Reluctant to change

I refuse to learn, I refuse to admit my mistakes
Bad things happen to everyone but there’s only so much pain you can take
My suffering is real, I am disturbed, it’s not fake
I am reluctant to change.

Maybe I have become the kind of person who is willing to simply accept his fate
But there’s a heavy weight on my chest that I can’t shake.

I want to change but I don’t put in the effort
Do I have a problem or am I just a lazy fuck up?
Swearing is not my cup of tea
Pardon me, I can’t think clearly.

All I know now is I am reluctant to change
Inside of me, I can feel a build up of rage
I am not sure what I’ll do at any stage
I don’t trust myself in the first place
So I know I won’t be breaking it anyway.
Even if I fall flat on my face
I will still be reluctant to change.

Possessed by a ghost
My mind is out of control
Not completely but almost
Breathe in and breathe out
Calm down and don’t shout
They try to reassure me but I still have a pool of doubts
I lay awake drowning in my own misery until I pass out.

I woke up in the evening
Having the same old feelings
Vividly remember my dreams
I can still hear all those screams
Which were piercing my ears as they were so loud
It was like hundreds of people gathered in a crowd.

Then I go and take a walk in the park
It doesn’t matter that it’s getting so dark
Dark resides in me
I’m no longer afraid of it
It’s a part of me and I embrace it
I walk towards a bench and I sit
This is comfortable and not strange
Guess this is why I am still so reluctant to change.

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So many questions

So many questions no answers

The weight of the troubles doesn’t transfer

Whenever I try make it right I make blunders
The ache in my heart strike me like a thunder

Waking up, I feel exhausted
I face these demons, they are traumatic
So scary that I am repeatedly haunted
There’s nothing like feeling unwanted

It’s my destiny that I hate
Can’t complain, they say it’s my fate
My head spins when I walk on the road
Legs tremble so I crawl on the floor

Shoulders are heavy now
I try to get up but I only go down
I see the sun and hope to see sunshine
I am in hell yet I say I am just fine

So many questions but no answers
I want to see a bouquet but I see dead flowers
I want to break free and scream out on top of a tower

This is not a game
Success doesn’t mean fame
My identity is my name
Why should I be afraid to be me? Why should there be any shame?

So many questions but no answers
I’ll ask them hundred times but to no avail
I’d want to succeed and not fail
Even if it means walking on hot flames

So many questions but no answers
Joy has vanished there’s only anger
I am an amateur but I want to be a master
That’s why I take shortcuts and like to cut to the chase faster

Now I know this is not the right way 
I’ll have to work night and day
There are questions and there will be answers
If only I rebuild after suffering this disaster

Need to be patient to remain sane
Take it as a boon and not a bane
It’s my story and I am the main character
Can’t back down, I’ve to fight like a wrestler.

I hide in my shell 
Because outside has become hell
People around me do wish me well
Life becomes harder when you have no friend.

Impact of an emotional trauma

Plenty of people perhaps do not realize what it’s like to have suffered a trauma. It’s easier to say something cliché like “Be happy, be positive and smile.” The only thing that is a concern here is if it were that easy then nobody would ever be miserable, people would never feel dejected at all, everybody would probably always be happy, and most importantly nobody would ever complain about anything because they’d be “happy and smile.”

I came up with an analogy to help people empathize a lot more with the people who have faced a trauma in their life or have struggled in life in any way.

Suppose a Tsunami has destroyed a city. Every building, every park, etc. has been dismantled by the disaster. Some people have died in this catastrophe, and the mayhem caused by Tsunami has left everything shattered and has lead to the death of hundreds of individuals. Well, it must have been a traumatizing sight surely when it was happening, but once it stops, there’s a deadly silence everywhere.

All of a sudden there is no noise all around the city. It is quiet. Is it peaceful…is it? Yes, it is. However, it became calm only after a storm! In this case, it is Tsunami though.

If you look at it now, you’d realize how calm and peaceful it is out there.  If you reverse the clock backwards, you’d see chaos out there.

