Just a bit more….
I wake up at 7:07 and rub my eyes, not because they are tired, but out of habit. I pick up the toothbrush and prepare to smear the toothpaste and start extending my daily routine. Except the tube is all shriveled up. It has been squeezed too much for my weak morning hands to eke out anything more substantial out of it.
And as I pedal towards office on my cycle, on schedule between the muhurtam of 7:40 and 7:43, I muse upon the several moments when I try to wring the maximum out of everything, even something as inanimate as the toothpaste tube. I think of the desperate extra winks I try to steal before I have to start moving so that I won’t be late. Of the extra page of ‘Different Seasons’ I tried to read before I knew I had to hit the bed.
Of the slowing down of my cycle as I approach my office so that I can catch one more song before I have to start working. Of the coffee I drain to the last drop during breakfast.
Of the pen I shake vigorously in a desperate attempt to make it regurgitate one more word before I have to go get a new one. Even as I cycle I see a puddle, a shallow remnant of last night’s rain, fighting a losing battle to not dry up as the unrelenting sun creeps up slowly yet steadily across the morning sky.
I remember Amma diluting the handwash when it was nearing the end to use it for an extra couple of days and of the times (not too long ago) of myself trying to shift my weight to cajole the stubborn pointer of the weighing machine to touch the 60 kg mark.
And then I wonder if I have tried to do the same with myself. If I have pushed myself hard enough, nudged myself a bit more to eke out one more moment of something more meaningful in this ephemeral circus called life. If I have dared to dream and if I have slept a little less to keep that dream alive. I am not sure if I can answer in the affirmative to that question and catching a sunset from the balcony of my apartment, I strain to find a violet trying to permeate the skyline and make its mark, if only to remind us that it is also part of the VIBGYOR that makes up sunlight.
And as my thoughts drift, I dwell on the several things that I do day in, day out that doesn’t really push me to feel fuller than before. Nietzsche famously said that anything that doesn’t kill you only makes you stronger. But I figure that what is more relevant to me is the fact that anything that doesn’t make me feel alive only makes me weaker. And sometimes, feeling alive means trying to hunt for one more oyster in order to find the pearl you are seeking, going one extra yard even if your shoes are torn, and scraping a wee bit more out of life, rather than settling for less.