Moving On

And slowly your name slipped

Out of the pages of memories

From being scribbled over and over

On the cover and spine

As the rightful owner

Your mention relegated

To a mere footnote

Stricken off with a lumpy, white toner

The roses you once gave me

Pressed into dried debris

Ceased being a reminder

Of your ever looming hubris

As they crumbled and turned to dust

Into an untidy heap on the floor

The date on which our eyes first met

Obliterated by an errant blob of ink

I behold a book

With dirty, yellowed pages

So old that they don’t tear now

But creak and crack

Breaking off

Just like your voice

On our very last call

Merging into nothingness

Sucking out all emptiness

As I finally

Feel

Liberated

As your ghosts no longer reside

As a thorn in my side.

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The Ghosts of Our Past

Hello again! So, post my previous write-up on moving on from a bad/broken relationship, I’ve received various direct messages with a lot of queries on the next step in the process. That is, of entering a new relationship and how to go about it while you’re still nursing wounds from the previous one. Now, I’m no relationship expert. Heck! I’m no expert at anything. Yet, if so many of you thought I could throw some light on the issue and took the time to message me about it, I believe it to be my blogger-ly duty to set forth my two cents on it.

Having duly made that disclaimer, I would also like to state that no advise or tip of mine has a blanket applicability. Please use them in accordance with the situation you’re in, the person that you are and rely on your own instincts too. Nevertheless, I would do my best to help out and I’m always here to listen to you!

Did I thank you for getting back to me and giving me such an amazing response? If I haven’t yet, I am immensely grateful. There is no bigger reward than seeing people read what you write, analyse it and give their feedback. So I’m in writer’s heaven right now, thanks to all of you!

Moving on with the issue at hand, you’ll see I’ve titled this post as “The Ghosts of Our Past”. Now, while I mentally pat my back for coming up with it, because I’m weird like that and also a geek, I would like you to take a moment for some introspection. During this time, make a mental note of all the red flags that made you escape your ex. It could be the fact that he/she wasn’t loyal and couldn’t be trusted, that your ex didn’t treat you with respect, or was too self centred to pay any need to your needs, etc.

You see, when we start dating someone new, we subconsciously reflect our previous relationship onto this new one. In effect, we second guess everything that his new person is doing for the fear of having to go through the same thing again. In all honesty, no one can pass such close scrutiny. Moreover, this isn’t fair to that or to you. You both deserve a chance.

So, I repeat, make a note of the red flags. Then when you meet someone new, keep yourself in check, more so over those very same issues. No one can fault you for looking out for yourself. After all, once bitten twice shy came into being for a reason. Yet, we can’t let anything from the past overshadow the happiness of our future, can we?

It is understandable to have trust issues after having been betrayed earlier. Yet, we need to make a conscious effort to remember that this new person in our life has done nothing yet to deserve our apprehension. I sincerely believe in trusting everyone till they give you a reason not to. The same holds true for all other concerns that you may have. Give yourself a fair, fighting chance. Or you could even maintain a strike card, you know. If this new person ends up doing three things out of the red flags you’d identified, he/she strikes out. But atleast give him the chance to make those strikes.

While writing this post, I’m also realising another grave concern that might marr the prospect of a happy future. Oftentimes, when things go well and like we’d want them to, we are overcome by a crippling anxiety of it all going downhill. The happiness we’re feeling in itself becomes a cause for concern. We keep waiting for the other shoe to drop. The notion of unbridled happiness coming our way seems far too alien to be welcomed with open arms, calm minds and warm hearts. This, again, is an after effect of our not-so-perfect past. Every relationship begins with happiness, that is the basic premise which makes it a relationship in the first place. It’s all hunky dory till things start turning south. Hence, when we experience happiness again later in our life, we view it with suspicion. We don’t trust our luck to be good enough.

Here again lies a struggle with your own self. I wish I had a solution, a sure shot remedy for this. All I can do today, however, is to make you aware of how our own mind works against us when it comes to situations like these. The only plausible path to proceed entails working with yourself to overcome these self created hurdles. To not let them affect your future.

It’s time to bury the ghosts of our past, firmly and surely. Jettison the baggage and free yourself of all shackles. Leave the previous relationship with the person that you left. Begin anew in the truest sense of the word. Make your own new relationship, new mistakes, new happiness and new troubles. At the end of the day, we’re all richer people for it.

I hope this helps. Again, I’m always available to listen to you and to talk. Do not hesitate in contacting me. Take good care of yourselves. Let me know what you think of today’s post in the comment section down below. I would love to get your views on it. I’m sure some of you might have a better solution to this problem. Even sharing can help others see the way ahead.

