02 Feb 2016: 04:45 PM

Sometimes your brain makes you a bystander to your own thoughts. Those thoughts might be scary or silly; they might be dystopian or nihilistic or they might make you feel like the eighth greatest wonder of the world; it doesn’t matter. The reins of control have been taken out of your hands and you’re only going where you’re being taken. But, in a bid to maintain a semblance of control, I carry a pen along and these words are from those travels of mine through the jungles of my sanity.


In the tale of Daniel and the lion, are you the lion or are you Daniel? The aggressor or the defender? This was the topic of my bath-time rumination today and I came to the conclusion that I’m neither; I am the spectator.

I like to watch. I like to observe. I like to know the inner workings of your life, of your brain and of you- as a person. What will I do with the knowledge? Nothing ground-shattering. I just enjoy knowing.

I think that is what drew me to the subject of psychiatry. When I was in school and was being constantly bombarded with the question of what I was going to be when I grew up, I was like everyone else. I answered it with a different answer each year. I went through a doctor, a botanist, a writer, a scientist and when I was fourteen, I finally settled on- I want to find out what makes you tick. The next bunch of choices were made as a means to an end. The best possible end. You see, I never wanted to be a doctor; I only went to the med school to be a psychiatrist.

What about you? Are you the lion? Or are you Daniel? Or maybe, you’re with me in the stands? Watching; cheering; wishing you were the lion; wishing you were Daniel; because they seem to be taking an active part in their own lives, while your life consists of sitting and watching them.

Maybe, you’re content being in the stands. You’re not one of those pushing against the constraints holding us back from the arena. You’re the one smirking at them derisively, glad that you’re not the one in the way of danger. I envy you. I envy you as much as I envy the lion and Daniel. I envy you your contentment, your self-assurance. I have an iota of it; but, I want a lot more. You see, I’m ambitious.

But, a spectator has no right to be ambitious. It creates imbalance, discontent- problems that I don’t have in me to solve. So, I live my life straining against the boundary. Pushing forward and pulling myself back. It’s a daily battle between what I want and what I am. It’s tiring. But, at least, I tell myself, (I can’t help this smile), I’m doing something in my life.

When I do become a psychiatrist, I’ll know you, your deepest thoughts, your fears. Don’t worry, I’ll help you with them. Because, you see that person trying to pushing against the rope, shouting herself hoarse and trying to get herself across to Daniel (before the happy recognition by the lion)? That’s me. And I’m always there. For you.


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