Whisky Words: Project (7)

This is Submission SEVEN of The Whiskey Words. The Whiskey Words is a writing project (and a giveaway), and if you’d like to participate, here are the rules.


“You can do it!
I believe in you.
Of course it is difficult but we are with you. Call us any time!
Try till you succeed. That’s all that matters.
If you work hard, everything is possible.
I love you and I know how high you will fly after the course is over, son.”

Once, I was proud to say these encouraging words to my son. I was being a supportive parent who firmly believed that my conviction in his dreams and success will propel him.

Now, even writing these words is making me cringe with embarrassment.
I had every reason to have faith in him. He was one of the topper at school. He spoke six languages, including two foreign ones. He got into one of the top three colleges in the country and had a good academic record throughout. All this despite no parental pressure (since we have done well in life without fancy degrees) to excel at studies.

After graduation, he could’ve found a great job here but he was committed to learning as much as possible before joining the money-making bandwagon. So, fairly easily, he got into a university of his choice in the USA.

He called us regularly from there. He was excited to be a student abroad.

In a couple of months, I could sense the change in his enthusiasm levels. He had mentioned the academic pressure. Contrary to his expectations, he was hating the snowy cold weather. Additionally, missing his childhood friends, trying to integrate in a different culture and fitting in with students from all over the world was tough on my shy young boy. Whenever I felt he was down, I tried to lift him up and make him see that it is just the newness of it all, which is taking its toll on him.

One day he mentioned depression. We lectured him on how tough he was and he had parents like us, who’d support him in success and failure but he had to keep trying. A few days later, we got the call.

He’d hanged himself.

Within just six months, the people who called him joyful or an optimistic young man full of promise, started labeling him as a weak-willed quitter who must-have-never-been-good-enough! The harshest judgement often comes from the closest ones. But in our case, as his suicide made news in the USA and here, even strangers criticized him.

Of course, a lot of well-wishers offered understanding and meaningful condolences. But, nothing can stop the pain, which started replacing “me” in my soul. In my head, I hear my long departed mother’s voice, “A parent cannot afford to make mistakes. A tiny spark can set the jungle ablaze.”

The tiniest thing you do, has a multi-dimensional impact on your child’s psyche.
So my mind wanders to the past, searching for anything that may have triggered this response in him.
Is it because he was raised by day care employees while we both went to work? Is it because we discouraged him from being a singer when he was 11? Did we allow him to watch too much TV? Or because we never opposed his atheistic beliefs?

So many questions! I know that the guilt will not help and I’m being too hard on myself. I have googled coping tips for hours through the sleepless nights and even tried a few but I just can’t handle this. It’s been a long time but I still cry before bed; or if someone mentions him; or if I see young students laughing in a cafe.
May this be I passed on to him.. this inherent limitation of wavering in the face of problems.

Or may be, I was supposed to learn that however well you know somebody’s capabilities, do not undermine their difficulties.

Listen to them carefully. Be on their side instead of cheering them on the path they’ve come to hate.

Sometimes your loved one needs empathy and not motivation. They need love and probably, a break.

Not all sadness is depression but before deciding if someone is "just down" think, reflect, question, listen and then give an opinion. And yes, depression can happen to a person who seems perennially happy-go-lucky too.

Life goes on, with or without those you love. I will finally accept this someday. We know that he never meant to hurt his parents or make us feel guilty and end our lives along with his. So, I will do the last thing he can ever want from me now – learn to be myself again.

– Janvi Shah (blog)

Labels of the human market.

A big thanks to Hanna for awarding me with the Sunshine Blogger Award, and I nominate SarainLaLaLand. Click here for the rules, Sara!  RULES
Also, do participate in the giveaway. For more information, click here.

“Labels are for jars, not for people.” – Anthony Rapp

Humans have judged and labelled other fellow beings since forever.

  1. It was impossible for her to step into her school without eyes following the curve of her ass. How was it that she had to throw out her skirts and wear pants that covered her legs and yet the eyes wouldn’t stop staring. She couldn’t wear the clothes she wanted, or get drunk at parties. She couldn’t dance her heart out, and not worry about the gawking men. She couldn’t talk to that cute guy across the hall, because of what she had to hear for the rest of the day. Slut.
  2. All his life, he’d hidden his secrets inside a dark closet. He had had a crush on this guy he’d been in the same class with for five years now. Unrequited love can make you feel devastated, but it’s worse when the other person doesn’t even know about it. Eventually, he did think it would be okay to tell people the truth. It was a catastrophe. He lost all his friends, and was made fun of for months. He had to change schools and start anew in a better place. It still rings in his ears though. Gay.
  3. You remember that woman who was thirty and wore over-sized tees and baggy pants? It bummed you not to be able to see how big her breasts were, and so you just never spoke to her. You called her names to satisfy your ego, and then laughed about it with your buddies. Remember how she dressed up just once for the re-union party, and your jaw dropped? You could smell the happiness she brought into the room, together with coconut scented shampoos, and luscious lips. And you called her an attention seeker, because she wouldn’t flirt back with you.
  4. Who knew it was a terrible thing to be black in sun-drenched “developed” cities? I am black, and human. My skin is dark, and that’s why I could not join my college football team. My skin is dark, and that’s why I was supposed to be okay with sitting in terrible seats while the others got the best. My skin is dark, and that’s why I was denied the job I was most efficient for. Fancy starlit cities weren’t the heaven they were referred to as, or are blacks not allowed in heaven? Please do help me understand.