Thank you for reading!

Love,

Varnika.

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Ten Things I Hate About You – Getting Over a Breakup

If you’ve grown up in the nineties, you could not possibly have missed watching the iconic, cult classic movie of our time – 10 Things I Hate About You. Apart from the fact that it is every girls go-to romcom and holds the distinct position of introducing the world to the wonders that are Heath Ledger, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Julia Stiles, this movie is famous too for its sickeningly sweet dialogue in which the ever aloof, ever stony, ever not-mush, Julia Stiles expresses and accepts her love for Heath Ledger. To refresh your memory, here’s how it went –

I hate the way you talk to me, and the way you cut your hair. I hate the way you drive my car. I hate it when you stare. I hate your big dumb combat boots, and the way you read my mind. I hate you so much it makes me sick; it even makes me rhyme. I hate it, I hate the way you’re always right. I hate it when you lie. I hate it when you make me laugh, even worse when you make me cry. I hate it when you’re not around, and the fact that you didn’t call. But mostly I hate the way I don’t hate you. Not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all.

What a brilliant way to hold you own while enumerating all the things you hate loving about a person.

So, taking inspiration from it today, I bring to you a method of getting over a broken heart or a bad breakup. Some of you might remember a previous post wherein I talked about the signs of a toxic relationship, how to identify them and then proceed to let go of any such mentally or physically abusive relationship (If not, please click here to read the post). Today, I feel like addressing the next step in the process. On how to move on with your life after the said relationship is over.

I’m sure each and every one of us finds the first few months in the aftermath of a failed relationship to be a painful time. However, the biggest challenge faced during this period is to not fall back into old ways. It is very easy, and understandable, to get back together with our exs. It is what you know. It is what is comfortable for you. It is what your life had been and it feels almost natural to be together. And yet, mostly all of us regret taking that step and making the wrong decision just to get our heart broken all over again. Sadly, by the same person once again. Do not beat yourself up about it though. I believe this tendency is quite akin to Stockholm syndrome where the victims of kidnappings end up developing sympathetic feelings towards their captors. This is true for all kinds of abuses too. Even a relationship that you had voluntarily entered into at one point of time.

Thus, it’s time to take a leaf out of Julia’s book. Make a list. Not only does making lists calm our nerves and gives us a sense of control, in this particular case, it can be quite cathartic. This list, however, will be an actual hate list. Sorry Julia, but your list has lived well past its expiry date. We’re over love now. Everything that has frustrated you beyond your limit, everything that broke you, everything that made you suffer and cry and everything that made you decide to leave should make its way on to your list.

And then, put that list up on your fridge. Look at it daily. Let it be a reminder of what you would have to endure if you make the folly of going back to your ex because, trust me darling, no one ever changes for good. Let the failed promise of your broken relationship give you a new lease of life.

When you’re finally able to trust yourself to think straight again rather than get swayed by your emotions, tear up that list. You’ve suffered a baptism by fire and succeeded. Now it’s upto you whether you want to be on friendly terms with your ex or not. Atleast you’d have the reassurance that your decision now would be based solely on what’s best for you.

I hope this helps you! If you do try it out, let me know how it went, please? Also, if you need help in making the list, let me know in the comments section down below and I’d post my own list for your benefit. Thank you for reading.

Love,

Varnika.

In Every Passing Thought – Love in a long distance relationship

While you boarded your flight tonight, I lay in my bed listening to two songs on loop. “Leaving on a Jet plane” and “Hey there, Delilah”. One about not wanting to leave your loved one but still having to go. The other on longing for your love who’s in a different place than you. The music spoke to me just as the lyrics sang to me. I’ve pondered over a billion thoughts, lost in an enchanting symphony. Not one of those thoughts failed to include you. Your essence permeated into each one, like a living, breathing corporal presence covering me in a blanket of warmth.

Seems unreal. Seems surreal. You’re a thousand miles away and, yet, you’re here. I can’t speak with you for an entire day but you still whisper in my ears every other second.

So I’m lying here in my bed again. Imagining all our dreams coming true. You know, about finally being together? In the same city, country and continent? About setting up our place together. You say you’d do all the work will I can sit comfortably and rattle off instructions. Sweet! I think about going grocery shopping with you. I think about giving lists to you while you forget to get half the stuff and work the charm of a sheepish grin on getting caught.

