A joint family.Many cousins.More laughter.The more,the merrier.It was March and I was in school preparing for my board examination with my friends.I was happy that time.They love me a lot.It's great if you have one or two true friends rather than having fake people who pretend to be your friend.Suddenly,there was lockdown all over the country.I was worried.No school.Can't meet friends.I thought the world was coming to an end.But at the same time I was so happy because I can't go to school.After fifteen days or so,I started to exercise with my brothers.I also watched a lot of movies with my cousins.We played a lot.We also played our version of Spill Your Guts or Fill Your Guts (inspired by James Corden Show).Thank God I was asked simple questions.There was also talk about my sister's marriage.My favorite time of the day was talking with my grandpa after exercising.My day wouldn't be complete without it.I love him so much.Meanwhile me and my sister opened an Instagram account and started to post quotes written by us.I discovered a lot of English songs and grooved to them.Life was not perfect yet it was beautiful. I started to love my life and myself.I learnt many things about life.Like letting go of the grudges we hold against people,appreciating everything in life and mainly being happy with what we have.And so many.My board examination was cancelled.Hooray!! My sister got married to the love of her life on June 12,2020 in quarantine.Older people of the family went to her wedding.The saddest thing was me and my cousins were not able to witness her marriage .Everyone was so happy in the family.On the night of her wedding she bid farewell and left for Bangalore.And after that,same routine.Watch movies.Exercise.Eat.Sleep. It sounds mundane to some people to follow same routine everyday.The afternoon of June 12,my dad had fever.He thought it might be coronavirus and so he isolated himself in a room.Never allowed any of us to go in.He had no symptoms.It was just a normal fever.He was perfectly alright.After 10 days my aunt also had fever.Shortly after 3 days or so my cousin had fever too.From her the fever was spread to my cousin brother.And from him,to my grandma and onto my grandpa and uncle.The first time,my grandma was alright.But the second time she had fever,she was not able to sleep due to suffocation.It was at the midnight of July 4 that my grandma's condition became severe.My dad and uncle called many hospitals.All had the same answer "We don't have enough beds.Sorry sir".At the morning of July 4,my grandma got ready to meet doctor.On her way to hospital she passed away.All of a sudden I heard someone crying.I rushed to the hall and my mom said to me, crying, that grandma has died.It was an extreme shock.We all thought that she would go to the hospital,come back and take rest for some time and be alright.But we didn't expect she would die.My grandpa was so devastated.Immediately my grandpa took COVID test.We were all mourning.All were heartbroken.The hospital told us they would give the body the next day.Fast forwarding to next day,my grandpa was tested positive for COVID.My grandma's body came to the graveyard at around 4.30 P.M.My mom,dad and everyone except kids went to the burial ground.We kids were not fortunate enough to even see her body.That night my grandpa was admitted in a private hospital.The next day,July 6 we all went to take COVID test.We didn't say a word to grandpa about this because he would be scared even more.The tests came and 6 members in our family were tested positive.They were home quarantined.The only communication with our grandpa was through phone.At first the doctors said his condition was alright.Later they told us he was in ICU.And again they told us he was good.My grandpa lost his wife.We shouldn't have left him alone.We should've been with him,comforting him.But what if my grandpa is home quarantined and the same situation occurs as compared to my grandma.He was so well before going to the hospital.After 12 days my grandpa passed away.He left us.My heart was crushed.I even thought if this all are real.I lost hope in almighty God.I was angry on him. But everything happens for a reason.It was hard to not to think about their demise.It was hard to move on with our lives.Every second,every minute was hard to move on.Grandparents are the pillars of any family.Now my family has lost two strong pillars.We always don't appreciate the value of a person when they are alive,when they are around us.We realize their value only when they are gone,gone to a new place or gone away forever from us.We will keep regretting every single action of ours towards them.Death is natural.We are born one day and we must die one day.Nothing is permanent.Life is too short to hold grudges,to be angry at someone,to not forgive someone.Forgive someone even before they ask you to.Love unconditionally.Value relationships.There is only one life.Let us live life to the fullest not wasting any minute of it.
