Friday, August 14, 2015

On Being Free and Pet-friendly

I was free. Finally, free. Free to live the life I had imagined. No rules and chains to tie me down. I could live life the way I wanted to. I had imagined this moment so many times, I couldn’t believe it was real. Living in shackles had made me so servile, it took some time – not much – to stop following those invisible orders. No reason to come home before 8 pm. No need to argue in muted voices. No need to hurriedly change into something ‘decent’ before stepping out of my room in the morning.

It was liberating. And yet, suddenly, I didn’t know what to do with my life. It was a blank slate. It felt great to not know what has to be done, but now what? I felt myself twiddling my thumbs, as I sat in my empty living room. I looked around at the bright white walls – so new, just like this new life of ours. What would you do if you could do anything? It was, at once, an overwhelming thought!
Once I realized the massive possibilities of this teeny-tiny question, there was no turning back. This is what I wanted – a life to be lived on my terms. An utterly selfish thought, but who cares. I didn’t have to care anymore. This was my life and I was its God, its creator. My life was my oyster for the first time in life. What was overwhelming a minute ago, turned into an empowering thought. Yes, my life. My rules.

We got a dog.

We weren’t dog lovers. At least not in the traditional sense. Neither of us had ever had a pet, so we didn’t know what it meant to have one. But the hubby had this desire to have someone he could call his own. A loyal friend, I guess. Someone who needed him – but I knew he needed him more. And I went along with it (okay, I was not as free as I would have thought). Our little puppy came home on an assuming day and we called him Dexter, after the serial killer in the TV series ‘Dexter’ (yeah, what were we thinking, right?). Hubby, instantly became the nurturer and I became the distant aunt – you’re so cute but keep distance pliss.

World, meet our sleepy pup, Dexter Kapoor

So let me clarify this. We’re not that couple. You know, the couple that replaces having a baby with a puppy? We’re the ‘we’re so not ready for a baby, but let’s experiment on a puppy’ couple. So Dexter is our experiment. And each day he tells me more about us, than we know about him. Isn’t that a scary thought?

So I went from being tied down to responsibilities I didn’t much care for, to being tied to a responsibility I care for deeply. Freedom then, is a myth. Or it is a series of choices. Freedom is choosing what will be the guiding principle of your life. And I’m convinced my life is led by one principle only – love. Selfish-wala love. 


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