When life was simple.
When our to-do list looked something like this:
✅ Have food
✅ Try to go to class
✅ Do nothing
✅ Get stoned
✅ Brush teeth
✅ Get stoned again
✅ Watch a movie
✅ Sleep some more
✅ Cook Maggi and add some eggs if you’re feeling too fancy
✅ Go back to sleep
✅ Play candy crush in class
✅ Go to the panwaari outside the campus, have chai and hang out with people
✅ If feeling too adventurous, go to someplace else for a while
College life was simple.
When college got over, I sometimes found myself in a mind space where I am alive in an utter disbelief of the fact that that part of my life is over and it is never-ever going to come back. And, to be honest, it is one of the saddest feelings ever.
My college would look like a dreamy painting to someone who’d see it from the outside.
Surrounded by colossal mountains peaking into its vastness embellished with fancy buildings, a tremendous football field resting right in the center, an amphitheater, a lake with geese calmly floating with the rest of the tribe and roads lined by palm trees. Imagine living in a space like that.
Amidst this beautiful scenery, we’d just while our times away. There wasn’t any pressure to be somewhere, do things or even start a day at all. We could just lie in bed and not go anywhere because we could. There was certainty of some sorts. There was security and there was always a lot of time.
We were so laid back because we could cram things a day before the exams and pass. Copy assignments from toppers and submit them. Attend enough classes to not get debarred. We also had an option to read and study whatever that fancied us. We could take any class that we liked. We could go anywhere at anytime of the day. We could party unannounced. We could meet people, and spend several hours watching a match in a small stall over chai and sutta and nobody could touch us. We could lie on the fields talking to our friends and lovers for hours together. Things were serene. Life was, as I said earlier, simple.
As I moved out of college, life was nothing like I ever imagined.
This is how my routine looks like now:
✅ Wake up
✅ Try to work out and eat breakfast.
✅ Go to work
✅ Think about what to eat for dinner.
✅ Work some more
✅ Get over with work at 8 pm.
✅ Try to socialise
✅ Try to make new friends
✅ Sometimes pass, most times fail
✅ Try to cook. Fail.
✅ Order food from the cheapest place possible because nobody pays freshers enough money to order healthy, expensive food everyday.
✅ Get stoned
✅ Stare at phone for 2 hours
This is what a normal day looks like for me. It was really difficult to adapt to it in the first year as the residue of serenity and nonchalant demeanor still lingered. The struggle was real. It might have faded a little now, but I believe that one never gets used to working several hours a day and have absolutely no room for anything else. Yet that is how our society works.
The question remains: is the change for better or worse?
I feel the answer to this question is a subjective one. However, I think I am somewhere in the middle where it has been both good and bad.
The answer to why has it been worse is quite easy.
I miss college. I miss being a part of a bigger community where I could do anything at any point of time. I miss having so much time that sometimes, I didn’t even know what to do with it.
For better because the world is my oyster.
I might have a sad routine today but I also have the power to change it at any point of time. In fact I do it quite frequently. My routine evolves on a daily basis now even with a job that keeps me occupied for most part of my day. I find newer ways to understand how I can fit my hobbies, interests and be healthier into my everyday routine. I feel that this kind of a life is making me more independent and strong, slowly.
When in college, we craved independence, freedom. We wanted to adult fast, get a good job and couldn’t wait to get started. Now that we have a job, are perhaps living our dream, we miss our carefree days.
I guess, this is how we are wired. We will always crave for something else, something more. That is how we are built and we can hardly do anything about it. But, what we can do is learn to adapt better.