I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
~”The Road Not Taken” by Robert Frost
Today’s Daily Prompt is about Taking Chances.
Until this year, I’d have a hard time picking a significant instance of taking a chance on something, but this year, for me, is the year of taking chances.
I go from being an engineer to a school teacher, with my career after 2 years still unplanned.
I move from comfy, good-weather Bangalore where family is, to Mumbai which has been presented to me as a stinky, crowded, dengue-ridden, flood-prone city. 🙂 But the nay-sayers haven’t managed to deter me. No. I’m pushing on – excited and happy (and maybe a little bit naive). I chose Mumbai, I chose my adventure. I’m pretty sure I won’t regret it. You know why? Cos I’ve heard more ÏloveMumbai than Ilove<insert any other Indian city>. I’m going to take them Mumbai-lovers at their word and discover it for myself.
I’m stalling marriage. No, I don’t have a guy down on one knee asking me for my hand..Oh wait. I have about 6 in line right now..on a matrimonial site.
The reason why I put that under ‘taking chances’ is because that’s what it’s seen as by the traditionalists in my Indian family. I’m 24- the age at which there’s a very high demand for girls like me. The older I get, the demand goes down in the marriage market. I know. I sound like a commodity. This has both made my stomach turn. and made me laugh. Don’t get me wrong, my parents don’t see me as commodity..but those are the rules of the arranged marriage game. Your daughter has the best chances of winning herself a prize-groom if she (or rather- her parents) plays her hand in her early 20s.
It’s no surprise that I love some dialogues in the Pixar movie Brave. For those who aren’t familiar with the story line- the film tells the story of a princess named Merida who, determined to make her own way in life, defies an age-old custom, causing chaos in the kingdom by expressing the desire to not be betrothed.
This dialogue between Merida and her mum, Queen Elinor, is a pretty accurate reflection of what it’s like to be me right now.
Princess Merida: I don’t want my life to be over. I want my freedom!
Queen Elinor: But are you willing to pay the price your freedom will cost?
Princess Merida: I’m not doing any of this to hurt you!
Queen Elinor: If you could just try to see what I do, I do out of love.
Princess Merida: But it’s my life! I’m just not ready!
And this is the part that made me happy cos I was imagining my parents saying this to me. 🙂
Princess Merida: And so, there is the matter of my betrothal. I decided to do what’s right, and…
[as she looks around the room she notices her mother in the background trying to stop her]
Princess Merida: : And…and break tradition.
[she looks over at her mother who is miming what Merida should say]
Princess Merida: : My mother, the queen, feels…uh, in her heart, that I…that we be free to…write our own story. Follow our hearts, and find love in our time.
And I end this post with Princess Merida’s closing narration:
“There are those who say fate is something beyond our command, that destiny is not our own, but I know better. Our fate lives within us, you only have to be brave enough to see it.”