I’m surprised I even got the time to write this.

You’re sitting there, reading this in a hurry. These days, you’re always in a hurry. Somehow you’re always rushing for things and you’re still always late. But as you read this letter, I don’t want you to ignore it like you do so many other things on social media. I want you to give this a thought.

So, I’m writing this because last night I looked in the mirror (no, it’s not a metaphor or anything. I literally looked in the mirror) and I stopped to focus. The dark circles under my eyes and the eye bags were more apparent than ever thanks to all the overtimes. But it’s not like I hadn’t noticed that before. What I really saw were three grey hairs. And that’s when my entire childhood and teen years flashed before my eyes.

So much happened in so little time!


In that flash of a second, I saw the years I spent staying out the entire day with kids in the neighborhood and coming back home looking like a street kid – torn clothes and muddy hands. All the years I spent in school, throwing paper planes around and fighting over lunchboxes. The years in college that I spent asking people to proxy for me, working days and days for festivals that promised to train me for what’s ‘out there’ and the never-ending struggle of finding an internship. My first interview, my first job, my first love and my first relationship! So much happened in so little time that the flash of memory lasts only a millisecond.

Is this called growing up?



And then, I’m pulled back hard and fast to reality where I see myself in the mirror with the three grey hairs. I realize how far I’ve come. I came from fighting over lunchboxes to barely eating a satisfying meal a day.  I came from signing on a piece of paper against my roll number to mark my attendance to scanning my fingerprint on the scanner. I came from laughing a lot to hardly smiling. Is this called growing up?

I couldn’t be any prouder than I already am of who I’ve become and everything I’ve achieved along the way but I could kill to go back in time where my biggest stress was who the supervisor was going to be for the next exam. Because to be honest, I miss the old you. I miss who you used to be!



Author: Zainab Haji


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