Self Obituary

How do I talk about the girl who talked way too much? And what do I even say?

I cannot claim to know her entirely. But I can indisputably declare that I knew parts of her completely. And that is solely because she chose to show them to me. She always said that she would unravel herself in tiny puzzle like pieces, and it fairly depended on you, which ones you got to hold.

Well, at least that’s what she thought.  They say there’s a certain fervour about some people that even they cannot contain. And sometimes, more often than she would like to admit, the cracks in her fearless, feisty exterior revealed glimpses of a vulnerable, sensitive and obstinate romantic who learned too early in life that there is no prince on a god damn white horse.

She tirelessly tried to protect the glimmer of unflinching hope and sanguinity within her from the boundless disappointments this world had to offer; only because she was a contradiction. She wanted to be understood, but longed to live like a mystery. She loved recklessly, but lived cautiously. She was a child from within, but wise far beyond her years. She had numbered wishes, but yearned for the uncountable stars.

And I hope that’s where her heart lays now. Amongst the twinkling, magical orbs that lit up her soul more than the rays of the sun ever could. I hope she is cosily wrapped in the blanket of the night sky, with her phone in her hand, her laptop wastefully open near her as she rests inscribing poems in her dreams that the dawn would soon erase.

And I hope she finally falls asleep.


1 year, 2 months and 2 days ago, on 14th April 2016, 334 staples sealed together my cut open stomach and my fate. Life had changed, and hardly did I realise back then, that it was actually for the better.


I spent the 3 months after a life altering and life saving procedure, tied down to my bed and to the haunting memories of the 7 days that had actually preceded the finale; the blackouts, the pain, the shuttling between 4 hospitals and 3 cities and of course, the final showdown: the 18 hour surgery that led to the one permanent thing I would carry out of my hospital room, my scar.


I had always wanted my life to turn out like a movie. Too bad I wasn’t very specific about what type of movie.

After 2 days of incessant puking, 6 hours of a very difficult train ride home, an evening of moderately distressed parents, 2 days in the care of a very concerned but equally clueless family doctor, half a day in hospital ward number 1 in city number 2 (that we had to fight and flee with me groggily piled in the front seat of my father’s car), a teary mother’s fight to be on a flight to Delhi, two highly alarmed relatives; my aunt and sister waiting to receive a mysteriously ill girl,  an ambulance ride to hospital number 3 in city number 3 (that I have minimal recollection of), an emergency room that I vaguely recall by the series of intrusive questions the doctor hounded me with on drug habits and pregnancy, 3 days in an ICU at hospital number 4 that was home to multiple heart breaking conversations with my absolutely distraught parents, a black shadow that I kept seeing lurking over my head, about a dozen confused and bewildered doctors, one thousand and one antibiotics that factually made my blood feel bitter, uncomfortable and painful medical procedures that made me bawl and the military strict rules of the hospital about family visits that prevented my parents from hearing those cries as I lay in a white bed thinking what a huge mistake it had been for us to have reached that horrid place.

But again, little did I know that the place I thought would end my life, actually ended up saving it.

And even though I spent every waking moment of the next several months hating every second of the unimaginable pain in every possible corner of my bony body, every agonizing step that my physiotherapist make me walk, every doctor’s visit where they refused to discharge me, every midnight desire to pee that entailed me waking a family member up to help me pace the 5 steps to the bathroom door so I wouldn’t end up in a pile on the floor, every staple and every inch of the scar that bled, and ached and just burned crimson every time I looked in the mirror that seemed to mock the kind of existence I was bound to have in this world hence forth.


But the funny thing is, sometimes, reflections lie; especially when you’re looking at them with the wrong eye. It took some time, loads of effort, a million fights with my family who were just trying to look out for me and were hardly realising that the more they kept me confined to that 4 walled bedroom with a nightstand that only carried the multiple medications I was required to take if I wanted to continue living, the more I kept sinking. Sinking with every drop of sanitizer that fell on my hands, with every mask that covered my nose and my mouth, with every step that I couldn’t take on my own, with every tablet of steroid that made my limbs frail and my face and belly bloated with fat that made me want to refuse to recognise myself, with every tangle in my hair that I had to chop off, and  with those little details of my life… eating road side pani puri or taking the local train… that I was told I would never get back.


Time heals all wound they say, and it was the passage of a lot of time to myself and with my family and friends and well wishers, that finally made me realise that the confines of my room didn’t represent the iron bar cage I thought it did, it in fact gave me a comfortable bed and a much needed break to heal.


With every party that my friends attended and I missed, with every slice of pizza that my cousins ate and i didn’t, with every day of college that my friends attended and I couldn’t, my petty, childish, vain brain often went back to that sinking feeling… but with time, medicines, mom’s yummy food, dads immense pampering, my sister’s attempts at understanding and comforting me and the frequent visits of my friends… that feeling started to fade away.


And as it did, I started to fight to get my life back.

It took a lot of convincing and a whole lot of arguments with supporting evidence to prove to my family that I was ready to get back to college, to get back to life. And then it took considerable effort on my part to build that new life.


A life where I was constantly aware of the prayers that had led to me still being alive and the love that I had to hold close as I learned to live with the medicines, the restrictions, the various pains, the subsequent surgeries, and most tangibly, the scar.


