“Do you sing often?” he asked me.
“No. Why do you ask?”
“I can see it. It’s written in your destiny. Your soul comes alive with music.”
“Well, I wish I did…”
“You would’ve done well.”
I closed my eyes and thought to myself, “If I could, I would. Could’ve, would’ve, and should’ve…”
When you look back and see all what you could’ve been and what you aren’t, it gives you a slight jolt. You want to believe that you did your best and didn’t just cruise along. There are limitless possibilities to your future when you are a bright-eyed young adult. You think you are just waiting to break into the world and conquer it.
But are you really ready for that? Are we ever really ready?
“I should’ve made you sing,” my mother said to me one day, with a pang of guilt.
“You’ve always wanted the best for us, Maa. It’s not your fault.”
I wasn’t trying to make her feel better. I meant it. It wasn’t her fault. If I really wanted to sing, I would’ve made it happen. For far too long, I held my circumstances as the villain of my failures. You want to blame your poor decisions or absence of decisions on something or someone. I did that all the time, to a point where it seemed like the whole world was against me.
Maybe, it’s a typical teenage thing.
“You have a beautiful voice, Prachi,” my teachers used to encourage me.
I didn’t take it seriously. When you have a gift, you take it for granted thinking that it will always be there. I didn’t want to fight that battle to get what I really wanted. I let it fade away into the shadows.
“I’ll sing one day, when I find Love. I’ll sing for him,” the romantic in me decided for herself rather stupidly.
The truth is I didn’t have the grit to follow it through. I was too shy to put myself through that constant struggle of breaking down every day and trying again tomorrow. I didn’t like the center stage much. I’d probably never let anyone know if I wrote a book or came out with an album. I’d be like SIA. Don’t show my face but still own the stage with the help of a young girl who dances creepily!
In the attempt to avoid scrutiny of any kind, I lost my art. My music. A piece of my soul. Then, it all started changing a few years ago. I was sick of feeling helpless. Is it always because of my circumstances that I can’t get what I want?
It took me some time to burst that bubble but when I did I realized one thing, “You are responsible for everything that happens in your life. EVERYTHING.”
Every yes, every no. Every opportunity. Every failure. You create your luck.
Today, whenever I see someone crooning to an acoustic guitar or picking up that pilot pen to sketch an illustration, I’m reminded of what I let go because of my cowardice to stand up for myself. You aren’t making a difference if you let it be.
You can, if you stop and think for yourself for a second. The world is a better place with you loving every second of it rather than you trying to curb the urge to punch someone’s face whenever you hear them talk.
That’s my gyaan.
Blame yourself, not anyone else.