Paying attention to the lesser known aesthetic details and colours of the culturally rich state of Rajasthan
Photography by Rhea Gupte
Udaipur and Pushkar, Rajasthan, India
A beginning which is going to inevitably bring me back to this point, several years later. The future will once again hold the redefinition of my goals, the sharpening of my skills and the blatant mortification of having a past self which, as per the brand new one, produced the most substandard work. After a year of mindfulness, I have come to accept this part of myself. The fact that every external critique pales in comparison to how harsh I can let myself be when it comes to analysing my work and thoughts. I have made peace with said self, at least for now, since I have my arsenal of redemption in the form of work I have piled up over the past four months.
While doing so, I longed for the beginning of a new chapter, a clean start, a future without the bearings of a past somewhat tainted from new discoveries and new abilities. For somebody who usually finds it colossal to have the year come to an end, I was counting down days with the vigour of a deer fleeing away from it’s attacker. In several ways, I have put all my eggs into 2017, already, prematurely, with an innocent zeal and ernest optimism.
Optimism is hard to come by when faced with a loss so great, it hurts with the intensity of being skinned alive from the fingertips down to the toes. There is no greater loss than losing a loved one. Confronting death for the first time is mind numbing. I don’t see how the second or third could be any better and there is no urgency to find out. It took everything within me to allow myself to heal and to allow myself the courage to accept that I needed healing. Coupled with everything that’s been happening in the world, being positive trumped being productive.
It isn’t all downhill as there were smaller victories to celebrate, plans to jot down and new ideas to put into action. These smaller windows finally gave me my definition of how I wish to lead life and how I define success. You see, for me, judging my success stems from deep within myself rather than from the words of others. Therefore, being unable to work at full potential, in the direction intended or unfortunately not yet discovered, only defines how unsuccessful the heart can make me feel; especially being torn between continuing on the same trajectory or uprooting a large part of my existence into oblivion.
Although, once again, I feel I have made my peace with said heart and am marching towards the change I longed for. 2017 to me is and has been the year of hope. Of promising the highest levels of self discipline, optimism, experimentation and self compassion I have practised in any previous year. Of understanding that only I can create or breakdown the boundaries around myself. And to knowing that my dreams can be defined by nothing other than my willingness to work the hardest towards them.