When I was little girl of about 6 years old, I always wished god to make me a clown or a magician. I had no idea why I made those weird wishes but now it think I’ve solved the jigsaw puzzle. I remember that as a child and still now, I wanted to see people happy and I wanted them to like me. I felt nervous and helpless when people cried because I am the worst person to consol people. So, I wished people would never cry, at least in front of me. At the same time, I wanted people to enjoy my company even if it just meant making them laugh. So, I wished to be a clown to make them laugh. May be it was my selfish desire to avoid consoling people and have more interaction with people. I had similar thoughts a couple of months back though it didn’t involve being a clown. Yes, part of the reason was my incapability to consol people but the larger part was to see them happy and to be liked. But I realized you don’t need to be a clown to make people happy or try to be liked by people , you can just be who you are trust me people will love you for it. They will enjoy every single conversation with you even though you felt that was the most awkward conversation you EVER had! And they will be happy to anticipate your presence too.
My other wish as a child was to be a magician. Yes, this was probably because of the various TV shows that I’d watched as a child but I came up with a reason for it too. I was the youngest member in my family and was never allowed to do anything without being interrupted. So, I wanted to be a magician because I wanted to have control, at least over myself. I wanted to decide what I would like to eat, dress or buy. I wanted to be independent. Now, I realized that I don’t need to be a magician or know some voodoo spell to have control over myself. You can take your own decisions when the time is right and you’ve learnt to be independent. It was all part of the growing up process and considering my age, I’ve still go a long road to travel to.
I know I’m just 18 but I’ve categorized my life so far into three phases. The first phase was when I was younger from the age of 3-12 years old. I was really curious, confident, stubborn, and rude and I wanted to achieve everything in life. Even if I was told you could conquer the entire galaxy, I would have dreamt to conquer that too. I was a dreamer, a mad dreamer.
But during the three years from 13-16 years of age, this mad dreamer got trapped in some dark island, caught in a swirling whirlwind of dark thoughts. There was this time when I started hating myself for being the person I was. I wrote sad diaries, poems and stories. I felt I was lonely and no one was by my side. My every piece of writing was filled with words such as dark, lonely, hated, alone, trapped, falling in a dark pit, etc. I was a confused, lonely and misunderstood teenager. I’d cry every night listening to sad songs and some nights after finishing crying, I’d forget what I was crying for. It had been a routine every night because I never felt happy or smiled. I’d forgotten what warmth was and I felt cold like a snake was slithering on my body every single moment. I’d forgotten to laugh. All these happy things, I’d forgotten to feel it. Actually, I’d forgotten to feel everything except pain. (And there was a tremor just now…If you get confused by this statement, I live in Nepal and you may have heard the news. Man I’m risking my life writing blogs!)
Anyways, when I turned 17 and joined high school, I met new people and there was new energy. The pain the past was decreasing and in my senior year of high school, I got the opportunity to join this amazing organization called Women LEAD Nepal. The first thing I learnt in Women LEAD was to be happy. It was like I was a little girl who’d learnt the first alphabet from her ABC book. I smiled more often, spoke with people and my reply of “how are you?” changed from “Fine” to “GREAT!” People who know me and ask me this question often will get it! And they are like “Awesome”! Along with being happy, I started appreciating myself and stopped caring about the judgments people make. But most importantly I learnt to be optimistic and positive that I should first stop predicting that people will judge me. Moreover, I learnt to love myself and believe in myself.
Claire Naylor, the co-founder of Women LEAD had once told me, “If you don’t believe in yourself then surround yourself with people who believe in you.” And yes, the same happened to me. I was surrounded my people who believed in me and they encouraged me to believe in myself. When you believe in yourself, confidence and strength comes to you automatically like it was a buy one and get two free offer. The moment you have these asset, no one can stop you from growing. You get opportunities and you get the skills to garb those opportunities.
In this process, I grew up to be the same little girl I was. You must be wondering that I just mentioned growing up and little girl together. I believe growing up is through mind and not just age. I was already grown up when I was little. I was confident, strong and full of energy. Yes, I had childish imagination of being a clown or magician and my younger self would be sad for the she won’t be able to see the big red nose and colorful clothes of the clown or the pointed hat of the magician. She was really creative I bet! She was a wonderful little girl, stubborn and rude too but she was never let down by anything. She stood up when she fell and when I had difficult time standing up; I always wondered how I could when I was little. So, I’d mentioned I grew up to be the little girl I was before because we share the same characteristics. She may find me a bit boring and no-fun adult but if I were to go back to the past through time machine, I don’t think she will be disappointed. Yes, she’d want me to socialize more and not just talk work but talk fun too but she would be proud of me. I couldn’t be the funny clown or magician with magical tricks but I’m sure she would recognize the magical pixie dust that helped me to come out of the dark island where I was trapped to become the person that I am today, “A Young Women Leader”.