Everything that has occurred is reminiscent of what makes us OURSELVES.As a species of the human race, the number of things you can lose will increase, it never ceases to zero. Even after demise, one is oblivious of free-will or destiny in this topsy-turvy realm. Reality check: I'm back to my phase space, contemplating a nuanced interaction with a girl. I find myself in the middle of the street on my way to school. Defying destiny is just my forte, but how far can it go! A new random girl (say “Mayuri') walks up to me, asking me to recite a poem for her, which I do gladly. Days pass by and her disappearance is perturbing my mind & lo & behold, she shows up, dispirited. I catch up to her to figure it out, I come to know about how traumatizing local “civil wars” could be. She asks me to be her best friend if that's fine, to which I concur. It's ridiculously outrageous how CHOICES can delineate someone, yet, we may never accord with the same. Being able to love without bounds might be the best feeling EVER, that is, while it lasts. Things started to get better for the both of us. I, helping her with her insecurities; her optimism & smile could make me forget the anxiety that my life's problems could give. But appearances can be pretty deceiving. Brutal fights in her family affected her devastatingly, she was doomed, despite the infinite love and care that I could give her; neither was I old enough to be able to be with her, nor was she mature enough for that and she, being from a lower “caste” was often humiliated in societies & public rendezvous. Even her parents forbade me to even SEE her, but I knew she needed me desperately. Both our lives had been a menace, entirely contrasting realms when we're not together, but the synchronization gave exceptional stability for some time. Through another girl, I came to know about a certain incident that shattered her, figuring out how addicted she was to drugs. Not that she loved having them, but rather forced by a group of guys. I confronted her, but she just lied as usual, saying that it was just a rumor. She deluded me as she wanted my happiness, never caring about herself. I trailed her past school-time one day, unearthing the secret “warehouse” of the drug mafias, composed of late teenagers. I summed up everything in that time-frame and premeditated tactfully, as I had to put a stop to their plans, when she'd leave for the drugs again. Unfortunately, I was captured, but then, I was elated they didn't have any weapons. She begged for my life, but they said, “Your life is as good as over”. That's when the police arrested them all, my bad they arrived a few min late; I fractured my ribs, legs as I was thrashed. She realized how passionately I loved her, but she just left me in the hospital, saying “good-bye”. I got out of the hospital in three weeks, she's still hiding her scars behind a smiling face, I promised her to never be so reckless again and she agreed for the last time. It was an arduous endeavor to get rid of her drug addiction, but she didn't ever take a drug again, just for my sole sake. Her parents never cared about her; her voice was suppressed all-her-life, something that changed ever since she loved me. For a few months, I was really busy; didn't see her since the closure of school. Much later, I discovered her freaking nightmares, dozens of suicide attempts in just 3 months, for which her parents blamed me. I gave my all to make it right, for I knew, if our love could rival that, it could eclipse any power in the world. I spent as much time as I could, only to “our” parents' dismay. I discerned she had potentially A FEW YEARS left (because of "Aplastic Anemia") and that I could NEVER ever see her again; she was going to be miles away. I decided to take my life; luckily, I BARELY dodged a 140kph car on the highway as I foresaw that I had to do WHATEVER it took to make her know LIFE, but I wanted her to see and feel it for herself, as my love was the sweetest “poison” for her. I had no choice but to shift to my LAST RESORT. The sole attainable way in those grim conditions was effective “brainwashing", without her ever reckoning the same. Gradually, I made her abhor me, yet in the process she found her “true self” & her vanquished pride, self-esteem, which she had lost. I lost my EVERYTHING, a broken man now, as I kept losing everything one-by-one. Lately, I came to know about her SURGERY outside the country in the COVID-19 phase. Although ~10% chance of success for her operation, gladly Mayuri made it out alive, but now she doesn't even feel I EXIST, but rather all her suffering was because of ME. No one would never know, but I DID resuscitate her with my love, instincts and showed her LIFE. This story may just fade into the dark, but my undying love for her never faded, even if I'm non-existent for her. I open my eyes, wipe the tears rolling down my cheeks, prepare myself to endure my “revolution” for the making of a new, bright WORLD!
