I land in the new pod like a feather. Softly. After gathering stardust, air bubbles, and dirt on my way. At my core, yet tightening like a coil, are memories of me; gathering, entering and ejecting from the pod, a million times before this.
I know it is only a matter of weeks before my mind begins to form and the memories from before get pressed against its wall. Deep into the subconscious. The way to which will be heavily guarded afterwards. With that, I will forever lose access to the lifetimes I roamed on this mud ball.
My new mind will not mind it though. The first gush of affection by the person whose womb I am in now will wash over it thoroughly. Forming new pathways to let the tentacles of this lifetime take root.
And add to the baggage I carry at my core.
Within months, a pattern will form, not very different from the previous ones. It will make me choose my tendencies, biases, pleasures and fears. A tiny bit of it is modified by the memories of my ancestors my new blood carries. By the time I finish tunnelling my way out and cry lustily in a brightly lit room, my life energy is a freshly squeezed sponge.
Eager to soak and store more.
The first roll, the first crawl, the first waddle into the arms of my rapt parent; nothing comes to me as easily as I make it look. But I have the exuberance of a new life. And I bob through the hurdles set by well-meaning adults. Joyously.
With every touch, smell, sight, taste and sound, my pattern collects more pieces to tighten itself. With every pat, knock, hug, hurt, hunger or feast, it grows stronger, adding more weight to my core.
Then comes the hurricane; intoxicating and scary at once. My limbs grow all gangly and begin to fill out awkwardly. To add to the already unbearable condition, the hormones are liberally sprinkled into my system. A slow poison, blurring the lines, heightening the sensations. There is no way I can get a handle on what is happening with my outer shell, inner core be damned!
My senses inform me I have my needs, and my mind guides me into ways in which they can be fulfilled. My parents have knocked some good sense into me before the hormones knock half of them right out. So, I, who have gathered accessories of ego, personality and status manage to forge allegiances to family, government and nation and make socially respectable choices when under observation. And am proud of them. I experience moments of weightless flight when I take my little ones out on a hike, give them a hug or watch them chase the butterflies in the park. But feel pulled down at other times. I wonder why, but don’t dwell too much on it. Who has the time?
My midriff has more mass than my shoulders. And I drag myself through my routine. My little ones have moved away and have their own little ones now. My partner and I are in an amicable cohabitation. But the sparks are long gone. Truth be told, I can feel the poison in our bloodstreams that brought us together slowly leaving us. I have more time on my hands and less energy in my legs.
So, I look inwards. I don’t know where to look. And when I do, all I see is a dark, scary blob.
After years of seeking answers, I can vaguely see the baggage at my core. Like hot tar metalled into crushed stones. How do I get rid of it? The more I think about it, the bigger it grows. I am horrified.
Even my midriff has shrivelled. I know my present outing on this mud ball is limited, and drawing close to an end. I am yet to figure out how to leave my baggage behind, with my ashes. I don’t want to keep coming back and go through the same loop a million more times.
I don’t want to go up and gather the stardust to come back, again. I want to be the stardust.
I wander in the wilderness, go on pilgrimages, give back to the world, and cry my heart out to my God. But the tar is still stuck to me.
One fine morning my partner doesn’t wake up. They have gone to the stars. My heart is heavy for years. Then I choose to forgive them. I feel lighter than before.
I no longer go out seeking nirvana. That doesn’t mean I have given up. I am just preparing myself from within. Turning me into a vessel open to grace- one conscious breath at a time.
My joints are getting weaker by the day. When I sit still, shutting up all the noises, I can see the baggage at the core clearly now, not as tightly bound as before, but still holding on to the centre. Will I be able to pull the pin out from the centre and make the entire structure collapse before I draw my last breath?
A visit to the doctor confirms I needn’t suffer these questions for too long. So, it is either now or not in this lifetime.
I decide to drop the first shiny robe I gathered here, my personality. This time, for good.
I float a little. Just enough to see me from a distance.
The next thing I do is pick a thing I really dislike and do it joyfully. It is easier now since I don’t have me standing in my way. But it still takes effort.
I begin to see the creator in all his creations. Well, most of them.
I float a little higher. But I am still without a jet pack. Nothing to jettison me to the space where I can become stardust.
Months drag by. On one full moon night, I feel the pull. I know it is only a matter of days now, if not hours or minutes.
This is the moment. My last moment of wakefulness. When I must surrender unquestioningly, wholly and irrevocably; if my baggage has to fall by the wayside as I become one with the cosmos.
I grow buoyant and weave my way out of the maze of memories. I nearly make it. I am almost not me. But a block in the loosened pattern latches on tightly to the core and refuses to let go. And I have no energy or time left to work on it.
This lifetime went by too fast.