You are fighting against yourself, with all the weaknesses and all the strengths known. It is an even fight between the warriors that know each other too well.

Such times are the true tests of our faith, our patience, our resilience and our inner strength. The faith that this is just a phase and it will pass by, the patience needed to let the phase pass and not submit to nervous breakdown, the resilience to get back our life again and the inner strength to keep it going in the face of enormous odds. Each one of us needs to know that we can make it through only if we want to.

But it is easier said than done. Picking up the pieces of broken dreams and trying to see life again through the cracks is an effort like none other. But then what is life without sorrows? We need to lose something to appreciate the value of the things that we otherwise take for granted. It is human tendency to ignore what is given and crave for something else. These times of pain are the ones which make us realize the importance of what we have because our grief isolates us and gives us the time and the inclination to reflect on our life and then hold onto the things we have. If we have been mistreated by someone or hurt by someone’s absolute disregard for our emotions, even an expected good turn or a little consideration by a friend or a stranger seems like a ray of sunshine in the darkness. As we build our life on the tomb of our past, we choose every little brick with care to see that it fits in the wall of our future and like parts of a puzzle being put together, makes more sense with each passing moment.

It might also happen that we become over cautious and try to protect ourselves by building an impervious fortress around our heart and mind to eliminate the possibility of any future pain. However it might so happen that in this zeal of over protectiveness we might push away someone genuine or hurt our own self by denying some much desired company or affection. At the end of it we need to decide what we value more and depending on how accurately we learn to judge the people around us our future engagements of the mind and the heart shall be decided.

There is no one way or the “right” way to do a certain thing. For each one of us there is a different way of doing a particular thing right. The same applies when we are trying to move over our bitter, sad experiences. But what is universal and the most important thing of all is to realize that it is us who have to decide whether we resurrect ourselves from the broken pieces of our life or remain shattered forever.

1 comment:

Joshua Victor said...


Arguably one of the best posts I've ever read on inner battles and losses we suffer. Mind you, I read a lot. One tip though - keep it short.
I have a simple but effective take on problems in our lives. Whenever we are facing a tough task or when we are going through a really bad phase, we should constantly remind ourselves that this will pass. Nothing in life is permanent, not even bad times :-).

The major reason for our miserableness is that we believe that bad times will never end or the problems that we face are the 'worst kinds'. Once you convince yourself that the bad phase will get over, we free ourselves or rather liberate ourselves from worrying too much.

- Joshua