I could always tell how a day would go with it's smell. The morning that smelt of roses, my sister Rosie, the light in my dark world was born. The day that had smelt like soured milk, my dad had lost his job. I felt sick to my stomach when this morning smelt like rusted pipe. I knew it was going to turn out very badly. The only other thing I know that smelt like this morning did was blood and the thought of getting hurt or having someone close to me get hurt made me want to hurl the content of my stomach into the toilet. My bed creaked when I stood up from it. I would miss that sound if it ever disappeared one day because its been there for as long I can remember. It might never disappear, on a second thought. My parents didn't even have enough money to pay the necessary bills not to think of fixing a little creak in my bed. My heart thudded heavily in my chest as I made my way around the house looking and calling for my mom and dad. I slid down a wall when I realized that I was alone. Again. The smell had some how gotten stronger and I had to crawl to the bathroom to throw the remains of my dinner up.\nRosie's cry that penetrated my foggy brain and jerked me out of my awful thoughts. It made me happy knowing I wasn't alone after all. I hadn't even bothered to check her crib thinking that my parents would have taken her with them to wherever it was they couldn't wait till I woke up to be at. I lifted her out of the crib and into my arms. Her smile made me cry. I prayed to whatever god was listening to keep this little one out of harms way for me. I prayed for that smile to never be wiped from her cute baby face. It was the weekend which meant no school. I took my bath with Rosie in her rocking chair positioned at the door which I had left open. I just didn't want anything happening to her while I was not looking so I had her where I could watch her even as I had my bath. I didn't close my eyes even though they hurt like hell because of the water running into them.\nRusted pipes, I wondered if she could perceive it too. I had already bathed and dressed her and was making her food when the phone started ringing. The churning of my stomach made me drop the sippy cup in my hand. I moved slowly towards the shrilling phone and lifted the receiver. \\"Kents residence.\\" I said. The questions were direct and straight to the point, the voice ladened with grief and sadness. I knew then that something had gone wrong. I was asked to wait in the house when I told whoever was at the other end that I was a thirteen year old with no driving license, no car, no money and a one year old baby girl. I waited and waited. I couldn't breathe, the air had become so dense with that rust smell that I even started to taste it in my mouth. I was already crying even before I heard the siren as a car drove into our drive way. I cradled my sister in my arms as I sat there, feeling sick to my toes. I thought I screamed when I saw the two uniformed officers at our door but I didn't. I just stared at them morosely with a baby in my hands. Something had happened to my parents, I could tell it. It had smelt like wet cardboard the day granny had the stroke that had paralyzed her, this was worse. When I didn't ask questions, Rosie and I were shuffled into the car with the repugnant smell and awful siren. Rosie cried all the way but nobody asked me to make her stop. All I got were pitiful glances. Nobody talked to me. When the car pulled to a stop, the female officer took Rosie from me amidst protests from us both, and the man took me to the most awful sight of my life. Fucking rusted pipes!\nMy parents car had been wrecked but I didn't throw up until the body bags were opened. I had to identify the lifeless body of my parents lying there like the carcass of h animals. I threw up until I had nothing left to throw up anymore and then I threw up some more. That was when my screaming started. I screamed until I was pulled away. The sight was so gory and nothing any child should see. They smelt of blood. That horrible smell of rust that wouldn't let me breathe were my parents' body lying on a bridge somewhere. I couldn't even ask what it had been they were rushing to. The lady officer kept repeating how sorry she was that I had to see that. My parents had no ID card on them and the telephone's number was the only one they could reach. There was really nobody else to do it since my parents were both the only child of their parents. But all that wasn't getting to me, the water under the bridge looked so blue and all I thought about was jumping into it. I would have, but my sisters cries jerked me back. She was crying and reaching for me. I don't know how but I ended up back in the car with Rosie in my arms. As I held her, I knew suicide wasn't the answer. I wasn't alone, I had this crying bundle of joy with me. It wasn't easy but I had to grow up at thirteen and become the mother she needed and the sister I was. Childcare system or not.\n\n
People have been writing stories for as long as four thousand years. We all at some point in our lives have turned to literature to reflect on human nature, to find meaning in life or to find stories that are similar to ours. Works of literature from every era of history contain the collective experience of being alive and the frustrations that come with it. Greek tragedies are not an exception to this. The three great tragedy writers of Ancient Greece; Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides have all explored the meaning of human life in their plays. Twenty-four centuries ago, Euripides was asking the questions through his plays, the same questions we still ask ourselves. Although Euripides's way of writing was less poetic compared to Aeschylus and Sophocles; his work has a very unique approach to human nature. In his play Orestes, the gods have an active role in human life. Gods are portrayed as cruel, hypocritical and flawed; as beings that put human lives into complicated situations where right and wrong are intertwined with each other. Orestes falls desperate in the face of his fate and this represents the injustice of the gods. His desperation is entirely relatable as we all feel powerless from time to time in the face of events that we cannot control. Whether a person is religious or not, being human brings a sense of rebellion towards the injustices of our sufferings, after all most of us do not believe we deserve the terrible things that fall upon us. This condition is brought forward in Euripides's plays with the instability of gods. Hippolytus is a play about a woman's love for her stepson, Hippolytus. Phaedra is in a situation which she has no control over, so she plans to keep her love a secret because she does not want to be dishonored by her inappropriate feelings. Euripides sees love as dangerous, an undeniable force that brings misfortune. As J. A. Spranger puts it in The Attitude of