I step into a clothing store with my father. We walk towards a counter behind which formal clothes are neatly placed on numerous glass racks in an organized manner. I tell the person on the counter that I want to buy formal trousers. He starts pulling out several trousers of my size from one of the rack. I walk on the other side of the counter and ask him to remove only those trousers which I ask him to remove. After choosing a few trousers, I walk into the changing room to see how these trousers look on me. Unsatisfied of the look that these trousers give me, I tell my Dad that I want to buy clothes from some other store.
After my Dad and I step out of the store I tell my Dad that I didn’t like the collection of the store that we were in. I tell him that I’ll buy formal clothes from Mumbai instead. On our way to home, he stops by at a random clothing store. We step in to see if this store has a good collection of formal clothes. After another session of choosing clothes from numerous glass racks, I step into a changing room with a pair of formal shoes in my hand to see how I look in these clothes. I wear a formal trouser, a formal shirt and formal shoes. I tuck in the formal shirt into the formal trouser. As I look at myself in the mirror, I wonder if I’m actually looking at myself. I step out of the changing room to make my Dad see how I’m looking.
My Dad tells me that I’m looking good. I look at myself in the mirror again. I see that I’m looking good but I fail to recognize myself. I feel as if the person in the mirror is not me; I do not wear formal clothes. When the employees of the store see the expression on my face, they tell me that these clothes are looking good on me. They try to convince me to buy these clothes as that’s what their job is. I rush into the changing room and immediately remove the formal clothes that are covering my body. I wear the informal clothes that I was wearing when I walked into the store. I tell my Dad that I want to buy clothes from elsewhere and we step out of the store. As we walk towards our car, I again tell him that I’ll buy formal clothes from Mumbai.
The above incident happened almost a month ago. I was finding it difficult to accept adulthood. I could not see myself walking into an office in formal clothes. I was happy that I was selected to work as an intern at Pangea3 and I was equally excited but I was also nervous. I knew that I’ll no more be able to enjoy the luxury of being irresponsible; that I’ll no more be allowed to be careless. I knew that my schedule will no more be flexible. I knew that I’ll not be able to do whatever I’d want to do whenever I’d want to do it. But I was also aware that one has to get comfortable with discomfort in order to grow.
Now, after a month, I enjoy wearing formal clothes. The process of buying formal clothes was difficult even after I returned to Mumbai but eventually I found comfort in formal clothes. My wardrobe is filled with formal trousers and shirts. I love my formal shoes. I no more find it difficult to recognize the person in the mirror when I stand before it wearing formal clothes. I now know that only my clothes have changed but the youth in me is still alive. I do not have to let go the youth in me in order to grow up. I’m not afraid to make mistakes. I’ve learned to accept the mistakes that I commit because I cannot rise unless I get comfortable with falling down. I’m learning to manage time; I’m learning to make time for things that I love to do while still doing things that I need to do.
Change is difficult to accept but change is necessary.