What does this analogy teach us? We learn that things aren’t always like they appear to be. You don’t exactly know anyone’s story and their past. You do not know why someone is like the way they are. What circumstances lead them to become who they are today.

Similarly, someone who has struggled in life and has faced a traumatic event might appear cool, calm and even collected. We never know what goes inside their head. In the analogy above, it’s the impact of Tsunami that needs to be understood. It might be calm after it is over, but it left everything destroyed and dismantled. Fixing the broken stuff requires time and patience. What would be necessary to fix those things?  It’d require skill and time. Do not be afraid to take your time to fix things.

So what would be required to get back on track for the person who has faced a difficulty? Just like skill to make things, a person needs good habits to have a healthy foundation of a successful life. Apart from good practices, it’s necessary to allow yourself time to overcome the difficulties. Do not be afraid to take time.

Trauma can have a severe negative impact on your life, but you can gather the broken pieces and fix them once again. The most important thing to remember is you have to take your time and do not feel as if there’s no tomorrow.

A disaster can destroy you, but you can always strive to do better and try to do better each day.

 

A series of unfortunate events

I had to do a case study on a street child. Talking to the kid put a lot of things in  perspective. After talking to him I realized that I  am more fortunate than I ever imagined. Here are the questions that I asked and the answers he gave along with my observations regarding him and the answers he gave to my questions.

Part –A: Physical Development

  1. Do you feel any pain or any discomfort in your body? If yes, do you seek for Doctor’s help?

Yes. Sometimes he feels weak and he is unable to run for long periods. He gets tired easily.  He doesn’t see a doctor too often because of shortage of money. His parents give him a medicine if he gets sick.

  1. For how many hours do you sleep in the night? Do you wake up in between at night? What might be the reason for this according to you?

6-7 hours.  Sometimes it happens that he wakes up in the middle  of  night because of discomfort. In summers, it gets too hot so he doesn’t get a proper sleep. Often, his parents fight and due to so much yelling he finds it hard to get a proper sleep.

  1. Do you get tired easily? If yes, then why do you get tired so easily? What do you do to remove this fatigue?

He gets tired easily.  Lack of availability of  proper  food and no  fixed schedule  to have meals are main causes of fatigue. He usually sleeps if he gets too tired or just lie  down and try to rest.

 

  1. What is your daily routine? Do you participate in all the activities with your own choice or are you forced to do so?

He wakes up at about 7-8am. He wanders here and there till noon on holidays and go to a government school on weekdays although he is irregular. During the evenings, he and his mates would do drugs like marijuana. He rarely studies. He does drugs because his mates tell him to do so.

 

Physique Observation of Respondent:

The respondent seems malnourished. There is no proper diet for him so it is obvious that the kid looks weak. His bone structure indicates he is not very strong. He  is very skinny and seems under weight. He lacks stamina and can’t do physical work for long periods. The use of drugs seems to suggest he doesn’t involve himself in sports or outdoor play activities.

Part –B: Cognitive Development

  1. Do you go to school? Why do you think you or any other child should go to school? What according to you does school provide you?

Yes. He says his parents want him to go to school and learn. School provides learning and fun. They also encourage them to play sports.

  1. Do you regularly attend school or do you miss school frequently? How have been your grades till now?

He is irregular in school.  He has failed 2nd grade once  and  due to  that he is 1 year behind.

  1. Now I will give you a small game.

If I give you 2 chocolates, 1 kurkure, 2chips, and how many items in total do you have?

After thinking for a while, he says 5.

  1. Identify these 5 colors provided to you:

Blue, White, Red, Green and Yellow.

  1. What is the capital city of India?

Don’t know.

  1. Which is the heavier metal of these two? Gold or Silver?

Silver.

  1. What color does the sky appear to be when it rains?

Blue.

 

  1. I will speak like 1,2,3,4,5 ,6…You have to repeat this series in reverse order

He does that successfully.

