Valuing what we have: Are we doing it right?

Many a time we forget that our mothers/wives/women in our lives are much more than the superwomen we see in the ads on television. Many a time, we don't realise the value of the herbs we grow at home until the doctor prescribes a tonic made of the same thing as a cure for the illness we have. Many a time, we learn the value of something we already were blessed with in our lives, a little too late. Bringing you this article to let you do a small check in your life, so that you don't let things- and people of value slip away before realising their worth!
Sandhya Nagaraj
Published on: 29th October 2016
Two people, three days. A simulated environment of more freedom/less freedom than they're normally accustomed to for 72 hours straight. With absolute involvement- complete to the point where the line between reality and simulation faded away.

And the results? ASTOUNDING.
Valuing what we have
The adage "We only realise the value of something once we lose it" is unfortunately not as outdated as I would  wish it to be.

The 21st century man has a comeback stating that he truly values what he has, the present day woman claims that she has never valued anything so much than the rights and freedom she has today. These sound great in theory. We at IUeMag wanted to put this to test, and check whether it would withstand the fire.

So two individuals- each unique in their own way, and each having lives glaringly different from the other were brought together on this experiment, where each of them had to live in a simulated environment (self created) for 72 hours.

1) Prakruthi*, a girl whose parents support her in every decision she takes in life and rarely put any restrictions on her, was asked to spend 72 hours believing that her parents would expect her to be home by 7:30 pm, and that she would have to stand up for herself, to why she did what she did, as part of the experiment.

72 hours later, this is what she had to say:

"I realised the value of my decisions being respected by my parents, only after these 72 hours. My parents always respect my decision even if they know I'm wrong! They tell me I'm wrong, but rarely enforce their decision on me. I didn't value it enough until recently, and realised that not everyone does it. Forget decision, even opinions don't get considered at times at some other homes! But people are different. This family is more protective (the one she believed she lived with for 72 hours). I'm not complaining because now I'm able to value their care and concern. It's just that the way this new family cares is different from the way I have been brought up. Really good that I was part of this for 72 hours.. Because now that I worded it, it's gone deeper! This makes me regard my parents more than ever, and makes me realise how blessed I am for having such parents, and makes me feel responsible to use the freedom I've been granted- which others may or may not have- well."

2) Ananya*, a woman in her 30s who has always lived in the sheltered protection of her parentss before marriage and husband & in- laws post her vows, absolutely dislikes the sheltered life she lives. She yearns for freedom day after day, and wishes she'd get to spend a year all alone, managing her life entirely by herself. 72 hours of unadulterated freedom is what IUeMag offered her, which she took gladly. No cellphones to pick up, noone to answer to, and the world, her oyster!

72 hours later:

"Day One- was brilliant. Noone to remind me that I'd missed waking up at the first alarm, noone to demand me to cook for them before they left home, noone to ask me what I ate and lecture me on health. Absolutely nobody to question me of my afternoon whereabouts, and well, nobody to check on whether I got back home safe in the evening. No sibling to pick a fight with over nothing in the evening, no spouse to make up for the arguments of the day before turning in. Dawn seemed like sugar, dusk seems to be bittersweet.

Day Two: Was the day I'd kept as the imaginary deadline date to pay off ALL the bills, and pay out the maid, the cook, and the gardener, and getting the fence fixed. Phew. Was it tiring or what! Also did I mention, super satisfying? With a teeny reminder of how I never bothered to do this while being surrounded by 5 people at home-forever?

Day Three: Nobody was waking me up, I just stayed tucked in all morning. While the previous day made me realise how immensely satisfying living independently can be, it also made me realise the value of the people I had in my life. Everybody have their own strengths. I cannot appreciate enough realising that I'm not a master at all of the daily tasks that need to be done to run a household. Having an expert to fix the fence while I concentrated my energies on making the home vibrant and beautiful is something I am more than happy to do now. It just brought back the life into my relationship with my everyday people!"

Prakruthi's story is not a piece of fiction. It is a living reality for those of us who have the freedom to do what we want, and a reality for those who don't. A reality where sometimes, we don't really know the value of living in a country where there are no wars to be fought, no freedom to be won, no explanations to be given, noone to answer but our conscience.

Ananya's is a universally real story- every child living with his/her family wants to move out, and explore the big world out there by himself/herself. How much do people appreciate the people they have around them, when they think it's forever? Nothing is forever. And that's what makes it beautiful.

To bring back a sense of value to the people and things we possess is what IUeMag set out to establish with the experiment, and the answers have been nothing but exhilarating.

Each old statistic needs to be replaced with a new one, each old measure needs to be updated to a new one- and IUeMag will continue to bring new stories that demand old statistics be replaced, that old measures be updated, that old friendships be rekindled, that old dreams be reborn, and that the eternal life within catch aflame! Peace!

*Names changed to protect identity.



Comments