Craning my neck, I stood in the makeshift backstage area of a small studio in Little India and tried to get a good look at the first play I ever directed. But about halfway through the show, I was pathetically trying to blink back tears that were already spilling down my cheeks and wiping away snot dripping from my nose on the sleeve of my motley jumper. That was perhaps one of the most liberating and humbling moments in my life because finally, finally I realised what I was meant to do.

What if I became like them? What if at fifty, I realised that I hated my job and never even really liked it to begin with? That night as I stood backstage and watched my play, I felt relieved because I knew that what I wanted to do in life was to create art.

An artist? There were bewildered laughs and sympathetic looks thrown in the general direction of my parents.

Naive. Delusional.  Simplistic. That’s what they thought of me. I could see it on their faces. And maybe they were right. Maybe, I am all that. But when did it become so crazy to have a dream?

The world is cruel to those of us who dream. Often, we are regarded as some kind of odd species, creatures of sorts, because people cannot fathom why we do what we do. Parents kick us out of the house and refuse to fund our education unless study something practical like medicine, law, architecture or engineering. Friends scoff at us. Teachers tell us to be pragmatic. Random uncles at Chinese New Year dinners give us ‘reality checks’.

In this day and age, it is so incredibly easy for us to be jaded and disenchanted. It is easy for us not to chase our dreams and follow our passions. There is no hard and fast rule in this business of chasing your dreams. I can only tell you to find something in yourselves to keep going. Because boy, is it tough.

You will fail, multiple times. That goes without saying.

It can start to feel like a pipe dream. There will be times when you pull your hair and go absolutely crazy because you have no idea what you are doing. It sounds berserk and borderline plain stupid but that feeling of insecurity is necessary.

Something remotely good only comes from some  kind of pain and struggle. You see, we’re built to fight. And you’d be surprised by just how hard you’re willing to fight for the things you love and believe in.

Theatre and film saved me as a kid. It took me out of my convent school, small neighbourhood, easy life and gave me a place in this big world. It made me feel human, like I was finally, really, living. And I want to give that to somebody. This is what keeps me hustling. This is what keeps me going when I feel like quitting. Thisis what gives me the strength to create art because I know that one day it will do the same for some kid somewhere.

At the end of the day, you have to ask yourself another question – “Do you love it enough to go crazy for it?”

My answer started off a little shaky in the beginning, a “maybe” disguised as something else. But by the minute as I fall more madly in love with art, it gets surer and firmer.


Dakshayani’s piece struck a chord in a few of our readers, and within the team-members themselves: ARE WE made to fight? Are we actually prepared to take every chance we get, no matter how painful, and use it to work towards our dreams?

As the Founder of Carpe Bloom, I do feel that the above is true. Dakshayani’s piece resounded within me; I know that there are things such as writing, such as Editing – things that I would absolutely fight for chances for, to hone my skill at it.

Dak and I have been friends for a while now; she’s been a mentor to me on occasion and with Carpe Bloom, I’v brought a smile to slip on her graceful lips on other occasions, too. Here, she’s taught me with all of her fiery soul. ❤

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