I have no ulterior agenda for this post.
I just believe I need to write my thoughts down.
I’m experiencing changes in my inner spirit. I’m sure we are in an ever changing state called life, but I have noticed the changes becoming more stark in the last few years.
I don’t know if age does that to you, or just knowledge.
You may or may not agree with certain thoughts, but this is a candid blog post where I share my personal opinion.
I made two big changes a few years ago.
I started reading and started travelling.
Two best changes in my life.
A few years ago I started reading a lot of books. I was never a regular reader before, forget a voracious one. This is an interest that developed over the last few years somehow.
I think reading is a double edged sword. It makes you wiser, smarter, develop more insights about the word, give you an opportunity to dive into the world of knowledge that this universe carries. The more you read, the more you realise how less you know.
But that also makes you question the things you had been doing so far, and wonder if half of them feel silly now in hindsight. Or if you feel like you are growing out of it.
Same goes with travel. I am just blessed with getting opportunities to get out and travel. All the situations conspired for me to travel so much and I’m so grateful I got an opportunity to savour each of those travel escapades.
I got opportunities to travel abroad, to some stunning places in the world along with solo trips to unbelievable places in India.
Travel taught me how beautiful this world is, and how VAST this world is.
But it also taught me that humans are similar. They have the same heart that pumps the same kind of blood, we all have the same emotions.
Anyway, for those following my journey so far, I became a professional dancer a few years ago and started a Youtube channel.
I used to make a lot of Bollywood videos at that time. And I actually enjoyed Bollywood music and dancing to it when I was 23.
I realise I don’t enjoy the latest Bollywood music much anymore. I don’t know why that is, but I’m not able to feel fascinated by Bollywood music like I did when I was 23. I believe it has a lot to do with having exposed myself to art from across the world, right from the beautiful performances in Paris to the Edinburgh Fringe festival. I felt like I belonged there. And it felt like I had so much to learn.
A big part of my soul just felt like it hydrated itself after feeling thirsty for the longest time.
Its funny but I remember every moment of those performances, those holidays so vividly. My soul just spoke to me and said “I feel like I’m at home finally”.
I find myself not being able to teach dance on the music that I have stopped enjoying. The whole process is just difficult and cumbersome to my spirit. I love folk music, independent artists across India and the world. I love all of those, but I find myself fighting the process of trying to choreograph on a mainstream latest Bollywood music. (I still enjoy songs from before, but have not found the inspiration recently)
I believe that people want art that is created out of the need for creation. And that there is a niche audience for all kinds of art in this country.
I also know that popularity in this country wants more Bollywood dance covers. More dance covers on the latest songs within a week of the song release and ace the Youtube numbers game.
I’m sure you know how it all works. And there is nothing wrong with it, nor do I judge anyone gaming the system (in fact I applaud them, if they have the drive and motivation to push themselves to keep making dance videos after dance videos and still keep the motivation whether they enjoy the music or not.
I have personally started finding it really cumbersome to play the social media race game, I believe art is to be created out of real creativity in the mind, but when there is the pressure for it to become a mass production to please audience, some folks can do that really well, but some buckle under pressure and start stifling their creativity.
I’m the second kind.
I’m not saying I will never dance to Bollywood music, but I want to let it flow organically.
I enjoyed doing certain things creatively at 23, but to expect the same from myself when I turned 32 two weeks ago would just mean we are looking at stagnation. And stagnation has proven never to be good for anything.
Oh yes, on that note, I turned 32.
I can’t believe it too.
I am blessed with pretty good genes I’d think, and I follow a great diet and regular exercise plus I smile and laugh a lot, and I’m petite in my frame so I don’t really look my age.
But one thing I have learned with age and about India.
That age shaming in India is REAL.
I find it hilarious because I am considered young every time I get out of India, and 32 is considered still in your prime of your career, whereas in India 32 is considered ancient.
I find it hilarious because I wonder if this conditioning is what causes a lot of our late 20 somethings and early 30 somethings to stop enjoying life, stop dressing up and working out just BECAUSE they are OLD according to Indian standards.
Gujarat has been the best example for me. The number of times I’ve been asked whether I’m still pursuing my studies or got asked what college I am in right now, and the mistake I make of telling them my real age is the biggest sitcom like experience. Once they realise how old I am I am told things like how I should have been having a husband and a kid by now that also goes to school. I’m sure I’m going to ask someday whether the government scheme that is giving away rewards for “Who produces the child first gets the best prize?”. I believe motherhood is a personal journey. I could have been 18 and had a child, or I could be 37 and have a child. This bias of one is right and the other is wrong is beyond my comprehension.
There are obviously a lot of evolved souls around who understand that a life different from theirs is not necessarily a bad life.
This city might not have seen many 30 something year olds wandering about independently , so I don’t blame them as well.
At the end we can always lead by example, and show them there are different ways of leading the world.
On that note, I can see that it is raining outside and I’ll finish my warm cup of green tea.
Also, on a separate note, I have been consuming a plant rich diet in the last one week and my energy levels have spiked. What that taught me was whatever diet you follow (vegetarian, non vegetarian, vegan etc), if one can include a lot vegetables and lentils in their daily diet they can see muscle recovery and increased endurance. More about this in another separate post.