When Jab we Met released in 2007, I was 21. Such a beautiful age to be alive, full of romanticism, life felt like ‘anything was possible’. I also identified a lot with the character Kareena Kapoor played –Geet . Her dialogues, ‘main api favourite hoon’ , ‘Jo kuch insaan real mein chahta hai, actual mein, usse wahi milta hai.’ etc. were very cheesy but oh so delightful to live life like that.
Eventually main badi ho gayi, mere parents bhi bade ho gaye, shaadi kar li, bachcha ho gaya, sab theek thaak chal raha hain. And then you start behaving as per what the society wants you to behave, It’s not even that someone forces you to behave in a certain fashion, but you just evolve into it. You kind of set yourself in the mold that you get poured into, all the volatility settles down and then you continue. Eventually to realise thats not the shape I want to be, but how to get out of it? The mold is of this shape, then how do I wriggle myself out of it?
That’s when you go back to pop culture from your 20s and see what made you tick, what excited you and then bring at least some of it back into life. Not everything, because you are not the person you were when you were 21, you are a different being altogether now, a mother , a wife, a boss, duh-dah-duh, all the things that you wanted to be, but you also need to remember and retain who you were.
Recently someone told me that he had feelings for me at one point of time in our life, when we were both already married and had children.
‘Did you know I had feelings for you?’. ‘Yes. I knew.’ ‘How? I never said anything.’ ‘Women always have a way to know these things’.
The 21 year old me would have been ecstatic at this proclamation and I would have milked this adoration to the max value, but the 30+ year old me just shrug it off. There is so much at stake than to indulge in these declarations, trivial at first but feed it and it could lead on a dangerous path. But, but it made me feel nice, both at the thought that someone likes this mommy woman and also at the fact that I was able to recognise it as soon as it started. The 35 year old me is also proud of nipping it in the bud and not letting it being carried to another level.
But there are other areas where I need some motivation to take the risk and go ahead. That’s where Geet might rescue me. I have an idea for a new business but the comfort in the existing life is so much that I cannot muster the courage to start something new which has a risk of failure. Failure due to it being a bad idea or failure simply due to not giving it enough time. Failure to start. Failure to sustain. The younger me wasn’t worried about all these things. I would get headlong into things and be sure that they will work out. Maturity is good but it comes at a cost of playing safe , the danger of knowing too much.
When Geet gets out at that Ratlam station she has no fucking clue about any dangers around her. Or when she decides to run away for Anshuman, it’s naivety and the bravery that comes from innocence that can allow you do these things. I have also done many such things back then when I did not know the perils of living life like that. Now I am scared to walk to the railway station at 11 pm because again, just so much is at stake, I need to be okay for my child. I need to stay alive as long as he needs me.
But that paralyses you. Knowing too much. You can’t let that happen. You have to let some of that innocence back into life, you need to take risks. I need to take risks. And live life a little more dangerously , because that’s who I am. That’s who I was. That’s how I thrive.
This one little life, live it at least a tad bit dangerously.
Hey don’t go after that guy who proclaims love for a married you, its a one way ticket with no way back. But may be get off a random station and wander around? Take that course you wanted to? Start that business? Let go of the ‘what ifs’ and just chill, will you?
“Bhai sahab, aap convince ho gaye hai ya main aur bolun?”