Thursday, March 24, 2005


I wrote the following entry last year, when I was in a particularly melancholy mood after reaching the big '4-0'...


It’s strange, thinking back now that I’m in my 40th year – I used to write in a journal everyday in my teens. It seemed like a necessity then, to put my thoughts down on paper & record all the significant moments for posterity. Who knew then that I would treasure those words although it’s been years since I have looked at any of those journals. The pages are mostly yellow now, with oxidation….ageing… like me…

I wonder how I could have written so much down every single day. I guess that is why they are called the tumultuous teenage years, when raging hormones not only influence how your bodies grow & create all that angst, they probably also contribute to the continual spurts of inspiration which manifest itself into words & if you are lucky, poetry too.

I was reminded of this when I started reading my 14 year old niece’s blog. Full of expressions like hmm’s, ha’s, lahs, it brought back memories of my adolescence when emotions raged & feelings were felt in extremes. There were only blacks & whites; no grays in between. One felt “love” for a certain pop star or movie star – never would we love another person the way we loved then. Little did we know then that such crushes would eventually die a natural death. Remembering some of my entries which displayed my affection for a certain pop star, I sometimes cringe at the words I have written. My “love” was true; no “if’s”, “and’s” and “but’s” about it.

I have sometimes wished that I could feel like that again. And on reminiscing with old friends, I have wished that I could go back to those carefree days again. I remember my father telling my sister & me something along those lines, where school days were the best days as we didn’t have to worry about earning a living & supporting your family. But then, I look at the life I have now & realize that with turning 40, came a maturity & confidence I never had, even as recent as a decade ago.

Some say that for a woman, after 40, it is downhill all the way. Well, these people don’t know what they are talking about. True, fine wrinkles are starting to show, & the metabolism has slowed down such that one thinks twice or even thrice when faced with a chocolate cake! And certain areas of the body have started to surrender to the pull of the ever-present gravity. For me, these external manifestations of age are unimportant. Inside, I feel the pride of having done pretty good job so far in bringing up 2 human beings in this world; I feel satisfaction in what I am able to achieve with the experience I’ve had in life; and I feel confident enough to speak my mind when the need arises. The ability to love is still there, although I love differently now, than then. No extremes of passion - just a constant feeling of warmth, tenderness & security of knowing that the love is there & is reciprocated.

Of course I wonder how I will feel when I am 50. I wonder if the process of menopause will bring with it similar effects on my affections, that menarche & adolescence did. We’ll see.


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