“Why don’t you smile, Aprajita?”

“Did you go through a tragic experience?”

“Hey, why is it that you have to try so hard to smile?”

These were the questions that I grew up with. The answers to which I didn’t want to confront for a very long time in my life because I knew how much that process affected me.

I knew I loved smiling, giggling, laughing and even making a fool out of myself for that matter. Well, who doesn’t?

Until I was in my late teens, I used to smile but I made sure to never open my mouth when doing so, I used to laugh but covering my mouth with my hands.

Despite my happy emotions asked me to crazy at times, I always held myself back. Even when I smiled or laughed, I quickly got back to my normal state because I didn’t want to embarrass myself.

Then at one point in my life, I met a girl called Prativa Ghimire. We happened to be friends in a coaching class. She observed me cover my mouth while laughing, many times.

One day when I was about to do the same, she caught my hand and stopped me, “I’ve noticed you do that often. Don’t! Maybe you’re conscious because of your crooked teeth but it makes you look beautiful. So, show it often.”

Although those words didn’t seem to be be so powerful back then; when I reflect back at my life today, I realize how that episode changed a self-defeating perception that I had nurtured for long.

That day and the days that follow, led me towards understanding one of the biggest lessons of my life, the importance of ‘self-acceptance’.

Most of us, consciously or unconsciously are in wait of that Prativa to tell us that we are perfect, the way we are. But, just take a moment to imagine – if we learned how to accept ourselves right from the beginning in our conscious lives, we would make the process of living so much simpler and joyful, wouldn’t we?


To the failed but undeterred self
I salute you a hundred times and
pay you a reverent gratitude
for stumbling on the unwanted lanes
yet getting back up with grace
for criticizing the self on small losses
yet appreciating the joyous moments
for crying hopelessly in the lows
yet smiling lovingly in the highs
for blocking yourself yet allowing
to feel the vividly possible emotions
for succumbing to utter negativity
yet exploring the positives to be alive
for finding life purposeless yet
exploring the reasons to move forth
for being baffled by circumstances
yet adjoining moments with coherence
for questioning the credibility of the self
yet nurturing the significance of being
for becoming unsatiably numb yet
transforming into a conduit of redemption.

Some stories…

Some stories make you realize that you are
not the only one living your story.

Some stories make you feel like your heart
is also throbbing in another body.

Some stories cut you short of your own breath,
so that you can breathe in the body to which your heart belongs.

Some stories suffocate you to death,
so that you can be reborn to live your own story.

Of Music and Magic

Her eyes sparked with glory and her voice could make anyone weave endless dreams. I’m talking about her. The songstress – Amber. She was simple yet sophisticated by all means. Of all the things in her life, she loved composing and singing songs. Songs kept her sane. She sang of all that she could and all that she understood. She, however, couldn’t understand one thing. It was love, she couldn’t comprehend, the kind which all her friends kept talking about. She didn’t understand it, until the day she met him.

He was the pianist who was new in town. His deep green eyes reflected the depth of the ocean. An ocean so deep you could drown in it and lose yourself to find him everywhere. And believe me when I say that he could make anyone fall in love with his enticing smile. A smile, magnetic and magical.

Every evening when he played piano in his hall, he had passersby stop and listen to his masterpiece. And one fine evening, he had a beautiful visitor awe-struck by his excellence, it was no one else but Amber. As soon as his eyes fell upon her, he knew he had never seen anyone so special. He knew it was love at first sight. Amber could sense him spectating her differently. Nervous and shy, she just smiled. She found out from one of the visitors that his name was Ethan.

Ethan, such a beautiful name, she thought to herself.

She would visit him every day and they developed a camaraderie gradually. A camaraderie of smiles and gazes. Not able to resist herself, she sang one day as he was playing. Soon they began jamming together. She would sing and he would play for hours and hours. Strangely they hadn’t exchanged a single word. But Amber realized that she was experiencing something beautiful. She was experiencing an emotion that makes you do crazy things. An emotion that makes you feel butterflies in your stomach. An emotion called love.

One day she went to Ethan and told him, “I’ve never felt so special ever before in my life. My days are now blissful and fulfilling and it’s all because of you. I want to spend the rest of my life singing for you and feeling the warmth of your arms. Ethan, I love you.”

Upon hearing this, Ethan went up the stairs and locked himself in the room. Until midnight, Amber kept knocking on the door but Ethan didn’t respond. Consumed by despair, she went home in tears and kept crying all night. The next morning, she had someone knock on her door. She saw a man standing there with a letter. It read:

“I am sorry Amber. Yesterday, when you confessed your love, I was the happiest person on the earth. But I will never be able to tell you that.

Because God hasn’t blessed with a voice like yours. In fact, he hasn’t blessed me with a voice at all.

Now would you want to spend your life with a man who will never be able to you tell that he loves you to death and beyond?”

As soon as Amber read this she ran to Ethan in tears of joy. She told him, “You don’t need to tell me that you love me. I can read it in your eyes.”

Ethan smiled.

Their eyes met yet again and she collided unto him like comets collide, to break into each other.

They kissed until the dusk.