I have a million other topics but this one is long due in my subconscious. Board games were a thing a while back and getting one on your birthday meant something. I used to carry it with me all day, tucked under my arm; While eating, while going to play outside, till I’d leave for school and once back, even to bed. I wasn’t a teddy bears or dolls kind of person, just this one, if I was attached to anything, I’d literally glue it on to me. I don’t know of anyone that clingy to be honest. I couldn’t get to sleep without holding my mom’s index finger the whole night. I don’t know where I lost this trait of mine, kind of. Okay, getting there.
Attachment is something you don’t understand when you’re that young, and as we grow older we do start associating with different things. I see people are attached to work routes or jogging routes. I know of people who are attached to certain food (rice, potatoes). People attach themselves to people, which I thought is pretty normal, but that’s a perspective. There is another take on it. Sometimes even attaching to thought patterns or ways of doing things, like waking up from one side of the bed or having fixed seats on your dining table (hate much?). Smallest of things can become an integral part of your life and it becomes a habit to have those things or people in your life. For me that’s attachment as I’ve grown older.
This article was totally inspired by my swimming goggles. Served me for more than a decade and managed to snap after bearing for one last swim. I can say I was totally amazed at how I wasn’t ready to let go of it yet. I put it in one corner of my room for keeps, oh souvenir–I told myself. If you’re really reading you know this isn’t about the goggles. Don’t we do the same with people? Hold on to them till the last thread and still keep hoping for something to happen. What is it like to just let go?
It was one of those house parties (party at home) I don’t remember what was the celebration but we’d planted helium balloons tied to stones outside our house. I wouldn’t do that today as I’ve seen too much on how balloons affect other animals once they’re up and away and land somewhere we don’t even see. Although, my take from that night was when my niece and nephews were so excited to just grab some and let go. Look at the helium slowly rise up, taking the balloon with it. I could sense their feeling only to make a relative sense out of it.
Imagining everything I have ever attached myself to, flying away in that thick night air, not caring to look back at me or plead at me to not let go. All this while, it was all up to me to just know that I wanted this. To loosen my grip on those thoughts, watch it drift. The thoughts like helium are meant to rise up, only if we choose to let the strings lose. Taking with it all our sense of baggage and leave us feeling lighter than ever. May be we are meant to always feel like that but we want to be the stones holding the balloon to the ground. What satisfaction in being stones? Feeling under control maybe, having some kind of authority. Is it worth it though?
I got this in complete clarity only by reading “The Immortal talks” by Shunya. Its something I will hold-on to till my last breath. Or till I know I want to let go.
When we attach something we make it a part of who we are, give it identity. This is Jerry’s phone, or this was Lata’s idea. The phone or idea, or object is belonging to someone and the ownership makes us feel important. We created it or used it for a purpose and after that purpose is served we can keep the memory or learning (in our lumbar minds- Sherlock Holmes), remove what’s not needed. How do you know if you’re too attached? Just try letting go. If its easy then may be you don’t have to abandon it, if not definitely time to make the move.
I have read that only an empty cup can be filled again. It never made sense until now. Only if we detach from our unfulfilling attachments can we be ready to receive other things, learn new thing, meet new people, see new places. (If mom’s reading I’m still voting for Coorg AGAIN! That’s a different context. Next time may be a new place.). Try jogging from a different route everyday, I did this and I’m telling you its liberating in its own smallish way. Try new cuisines and vegetables you’ve hated all your life; you never know your taste buds might surprise you. Why should there be a wrong side to roll out of bed. Roll out from all sides, everyday choose a different one. See life from different angles and that’s going to happen only if you turn the kaleidoscope, in different directions not if you are hypnotized by one design. Just saying, I’m not keeping the broken goggles, it served me well. I’m Grateful and time for new ones!
Buy the book already!!! And if I’ve gifted it to you read it already!