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Be a part of the contest Navratri Diaries, a contest to celebrate Navratri through stories and poems and win exciting prizes!

An Unhappy Future

An Unhappy Future

4 mins 370 4 mins 370

Every one around me admires me, thinks I am smart, for one reason: my grades. These are the people who ask me why I care, these are the people who judge me deeply. These are probably the same people who put so much pressure on me, expect me to rise up from a regular girl on the Upper West Side to become a scientist, doctor, lawyer, the place they believe intelligence lies. Their weight just adds on to that of my parents, who expect success, who push for success. Parents who wouldn't enjoy me having an unstable career, always suggesting a good career, a stable career. I've never had the heart to tell them who I truly am.


Every night, every morning, the thoughts that run through my head are not those of math, of science, of politics. It is not that which leads my head, truly, it's writing. The joy of the keys flying off the keyboard with an idea running rampant in my head, the joy of the scratch of a pencil against paper, of reading pages and pages over stories I've lived and written. My heart beats for poetry, beats for reading and writing.


I lean against a pillow, sinking into its depths, hiding my screen from the wandering eyes of my family. My brother knows a little about my poetry writing, but he's never read any— and I plan on keeping it that way. The gray cushion behind me is a shield, and I look around, checking that none of my family is there. No one is around to disrupt me. My fingers fly against the Tumblr page, writing for myself, writing to grow, feeling the relief of my words floating away from myself and for the world. Therapy to release anger.


This is the only way I can survive, with the string of words thrumming through me, with sharing my story, putting it somewhere. Making it so it doesn't feel as final as I'm sure it really is. They said her looks would never be important, that it didn’t matter whether she had long or short hair, I type, feeling the words as they lift off of my shoulders. As I recognize the way it makes me feel, and how good it is to say something, anything, about the nightmarish life I feel on the inside, something about the churning in my stomach and the way I hate the girl who looks back at me in the mirror.


For me, writing is all that gets me through. Trigonometry sits undone on a different page on my desktop as I write, just keep going, do something I would choose any day over math and more math. Over formulas and x's and y's, it feels good to let out my emotions, let out the bleak gray my life has become into a world that hopefully has more hope than I have. Hope, which I have lost knowing no one knows about the extent of my writing. Every day, I think about it. About going to join a poetry club at my school, and taking that leap to do something, do anything. Cross a bridge that is weak, creaky, that could lead towards my death, that requires a leap of faith and trust I have not built up with myself. This unsteady, undependable future is a shaky ladder I fear to look away yet accept.


I have dreamt too many times about becoming a bestselling author, a poet with a voice, more than a quiet Asian girl who sits down and does her work. Say something, do something, follow my dreams. Stop doubting the one thing that keeps me going through the day— accept my life and secret for what it is. This is all I want, to accept the fact that I truly am a writer, accept a part of me I have lost over and over again. A part of me I've tried to block out, deny, distract by taking more and more on my plate. But really, I want to be a writer. Really, I want to tell someone, so that my secret isn't just my secret. But something the entire world knows: I want to be a writer.


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