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A Disappeared Text And An Existential Question

Do you believe in signs from the universe?

Do you believe in synchronicity?

Do you believe in a higher power?

I can keep going...

So many words are out there that hint towards a straightforward question.

"Do you believe in something you can not see, touch, smell, hear or taste- Something; You can feel something every now and then yet can not confirm with any certainty?"

Religion has always been a confusing thing for me. I am the daughter of a believer and an atheist. I grew up around people of different faiths. Around the age of sixteen, I let go of the idea of religion and went on a journey of trying to find an answer to that question above.

Despite reading all I could get my hands on and talking to so many scholars, I didn't find an answer. After almost a decade, I gave up. It was easier to do that than continue the search for an answer.

A few months after I gave up, I lost a pregnancy. It was the hardest thing thus far I have faced in life. After all, I am an engineer. I found comfort in numbers. Statistics became my best friend. Then came the second, third, and fourth miscarriages. The statistics no longer gave me comfort. I was a wreck. I was tired, exhausted, emotionally and physically, all the time.

It's not easy to see someone's pain. I found myself on the verge of a nervous breakdown. People around me started avoiding me as their words no longer affected me. It's one of those times when people around you will start asking you why you are this way. There is no answer to that question. It's what it is. Grief.

I was typing this extended essay, yes- being a writer comes with its own issues of inability to write two-line texts to someone. As I was trying to enter a new line, I accidentally selected the entire text. I attempted to unselect it but couldn't. Then I thought to copy or cut; instead, I pressed the space bar. The whole text was gone. I stared at the little white space of my phone's text message window for a bit. The first thought that came to mind was, "Well, the universe works in mysterious ways."

I did not type the message again. I started thinking about the questions I started this essay with.

Faith is much needed, so is the awareness of the fragility of this life. Without either of those, we will get lost. We will lose the value and priority of truly living, not just existing. I am not back from the lost world yet; I am working on it. Whenever I am here, writing, I feel not lost. My days are a combination of existing and living at this time. It pains me at times that this is my present. But other times, I take comfort in knowing this is my present and change is a constant, that what matters is making those tiny steps of progress.

In the past 15 years, I have learned the value of hope and faith while having a grip on your present and reality as you see it. I have also learned the importance of accepting that I know very little.

The biggest hurdle was living with the unknown and accepting that I did not have much control over life.

I smiled today as the text disappeared.

So, for me, the answer is yes.

I believe there is something bigger and collective than just me.


Sajatha Jaffer

Writer, artist, poet, humanist, trying to be a better person today than I was yesterday while sharing extraordinarily ordinary things of life. Boldly!


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