“I am finally done with my poem.’ I told my roommate. “Good. All the best for tomorrow. I hope you qualify.” She said. But I knew better. I wasn’t going to the poetry competition to win. I was going there to spread my own ideas, something poetry was initially meant for. The next day, I recited my poem in front of everyone. there were some very talented people who showed up, and from whom I learned a lot. It turned out to be a learning experience for me, and I was extremely happy about it.
On my way back from the competition, I called my mom. “How was your performance?” she asked. “It was nice. I realized I need to improve a lot. But the rest of the performers were brilliant. Their delivery was amazing. I could see the passion they had in their eyes. They created an aura around all of us that acted like a magnet. No one was doing anything but listening, and floating in their ocean of words.” That’s amazing.” My mom told me. “How is Raunak?” I asked her. Raunak was my dog. “He is sleeping right now. I was making tea, let me go and check up on him.” Said my mother. As she went in the room to check up on him, someone gasped, and the phone got cut. I tried calling her, but no one responded. My heartbeat increased. I didn’t know what to do. My face went pale and my hands started shaking. There was sweat coming from my right temple. With a very heavy heart, I walked back to my apartment.
A couple of minutes later, my parents called me up. My sub conscious was asking me not to pick up the phone, but with a strong will, I did. That very moment, I dropped the phone. Tears started rolling down my eyes. I started moaning loudly. Everyone in my flat tried to calm me down, but my entire body felt numb. I was feeling suffocated. My dog had died in his sleep. I took my phone, earphones and went outside. I had to calm the storm inside of me. The next day was harder than the previous one. I went to the college. On the outside, I was completely fine. But on the inside I was feeling very restless. I hadn’t cried and I didn’t know how to.
It was 9 in the night. I called my mother. That was the first time I was speaking to her since Raunak’s death. “How are you feeling mom? I asked her. “I’m okay.” She replied. Her voice had a heaviness in itself. She had been crying a lot. “Did you talk to someone about it?” my mom asked me. I told her I didn’t. And that was the moment I realized that I needed to pour my heart out to someone. Someone who will understand what I was going through. Someone who would understand my pain. And so I called Ratnabh and told him everything. I had hopes that he would understand me, and help me take this anxiety that was eating every ounce of my comfort away. But he didn’t help me. And I presume that was a trigger. At night, I started crying. And I cried for almost two hours. Every nerve on my body was burning. My vision became blurred, and I thought I had reached my end.
But when I stopped, I realized I could still breathe. That was a reason enough to tell me I could still breathe. My anxiety was slowly drifting away. I could still somewhere feel the presence of my dog. Like he would be guiding me towards the correct path. Just because I couldn’t see him, didn’t mean he wasn’t there. I felt a different kind of strength in me, a strength that would let me cross every storm on my own, without depending on anyone else. For the first time in a long time, I felt there was hope, that things will get better, and probably my heart could see the sun again.
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