It is when you feel love, loss, joy and pain, that you can even know that you can’t ever understand Life!
A reader of my Book Fall Like A Rose Petal (Westland) reached out to me a couple of weeks ago wanting to send me a book of his choice. The book, My Little Epiphanies (Bloomsbury), by Aisha Chaudhary, arrived over the weekend. I finished reading it in one sitting last evening. Aisha passed away, at 18, on 24th January 2015. She had S.C.I.D (severe combined immune deficiency). Before she left this world, Aisha shared her most intimate thoughts – her joys, her inspirations, her fears and anything that told her more about herself and Life – in the form of My Little Epiphanies. All of 70 pages, the book is a rare, and profound, collection of very mature perspectives on Life. Coming as it does from an 18-year-old, it amazed me. The book does not tell a story, it is not a biography, it is not an account of her pain and hopelessness, fighting as a she was, a losing battle against Life, for her Life. To me, My Little Epiphanies, is a way for you, the reader, to discover the opportunity to be the light yourself, when you are going through a dark, seemingly endless, tunnel.
Sample here my selection of Aisha’s most profound thoughts from the book:
Are we living to die? Or are we dying to live? I want to do the latter.
If Life is a stop in the station, I must admit I don’t want to get on to the coming train.
I think we are the truest versions of ourselves at night before we go to sleep, just before we close our eyes.
If you feel like things aren’t moving, there is a cure for that, and that is time.
Happiness comes in all shapes and sizes; you just have to find the one that fits you best.
If you can’t change your own Life, there’s always someone else’s.
Pain lingers in the mind longer than it really lasts.
What was, is not.
My Little Epiphanies will stay with me for a long, long time. Not because I feel sorry for Aisha. But because I am grateful to her.
She reiterates what I have always believed in – that it is very important to be honest with your feelings. You don’t have to always be strong in the face of a Life situation. You just have to be yourself – even if it means you are being vulnerable! In sharing her deepest thoughts, Aisha helps us connect with the way we often feel when pinned down by Life. Reading her book, I felt that she was telling us that it is fine if you feel low and miserable some days. It is fine if you feel beaten and burnt out. It is fine if nothing makes sense. Most important, Aisha makes no claims about knowing more about Life either or how it must be dealt with. At almost her parents’ – Aditi’s and Niren’s – age, I couldn’t agree more. I certainly don’t know what Life is all about. So, to me, being honest and wearing your Life on your sleeve, is the only way forward in living this inscrutable Life!
I consider it a blessing that I came across My Little Epiphanies. I found inspirations in Aisha’s reflections there. Inspirations, that I believe, will give me enough energy to last longer on my journey. They say, when the student is ready, the teacher shall appear. I guess this is true of a seeker too. Almost always, an Angel will lead the way…helping you be the light that you are seeking!