I have opinions. Like it or not.

The Choices We Make

“Every man is entitled to life, libery and the pursuit of happiness.” And so go the famous inalienable rights.

I have spent the last one year pursuing something that I thought would make my life immeasurably happy. And it took me 2 weeks of concentrated thinking to realize that there are other, bigger, more important things that I must think about, before going after a tenuous, fickle dream.

When it comes down to it, happiness is what we create for ourselves. We know that there are some things that have to be sacrificed for attaining others. And such has been the norm of life so far and such it will be for all life ahead. However, I ask: must we consider our choices as “giving up” ? Why do we have to give it a strong negative connotation by calling it “sacrifice” ?

A year ago I made a decision that would affect the course of my entire life. But I was the only person affected by it. I was the only person who would be happy by that decision of mine. Today, changing that decision has changed so many facets of my life. It has affected so many people involved, it has made everyone around me so happy that it doesn’t seem like such a bad thing after all.

What about me, you ask? Well, I am not going to be a saint and say everyone’s happiness is my happiness. Admittedly, I was saddened by it. But, I am also incredibly relieved. I feel like a big weight has been lifted off my chest. I feel like I am finally being given an opportunity to make the best of what I have, to explore possibilities that were hitherto closed off because of that one decision.

I am also glad that this realization came to me when I had everything I wanted. I am glad that I decided this of my own accord, and not because circumstances made me. I am leaving at the top, when there is nothing to stop me from going ahead but my own free will. And my own free will has made me see sense in not going ahead with something that would have me caged for years. Something that would stagnate my growth and suffocate my spirit.

I feel liberated. I feel happy. I feel alive. Now, what was that about the inalienable rights?

As I leave, my first attempt at poetry:

the opening of the eyes
the rush of blood to the head
the heart beating a violent tattoo against her chest
she saw in front of her the vast sea of possibility

the gaping expanse ahead
the soaring heights above
the yawning depths below
made her spread her arms wide
and fly, far away, into eternity.


Comments on: "The Choices We Make" (9)

  1. alice-in-wonder said:

    Not bad, for a first attempt. 😛

  2. There was a blogger who was wondering about how one onj can never know when to give up n i had told her… tht the rite time to give up..is when there is that feeling of relief frm within. A bit of sadness mabbe yes..but when one more feels relaxed n at peaces ..is the rite time to give up.

    u have used xactly the same word! n i find that so amazin!

    gr8 decision gurl:)

  3. u use words like “as i leave…” rather casually, don’t ya?
    and here i was. feeling all happy suddenly. sigh.

  4. rayshma said:

    now that i’ve read ur entire post….
    i think i understand what u’re saying here. have been thru giving up *for lack of better-suited words* something i’d worked for all my life for something i knew would make me & everyone around me happy.
    i don’t know if that works, tho.
    u do feel good about it for a long time. but the fact that u’ve given up that dream will stay with you.

    not trying to scare u or anything… just my current state of mind… u know the details… just build up the courage u’ll need on ur low days. to stay on top. and remember why u chose what u did 🙂

  5. I loved the poem.. but more than that I loved the way you said this “that would have me caged for years. Something that would stagnate my growth and suffocate my spirit.” .. it is very important that you realize that at the right time and get out on top as you said.. that takes a lot of courage, but like you said Happiness is what we create for ourselves! God Bless and good luck!

  6. Hi!

    have noticed ur comments on Rayshma’s blog for a while so out of curiosity came to visit.

    I dont know u well enough to know what it is ur leaving behind and what it is that u wish to pursue next. but ur post shows confidence and self assurance.

    and with those i am sure u will excel at whatever u choose to do….may u find the happiness u seek in every blade of grass and every twinkling star.

  7. @Alice: Thanks!
    @Pavi: Well, sometimes you just have to think of the greater good, if I may. Works well for me, I’m not complaining.
    @rayshma: I know hon, but I am prepared for any eventuality. Thanks for the heads up tho!
    @preethi: I am glad you see it that way. It’s made me feel so much better.
    @pinku: Welcome!! I am sure I will do whatever it takes to make me and my family happy, after all, isn’t that what is most important? I hope you do come back. 🙂

  8. Galadriel- the lady of light- hmmm.

    “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Happiness is something that we can mostly pursue and maybe not actually have. Jefferson somehow knew that he should be putting in the pursuit part in the declaration. For the most part, aren’t we all just pursuing happiness?

  9. @Taz: Exactly, pursuit, not entitlement to happiness is our right. I am sure he knew what he was talking about when he inserted that word there. All of us most certainly deserve to be happy, but it cannot be handed out to us, we need to find it for ourselves. And this act of finding happiness is what freedom enables us to do. So, yes, as you rightly pointed out, most of our life is spent in the pursuit of something that we think might make us happy. 🙂

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