We all make choices. Some of them turn out to be great, others not so much. However, there is an intrinsic worth to this choice itself.
It is uncanny how one decision holds the power to alter your life. Choices we make shape who are as people. A simple choice to have momos instead of pani puri says so much about you (that you are a person of culture.) Or the major ones like which college you choose to go to or which society you enroll in. Like for real, every day I thank God that I didn’t get through FIC recruitment. The one choice that binds us all is the one of ending up at DU and god knows how much all of us regret that one. But that’s the thing about choices – you can never be sure if it is the correct choice.
For me personally, regret has been a major element in my life. Every choice I make is followed by self-questioning if the trade-off was even fair. For starters, the choice of choosing BCom Hons at SRCC over Economics at Hansraj. All my high school, I thought economics is the thing I will absolutely do. The neoliberal child of Gregory Mankiw was inseparable from my personality. So was SRCC to be very honest – it was that combination that was the most perfect thing I could ever get. As the world sunk into a pandemic, boards got canned and results came out. The ambit of my choices seemed restricted (If any Economics Hons wants to mansplain Game Theory, here is your opportunity) and I finally gave into my affection for SRCC over my desire for Economics. Oh boy only if I knew how much I am going to regret it. SRCC was nowhere close to the dreamland I imagined it to be. It is toxic and ridden with a million problems an article cannot summarise. One week in, I regretted it.
If a choice to pursue a long-sought dream can turn into a nightmare this quickly, I am not sure what choices are worth making in the first place. But here’s the thing: there is no right choice. The grass no matter what will always be greener on the other side. And this is a particularly difficult thing to digest. Often giving up one thing for the other is difficult. The trade-off itself is tough and feels weirdly unfair at times. We need to normalise not knowing things or making bad choices. The thought of what could have been plaguing me. What if I chose to stay at some other society; What if I chose to take Hansraj for Economics; What if I never chose to move out of Mumbai; What if I chose to not leave DU Beat. What could have been seeming beautiful but then reality hits. Life is difficult; no one is truly happy. I don’t think there exists anything such as true happiness.
In the words of Diane Nguyen: Every good ending has a day after the good ending. However, what can help make peace with reality is living one day at a time and finding happiness in small things. It sets you free. But it is easier said than done. Being comfortable with what you have takes time. Some people spend a whole life chasing what they don’t have instead of fully enjoying what they have in the present. I refuse to be that person; when I am old and on the verandah of a house somewhere in the hills, I don’t want to be thinking of what could have been.
I often think about how comfortable I am with oversharing. I am not afraid to be vulnerable. I believe we all pretend that we have perfect lives, perfect partners but this facade keeps making us more and more miserable. I would like to find comfort in a world where everyone could be honest about their realities.
As I write this beside my window with soft Bollywood music, heavy rains hitting my windowpane, and darkness all around, it feels eerie that this is the end of my time at DU Beat. This place has been more than a home to me; a personal journal in so many ways. I don’t know how to make peace leaving a space that has meant so much to me. Picture this as your favourite television show ending (I like to think of myself as more of a Gilmore Girls – long and tiring at some points, heart-wrenching and emotional at the end.) Fades into Alag Aasman by Anuv Jain.
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Featured Image Credits: Choices and Dilemma by Moumita Mukherjee