I wipe a tear away as I smile and recall our happy place. The one you created with words and love to bring me out of my worst nightmares. A cottage near a pond. A toddler learning to ride a bike. A girl helping her mother down the stairs. A baby on the way. A man taking in the sight with a happy sigh. A walk, hand in hand, to watch a setting sun. It sounds silly and unrealistic to a rational mind. It is not supposed to be real though. It’s supposed to keep alive within us the idea of a home, the feeling of belongingness, the assurance of a future and the love of a lifetime. It is meant to be idealistic. It works.

I can see the hours go by. Each agonizingly long and painfully slow. Symbolic of the life we’re living.

You see, you’re on a flight, and time for me has halted. I’m on pause, darling, till you hit play again.

Meanwhile, I’ll dream of having a cup of coffee with you as John Denver’s dulcet tones carry on …“Ev’ry place I go, I’ll think of you, Ev’ry song I sing, I’ll sing for you, When I come back, I’ll bring your wedding ring. So kiss me and smile for me. Tell me that you’ll wait for me. Hold me like you’ll never let me go.”

What are your thoughts on long distance relationships? Or relationships in general? Do you think they’re worth all the trouble we put ourselves through? Let me know in the comments section down below!

Love,

Varnika

Doubt

It creeps into my mind,

Quietly, without much ado.

Once inside, it fills up the entire space

And promptly sets up residence.

From them on it consumes me,

Riles me and spurs me on.

It blinds me to logic

And makes me abandon all reason.

In mad fury do I function,

A walking wreck I have become.

When I come across her, it fills me with bitterness,

Causing me to explode.

I spew filth and make her wither

Till she’s too scared to even retort.

Oddly enough,

It makes me find comfort in her pain.

I go on till I run out of steam

But not before she begins to look at me with disdain.

Deflated and satisfied after getting rid of all my venom,

I return to normalcy.

Then it smirks,

And proceeds to leave me

With a smug smile plastered on its face.

I let one doubt destroy me,

Left without any saving grace.

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Coffee, Cookies and Barista

“Is it over yet?” Sarah enquired over the top of  the menu she was only pretending to read.
“I don’t know.” Replied Liz, drawing circles with a fork on the red and white, chequered table cloth.

“Well, What do you think?” Sarah tried to pry out something more than the hundredth ‘I don’t know’ in a row.

“I don’t want it to be over, I guess. But I know it’s not going to work out.” Liz shrugged, still feigning nonchalance.

“Why, what’d he say today?” Sarah asked, slamming down the wooden menu.

“Nothing.” Liz said, absently twirling a strand of hair in her fingers.

“What do you mean?” Sarah squinted, thoroughly perplexed and equally exasperated. Yet it was nothing compared to the anger she felt in her friend’s behalf.

“It’s just that he hasn’t been in touch much lately”. Liz said with the same faraway air.

“I’ll get you a cup of coffee.” Sarah got up decisively.

“Does this mean it’s over then?” asked Liz, sipping her coffee a few minutes later.

“I think it should be. You know better than me that he doesn’t treat you right.” Came the prompt reply.

“Does anyone ever?” Liz sighed, licking away at her milk moustache and nibbling on the complimentary cookie. 

“Maybe, maybe not. Doesn’t mean we shouldn’t hold out hope. Atleast, that way we protect ourselves from the ones who don’t.”

“And stay alone?” Liz whined, trying to hide from the glare aimed at her by seeking shelter behind her cup.

“And stay strong.” Sarah pulled away the other’s cup, making her look into her eyes.

“Hmm.” Liz finally nodded her approval, always gracious in defeat. Though that did not stop her from stealing the cookie off Sarah’s plate too. She could not be blamed. They were divine.

“Hmm!” Sarah reiterated with pursed lips and folded arms, just to drive the point further home.

“The Barista is kind of cute though!” Winked Liz, with the hint of a smile threatening to form at the corners of her lips.

“Yep, definitely over! We’re switching to wine tonight.” Sarah said, grabbing her friend’s hand and pulling her along.

Laughing, with arms entwined, they left the little coffee shop. 

Vika watched them for a moment till they turned round a corner and disappeared from view. Then she sighed and smiled while clearing the table, mentally patting her back for adding her special, “pick-me-up” cookies to their plates because God knew the girls needed some sugary love.

Then, still smiling, she went behind the counter, walked up to the charmer manning the coffee machine and gave a quick, warm hug to her husband of 49 years. 

For more short stories, please click here. For poetry, please click  here. Please leave your thoughts and comments down below, I’d be delighted to get a feedback. Thank you for reading!

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Hey, Soul Sister!

She’s the keeper

Of my darkest secrets,

The repository

Of my deepest desires.

