empathy

10 Things Life May Have Taught but You have Forgotten

Photography by Marta Bevacqua

Photography by Marta Bevacqua

  1. Life made you realize the importance of some things after you had lost them. But every goodbye that made you regret, it gave you a new and better hello, but you were too busy mourning to notice it. Notice it now. Look around you and see the changes that have occurred in the last, say, 5 years? A lot can happen in five years. If things have changed so much in five years, imagine how much it can change in the next five years too. Nothing is permanent but change, okay?
  1. Life is not just hard-core parties and dangerous sports or drinking and smoking your life away. It is comprised of insignificant moments like the delightful fragrance of your amazing morning coffee, the beautiful/handsome strangers on the street, when you buy new clothes or shoes, the moment you meet your best friend and feel like home, visiting your family members after a long time, having an unexpected holiday. Life isn’t that complicated. Don’t make it like that. It’s not a race. I REPEAT: IT. IS. NOT. A. RACE. Stop running.
  1. Life taught you that the people who you thought were going to be with you forever, leave sooner than they took time to enter your life. It’s alright. I believe everybody has their own path in life and sometimes their path diverges from yours. I think it’s better to let them go and not diverge from your own path just because you don’t want to be alone.
  1. Life taught you that there will be times in your life when you are the only support you will have. But you will have people volunteering to carry your pains and suffering, but you, no matter how bad it gets, just want to carry it alone. It’s admirable, but let other people help you. Don’t rely on anybody completely, though. And be careful with people you unload your burdens on. Some people tend to use them as favours when they need something from you. Don’t let other people carry ALL your burdens for you. We all have to carry our own weight in this world.  You can lend them a bit if they are completely ready to do so. It’s okay to do that, okay? You have problems because you’re strong enough to carry them. Trust me. You ARE strong enough.
  1. Life taught that no matter what anyone says, you know that life can change in just a second. That’s all it takes. It’s equally scary and exhilarating at the same time. Your life can change in a second. It’s not necessary that these changes are your doing, but there is just a second difference between never meeting your future lover and then you meet them by chance or accident or fate, whatever you believe in. I think I’m always looking forward to tomorrows because I believe that somebody’s path may diverge into mine and it’s wonderful to share your journey with others. It takes just a second. Remember that, please.
  1. Life taught you that the best things in life are short-lived. It taught you not to take ANYTHING for granted. Please don’t forget that. We don’t have control over anything in this world, but ourselves. Our actions, our words are the only things we have control over. Use these things wisely and kindly. Like it is said, “A moment of silence in a moment of anger can save you from a thousand moments of regret.” Life can take away something as quickly as it gave it to you. Be thankful for whatever you have. Others don’t even have that.

 

  1. Life taught you that it is never too late to change who you are. You ARE going to change, whether you want it or not. The thing is, HOW you change is something you must control. The scary thing is, nothing is stopping us from doing what we really want. You can do anything you want whenever you want it. You can go and shave your head or quit your job or leave your home or cut ties with all the toxic people in your life any time you want but you just don’t or better put, you just can’t. We’re all scared of actually getting what we want. Why? Because we’re not sure if what we want is what we actually want or do we actually want the things we want because everyone we idolized has had them as well? Life is about knowing what you want, even if it is not popular “want-zoned” things. DON’T BE ASHAMED OF WANTING WHAT YOU WANT. EVER. Don’t have a herded mind-set. Not you. Decide to change who you are bit by bit. Start saying no, start saying yes, to things that you truly want or don’t want to do.
  1. Life taught you that every time you fall, you’ll decide to give up, but after a while, you get up. You DO get up. It’s okay to lie down on the floor after you received a set-back or betrayal or both of them together. But don’t lie there forever. ‘Cause whether you like it to not, or you care or not, or you notice or not, life is passing. Just like a river, just like hands on a clock. None of us can do anything to stop the flow of time. You can build dams on a river to stop the flow, you can try to do the same with time, but when the flood comes, when everything you’ve been putting off comes at once, no dam can stop it. I’m not saying this to frighten you, I’m saying this to prepare you. Don’t build dams, go with the flow. Build your boat and go with the flow. Steer yourself in the direction you want. You’ll get where you’re going.
  1. Life breaks every single one of us. Every single one. What we rebuilt from the damage is who we are. Don’t be afraid of being broken. You can hate life or you can love life or you can drag yourself through life or you can get things going. The point is, whatever happens might not be in your control but you should have control over how you handle things life throws at you, okay?
  1. Life is certainly what you make it. Things won’t go like you wanted them to, not always, but sometimes they do. Notice when they do. See the signs. Extraordinary things happen to ordinary people because they’re always looking for them. Always look for extraordinary things. It’s not about what you don’t get, it’s about what you want to have and how much determined are you to get that. If you are okay with giving up halfway, it wasn’t what you wanted. But if you can’t give it up, can’t stop thinking about it, no matter how many disappointments you have suffered, then that is it. Passions can NEVER be forgotten or repressed. Never. You’ll see that other people always get what you want and you’ll want to give it all up, but you’ll see that you can’t. And after a while, these people who got what you wanted, will become an inspiration rather than a source of jealousy and envy. Let your failures motivate you, rather than define you.

“The time has come, let us be brave!”

Oshin Ahlawat is a young poet and writer based in New Delhi, India. “I believe people who write are like tornados and cyclones. We wreck a lot of lives; for better or worse. It all depends on the people who read our work. They decide where the damage is going to be; the heart or the mind and whether it’s going to be for the good or for worse. I wish to give them the choice to decide that. I’m just going to focus on doing what I want”, she says. 

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