Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Unbearable Heaviness of Mediocrity

There is this persistent tiredness that you just cannot seem to shake off. You wake up because you have to. You stare into your cupboard, grimace at how unexciting you have begun to look. It isn’t that you do not like to dress up, and feel attractive, but the effort feels so futile now, after all it’s just another day at work.  Maybe, I’ll wear something nice on Thursday; a prayer to self.
As images roll by the T window, you sigh. Into a tunnel, the grimness inside becomes more pronounced, feels like death.  It’s not that you feel so grim on a daily basis, not yet at least, thus when you do, it takes you by surprise. And that is the day I’m talking about, that one day every couple of weeks, when the monotony that has set into life hits you, hit you so bad that life seems dismal.  When you look around and see images in frames, when a song on your pod makes you wanting. You look across, at a beautiful face, and wonder, a sudden rush of hope. You smirk. Or when one of the despondent ad banner, calling for depressed or tired people between the ages of 18-45 for a study at Boston Children’s hospital, makes you wonder more than it should. How old are you? 26…32. A screech, a halt, the shrill voice of a baby crying, shakes you off your reverie, back again, and you ask yourself, how did life get this way?  This feeling of stillness, of monotony, where you have started living life weekend to weekend, when the days between two Saturdays are nothing but a blur, or you treat it so, you do enough just to get through the week, you earn enough just to have fun every Saturday, for everything else, you’re always running short. When suddenly dreaming impossible dreams makes you sad , when wondering about the what ifs’ makes you shudder, for you aren’t that way past those moments , and yet find yourself resigning to how things are , that shouldn’t be. The everyday drama so inconsequential makes you frown at how petty your existence has become. When the unbearable heaviness of mediocrity slaps you right across the face and you look around the compartment despondently.
You can’t really shake it off can you - the heaviness, the realization and the drowning feeling droning through your insides. Can you give it all up; follow that dream, that desire to be different, to experience happiness do something you really liked to do once, wanted to be good at, wanted to devote time to, but gave up, for life got in the way you say. Sometimes, I feel this pang, this disappointment in self to not have given time and energy to that dream. But the truth is, you do not really want to give up everything to achieve that, for that existence is so esoteric and you like your life, the comfort, the money, the security, the girlfriend, the husband, the apartment. This existence, in spite and despite the struggle and lack of glory makes sense, is easier to handle. It is ironic, considering how sensitive our jobs, and well-being is to the current economy and government legislations. Somehow the alternate was never a possibility. Deep down you knew you weren’t good enough to make it, or never had the patience to figure it out, think it through, have that wild streak, and maybe you just could not make up your mind. And you have worked hard, worked really hard to get where you are, and today it just doesn’t feel enough, does it.
Or, you never really had a dream, just a plan, a life’s plan which you stayed true to. And you got that ideal job, not necessarily the dream job, but you’re comfortable. So the pang for a different life paints a blurrier picture, but it doesn’t undermine that desire to question how things are going.
This retrospective introspection makes you melancholic. And I only speak of that one day every once in a while, it may last a few hours, the week, not yet a lifetime.  Tomorrow you will be fine, the weekend will come and you will frolic it away, do chores or simply sleep through it watching ‘The Game of Thrones’. You have your life, its trials and tribulations, there’s no time, and there is no going back.  It is just that today for some reason you feel otherwise, everything is grim, there’s a little shudder - is life slipping away. You breeze past the day thinking of a time that could be, would be, if you could just take a break and follow a dream, a vocation, a stab at greatness, an achievement, a recognition. And that is the unbearable heaviness of mediocrity, it’ll come, it’ll go, and you’ll learn to embrace it with a little sigh.


Igirit said...

This is lovely.

I suppose it is some consolation that it truly never is too late.

Tanushree said...

I think it is the only consolation... and then you just gotta jump that fence.