She has the heart of a nomad, they said, the stillborn flames permanently etched in her eyes. A regular case of wanderlust, they said. The epitome of extravagance, still others said. Yet unsaid, lay the truth. An inherent simplicity hidden in layers of opulence. A desire for a place to call home. A search for a calling of the heart. An escape from suffocating realities. A fiction story by Saili Lohokare. (#SailiLohokare, @SailiLohokare, #Siliconeer, @Siliconeer, #Fiction)

It was an ordinary Sunday afternoon, infused with the typical lethargic unproductivity. An intricate cloud of thoughts surrounded her- thoughts regarding academics, thoughts regarding people, memories, but perhaps most overpowering were the unshakeable perspectives of worthlessness and underlying sorrow. It was at this time that her thoughts turned to the redwood tree. Its looming branches and bristly leaves once held so many promises, snippets of the future that seemed close enough to touch, like wispy clouds on a bright summer day. Oh how the mighty have fallen! Perhaps even its might was an illusion, a safety net for people to hold on to in hopes of finding a form of sanctuary.

In this moment, she was struck by a series of realizations, somehow sparked through a seemingly simple conversation with an old friend.

First, the temporary structure of emotional pain. As she looked back in life, she remembered a time when pain had once seemed like a never-ending maze, with new obstacles consuming her at every turn. Yet, here she was five years later, that same pain as irrelevant as the person who had once bestowed it upon her.

Furthermore, through each trial, she had found something beautiful. In pain, she found wisdom. In the strenuous process of resurrection, she found growth. On a more simplistic level, by going to a boring party, she met her best friend. By going to a tutoring class, she met yet another.


Every small decision had some form of impact on her. Moreover, every single person in her life, whether they hurt her or healed her, whether they stayed or left, whether minor or prominent, took her one step closer to a mysterious future, the summation of the intertwined elements of heartbreak and happiness. For, how can one understand the value of beauty without knowing pain first?  How then, had she any right to pity herself? It was true that she had known more pain than most at an early age. However, it was equally true that she had been blessed with the presence of many special individuals in her life.

With these epiphanies enveloping her, her philosophy was reinforced: to strive indefinitely to make a positive impact on every life she touched, even if it was minor in relevance. Knowing full well the weight of each piece in a broken heart, she vowed to never impose the same burden on anyone else, but rather help them heal. In a poetic fashion, she stood up, the flame inside her growing with each breath, and said to no one in particular:

“The ability to make me feel worthless has been subconsciously self-crafted. Had I not felt worthless myself, anyone else’s notions would have fail to have an effect. Therefore, with that revelation, your privilege, your hold on my heart, has been revoked.”