wanderlust

A Standing Ovation That Everyone Needs

Illustration by Jacinta Blaxland

Illustration by Jacinta Blaxland

I was reading a book and came across this quote, “Everyone in the world should get a standing ovation at least once in their life because we all overcome the world.” So, here I am, deciding to give standing ovations to all the people and terrible circumstances these people try to overcome in order to keep living their life as best as they can, same as me.

Here’s to the times, when we said goodbye when all we really wanted was “please stay” and we had to give up on someone not because we wanted to but because they did.

Here’s to all the ‘forevers’ that changed to ‘nevers’ in the blink of an eye and all we could do is bite back our tears and smile and accept things as they turned out to be and hope for something better to come along.

Here’s to all the people that we miss so much that in our dreams there is only darkness and their voices, here’s to all the people that we think about but who don’t even appear in our dreams anymore, here’s to the ones who are just memories of memories now.

Here’s to you and to me and a million/billion others who get up every morning and hope that today it will get better even when the odds are always against us, to all of us who know what we deserve but never get it but we still hope that we will because we believe in something greater than fate: Ourselves. And that keeps us going.

Here’s to all those unending dark nights, to the days that passed in the blink of an eye, to the setbacks that knocked you off the knees today or years/months ago, to the times you got back up on your own, to all the tears you didn’t wipe away, to you who keeps searching for all the silver linings in grey clouds.

Here’s to all the times you doubted your choices, to all the times you were afraid of losing precious time of your life, to all the times you felt alive, to all those people that made you glad you were alive to witness that moment.

Here’s to all those moments you sat in exasperation and with hope totally lost, to those times when you needed inspiration that never came, to all those times nothing worked out quite like the way you prayed it will, to all those apologies you never said or got, to all the people that we lost because sometimes you have to lose things to know what they actually meant and to cherish it in your memories and look for something better.

Here’s to all the teachers and parents that never tried to understand you, to all the friends that never quite understood the concept of friendship, to all these people that made you believe that it was your entire fault and you were the “different” one. To you, who bent due to their crossed stares and words but never broke. Never broke. To you, who I’m telling to STRAIGHTEN the hell up now. Okay?

Here’s to all the love you gave and deserve but never got it in return but you didn’t let these people empty you, to all the forgiveness you gave but never got, to all the second chances that turned to shit because things might’ve been the same but those people changed and you blamed yourself (please don’t).

Here’s to the sufferings, here’s to the pain, which made you stronger and kinder. Here’s to all the people that are holding onto somebody’s who is already gone, who are leaning over the balcony and hoping they will fly, who wake up with tired sighs and eyes, who are surrounded by friends they no longer know, who sit in their worn-out chairs and wait for change to come and take them away from that place.

Here’s to all the adults who are still haunted by things their parents said to them in childhood, to the fights you blocked out with covering your ears, to all the people that give back more kindness to the world than it ever gave them in return.

Here’s to all the people that chose people/things over you, to them teaching you the lesson that you would never do that to someone else, to all those times you felt replaced and forgotten and unimportant and “not good enough” but you accepted it all because you think that that’s just how things are always with you and that’s the way it will be, to you who I’m telling this to you: It IS NOT like that with you. You don’t deserve to be replaced, forgotten, unimportant and not good enough.

To you, who is IRREPLACEABLE, UNFORGETTABLE, IMPORTANT AND GOOD ENOUGH. Yes, you are. Please don’t forget that or let somebody convince you that you aren’t. You deserve a standing ovation for being alive and for being you, however you are or how’ve you been, whatever you’ve done or never found the courage to do, for getting through whatever people did to you, for everything. Here’s to you, darling. I hope you know how awesome you are and how much more awesome you can be.

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.