Hi, folks! This post and the rest coming after are thoughts that glided into my mind one balmy afternoon sitting by the window sill. The title says it – a compilation of thoughts and impressions of characters and experiences that lent its magnificence into my storybook of life --- This is the first installment. More coming before I finally take off.
LOOKING FOR A HERO
- Life hasn’t been easy. Never has been. Every twist and turn on that beaten path I trudge got me bungled up with so-called ‘villains’ in the real life of a struggling twenty-something. I was practically on my own in the big city trying to find my rightful place where I thought I could belong. But anyone who has gone through that ‘phase’ of searching will say this that it makes such a huge deep dent and impression on your emotions, energies, and resources. It saps you dry to the bone--- practically takes the life out of you.
Times when I was literally down on my knees lost, confused, defeated, alone --- that I longed for someone or something to pull me out of the maze, lift me from the mud, get me back on track again --- but there was none. Those youthful dreams of a knight in shining armor, a prince, a savior, a rescuer, a liberator disintegrated right before my eyes. I slept through my tears and when the morning rose with heart still heavy I trudged that same road again. This I did day after day after day. Weeks turned into months, months turned into a year.
Then something happened on that one particular day I won’t ever forget, I accidentally bumped into an aunt I haven’t seen for a long time. She was loaded with bulging bags of groceries compared to my bag of biscuits, my cure for hunger pangs when job hunting. I silently cringed in embarrassment. But she simply looked at me with a huge smile on her face and a happy glint in her eyes which pulled me to her as I gladly agreed to a cup of coffee at a nearby café. Over cups of hot cappuccino (Ah! when was the last time I had it?!), she cheerfully rattled on about her family and life back home in the States. She was in town for the wedding of her youngest son who opted to stay in the country instead of joining the family abroad; he was getting married the next day. Yet in the course of our chat, she never did once ask how I was or what I was doing. I expected that she would. Relatives and friends I chanced upon in the city always ask me that question. I began to hate it and developed a fear for that inevitable question --- because apparently nothing was happening to or for me at all – I remained as worse as when I first came here. There was nothing to say or tell. But this time here was my aunt --- there was something different in her – particularly her eyes. It seemed oozing with warmth and something else I couldn’t pin my finger on. I was mesmerized by those beautiful eyes while glued to her every tale.
“You know, I remember when I was your age……..” she continued with her casual warm smile and voice. “Oh yes, it’s so funny looking back at it now. Imagine me queuing up at every vacancy sign I saw --- Eating a small pack of biscuits for lunch outside the interview door --- wearing the same clothes with every job interview; it was the only decent one I had --- cried buckets of tears on my pillow every night.” She looked at me and gently said “It wasn’t easy, far from it. I got the bad deals more often than the next girl like me. I often wondered why. Yet I knew that I could do a worthy job given the chance. But I never got those chances. I was beginning to think that I was good for nothing --- at all.”
“But each day I would go out and knock on office doors still and do the usual applications and interviews. I would even walk long distances in my weary shoes to get an interview because I didn’t have enough for a ride. I don’t know. It’s just something that you do, something from inside yourself that makes you rise in the morning each time and do what you have to do. I didn’t even know what it was people would say about ‘hope’ or ‘inspiration’ because I had none of those – felt nothing either. And the knight in shining armor I thought would be there for me ------ turned out to be just a figment of my flighty youthful imagination. Yeah, too much reading of fairy tales and romantic novels? “and she smiled warmly. “But this I have learned, I want you now to know it, too
YOU ARE FAR STRONGER THAN YOU THINK YOU ARE. That’s the reason why you are still at it working doggedly at that dream --- it’s because something special inside makes you. Whatever miracle you might be hoping and searching for --- cannot be found from without because it is right within you --- inside you all along. LOOK INSIDE AND SEE THE HERO IN YOU.”
I didn’t realize it that my tears were falling buckets but I felt no embarrassment just great relief as the flood gates of my emotional dam burst open wide releasing all that I had kept deep inside for so long. Then I finally realized that the beautiful sparkle I so admired in her warm brown eyes was --- wisdom.
To make a long story short, my aunt went back to the States three days after our coffee date and we’ve never seen each other hence. As for me, I’m letting my ‘hero’ take me to my dreams. I know that one day --- and soon --- I’ll get there! :-)
posted on Sunday, November 12, 2006 5:31 PM