  1. What do you want to be in the future? Why do you want to be this?

Never thought  about it.

  1. Now a situation will be provided to you. Tell me how you will solve it. If you are walking in a jungle and you are completely alone and you suddenly fall into a pit. How will you come out of it?

By climbing up using my feet and hands.

Interviewer’sObservations regarding Language and Other Cognitive Aspects:

He seems to be a slow learner as it is indicated that he has failed 2nd grade once. He seems to lack general knowledge as he didn’t know about the capital of India. He was unable to construct proper sentences and gave very vague answers. He is unclear about his future goals. For proper cognitive development, a child must be well-nourished but only nutrition cannot solve all the problems. The caregivers must make sure to instill good thinking and behavior pattern in a child.

Part –C: Socio-Emotional Development

  1. Do you have friends? How many friends do you have? Why are they your friends? Do you meet them frequently?

Yes. Plenty. They do drugs together and wander the streets together. They do marijuana every evening.

  1. What is your birth order?

First-born

  1. Do you have any brother or sister? Do you like them? Do you play with them? Are you ever jealous of them?

Younger sister. Yes. Yes. No.

  1. Do you love your parents? Who loves you more, your mother or father? Do you like spending time with them?

Yes. Mother. Yes.

  1. How many people do you meet every day? Do you ever express your feelings with them? Do you tell them about your problems?

Plenty. No. No.

  1. Do you want to live independently, i.e., without your parents, or do you want to live with them? If yes/no then why?

Live with them because they send me to school, gives me food and money.

Interviewer’sObservations:

As most kids, he seems to be innocent but due to his environment, he is indulging in bad habits. He wants to stay with his parents because they take care of his basic needs. He has a younger sister and he holds no grudges. Despite giving vague answers he remained calm. He is the first born in his family. He seems to be compassionate like most kids.

 

Part –D: Understanding Respondent’s Context/Culture

  1. Do your mother and father live together? Do they fight? Have you ever seen any sort of domestic violence in your house?

Yes. Yes. Yes, sometimes his father hits his mother especially when drunk.

  1. Does anyone in your family drink? Do you drink?

Yes. Just once.

  1. Does your father or mother scold you? Have you ever got beaten by them?

Yes. Yes, his father hits him if he makes him angry or does something bad.

  1. Are you from Delhi itself or have you shifted here from somewhere else? If shifted, then from where and why?

He’s shifted from village in Uttar Pradesh. He doesn’t know the reason.

  1. Is the place you are living in now clean enough?

No. There is not a lot of space as well.

  1. How are your neighbors? How do they treat you?

Bad. They yell at him.

  1. Is there any hospital or Doctor’s clinic nearby your house? How do they treat you?

Yes, there’s homeopathic clinic. They give him medicine if he is sick and they talk nicely to him.

  1. What are the conditions of the place you work in? Is it clean enough? Is there any medical facility present there? How are you treated there?

He doesn’t work. His father is a rickshaw puller. He is in school. There is a medical room in school.

  1. Is there anything else you would want to share?

No.

 

Interviewer’sObservations:

 

 

The respondent has seen domestic violence. He has already tried alcohol once at just 9 years old. His father earns and although he sends him to school, he seems to be careless and doesn’t involve himself very much in his kid’s life. That can cause self esteem issues and feelings of being unloved and decreased self worth. Other psychological disorders like PTSD and depression can also take place due to domestic violence. PTSD occurs when an individual suffers from a traumatic event. Constant exposure to traumatic events can lead to anxiety and feelings of hopelessness.

Shy vs Introvert

A lot of people have a misconception regarding these concepts.

Shyness is when people have a doubt in them about approaching new situations and people and feel uncomfortable in unfamiliar surroundings.

There is an element of rejection present in a shy person. They fear rejection and hence often suppress their feelings and/or emotions.

On the other hand, introverts enjoy being alone. It is their preference. They enjoy solitary activities and seek solitude . Being in a gathering is not their cup of tea. Well, that is nice, more alone you’re, less bullshit you have to deal with.

