Her little book of dreams

When she was just a innocent little girl
She dreamt and wrote about things she would achieve in this world
She giggled and danced her way through adolescence
Always carrying her little book of dreams in her tiny hands

But the realities of the unjust world put her in a cage
Started tearing down her dreams page-by-page
People kept telling her how she should be holding a pan and a ladle
Or she was simply born to swing her baby’s cradle

She gathered all the tattered pieces of her broken dreams
And stuck them back together, a beautiful mosaic it seemed
She clutched the book even more closer to her heart
And stood up for all the girls whose dreams were torn apart

Ashwini

Epilogue:

All over the world, a girl’s education is deemed optional for her growth. Because according to some, a woman’s place is in the kitchen and not in a classroom or a workplace. Historically, this has been happening since centuries. But with changing times, even the society needs to evolve.

Women have the strength and power to run a household as well as a workplace. What they need is support and encouragement. Mostly importantly, we need to remember, when you educate a girl, you are educating a child. Let’s work on that! 👸🏻

Her beauty.

This time, she chose to be her own kind of beautiful

The beauty that goes beyond the color of her skin
And unveils the shades of her attractive soul

The beauty that surpasses the length of her hair
And uncovers the width of her smile

The beauty that isn’t measured by how fat or thin she is
But it adds up the weight of the love she carries

This time, she chose not to be just like them
But to be herself and that’s how she chose to be defined

– Ashwini

Epilogue: Women are constantly put into categories of being either too thin or too fat, too dark or not fair enough, there’s never a “perfect” woman. And these judgments are passed on by men and women both. Even if you say it in the most casual way, you don’t know how deeply it might affect the other person. Rather than classifying women based on their physical appearance, I hope we get to live in a world where men and women themselves recognize that life is so much more than just having a pretty face. It’s all about being a beautiful soul. 💫

Choose yourself. Over and over.

We often talk about how we love a fictional character from a movie or a show. Have you ever wondered how easy it is to love every other thing in this world and yet, so difficult to love ourselves. We try to find meaning in the outside world, to search the light that will guide our way and give us a reason to live, something that will make us happy and feel good about ourselves. But, how often do we sit with ourselves and try to make sense of what we are.

You try to find the “good” side of all characters in movies, friendships and even relationships. And yet, you’re so cruel to yourself. To think that you’re unworthy of any good thing in this world. That you will never be as cool as the other person is. And yes, you can try to be that person, but you can’t escape who you are and what lies within you.

It takes a lot of strength to face your own demons – your insecurities, your weaknesses, your pain, your failures. And trust me, it takes an insane amount of courage to acknowledge all these things that make you vulnerable. If you can be kind to strangers and even stray animals, why not show some kindness to yourself? The first step to self love starts with accepting yourself. The good, the bad, all of it. These are the things that make you, YOU.

Accepting yourself empowers you to grow past your weaknesses. You need to tell yourself insane amount of times that “I am not just a product of my insecurities. Rather, these are just things that make me human”. What really matters is how you choose to get past it and focus on things that do bring the best out of you.

Honestly, the world is always going to have something to say about you – sometimes good, sometimes bad. Don’t let them define you or just blindly adhere to the world’s perception of you. You have the choice to live a life built on your own beliefs and choices. Just work on yourself. Believe in yourself. Choose yourself. Over and over. ✨

Do your thing.

“Just do your thing, girl!”, that’s what my best friend said to me today. And it got me thinking, how important it is to hear these words even when you think you are on the right path. This wasn’t some deep advise, but just some encouraging words to get you going. At times, our own judgement gets clouded because we get lost in the ongoing chaos around us. When we watch multiple things, listen to contradicting podcasts, talk to people with different views, we begin to wonder about our own life choices. Sometimes, we judge ourselves so much that we begin to doubt our entire purpose in life even when we have found it.

To me, a healthy debate is important. I like to listen to what other people have to say, it gives you a different perspective to life. But, we also need to be careful about how we are reacting to all this information that we consume. The most important part you need to realize is, these are the other person’s views. They choose to believe in these things because at some point they too, had a revelation. Maybe through another person or any other channel. Whereas you have to decide what knowledge to keep and what to discard. It’s okay, if you want different things from the world and realize that you think differently. These differences are what make you, YOU.

