What is a Desi, you ask?
It is a word derived from the Sanskrit "des" or "desh" meaning "country". The term means "one from our country". It usually refers to people from, or with a heritage from, India, Pakistan or Bangladesh.
So I ask myself: I was born Desi, but who am I really?
I desire the peace and anonymity that only comes with living in solitude. I have grown weary of being judged for what I not am, or scolded for what I am perceived to be. I only feel true acceptance and understanding from three or four people in my life (and for that I am blessed). In a way, I am complaining. But I am mostly just so very...tired.
Have you ever been in love? Horrible, isn't
it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens your
heart and it means someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build
up all these defenses. You build up this whole armor, for years, so
nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any
other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life. You give them a
piece of you. They don't ask for it. They do something dumb one day like
kiss you, or smile at you, and then your life isn't your own anymore.
Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you
crying in the darkness, so a simple phrase like 'Maybe we should just be
friends' or 'How very perceptive' turns into a glass splinter working
its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just
in the mind. It's a soul-hurt, a body-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you-apart pain. Nothing should be able to do that. Especially not love. I hate love.
Every time I am having a totally insane period of time, as I have been lately, and I get annoyed with how exhausted I am...I simply remind myself...
I am blessed, I am blessed...I am blessed to have such opportunity, to be able to attend school as endlessly as I do, to be able to be exhausted by as something as privileged as my education, to have the incredible support network that I do, and most importantly: to be alive.
No, I haven't forgotten that I stared death's seedy face right in the eye...It's been about 7 months since my accident, and I am still working towards the many things I realized I must do when I emerged from the fog of my accident.
last few days have really made me realize something... Before we set
forth on our ambitious projects to change the world--as doctors,
scientists or engineers, we have to first focus on treating those
closest to us, those we encounter in our daily lives, with more respect
and love. To be horrible to those you see everyday, yet to claim to have
ambitions of positively impacting greater humanity, is perhaps the
greatest hypocrisy of all. We are ALL guilty of this at times,
absolutely myself included.
To be weird. It sounds like a horrible thing, right? On first thought, the mere connotations of the word, "weird" imply someone who wears a superhero leotard to the grocery store, is mentally imbalanced, and generally socially inept. I mean really, who would want to be weird?
Well, I do. Why you ask? Why would someone want to classify themselves by such a horrid adjective? Simply because being weird is exactly not that. To me, being weird is something extraordinary. It is almost even a badge of honor. To be classified among those who reject the norms of society to live life as they see most fit; to live in a way that could theoretically maximize their potential. What an honor it would be to be classified amongst these fearless individuals. In a sense, for some, being weird is choosing to strive for excellence, choosing to be memorable.
As most of us individuals who are truly weird by nature can say, it's not so much a choice as it is who you are. While you can choose to act "normal" to help you blend-in and exist in a more camouflaged way within society, I believe doing so only inhibits personal growth. To be weird is to allow yourself to get tangled within your own mind, in your own world of purposeful relevance, that could potentially lead to a moment of shining revelation. Furthermore, to allow yourself to be weird is to embrace your own intuition more than you regard the standards predetermined by our society for you. I don't know about you, but I want to have the chutzpah to be a little MORE weird.
Albert Einstein: Changed the way we look at the world, yet he was totally weird
Don't believe in my advocacy for being weird? Then let's look at some legitimate facts. Some of the greatest individuals throughout our human history were considered to be entirely crazy, and functioning in their own world, during their time. The late Steve Jobs only attended one semester at Reed College. However after dropping out after this first term because a lack of the college's affordability, he proceeded to drop in on courses, as a non-paying student, while sleeping on the floor of his friend's apartments. During this time, he recycled cans and bottles to have money to eat, and he ate free meals every Sunday at the local Hare Krishna temple. Essentially, one of the greatest innovators of our time, spent part of his young adult life living like a homeless man. Can you really tell me that his life during that time doesn't sound pretty weird? Jobs is later quoted as having said that it was the inspiration he received from the courses he audited, and the resulting introspection, during this time that lead to his development of the early Mac computer. It should go without saying that in addition to Mr. Jobs, countless other individuals throughout the history of man have been incredibly weird, yet on the brink of genius.
An individual who is considered weird now could very well be considered revolutionary and forward-thinking in the future. Besides, who's to decide what "weird" and "normal" are, really?
Be weird, strive for genius. Normalcy is overdone.
Disclosure: These are my views, and I completely understand and respect if you disagree. I don't mean this rant as a judgement on anybody or anything in particular, when I speak about things, I mean it in a general way. I make some mentions about education and income, as they apply to my life. I am by no means talking down to anybody that comes from different circumstances.
We live in a time of using, not loving. And being afraid rather than pursuing.
I look at the way I love, the way people of my generation love, and appalls me. I wonder when our values, as a society, experienced a shift from actually valuing human interaction, and savoring our experiences with each other as individuals, to simply discarding the people we know like old magazines on recycling day. We always seem to be looking to upgrade, to see if we can find someone taller, skinnier, stronger and smarter than the last person we were with. While I believe that nature drives us to find a mate with whom we would produce the strongest offspring, this innate drive to find a compatible mate is quite different than the blatant egoism and rampant superficiality that so many of us carry with us today.
