"Come on beta, drink your milk, otherwise the doggy would come."
"Baby, it’s time to sleep & if you don't, doggy would come."
"Don't cry, otherwise the doggy will come!!"
Such were our first life tutorials. Probably all of us subscribed to them & learnt to eat, sleep & drink.
As a kid, I was extremely scared of dogs. I was so scared that all my actions were inhibited by this dog-phobia. With even the slightest indication of a dog nearby, I could sense the chill that ran down my spine. This wasn’t because the dogs were intimidating. Instead, the tutorials were. If you wish to anticipate the extent of my fear of dogs, think about your confidence to say/write (or even, think) against the unity. I mean, Statue of Unity.
One fine morning, my fear was ready to take a toll on me. Sharma uncle from the neighbourhood visited our home & my papa called me up to show off that his 3-year-old has learnt the ABCD. So the examiner in Sharma uncle was ready with his questionnaire & he, with his heavy voice, started the quiz, of course with no lifelines.
“A for...?” I said...”appplllee!"
He asked, “B for...?" I replied...”ball”.
He went ahead, “C for...?"
I started getting intimidated and with my shivering lips, replied, “catttt!"
But Sharma uncle was on fire.
He went ahead & asked, “D for..??"
I was so scared that I held papa tight, raised a finger towards Sharma uncle & almost cried,
"D for doggiee.!!!"
Finally the quiz got completed, wherein I passed with flying colours, with a distinction in letter D. After the quiz, Sharma uncle came closer to me & said something in a very low tone.
Something. In a very low tone.
Today when I go in retrospect, I find that his lines have had a lasting impact on me. His lines made me to introspect & explore a new dimension of life. Never had I thought that his lines would be so relevant in today's world. Never had I thought that his lines that were uttered in a low pitch, would eventually echo inside my head. Never had I thought that those lines uttered by Sharma uncle would turn out to be one of the best doses of wisdom.
Talking about today's world where there's so much to see, so much to do & so many people to spend time with, there's one growing concern among all of us. And to address that concern, the best we have done is to put it on our t-shirts. Yes, I'm talking about mood-swing.
Just when you thought that ABCD is a mere lingo for kids to start learning the English alphabets, I thought of adding more to the learning curve. Think of all types of different moods that you usually find yourself in. I thought about the same & here’s my addition to the learning curve, or trouble.
A for aggressive, B for boring, C for calm & D, for not doggie!! D for doubt.
Mark the alphabets.
A, B, C, D. Aggressive, Boring, Calm, Doubt.
And why should I take the trouble of explaining to you about these 4 different emotions! You already have been in all of those 4 moods. And the best I can do is to take you to this amazing journey of your own emotions. So what are you waiting for? Fix the belt & get ready for the ride. The ride of your own emotions. The ride of your 4 moods. The ride of your ABCD..!
But, ABCD is not enough..
Lets start with your first mood, mood A – Aggressive.
When was the last time you had a fight with one of your peers on the religious/political front? That verbal spat & fierce exchange of words! How about that heated argument with your parents on the most overrated issue of human history, marriage! And how can you forget the last time you screamed on someone in your city’s heavy traffic!!
In all these instances, you were high on adrenaline. You could feel the blood pumping through your veins & your pulse rate was so high that you feared of skipping a few heartbeats! Because, you were in an Aggressive mood.
Calm down yourself because we’re switching to a lazy Sunday afternoon. Recall those hours when you spent all your time in filling up a full-page with your signatures. Think of all those phone calls to friends & family that were tempting to make but boring to take! And it was so silly of you when you had nothing to feed because all you relied was on your FB news feed!! Apologies if I made you felt back in your most comforting, Boring mood.
By the way, how did the world seem to you when you got your first job? How did it feel after cracking that competitive exam? And how about catching that train which you almost missed? Leave it all aside, just think of that time when the nature was calling upon you heavily and finally you got some time/place to reply to that nature’s call!
Instead of this elaboration, I now realise that I should have simply written MS DHONI and you would automatically know that I was talking about the Cool mood.
What exactly happens to you when you spend hours in a shopping mall & narrow down on 2 of your favourite jeans but can afford only one of them? How do you feel when asked to choose between the most comedy movie & your favorite romantic movie? What are your thoughts when you’re watching a CID episode & there’s a scene of a milkman/postman/breadman/waterman/plumber/driver/servant entering when the kid is alone in the house? Both you and Daya, are actually in Doubt.
An image could’ve saved both your time & mine. But as a writer, you’ll always find yourself in a ‘D’ (doubtful) mood.
So A,B,C,D. 4 different moods. 4 different emotions. 4 different thoughts. 4 different reactions.
But ABCD, is not enough..
So what's the point here? Am I trying to say that being calm is better than being in doubt. Or am I trying to make a point that our boredom should always be replaced by aggression. No, absolutely not! I may be a bad writer but don’t you dare question my sophistication!
We are humans, & the design of this nature gives us every right to laugh, cry, yell & of course, smile. Here’s the bottom line. It’s completely alright to have these 4 different moods within us.
But ABCD is not enough..
When we're all pumped up & in aggressive mood, we want everyone else to be so. When we're tired of the worldly affairs & experience boredom, we don't appreciate someone too energetic. When we're calm, we don’t entertain aggressive behavior of others & when we're in doubt, we feel uneasiness in the company of a few confident folks. Still, it’s okay to have aggression, boredom, calmness & doubt. It’s good to have these ABCDs.
But, ABCD is not enough..
Here lies the bone of contention. All of us are not always in the same mood. And when 2 people, in different moods, meet each other, a conflict is bound to arise.
This creates a huge gap in understanding & that's why, ABCD is not enough. This creates a big psychological disturbance & that's why ABCD is not enough. There's a big void created in our world just because, ABCD, is not enough.
There's a big reason to worry. But there's a very small remedy to our worries. All we need to do is to take just one more step ahead & move from D to E, which stands for empathy. When we gain empathy, we master the art of understanding the feelings of others. So when we're in aggressive mood, we still understand our friend's boredom & we don't yell at them. When we're bored, we understand our partner's energy & we don't disrespect him/her. When we're calm, we don't tag the aggressive as bad & when we're in doubt, we tend to learn from the confidence of the others.
All this makes me remember to what Sharma Uncle said to me twenty years back. After that ABCD quiz, he came closer to me, lowered his tone & said...
"Beta, you're good. But remember,
ABCD, is not enough!"