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For 27 years, I lived somebody else’s life. Now reclaiming what is rightfully mine, one story at a time. Support me: https://ko-fi.com/debduttapal90

I like to live inside my head, strongly dislike rules, and yeah, I write about stuff

Photo of Author. Me pretending to enjoy a Sunset while guiding my partner to get the “right” shot.

I grew up in a collectivistic society, where the question, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” wasn’t open-ended.

The only acceptable answer, especially for those who performed better than average at school, was a Doctor or an Engineer. When I announced at fourteen that the field of medicine isn’t the right fit for me, I was met with several sad and disappointed eyes.

After all, who would inherit my Father’s Stethoscope? — This was a real question posed to me, intended to guilt me into submission.

My personality was not in accordance with my gender’s guide…


And in return, it taught me what really matters

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In my 20’s I wanted to change the world. Armed with the naivety and fresh enthusiasm that every student graduates with, I too wanted to create something — a lasting impact. It didn’t seem like an impossible dream back then; instead, it was the only one worth having.

I’ve always prided myself on the fact that I know myself well. That I have a certain degree of heightened self-awareness, and that is a tool at my disposal.

Knowing what I want and being passionate about it would make a massive difference in my professional life. …


I want to go on a tropical vacay, but I could also settle for a few nights of continuous sleep. One month after my Pandemic Anniversary, this is my answer to the question, “What do you really want right now?”.

Weirdly, two diametrically opposite things come to mind, and I cannot choose which one I want more.

Photo by Natalie from Pexels

Initially, I tried to answer a writing prompt and list my pandemic reflections, but two days of staring at the cursor rapidly blinking on a blank page taught me that I am not in the headspace to do so right now.

I had…


And you can’t tell whether you’re stuck or in motion

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I first learned the term midlife crisis during an inconspicuous undergrad class. We were reading about the psycho-social developmental stages of humans, the various theories that had made their way into our books, and their analysis and criticisms.

My first reaction was that of shock, as back then, I had my life thoroughly planned out. By 45, I would be high up on the corporate ladder, enjoying the view. I would mentor young women and help them reach leadership positions.

If I met a person who was brave enough to deal with me, then I would be sharing my life…


HUMOR

And beat the pesky itch of productivity

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I’ve been struggling to control my mind of late. It’s been slippery, quick, and confident being on its own. And now that I spell it out, it sounds like I am describing an eel.

Anyways, the thing is, it refuses furiously to commit to anything, whether writing, cooking, or taking some time off.

That last one is a big surprise for me, as I’ve always considered it to be an exceptional skill. No matter what is happening in my life, or if the world is ending, I could always grab my blanket, play a movie, and flop on my bed.


POETRY

If I tune out all the noise, can I hear the truth?

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Liquid pouring on my wrists,
rubbing it in my hand,
A fix for my face,
no remedy for the soul.

Cobwebs in my eyes,
distorting my field of vision,
Remove them, tear them off,
my palms are empty.

Look at a mirror,
stare at the reflection,
Everything is clear,
but can’t focus for long.

Lights in the sky,
the red glow of pollution,
Shush, squint your eyes,
pretend it’s Aurora.

Living in a minefield,
another piece of shit town.
False promises of eternity,
of immortality and impact.

Where reality ceases to exist,
and dreams go to die.

Filtered faces, filtered…


POETRY

Extracts from an insomniac’s diary

Photo by C Technical from Pexels

2 a.m., it’s time,
wrap up your day, my love.

Riding the high, waiting,
waiting for it to shut off my mind.
Could there be a button for it?
Or maybe one called sleep.

The mill churns out memories,
flashbacks of my war.

Could I call it one, though?
When it’s only in my head.

Crooked wrinkles and
creased fine lines,
Let them all out, let it out,
the murmurs of the night.

3 a.m., it’s time,
close your eyes and keep ’em closed.

Take long breaths,
not short jagged ones. …


And it is a big one this time

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I am a fully grown 30-year-old woman who is mildly addicted to everything made for teens. I like to think that I am a well-adjusted adult, but my Netflix viewing history says otherwise.

I am not entirely sure what it is, but the feel-good vibes that emerge from a cheesy rom-com or a teen drama are my go-to guilty pleasure. It takes me to a happy place, although ironically, my own teenage years contained scarce bits of happiness.

A recent accomplishment of mine was that I couldn’t sit through Dawson’s Creek’s first season. …


And other confusing thoughts about my body

Photo by William Fortunato from Pexels

I’ve wanted to share my thoughts regarding my body for more than a year now and haven’t been able to.

This was one of the first topics I wanted to cover, even before I started writing on this platform. I wanted to talk about things that no one talks about, and although body positivity has been a massive movement in the recent past, there was still stuff that I wanted to get off my chest.

At first, I believed that I didn’t get to writing this piece because I wasn’t ready for it. That I wasn’t brave enough. …

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