Leg break > Heart break

My last entry was about discovering Proust, and waiting for the biggest heartbreak of my life to read him. In a strange twist of one ankle, two steps and a rainy evening – this has happened. I broke my leg on Tuesday and am now convinced that it is worse than all the heartbreaks I’ve had. When the heart is udhas, one can at least do karvaten badalna as they beautifully say in Hindi –  tossing and turning on the bed (its dabba English equivalent). When the leg is gone, what can you toss, when will you turn, how can you mourn?

Thoo.

I was watching Zizek (bastard) when I realised I hadn’t signed out. Took an umbrella and went down the stairs. Slipped on the last two steps and my bum fell on my ankle. I was beginning to think ok now I will  get up quickly before someone sees me while my ears caught a different horror altogether. They heard something creak.

I moved my foot and tried standing up only to fall back on my bum. It seemed as though there were no bones in my left foot and everything had dissolved into a trembling mass of jelly. I writhed in pain for a while before gathering myself into a heap in one corner.

Image credits: jeanandre.fr

Cut to Wednesday, I am lying on the operation table, head foggy with anesthesia but still finding the courage to blame Proust and Zizek for all this. Proust because he said something about how we never know the value of a vehicle and are never really curious about its inner workings until it breaks down. Pliss ok Proust – when I read that, the first thing I did was touch my hands, eyes, feet, hips and feel grateful. And Zizek because just. I felt the surgeons hammering something into my foot but I was more bothered about an itchy nose and my newly heavy hands that refused to move.

I am in Payannur now, recovering slowly, feeling helpless and useless. Read two pages of Proust and felt cheerful. Then read more of Wolf Hall and got frightened. Mantel is a goddess. The first chapter made me cringe but in a hungry sort of way– all those brilliant one-liners about blood and breaking bones.

I cannot walk for a long time. But for now this is what I can see outside my window.

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I hope that for as many heartbreaks and leg breaks that come my way – there is always a window nearby.


 

**Featured Image credits: jeanandre.fr

UP

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It has been a somewhat happy morning. In your late 20s, the only monster dread is waking up in the middle of the night and not feeling sleepy afterwards. There’s that precarious window of 5 seconds after you are thrown out of sleep and you are afraid that your mind will now wake up loudly and show image after image of your biggest insecurities. Who needs a nightmare after that?

Even so, sleep devi has been kind. Maybe that’s why the happy itch is back. Yesterday a friend told me about Karunanidhi’s disciplined routine – waking up at 4:30 to write and all. I was supremely disturbed. What the hell am I doing in life?

My students are eating books week after week. I am only eating.

Yesterday was a day of many discoveries. I reread Aunt Julia and felt thunder bolts of love for Pedro Camacho. This morning I read bits of Alain Botton’s How Proust Can Change Your Life: Not a Novel. 

It has left me giddy. I’ve been waiting for the biggest heartbreak of my life to start reading Proust. That kind of defeats the point of reading Proust in the first place, I realise. So today I am happy that the itch is back and I am waiting waiting to read Botton’s book. Maybe after that and after Didion and Eliot – I can think about Proust.

In other news, I wrote a thing about my bleeding, oozing, puss-ing love for 9 songs. You can read it here.

It’s a happy day!