Even if nothing great awaits me tomorrow, I look ahead to the new day full of anticipation, enthusiasm, excitement and hope, because life is unpredictable. May be it is going to be my lucky day which will change the course of my life. Wasn’t the day I discovered I was pregnant, the day I was diagnosed with cancer or the day I won my first blogging contest start just like any other day? Not a single day is going to be an ordinary day in my life. I will see to it that it will not! If it cannot be good, it can get %^&$## bad, but not boring and monotonous. The bad days come with their own set of challenges and lessons which are important for me. How am I going to appreciate light if I do not know darkness?
From nature, ice creams, comics, jokes, movies, chocolates, long drives to video games there are many silly things included that make me happy and add zest to my life. It is going to be a big challenge to pick five from the list of 157 zesty things in my life. But as usual, I face the challenge, bite my lip hard and pick up the five things that add zest to my life.
That is odd you may say, but I really enjoy the challenges life throws at me. Without those odds set against me, I would never have realized my true potential or strength. Be it my club foot, challenge of societal and religious restrictions, being diagnosed with cancer or bringing up a special needs daughter, they have made me realize the value of life and helped me develop respect for myself. There was time when I had unknowingly slipped into the state of living life monotonously. Each day brought more boredom to be faced by me. The waking alarm was ‘cancer’ which came into my life at the age of 29. It shook me from the slumber. I realized that life is short and it can end any moment. Since then, I have lived my life to the fullest. Overcoming my limp, kicking the cancer butt, picking up my education after 20 years of gap and bringing up my special needs daughter with love, care and dignity are just few of the odds that I faced in my life. They have filled me with strength so that I can fight with gusto. If I had a choice, I am sure I would not pick these challenges for me, but now that they are – I love kicking their butts and overcoming them. In that way, I can say they add zest to my life.
Starting from Amarchitra Katha and writing school essay about the journey of a coin, reading and writing have been an integral part of my life. Some of the books and papers have been replaced by e-books and the pen by keyboard, my diary by my blog, but the enthusiasm and passion has never dimmed. I have fallen in love with characters that do not exist in real life, and prayed for their success. For people who do not live in books, this may sound weird but I am sure there are people who will understand what I am saying. My grandma was one of the people who knew how much I loved books. Once she tore up my favorite batman comic as a punishment for answering her back. That was the ultimate pain a person could inflict on me and she knew it. Boredom and books cannot live in the same room…. I prefer books on any day.
I don’t sing nor do I play any musical instrument. I enjoy the hard work and dedication of other singers by listening to music. Starting with Binaca Geetmala that blared from our radio as I got ready to go to school, I have listened to bhajans, Bollywood songs, Ghazals, MJ, Police, Billboard chart toppers and many other songs throughout my life. Today, music is associated with Linkin Park for me. The power of Chester Bennington’s voice adds zest to my own life. The lyrics of their songs are really captivating as is their music. Moreover, they do not lick the mike, put out their tongues, hold their crotch or go for the skin show to woo the audience. Thanks to Rayyan, my son, who introduced such a wonderful band! I do not believe in restricting myself to the music of LP though. I do enjoy good songs from any part of the world when it can really touch my heart or put a smile on my face.
Hmmm.. that would not go down easily with many people. How can work add zest to my life? Believe me, it sure does. Being out of work for nearly 2 decades made me realize the worth of work and how important it is for me. I have loved being a teacher, freelance writer and counselor. I cannot say I do enjoy doing all my household chores by myself, but that does bring some discipline in my life (and also in the life of my children who know there is no maid coming over to clean up their mess). When I did not work, I had all the time in the world to read books and enjoy my free time as I wanted, but it did not give me satisfaction at the end of the day. I felt empty. Counseling gives me a chance to make a difference in the life of people, who feel emotionally traumatized. There is nothing more fulfilling then wiping tears off someone’s face and replacing it with a smile.
Nothing makes me happier than spending time with my children and I can assure you that they equally love spending time with me. In fact, I enjoy spending time with children in general, learning my life lessons through their innocence in the process. My two children have been greatest motivators for me to have zest for life. They are also the best teachers I have come across. They made me what I am today. Nothing touches my heart more than the innocence of a child. I cannot imagine how people have heart to hurt them either physically, verbally or emotionally, because nothing appears more precious to me than the smile of a child. I am not only blessed with the love and trust of my two children, but also that of my nephews, niece and many other children I have come across in my life. Children have the power to wipe away the dirt from the face of the world and make it appear all rosy and clean. They are the instant energizers who can change the gloomiest day into a bright one with one single innocent sentence. If you care to know and love children, they can add zest to every single moment in your life.