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Fear of unknown – Possibly the most common and strongest of all phobias to conquer. It might be the single biggest factor for rising suicide rates, psychiatric centers raking money big time, depression being the most used word of the decade and potentially linked to many other terminal illness as well. All for what? That the victim may never know. It’s probably the single most severest reason, cutting across all eras and generations, that the eagerness or curiosity to know the future, that has set the case for soothsayers and prophecies to survive for so long. Even today there are so many lives sacrificed on special days based on some magician’s forecast that such a kill might earn them power or benefits. So many students who take rash decisions before even their exam results are confirmed. And god knows how many lives are lost for love. The unifying thread for all these have always been one single thing – fear of the unknown. Had people been positive enough to think of a good scenario, many a fear could’ve been nipped in the bud. But the stark reality of the real world, doesn’t present such a rosy picture and anything bordering on negative have a much stronger pull into doom.
I, for one, have always stressed myself silly, right from my school days, over how things would turn out and would even have a mini scene enactment on mind on what would be my response for any by the other person and often thought of the worst case scenario to prepare myself or rather iron myself into the belief that if you can expect something bad, even it happens, the impact would be less. Mind would always be like Kashmir, red alert situation even on peace times. This kind of situation became such a routine that, my hair started greying out pretty fast, much to the worry of my parents. And I always carried this forever lost in thought kind of a look and even when I tried a joke, people used to think I am dead serious. My fashion sense or the lack of it, didn’t help either. I was least bothered by my looks and wore dresses that were clumsy fit (as described by peers) and with my soda butti specs, often passed for a person much older than my real age. It never bothered me that I always bothered about everything, but in the process I had forgotten how to celebrate. When I won some award from my CEO for some project, it was published on internal newsletters. Usually people delete any mail which carries color background as junk but somehow the news caught attention of one of my friends who told me about someone carrying same name as mine had won that award. When I told it was me, she refused to believe and when I showed her the mail, she was shell shocked. “Had it been me in this situation I would’ve been jumping with joy, what is wrong with you and whey the hell are you so nonchalant always?” she shouted at me and dragged me to food court, alerting all our friends and to my recollection that was the first ever treat I enjoyed participating. Vasool Raja MBBS la oru dialogue varum. After being hugged by his mom, Kamal will say “I don’t know if I am courageous now but the fear has gone”. It might be a simple reaction and a very common response by my friend. But not every apple that falls leads to gravity. Somehow, something changed a bit inside and I realized that, as much as fearing the unknown, I had totally shunned the present and anything positive in life. Even now nothing major has changed, but at least the degree of pessimism has reduced a bit I guess. I’ve stopped looking forward to the next day or ten years down the line. In fact as a buffer I even resist thinking about anything other than the present. Like, I don’t know what is going to be the post for “V” in this AtoZ series and even though it wouldn’t depress me not to know it, I am not bothered by it. It may not be the cure, but I hope, those who are in similar boat as mine, find that friend of theirs quicker than me or as quick, so that they can get to realize their present and even enjoy it, if possible.


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