Honestly, I tell myself that I believe in me more than anyone else. Because I know I am willing to work hard for the things I really want. It took me a lot of years to finally accept the person that I am, with all the good and bad combined. And let me tell you, that has been the best part! Because now I know what I am, who I am and what am I built of. This has helped me to be myself, trust my own instincts and go after the things I really want.

So, keep the good parts from what you see and hear and altogether discard what is not helping you. If you believe in something with all your heart, why not give it a chance to come true. The world will be judging you no matter what, the good and the bad. So, why not give them something good to talk about. Choose yourself, just be you and do your own thing. And I bet the chaos of this world will vanish into thin air when you do so!

PS: I chose this picture because the sun always reminds me that it will rise and shine, no matter what!

Postcard

I sometimes wish I could send you postcards from all the places I had never been to before and yet I felt like I have always belonged.

I wish I could write you long paragraphs describing my journey and sometimes, I could just write a single line that would sum it all up.

I could write to you about all the strangers who helped me find my way home every time I got lost and the ones from whom you should stay away.

I wish I could write to you about all the feelings that engrossed my mind
and the moments when I felt nothing yet everything seemed alright.

Most of all, I wish I could tell you that there exist places beyond your imagination, just waiting for your arrival. ✨

New Year, Upgraded Me.

The start of a new year acts as a cue to hit the reset button in our lives. We see this as an opportunity to reassess our lives and find things we would want to get done in the upcoming year. However, rather than the cliched “New Year, New Me”, I’m more of a “New Year, Upgraded Me” kind of a person. I feel that you don’t need to uproot your whole life right away in the name of change. But what we can do, is choose to focus on things we’ve been wanting to achieve since so long and tackle it one day at a time.

Also, I believe it’s important for these “resolutions” we set to be realistic as well. I remember when I used to try to quantify these resolutions just to feel like I’m achieving something. And a week later into the new year, I used to forget about them because they felt far-fetched. However, I feel it’s more helpful if you choose a niche you really wanna improve at and give it your honest try. Change takes time. For example, instead of directly trying to cut out sugar from your diet, why not focus on being healthy first? Find a diet plan that’s going to help you stay fit and gradually decrease your sugar consumption .

This blog, too, was a part of my last year’s goals. And well, here I am! Finally after years of convincing myself that I need to start writing again rather than just talking about it, I finally did find the strength to do it. During previous years, I had set a goal of writing one blog post a day and I failed in doing so. So instead, now I chose to focus on getting into the habit of writing first. I can now choose the frequency of my posts because I can anticipate the amount of time and efforts it takes to finish up everything.

So, whatever you are working on or want to, keep going. You don’t have to take the giant leap of faith every time. Sometimes, even one baby step towards your goal is all you need to get going. It’s only the first month of this year. So, even if everything is not going according to your plans, you still have the rest of the year ahead of you. Don’t give up now thinking it’s already the end of January, rather, focus on utilizing the remainder of your time. Trust me, it’s never too late to start something. Just go for it!

Being okay.

Throughout life, we often tend to train our mind into being okay. It is a good thing you know, but only when there are no options left. But when you do have options and you still choose to give up on things you’ve strived for and loved for so long, would you really be okay? Did you really work your ass off all this while to give up when it counts the most? To leave the person, who till date meant the world to you? To give up on your lifelong dreams just because the timing isn’t right? Do you really wanna be that person who’ll just be okay with what comes next?

And yes, you can be okay with a lot of things and still live a happy life. But that moment when you’ll be breathing your last, your brain will be scanning through your memories before it goes blank and it’ll stop at the things you gave up on which meant everything to you. And most probably you’ll carry that guilt even after the end. Wishing then that what could’ve been only if you wouldn’t have given up when you had the time. You will find the strength to live, we all do, but do you have the courage to go after what you want?

We’ve got this one and only life. And if you don’t go all out for what you want, there’s a chance you’ll be stuck in the rut of a mediocre life that you chose to settle for. It won’t be so bad after all you know. But that’s what, that’s how it’ll be, not bad, okayish, liveable. Instead, why not make it an incredible, large, living-the-dream kinda life? ✨

How far would you go?