The world is becoming a better place, but we still cannot overlook any injustice being done to someone else.
To the people who judge and label, just stop.
To the people who are judged and labelled, stay happy. Let them judge, while we strive for happiness and actually be happy. I promise to you, that this life is wonderful if you choose to make it one. I love you all.

Previous post : Love thyself.
Related post : Earth.

The big bang theory.


This terrible world we live in, is beautiful.
Miracles are all around us. We are miracles. What else do we need to believe?

  1. It’ll take a second for the next big bang to wipe our existence, and yet every morning the sun colors the sky in hues of orange, yellow and blue. Every morning the world wakes up, and somehow, we all live. The sky turns orange everyday as birds chirp, and leaves rustle. And then it turns yellow as we breathe, and feel. And then the blues change, as we make choices to live out our story.
  2. Darkness is an inevitable part of light. Day in and day out, we lose faith and belief, and yet we never lose hope. Even when we are broken into a thousand and one shattered pieces, we still hold onto the tiniest sliver of hope that it will be better someday. Everything seems to go wrong, but we never do. The cosmic stars that made us always fall apart, but they never cease to fall apart forever.
  3. We are made of stars and comets and light. Our fingers are the shooting stars that were wished upon hundreds of years ago, and our eyes are cosmic dust that we think is beautiful. We are all different, for the stars in our body and the light in our hearts is not from one single galaxy. We are made up of millions of galaxies. And just like them, we are beautiful too.
  4. We can love. Among billions of souls that roam on this planet, we always find the lost pieces of the puzzle that we are. Friends, families or soul mates, we fit into their story and they fit into ours. We are all love stories, and poems that rhyme in no decided manner. We are infinities, and we don’t really care if ours is bigger or smaller. We are all the stories that overlap and we are the pen.
  5. We have flowers, stars, and beings so far beyond us that all they know is love. We have sunsets, and mountains that shout back our names. We have fragrances that awakens our desires, and we have each other. We have colors. We have feelings, and we have hearts.
  6. It’ll take a second for the next big bang  to wipe our existence, and yet every night the moon shines bright enough to let us shine too. The sky turns black with white spots that are just us waiting to be born again, a thousand years from now.

I know it’s terrible. But it’s beautiful too, all you have to do is find the perfect place for you.


Previous post : Blind hearts.
Related post : Mirror

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Hope, and
A few wishes to elope.
The glass was half-full.
Sunrays, and
A few reasons to stay.
The glass was half-empty.
I picked it up,
Which one was more important?
I placed it
On the table
and smiled.
What mattered was,
I was the one
who was pouring
it was wine.
It’s meant to be
Half-full, and
And so are we.

Previous post : A pack of color pencils.
Related post : Hearts

Friends, if you like reading my work, do share it with your friends (on whatever social media you deem appropriate). It would be amazing to have more people reading my compositions. Please help my infinity grow bigger ∞

A pack of color pencils.

“Humans are fragile creatures made up of broken hearts and broken promises.” – Unknown

The water at the end of the dessert. That is what a promise is made of. It’s not real.

  1. Young Rue thought that Santa would send a present this year too. She had been a good girl. She had been nice to every one, and had done all her work. Every year she waited for a box wrapped in red paper with a small paper that read “As promised.” She had a deal with Santa. She had promised to be a good girl, and in return he had promised to bring her some of her favorite chocolates and new toys. She ran out of her room as soon as she woke up, but found no presents. Had she not been a good girl, or was Santa biased against orphans?
  2. Rue learned about how words could be carved into promises as she grew older. But she believed in people anyway. When he promised to be there for her every time she shattered into pieces, she smiled. She knew he would. But when everything around her crumbled, her life was a mess like the mascara flowing down her cheek, and she was drowning log in the high tide, he vanished like the sun on a winter day. Another empty promise, another broken heart, another normal day.
  3. With time, her words lost their meaning. She stopped believing, and forgot to keep her promises. She handed out assurances and promises like a pack of color pencils that would make your life colorful. But only while it lasted. And then she failed to do what she said, show what she meant, and be what she wanted. The colors ran out, and the pack was empty. A hole in her heart was yearning for someone to remind her what promises really are. Yearning for someone to make her believe.
  4. On a summer morning, she found the person looking at her through a dirty mirror. Brown eyes and dark hair with a new pack of color pencils in her hand.

Empty promises will break you. But you’ll always have at least one person who can love you. Be your own pack of color pencils. Look for the sword.

“She wasn’t waiting for a knight. She was waiting for a sword.” – Atticus

Previous post : Love thyself.
Related post : The thin line.

Friends, if you like reading my work, do share it with your friends (on whatever social media you deem appropriate). It would be amazing to have more people reading my compositions. Please help my infinity grow bigger ∞