3 Hours to take a Bath? ~ ~ Tulika Agarwal

Last week, my father sent me a message quote on Whatsapp, which went as “Some days I can conquer the World, other Days it takes me three hours to convince myself to bathe”- Anonymous

Well ironically, it was true and I sensed why he would send it to me. The quote depicted an inherently deep meaning emphasizing my current state of spirit. The situation curated by an unknown bat virus has led the majority of us to put our guards down. The initial lockdown had me all zesty, to make each passing day more productive than the previous one, albeit it did have its own implications as days progressed. I went all out, overcame my fear and learnt driving, picked up stitching and embroidery to craft out designs and frame them as my personal collection, create sumptuous dishes and even took up an array of painting classes online to tick out the daily checklist of ‘What To Do Today’ on the dashboard. 

It has been over five months since Lockdown 1.0 and as we march ahead into Unlock 4.0, I can now firmly state that the whole concept of showcasing your acquired skills sitting at home to the countable followers on social media & family groups is passé. The real emotion of being able to conquer the world every day is subjective and so is the conviction to go under the shower. They are not merely literal thoughts but the under layered expressions that convey what truly motivates you to wake up, smell the coffee and get going.  Certain eye grabbing incidents in these trying times and the daily news flashing onto my TV screens have left an indelible mark, which resonate with me and somewhere boost my food for thought. The essence of life, in retrospect, is to brace ourselves to face the situation in hand. No amount of sobbing, repenting and pondering is worth it – after all, it’s all about valuing relationships; for they are the fodder that keep one sane and make it all seem worthwhile even if the exterior professional life crumbles. 

In my opinion, be it an academic qualification or a mundane corporate routine or an entrepreneur cracking the code to add zeros to his bank account, it all equates to a ’Pizza Base’. The base is similar for all – strive to reach the zenith. What favors one over the other is the choice of topping – could be fruit, salty, saucy, plain, or extra spicy. These toppings differ on every pizza and make it unique which stems from one’s own creativity and it can take varied timings for each individual to develop it. I too have my days now, where the mornings begin with music and yoga – a way of lifestyle and shift to the daily chores followed by online courses, social media surfing and teaching the underprivileged kids. Not every day of the week is power packed performance oriented, and with time I have accustomed myself to let it flow the way it has to; even if it means to drag myself for a shower. If your attitude lets you see an opportunity in every challenge that life throws each day, then one can bounce back in a reflective mood where he does not have to gather the force to constantly wiggle around to attain what is the prescribed notion of success and output. Many of those who had been living under the impression that the relationship between their day-to-day activities and their ultimate goal of life was idealistic, have discovered gaps and made amends in the priorities – leading to a shift in the meaning of the ‘quintessential success barometer’. 

So if one had to ask my opinion, I would actually agree to the quote sent to me and proudly accept it rather than defying it hoping that I do not fall for it. On the contrary, it is imperative that every person – whether starting out his life or already established must not disillusion himself but take each day as a new beginning to continue from where it was left the night before. In the end what matters is, ‘I tried’! Maybe with time, on those tough gloomy days I will convince myself in less than 3 hours to actually have a bath.

As Robert Frost had famously said, “I have miles to go before I sleep”.