How far would you go?
For those dreams that keep you awake at night
And the ones that enlighten your soul during the day

Tell me, what would you do?
When you see your dreams lying right ahead of you, waiting for you to claim them
Would you simply walk or run towards them with all you’ve got?
Or would you turn your back and walk away in the abyss?

You spent all these years weaving the tapestry of your dreams that has comforted you when no one else did
You carried them in your heart, which glowed with pride all this while
Would you just cast them away as dead weight
Or would you travel through space and time just to make them come true?

You could walk away at the first sight of failure and join the herd as they say,
But your real strength lies in how far you’re willing to go because your dreams are what separate you from rest of the world

So, tell me now, how far would you really go?✨

PS: Hope everyone’s having a great start to the year. Even if you’re not, stay put and believe that better things are coming your way soon! It all does work out, sooner or later, but it does. ❤

This picture was taken while flying off from snowy New York to sunny Florida in Dec, 2020!

Chasing sunsets.

We were literally chasing after this sunset during our drive through the Florida Keys. Our phones showed that the sunset was in 10 minutes and so we started running towards the point where we could see the sun going down. Later, I just sat on one of the stones nearby watching the beauty unfold. I couldn’t help but think about the magic of this universe and how it just naturally paints the whole sky with all these vivid colors. I purposely chose not to add any filters to this picture because the twilight sky did a pretty good job here!

With the start of a new year, I hope you all too, chase after real happiness, run towards things that brighten up your life and run away from those that suck the light out of you. I hope you find work that motivates you and takes you one step further towards your life’s purpose. And most importantly, I hope you’re surrounded by people who bring out the best colors in you and genuinely make a conscious effort to be a part of your life. Choose people who choose you and hug them a little harder next time!

This past year was really a roller-coaster ride of events and emotions. But, it also helped me to re-evaluate things I never really had time to ponder over. Mostly importantly, it has taught me that happiness is a choice. So when things go awry, if we begin to focus on the positive things in life and let go of all the things beyond our control, life does seem simple and less complicated. And whatever you’re chasing towards, don’t forget to cherish the little joys of life! 💫


PS: I’m finally back to blogging after a two-week break in Florida. This picture was taken at the Bahia Honda Key in Florida Keys. I already miss the Southern warmth in this New York cold. Looking forward to creating and writing more this year. ✨
Happy New Year folks! 🎈

We all have history, darling!

Someone said this to me a few days ago and I simply couldn’t stop thinking about it. Isn’t that true, though? You, me, all of us. We all have been through different things in our life. And that lady didn’t refer to it as some sort of a bad experience. What she meant was, we all have had brief or enduring chapters in our lives which have had a significant impact in our lives. This history that you’ve had has probably led you to become the person you are today.

Remember, how you used to sit for history lectures and listen to your Professor talk about these astounding people who fought battles, who created change, even led revolutions, fought for independence? And we learnt about these men and women because they were brave enough to do something significant that it lives on even after they’re gone. We, too, are modern day heroes writing our own chapters. Some have to fight battles with outsiders who come to rob the love that resides in our hearts, while some have to fight their own vicious mind and achieve control over it.

The scars that these battles leave, might hurt you out of the blue. A sting that hurts you so bad, you lay writhing in pain. But let these very scars remind you, that you fought the battles that have brought you here, you showed up on the battlefield! And though you might have lost some battles, don’t forget what they taught you. You always learn from your failures. And darling, you don’t have to carve out tombstones for the love that died or the people that left or your failures. You don’t need to build a memorial park where once stood a fierce warrior who fought back. But rather build an empire, that thrives with people, who uplift you and who would fight these battles with you. Build an army that would be ready to fight for you, roaring with the battle cries of hope and wearing shields of love as armor.

We are all modern-day warriors. Today, we fight. We fight against injustice, inequality, patriarchy. We fight for the things that our hearts want and we stand our guard against people who try to break down the walls of our mental peace. We are the unsung heroes, that fight bravely everyday. Because if you are going to create history, why not make it a glorious one! A history which doesn’t end up in ruins, but an empire that still stands mightily after fighting hundreds of battles. And one fine day when you will look back, you will think about the braveheart that fought through it all.

PS: This picture was taken at Lakshmi Vilas Palace, Gujarat, India in Dec 2019.