Defeating my biggest enemy ever….

I woke up this morning, and it dawned on me that I am moving. Tears rolled down my eyes and soon became a stream that would not stop. I have been very emotional for a while now, but my responses were blunted and brain numbed. I can feel a haze in my brain like almost it does not want to work anymore. I am walking into uncertainty but what other options do I have? I tried avoiding this situation for a couple of years now but to no avail. It would have been easier if I knew my parents are at least considering our relationship as a viable option. The truth is I really do not know that. Every time I talk to them about this, they say, “we will do what you want us to do.” Those words are far from what I want to hear. I do not want them to feel like they have no option. Everything I look at in the house reminds me that I am leaving in two days. I see outside the window and realize that three days later I will not see the same driveway from my window. This place has been my home for the last five years. I went through hell and back here. I met “D” here and now I am leaving him. I want to drop everything, run into a corner and just stay there. I have never felt such an unease to do anything in my life before. I was not scared to leave India and come to states. Then again, the past five years taught me a lot. They taught me to be scared and pessimistic. Aren’t the bad experiences supposed to make you strong then why is it I feel more vulnerable than ever in the past? Every single molecule in me does not want to do this, but I find myself questioning is it because I became too comfortable here? I did not think that this move would affect me so much.

Added to all these fears is the fear of not getting into medical residency this year. The application process starts in mid-September, and I have one more test to take. The latest that I can take the test is the end of October. That is less than two months away. If I do not make it this year, I wait one more year without making any money and being a burden on everyone. I see my dream of becoming a surgeon going down the drain, and I am standing here not able to do anything about it. I cannot see myself working as a physician but surgery is a forbidden apple for international medical graduates. Why did I ever come to US? It would have been so much easier to be a surgeon in India. I feel like everything is falling on me crushing me under its weight.

“D” is going to school full-time and hardly gets 6-7 hours of sleep a day. He is working so hard for our future, and I am leaving him when he needs me the most. I have no idea what he is going to eat. I hate that he might fill up the fridge with those stupid frozen pizzas because he would not want to spend money and eat out. He is trying to be strong for me, but I know it is killing him inside. Only if I were a little more efficient in finishing my exams, I would have that edge over my parents, and they would have been more receptive for our relationship.

My Indian family thinks that I am a rebel and not being obedient. My American family, on the other hand, thinks that I am trying to please my parents too much. I am annoyed because even after I go through with this move, my parents will still say that I disobeyed them because I did not move when they wanted me to, but moved when I wanted to. I want to do tell my mother that this is killing me, but will she understand me? No, she won’t. She just hopes that if I move away from here I will forget everything, and this whole “D” situation will magically disappear. She does not realize that I am not a little kid anymore that she can tell me a story, and I will forget about candy. Our relationship is like an elephant in the room that my parents do not want to talk about.

Last night, I was asking myself few questions: after what all I went through for the last ten years of my life why on earth do I still dare to dream of a better tomorrow? Do I even deserve to have a happy life? Why do I take decisions’ time and time again that just cause me more pain and threaten my existence? Will I ever learn the art of self-preservation? Do I deserve to be alive? As these questions ran through my mind, all I wanted to do is run into a dark room, shut the door behind me, and never come out.

Then within five minutes I heard an inside voice telling me “R; you would not be alive today if you did not deserve to live. That is true you went through a lot and feel completely helpless right now, but do not forget that you survived everything until this point. That itself is a reason why you deserve to be happy and dare to dream. You learned your lessons from all the bad decisions you took, and it is time you leave past in the past and move on. Do not question the past, because it cannot be changed. Never underestimate the power of fate. Do your job and leave the rest to God? Don’t you remember the verses from Bhagavad-Gita?”

“karmany evadhikaras te
ma phalesu kadachana
ma karma-phala-hetur bhur
ma te sango ’stv akarmani”

“Which means you have a right to perform your prescribed duty but you are not entitled to the fruits of action. Never consider yourself the cause of the results of your activities and never be associated to not doing your duty.”

This self-realization made me to see clearly and dragged me out of the whole pity party thing that was going on. Then I realized that my brain was using the technique of self-preservation without me even knowing so I guess that answers my question. Maybe, I am not as much a screw-up as my conscious brain wants me to believe. I keep forgetting that our brain is a lot stronger than we give it credit for.

Then I found myself asking a question: How badly do I want to be a surgeon and marry “D,” and what am I willing to do for that? The answer was clear. These are the two things that I am living every waking moment of my life. I am willing to do anything that is moral, ethical, and legal to get these. I then told myself, “you heard that. Moving to your brother’s place falls within those three bounds, and it is a small sacrifice you are giving today for a better tomorrow. “D” is a responsible man. It would be nice if you can help him out, but at some point you both should work separately to do what is best for your combined future. That is what you are going to do right now. It is just a small inconvenience for your brighter future together.”

Life is hard; then again, it is me who made these choices.

  • I could be like a normal Indian girl and get married to an Indian doctor like my parents wanted me to. It would have been easier to get medical residency too because programs hire the spouse. Life would have been easy but did I ask for easy? Would I have a man like “D” in my life? I guess I got what I wished for.
  • I could go the American way and get married to “D” without my parents’ permission. That would have been easier to get medical residency too because I would have a green card. Then am I prepared to risk losing my parents forever? Or am I prepared for my parents resenting “D” forever? Will I be able to answer my conscience that I got a residency in a way that my parents did not approve of? Why do I have this need to get my parent’s approval for everything I do?
  • I could just be like any other international medical graduate and become a physician and not a surgeon. What will happen to my dream then? Should I just give up the fight, even before I get on the battlefield? They say you do not lose until you give up.

It is supposed to be easy but no one ever said doing the right thing is easy. It is hard, and it is going to get harder. I made these choices that put me in this position, now is the time to show my perseverance and get through these tough times. I might be feeling helpless at the moment but when all this is over, I will be so proud of myself for what I accomplished. On top of all this I know that God has always carried me through the most difficult times of my life, and He will do the same for me now. I see this mighty hill in front of me and get scared that I have to carry it all by myself. I keep forgetting that God is the one that is carrying me, and that makes Him carry me and the hill. 🙂 Moreover, God will not give us a task without arming us with tools to accomplish it. After all, He does not want to see us fail. In addition if this is the biggest problem, I have, I should be grateful that I have a privileged life than most people on the planet.

NOTE: I hope all the God talk is not too repelling to my atheist readers. This is just how I comfort myself. I am sorry if I cannot connect with you.

Even after I say all this to myself, I still find myself emotional and crying. I think that is acceptable because I am human, and it is all right to show it. Maybe, it is just the bad inside me crying that the good is finally going to do things its way. The bad me is not used to doing things the right way. 🙂 If you read the whole post wondering who my biggest enemy is? I will spell that out for you “myself.”

Find my complete move story here

Click here to read my another humorous self-realization story.

Comment down below to share your experience and advice.

-R.

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9 Comments

  1. I really admire you because you are standing up for what you believe in. Good luck and don’t lose hope. It doesn’t matter how many times we fall, what matter is how many times do we have guts to get up and shake off the dust. 🙂

    Reply
  2. Forget everybody. Do what is best for YOU. Go where your heart leads you and ONLY there. You are trying to please too many people. As a woman, I understand this. It is torture.

    Reply
    • Raina

       /  September 8, 2013

      Yes, it is but if I do not try all, I can to get their approval now I will blame myself for not trying enough in the future.

      Reply
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