Step back and self-evaluate. Are you sure aren't already surrounded by individuals who are worth their weight in gold, and a significant other who puts your happiness first? For what are we striving? Why must we so readily discard such individuals of value from our lives? Many modern men are hardly brag-worthy, most having forgotten simple things like opening doors, bringing flowers, and showing passion with reckless abandon. While many a modern woman is incessantly demanding and afraid to relinquish control, for fear of retreating back into gender roles so suffocatingly reminiscent of the 1950s.
We are a generation disillusioned by circumstances we have manifested for ourselves. So many deeply bright and successful individuals, near and dear to me, have mentioned that they believe everybody cheats (frequently) in relationships, and that we now live in a time where nobody stays together. Don't you feel that that is for us to choose? Why must we simply accept circumstances based on societal norms that have little basis in what we actually want for ourselves? The fact of the matter is that even if "everybody" cheats and "nobody" stays together, I think we need to take a hard, honest look at our lives. Using terms like "everybody" and "nobody" implies a general majority of the population, generally assumed to be greater than 50%. Statistically, only 30.4% of the US population has bachelor's degrees, 7.95% have master's degrees and a mere 3% have doctorate or professional degrees. Most of you reading this entry have been educated at the bachelor's level or above, CLEARLY we are not the statistical majority. Why are we living our lives by the assumed (likely incorrect) values of the majority, when we cannot pretend to be classified as such? Even if we fall into the statistical majority, can we not choose to have better outcomes for our lives?
I understand that life is everything but straight forward, and that there are an infinite number of factors beyond our control. I am not issuing a call to perfection, I am merely encouraging us to strive for better. To simply try and believe that even if everybody cheats, and no relationships last, that does not have to be the inevitable outcome of our lives. We are not victims of society's existence.
We have to cherish who we have before us, even if their exterior is marked with irregularities.Work to be better. We must love harder and more freely.
I am so very much a child of the night. I find it so peaceful and calming, it's honestly always (since high school, really) been my favorite time to do work and just about anything else. If it were up to me, I would stay up until 5am every night, sleep till noon, rinse and repeat. I will be just about the worst 9-5 adult ever.
I also get the urge to do random things at this hour...For example, I wish I could bake cookies right now. But I know even if I were to bake them, they wouldn't get consumed. Sad!
If you know me well, you know that I have a crazy long and detailed memory. Even my short-term memory has served me pretty well, I got through all of K-12 and college relying solely on my short-term memory. It wasn't really until a year and a half ago when I began my quest in the sciences that I actually started studying to learn and understand--it's interesting what can happen when you find a subject you like, right?
Anyways, back on topic. Having my memory was pretty fun as a child, I would be the only member of my family who remembered where we parked at shopping malls, and other inane details such as the license plate numbers of our cars (I still remember the license plate number for a car we haven't owned for 14 years) and the makes, models and details of random cars. As I entered my teenage years, my memory helped me get closer to people faster as I would remember almost all of our conversations and their emotions related to them, so we could always pick up where we had left off at our last meeting.
However, as I approached my 20s, I found it difficult to forget some questionable memories of my childhood as they still remained fresh: the clothes worn, the words said and the expressions on our faces remained deeply etched within my mind. I actually found it to be quite irritating. How could I move forward, in a healthy way, towards adulthood when my heart was still smarting from these decade old incidents that felt so fresh in my mind?
And then my big accident happened, in the fall of 2006, that resulted in a nasty head injury. And I had a temporarily fuzzy memory that lasted a few years. While the memories eventually returned, I learned how to develop a different perspective about my childhood memories, and was able to embrace them.
Despite the fact that I have learned to evolve my perspective, I remain annoyed by my memory. I still remember the most ridiculous of details and happenings of my life. Some of my friends are quite amused by this ability and call me to discuss their wardrobe choices for events, as I have a visual memory of most of the clothing they own. However, some are taken aback by what I remember and give me a suspicious look when I recall a detail about their lives--to the extent that sometimes I have to act like I have forgotten, so as to avoid these funny looks I get from people.
Like many, I especially struggle to forget men from my relationship past, where things ended badly. But, mostly, I can't help but wonder: Do others simply choose to forget, because it is easier to move forward when the past isn't holding you down? Do they act like they've forgotten so those memories don't resurface again? Or do they actually not remember?
I love it when I see an elderly couple holding hands and gazing at each other with love. It gives me hope that all love is not lost, and it makes me feel less crazy for wanting to be married someday (emphasis on SOMEDAY).
At my high school there was an older couple, him a chemistry teacher and her a guidance counselor (my guidance counselor, actually), who would always walk through campus at lunch while holding hands. My girlfriends and I would look at them and coo about how cute they were. But really, if you think about it, you realize to still love somebody after decades of marriage, that have no doubt been filled with trials, frustrations, and moments of anger and sadness is deeply admirable. THAT takes guts and determination.