So, do not confuse shyness with introversion. These are two different things.

Creativity and Intelligence

images (4)These are two different concepts. While traditional schools generally focus on measuring intelligence, creativity is as important as intelligence if not more.

Intelligence gives you a base to find out something or take the understanding of a concept to the next level. On the other hand, creativity is significant as well because having sufficient knowledge about a concept is not enough. Being creative leads to new discoveries and opens a new horizon to think about a concept at a deeper level.

Standardized tests that schools expect students to take measures intelligence. The examinations do not test the divergent thinking of a person.

Just think about it. We all learn to write, speak and listen. There are always people better than you no matter how great you become. So what is the difference between the students studying in Oxford University and a student studying in a different region but is more creative as compared to them? While, a native English speaker might have a much more enhanced vocabulary, it is still possible that a non-native English speaker use the English words more effectively as compared to the native speaker. It is all about how creative you can get with the strengths that you have. We can also conclude that it is really our choices that define who we are, not our abilities.

A student who has graduated with a degree in English might be more capable than someone who does not have a degree in this field but various circumstances in life can lead him/her to stay unfocused and s/he might never fulfill his/her potential while the one who just enjoys writing might come up with ideas that cannot be taught by anyone; which comes naturally.

Intelligence is significant in that sense that it measures your aptitude for a particular field. Aptitude refers to a natural ability in a field. However, there is a relationship between both these concepts. Intelligence serves the bases for creativity. You learn concepts, understand them and memorize them. Your ability to learn and comprehend the meaning of concepts makes you intelligent. Given a new situation including new problems requires creativity. You have to use your previous knowledge and apply to the newly arisen problem. With intelligence alone, you can give solutions to the similar problems but in the case of a completely new problem you have to use the previous understanding.

The best example of I can think of is recess. Gretchen Grundler is what we can call an intelligent girl and she is certainly creative as well but why is she creative if she’s intelligent? The reason is it doesn’t necessarily means being intelligent means you’re not creative. However, being creative does not mean you need to have a high IQ like Gretchen Grundler. Now, if we look at the other character, that is, T.J. Detweiler, who is the prankster of the gang is not even near to being superiorly intelligent but is highly creative. Pranks require creativity and he is a top-notch prankster. Despite being intelligently average, he earns all the points in creativity. Therefore, being intelligent does not mean that one is highly creative and similarly being highly creative does not necessarily means that one has high IQ.

Escapism!

Escape from the reality, but never forget that you’re only a guest in your fantasy land”.

Don’t you love living in a fantasy world where there are no restrictions whatsoever? Many of us love to take some time off from this busy world and explore an imaginary land inside our mind. Too much of denial of realistic world and escaping the existing realities of life and being lost in your own reverie is called “escapism”. When there are those difficult times where we are unable to cope up with the harsh realities of life, it is natural to fantasize about things which are almost impossible to occur in real life. Although, it’s important you don’t entirely dissociate from the outside world.

There are plenty of good reasons why you must avoid living in your imaginary land and pay attention to your real life as well as real people around you. How do you think you’re going to reach your goals? It’s not like one day you’ll wake up and it’ll be like oh! There you have it. Everything you’ve ever wanted is just in front of you. No, it doesn’t work like that. You have to earn it. Certainly, nothing will be served to you on a plate, you gotta work hard.

It also highly affects your social relations especially for young adults for whom it is a time to build a career. If you’re never interacting with the your fellow humans then it’ll affect your inter-personal relationships in a negative way. So, escapism can cause an enormous damage to your life as a whole. Also, the people who practice escapism tend to be a lot more depressed. It’s not at all surprising because there’s a greater chance that you’d tend to feel lonely when you’re lost in your own world. There’s really nobody to accompany you, except your thoughts and self-made characters.

So why would you need escapism to escape the real life? It’s going to make things a lot worse so I’d say just try to limit your time and always remember to buy a return ticket to reality after visiting your fantasy land.