Euripides towards Love and Marriage: ‘'His disapproval of love as an irresistible passion he shows in three choral odes- in the Iphigeneia in Aulis, the Hippolytus…'' When her maid finds out about Phaedra's secret, she tells Hippolytus, but makes him swear to not tell another soul, since the consequences would be disastrous. Hence a conflict arises within Hippolytus; he is outraged by how terrible a thing Phaedra could feel, but he did swear an oath to not say anything. It is important to mention here that Hippolytus' conclusion of this revelation is that women are terrible, so it does carry misogynistic aspects, in that he fails to recognize that it is not just a woman's nature to fall victim to desire but rather it is a collective human experience. But Euripides highlights the issue of free speech and its impact on events. When Hippolytus decides to break his oath, Phaedra writes a note saying Hippolytus raped her and hangs herself. As he is sent to exile because of her note, we see the consequences of his decision. The question arises; was Hippolytus right in breaking his oath or was he doing the right thing by freely speaking? Euripides presents the dilemma of free will, where sometimes the right and the wrong thing to do isn't clear. As much as there are events that happen beyond these character's control, like the gods' influence and a lack of control over emotions, we see that there are choices to be made that come down to free will. King Theseus, in The Suppliant Women is a just and rightful ruler, as he accepts to help the wives of the soldiers that have fallen in the battle of Thebes. The women want to properly mourn their husbands but King Creon forbids it. Theseus attack Thebes and gives the women the rightful burial of their relatives. But in doing so a lot of his own soldiers die, even though he did the right thing there were a lot of casualties. He seems to accept the cost of what he has done, but others don't feel the same. This brings forward the complexity of life, while Theseus did the right thing, his good deed does not bring happiness to everyone. But should he have not helped the suppliant women? Can we not achieve happiness even if we choose to do right? Euripides' play challenges the meaning and the costs of happiness which highly relates to real life. He seems to have a dark understanding of human happiness and it is a realistic understanding nonetheless, but just like how someone's happiness might not reduce another's sorrow, the grief of another does not reduce the achieved happiness. Looking at it in this light, it doesn't seem so dark but still remains realistic. The complexity of human life is filled with many questions and many answers and sometimes no answers at all. To look at the works from many years ago as we looked at some of Euripides' plays, it is obvious that humans have long been searching for a meaning to everything in life. His work offers some insight as well as asking new questions about the human condition.
I am fighting, flailing my little arms. A lady and a man I don't know, are stuffing me into this stupid car seat. I look out the fingerprinted window and there she is. Staring, watching, not doing anything at all. A single raindrop wanders its way down the window, lost, nowhere to go. I fight even harder, refusing to stop until I get what I want. The car starts to move, so I twist my body to see if she is still watching. Deepening my twist, so I can get one last glimpse before we turn off the street. I face forward with tears streaking my face. I don't know these people who are taking me away from her. From the lady, I have known all my life— my mother. I am confused, trapped in this strange building. After they took me from my mother, they took me to this horrid place. I feel completely claustrophobic locked in this small room. I hope I can leave this devastating room. I honestly don't know why it seems so devastating, but I guess it just is. The room is bland, boring. The walls are an off-white color. A dissatisfying color. The only toy here is a small kitchen set. The kitchen set looked as if to break at the slightest touch. It has white paint peeling off. The paint being torn from the set, just like me. I miss her terribly, my mother. I feel scared, my anxiety spiking. I am just sitting on this patched up couch looking at the cup of water on the table next to me. Random people keep poking their heads in, trying to encourage me to drink water, but I am not thirsty. I hope they find something better to do than to keep bothering me. The same woman and man that took me from my mother walk through the door and stand in front of me. I stare at them blankly as the woman says, “My name is Ms. Blaster and this is Mr. McDoris.” I nod my head, for my mind is elsewhere. My mind is busy. Busy on all the worries rushing through my head like a tsunami. Ms. Lee gets on both knees and looks directly into my eyes and says gently, “Can you come and follow us, please?” She stands up and walks out of the room, with Mr. McDoris following. I hesitate, then finally give in and run to catch up with them. I walk into a massive lobby. People are sitting in black chairs. It felt airy, unlike the small room I was in. The people were all nicely dressed, they seemed arrogant, even though I have never met them before. Windows cover most of the walls. I continue to follow Mrs. Blaster and Mr. McDoris. They lead me to this woman I remember spending time with a couple of months ago. She would take me to the Kings Dominion and Maymont. The woman is wearing nice clothing just like everyone else, except I could tell that she wasn't like them at all. She's not really tall, but she is definitely much taller than me. Ms. Blaster, Mr. McDoris, and the woman start talking about something that seems like it's important, but I'm not paying attention. I am busy trying to understand the situation. I squeeze onto the woman's hand as if it's my life support. I make our way to the car and she buckles me into my car seat. She walks around the front of the car and gets into the driver's seat. Once again, raindrops hit the window. A single drop wanders all the way to the bottom and disappears. More lead their way into the safety of the frame. Tucked safely together. United. Every insignificant thing belongs somewhere. For some reason, that gives me a sort of clarification that everything is going to be alright. I think this is the first time I truly feel safe in a really long time, I don't have to endure any more pain, physical nor emotional like I have before. I also think that you have to believe it yourself, you have to believe that things are going to get better. You have to have hope. Hope. Hope is a wonderful thing. For the first time, I have hope. I have hope that I will be safe. I have hope that I will be happy. I have hope for my future and hope for now. Even though I have endured tragedy, I have regained hope.