Every Sunday afternoons, at exactly 11 AM, my mobile beeps to indicate an incoming text message. This has been a routine for the last 16 months. Ever since I started an account with Ulster bank, Dublin. I had opted to receive weekly reminder on my account balance. Today was no different either. It's like an alarm for me. I woke up and since I had nothing better to read, I decided to check out the message.
Jesus 'Freaking' Christ !!! I am down by 675 euros from last Sunday. It's not even the 1'st yet. My rent isn't due until the 7th. And when I convert it into rupees, it's roughly 52,000 rs !
I couldn't be more awake now. What the hell happened to my money? I was pretty sure I am being robbed. I scroll to read my last week's balance and the week's before and the week before. That's when I noticed the pattern. On an average, it was going down by at least a 150 euros every week. Now I was more than sure that some smart-ass is swindling me. Fuming mad, I open the browser and I click on my last monthly statement.
Lo and behold ! Turns out that smart-ass swindler was none other than yours truly ! Or maybe a hidden personality in me I wasn't aware of. And where was all this money going every week? Pizza, pizza and more pizza and more food and a couple of departmental store purchases.
Now I am dazed. I had been cribbing the entire time of my hectic work schedule and how in the world did I find the time to do all this shopping and good lord.. Pizza? The largest, most extravagant pizza, always ordered with over 2 side servings (Did I mention I love the garlic bread?) and 2 cans of coke (not even diet)!
And that's when I found the culprit. 2 websites amazon.com and justeat.ie. There were even days when I had food delivery to my apartment 3 times a day and as if that was not enough, I purchased a pair of shoes too (I can't even recall if it was delivered or not).
I jumped off the bed and rushed to do what any other girl would have done. Hopped on to the digital weighing machine I had hidden in the bathroom. It's been a good 3 or 4 months since I checked my weight, but I did have a rough estimate of what I had weighed then. Today, when the digital display refused to stop even after crossing an excess of almost 18 kg from the last measurement, I didn't wait to see the final number. I turned away and jumped off...to have a look at myself in the mirror.
Here I am, nearly 20 kg (I was overweight earlier, so now I am pretty sure I have touched the obese mark), with a near empty bank balance and oh my god... is that a jalapeno stuck on my hair?
The million dollar question - How in the world did I get here???
Does a broken marriage do this to everybody or am I the only one?
And for the life of me, I couldn't remember the last time I actually stepped out of my building. I know I am still employed and working, but did I go to office at all? I check my outlook and yes, I was right. I haven't been to my office for the last 2 weeks at least.
So I did a retrace. I was back in Dublin from India on the 4th of May 2013 and today was was the 26th of May, exactly 3 weeks later. During this entire time, I haven't been to work, I haven't stepped out, my house is cluttered with boxes of pizza and take out containers, I have been stuck in my sweatpants (apparently the only ones which fit me) for god knows how long, despite all these, still miraculously touching bankruptcy and stuck with a jalapeno on my hair ! I am pretty sure this was rock bottom for me.
It's been over a month today since this really tragic realization hit me. I haven't shed the many extra pounds I had put on nor did my account gain the euros drastically either. But I do know for a fact I am no longer going downhill.
- I wake up everyday and force myself to go to work at least 3 days in a week. I take 1 day in between 2 consecutive days to prep myself for going out the next day.
- I make it a point to cook my own food, even if it is something as simple as a bread toast or as extravagant (!) as rice/sambar.
- For the first time, after many many months, I spent close to 2 hours in a saloon, getting my hair and eyebrows done. I even threw in a few extra cash to pamper myself with a much needed massage. Certainly money well spent.
- Since I no longer fit into any of my old clothes, I went out and got myself a few decent ones which doesn't make me look like the big fat pig that I am.
- Apparently, another undesirable side effect of putting on too much weight too fast, I have a face covered with zits and acne's. So I splurged a bit in getting some good concealers and foundation creams.
- I googled very earnestly to find out how Kareena got her size zero figure and even though I am not diligently following it word by word, I try to do it maybe once in 4 days. I hope I can be presentable in probably the next 6 months to come (most optimistically).
I couldn't have done all this without the help of my family and the few dear friends who popped in once in a while, on phone or email, to check on me. I am not proud of what has happened. Nor am I thrilled to be where I am today. I don't expect to be scooped up by a knight in shining silver armor anymore. But I certainly want to live my life with a smile on my face and feeling good about being alive. I needed some time off from everything and everyone, to deal with my emotions and to assess where I stand and where I go from here. I did that and now I am back on my feet, pretty much to being the girl I was, almost 8 years ago. Before any of this came into my life. Much calmer, much saner.
What's worse than being 29 and single you ask me? It's being 29 and divorced. But I know I can deal with it. And I intend to do it on my own. I had been going around in circles with a zillion questions on my head about many many things and phases I had been through (likely to be another of my post soon), but I had never had this much clarity as I feel today. Nor the peace of mind. Nor the wonderful feeling of rebuilding hope again.
And last but never the least, I found solace in something more ultimate, the supreme power. I was never an atheist, but today I am a firm believer. I am not a religious fanatic, but I make it a point to light the lamp at least one time in a day. To see the holy glow light up the faces of the many gods I have assembled on a small side table gives me such a sense of relief, I am terribly ashamed that it took me all these years and so many experiences to get me here, but I am glad it's better late than never.
Since I have been so candidly honest in my entire post, there's another point that should not be missed. Yes, I do miss not having the physical presence of a close someone around. Someone who would hold my hand when I walk down the beautiful streets of Dublin. Someone to tell me if the dress I picked looks good on me. Someone to just sit down and share a cup of coffee with. And by this someone, I don't mean a boyfriend or lover, but I need a friend around. As thankful as I am for the wonderful people who have been around to help me while I was down, the irony is the fact that every single one of these people are miles and oceans apart, with lives of their own to deal with. It's just a feeling I get, but maybe my way up would have been much quicker, if there was one friend around here to hold my hand while I was getting up. Walking back in to an empty apartment is not a cake walk everyday. But again, that's a thing of the past too :). I have learnt to be happy with myself [no pun intended ;) ] and I am totally loving this new found sense of freedom, seeing the bright side of life and feeling bright and cheerful again.
A thing of the past is a thing of the past. I don't regret it. I am glad for it, but I am more glad now ! Forgive and forget. A lesson learnt for life. I look forward to bright sunny days ahead. Period.