Don't die before you die
Updated: Jan 9
It’s been a while.
My dark circles have grown as a result of my fluctuating sleep schedule. Last week, a sadness washed over me as I curled up in a ball on my bed, spending as much time as I could away from everyone and everything else.
And now, this week, I don’t feel anything.
Neither sadness nor any of the other bazillion emotions known to mankind. Nothing excites me, worries me, or makes me sad anymore.
I sit reading a book, but all the words go through my head. I listen to music, but all the songs go through my ear and out from the other. I talk to my friends but don't participate in the conversations.
This is what my life has come to be and will be, I tell myself.
As I lie in bed, staring at the ceiling, thinking about nothing in particular, a soft knock on my bedroom door startles me. My dad comes in, sits on the edge of my bed, and whispers softly, “Is everything fine Kaira?”
Still staring at the ceiling, I nod briefly and say, “Yup.”
Of Course, he didn't believe me, but he knew me well enough to know that I would not budge. So instead, he lied down next to me, facing upwards, and started speaking. “Covid has given us all a hard time, has it not? Sitting at home for a year...it's annoying and frustrating, isn't it?
“Yeah, I guess,” I replied, my mind too exhausted to give anything but a dry answer.
“But we’re lucky,” he continued. “Lucky that both of us are in the pink of our health…physically at least.”
“Okay...”I said, wondering where this conversation was really going.
He glanced at me before he looked up at the ceiling again. “WE are living for a reason. WE are fortunate to have a life with which we can do anything we want. WE have the luxury to put it to the best use possible. I don't think we should waste it.”
“So who said we should?” I questioned, shutting my eyes, already tired of the conversation.
“No one. But talking and acting are two disparate things. All I've seen you do for the last week is stay in your room. You don't go down to play anymore. You don't talk to anyone unless it’s absolutely necessary. You lie in this bed whenever you have the opportunity instead of living your life and having a good time. It pains me to see you like this.”
“And what exactly is your point dad?” I finally retaliated. I sink back, expecting him to rebuke me. But all he does is smile, his eyes holding years of quaint wisdom.
“Live till you are alive. Don't die before you die.”
And with that, my eyes opened.
That was it. I was feeling so sorry for myself because of how the pandemic had shaken me. How my friend circle had narrowed and my sleep schedule had fluctuated. I went into this dark place, but instead of trying to find the light, I sat in that place, doing nothing. I could have made it a good time if not the best.
But I didn't even try.
I never knew a whisper could impact you more than a fleet of shouts.
I never knew five words could change one’s perception of life.
According to a study done by Cambridge University in 2020, young adults and teens have been target victims of immediate and long-term effects of covid-19. Loss of structured occupations like school or work, something that our daily routines revolved upon made many feel disoriented and purposeless. We were all self-isolated, but indirectly for a lot of us, socially isolated too. And as a result, it is totally normal to feel lifeless in these crisis times.
On the other hand, covid-19 has been a catalyst in helping mature our minds much faster. A once-in-a-century pandemic has come in OUR prime years, to carve into our brains a message that life is short and uncertain.
So, be wise, not wasteful.
As I observe the world around me, I realize how much time in life we waste not living freely.
I realize how people can die without actually dying.
Your attitude towards life in one way decides your mortality. To live is a very rare thing because, in today’s world, people prefer to just exist.
So, try that new sport out that you've been wanting to play. Post that reel that you've kept in your drafts for the last month. Call that one friend with whom you've distanced instead of thinking about your pride too much. Don’t be afraid to wear that outfit you’ve reluctantly kept in the back of your closet.
Stop overthinking. Stop stressing. Stop bothering.
*P.s special thanks to my father, for inspiring me to write this piece:)*