She’s calmed my storms,

More times than I could ever count.

She’s nursed my heartbreaks,

With a listening ear and a comforting shoulder.

She’s let me sob when I needed a good cry.

She’s made me end my pity party when she knew I’d had enough.

She’s held my through long nights

Plagued with hellish nightmares

Without ever raising a questioning glance.

She’s killed time with me

While counting stars from our balcony

When nights were too beautiful to sleep away.

She’s lived life with me

While neither had a clue of what it entailed

But powered on because we could bumble through it together.

She converses with me with just one look,

While the whole world looks in from the outside.

Ignorant of a silent exchange forging a bond so deep,

Even the darkest corner of Erebus couldn’t dim it’s celestial glow.

Soul sisters, they say, come in every form.

I found one on the first day of college

Living in my very own room.
This post is dedicated to my best friend and college roommate. We’re way past the seven year itch now! She’s known the best of me and the worst of me, and loved me regardless. As she starts on another journey in life, I can only wish her all the luck in the world as I send all my love with her. You might be going halfway across the world, darling, but I’ll still be just one text away. You’re on your way to achieving your dreams and I couldn’t be more proud! 

Thank you for enriching my life with all that you are, Megha. I love you!

Space

I was floating around aimlessly,

Like some homeless space debris.

Not knowing what to do, where to go or where to drop anchor,

Because that all-knowing, all-telling, inner voice

Had long ago muted its strains.

By my own design or from the weight of the world – ‘Twas a secret I had no intention of unraveling.

I strayed into the vicinity of a dying star on its last dregs of fire, its hopelessness felt like a kindred pain.

I decided to stick around for some time, drawn towards its growing misery with a strong, gravitational pull.

Little by little, in the warmth of company, the star rekindled it’s blaze. 

Till it glowed with a blinding light that sent me spinning around in ecstatic frenzy.

The muffled tones of my inner voice could now be heard anew. Stay, it said, as I danced around,

Like a moon making merry.


For more poetry, please click  here. Please leave your thoughts and comments down below, I’d be delighted to get a feedback. Thank you for reading!

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Close, but no cigar

I find most of social media inundated by posts titled “letters to my ex” or on a similar vein. They spell out all the reasons why a certain someone was terribly wrong for you. Ironically, this realisation, or shall we say revelation, usually comes to light only when one has moved on to another significant other who feels just right. What baffles me is how when you scroll down to the time when the posters were falling in love with their apparently toxic ex’s, they seemed deliriously happy. As much as they are with their current situation. I understand people change over time. What I don’t get is how, in retrospect, we fall victims to tunnel vision and only see faults in others. Do we forget that the wrong person was completely right for us at a certain point of time? Or are we agreeing we plunged into relationships without first knowing the person and/or analysing if they are compatible with us or not? Hundreds of similar questions pop up in my mind and I’m sure the hypocrisy, or foolishness, call it what you will, could not have escaped the notice of countless other people.

Yet, the amount of vitriol spewed everywhere is nauseating. 

So to every friendship of mine that parted ways down the line in order to be substituted for one that stood the test of time and is still going strong, to every other relationship in my life that ended only to make way for something so beautiful that I’m always at a loss for words to describe it, I am not going to say you were wrong for me or I regret being with you. I get that we could have made it past the finish line but we fell short. While the current “we” won the race, you were a close and well deserving second.

I’m going to sum it all up by saying – Close, but no cigar.

What do you feel about failed relationships in your life? Are you still in touch? Are you civil towards each other or is there a lot of resentment? Do you think my approach makes sense? Let me know in the comments down below!

Smokescreen

I’ve forgotten you.

It’s been so long

That I couldn’t recall

The colour of your eyes

Even if I tried with all my might.

I’ve forgotten you.

The way you moved,

The way you talked,

The way you walked around.

I can’t even remember a hint of your smile.

I’ve forgotten you.

You’re just a dull, old memory

In my mind’s deep repository

Where things can never be found,

That’s where I’ve buried all my thoughts of you.

I’ve forgotten you.

Even the feel of your touch

That used to mean so much.

Yet, somewhere along the way

I’ve lost track of what you could do to me.

Now I’ve forgotten you,

By putting aside the blinding veil of love.

Yes, I’ve forgotten you,

That’s the song I sing to myself,

Because I’ve forgotten you,

Yet I’ll write of you

Till the day I die.

I’ve forgotten you.

(Oh, what a flimsy lie!)


For more poetry, please click  here. Please leave your thoughts and comments down below, I’d be delighted to get a feedback. Thank you for reading!

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