The people around me sometimes fail to realise what this life is for me. Those who are close to me try their best to understand, while those standing at the fence… looking in… afraid to get too close, often judge my decisions. Why I still crave and eat pani puri sometimes… why I return after every surgery to finish college… why sometimes, when I am having a terrible, terrible day, I can’t for the love of me… in words explain to them that I don’t feel too good because of those things that I now face, fight and force myself to forget every single day; the headache, the stomach ache, the shaking of my hands… And there are still times when I want to scream from the rooftops and somehow tell all those standing at the fences to stop making my decisions for me and to stop judging what I do…. but then I think back to this crazy journey that life has been so far… and I know that it’s just not worth it. Just like it’s not worth crying over the crop tops I can’t wear or the trains I can’t ride or the hands that won’t stop shaking or the dreams left behind.


I am now learning to take pride in the simple fact that I have made it to today. And my scars are proof that life tried its best to knock me down, but it failed… and I am here… still breathing… still fighting… still learning to accept every imperfection of my new existence.

Zomato TVC

Product: Zomato App

Client: Zomato

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad Type: TVC

Duration: 90 seconds

Scene 1:

Int. / Day


(A woman packs food for her husband, her son and her daughter. She puts some aside for herself.)

Action: The husband (dressed in formals) walks into the kitchen while on the phone, picks up the box of food, waves his hand to say bye and leaves. The son (dressed in uniform), walks into the kitchen, puts the food in his bag, hears the honk of the bus, mumbles to himself about being late and runs out. The daughter (dressed in work attire), enters with a file in her hand.

Daughter: Mumma, aaj aapko bola tha na ki Simran ka bhi khaana pack karna.. aapne extra banaya na?

Mother: (Quickly putting her own share in the daughter’s box) haan haan beta, 3 chapati aur sabji uski bhi rakhi hai.

Daughter: (looking into her phone) okay maa, meri cab aa gayi hai, main jaa rahi hu. (She hurries out)

Scene 2:

Int. / Day


(The woman is seen cooking some rice. The bell rings. The woman switches the gas off and goes to open the door. Her son is standing there, sobbing slightly. He tearfully shows her his elbow that is gashed and bleeding.)

Action: The woman pulls him in and hugs him. She takes him to the sink and washes the wound while wiping away his tear stains as well. He screams in pain.

Mother: Bohot dard ho raha hai?

(Son sobs and nods in pain)

Mother: Abhi dawai laga denge, toh theek ho jayega. Aapne khana khaaya school mein ya mumma abhi khilaye?

Son: (little agitated) maine apna tiffin khaatam kar liya tha. Abhi mujhe kuchh nahi khaana. Aap mujhe story sunaona!

Mother: (smiles and nods) achha chalo (takes his hand excitedly)

(The mother and son are shown lying next to each other in bed while the mom reads out a story from a book to her son. The bell rings again)

Scene 3:

Int. / Day


(The woman opens the door and her husband stomps inside in a bad mood. he heads straight for the sofa, throws his bag down, sits heavily with the remote of the TV in his hand and surfs through different news channels. His wife comes and sits next to him.)

Wife: Bad day at work?

Husband: Yeah. Labour on strike again. So staff shortage. I’m just really tired.

Wife: Aapne khana khaya? Ya laga du abhi?

Husband: (Shuts the TV, gets up and starts walking towards the bedroom) Nahi maine office mein dinner kar liya tha. Bass mujhe ab sona hai.

Scene 4:

Int. / Night

(The woman picks up her phone and dials her daughter while sitting on sofa)

Daughter: (whispering) Mom, I’m in the boss’ office. I’ll talk to you later.

(The phone gets cut. The woman walks over to the kitchen. There is an empty vessel on the stove top. She looks at it and sighs, picks up her phone and texts her daughter)

Mother: “Have you had food, beta?”

Daughter: “Ordered through Zomato in Office. Working late. Don’t wait up. “

Scene 5:

Int. / Night

(The mother is asleep on the sofa. It’s dark. The door lock opens. The daughter walks in and turns the lights on. She glances at her mother asleep on the couch. She walks over to the dining table and puts her bag down gently. Opens the fridge and removes a bottle of water. She shuts the fridge, leans on the kitchen platform. Drinks water straight from the bottle when she sees the empty vessel on the stove top. She puts the water down and walks to her mother. She taps her shoulder gently and the mother wakes up groggily.)

Mother: (Smiling kindly) Arre, tu aa gayi. Itna late! Bhookh lagi hai? Achhi tarah se khaana khaya?

Daughter: (Tearfully) Maa, aap sabse puchhte rehto hai agar humne khaana khaaya. Aap batao, kya aapne kuchh khaya?

(Her mother’s eyes lower a little)

Daughter: (wipes her tear, smiles, unlocks her phone and opens the zomato app) achha chalo, batao aaj hum kya khaye?

(The mother and daughter order online through the Zomato app)


Zomato logo on screen.

“Discover. Choose. Order. Review”

Scene 6:

(The daughter opens the door and receives the food through a Zomato delivery man. The mother and daughter sit on the sofa and enjoy their meal with the boxes open in front of them and the television on. They are seen laughing and eating on screen)


“We don’t just serve food…

…We serve Happiness”

Pepsi Light TVC

Product: Pepsi Light (Beverage)

Client: PepsiCo.

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad Type: TVC

Duration: 60 seconds

Setting/ Premise:

Ext. / Day

3 men are hanging from 3 separate branches of a tree. The branches are creaking, bending downwards and are about to break. The men are holding on, trying to balance themselves. The branches stabilise a little and the men breathe a sigh of relief.

Scene 1:

A leaf is floating towards the branch where Man 1 is hanging.

Focus on the branch; the leaf approaches closer to it.

Focus on the man’s face; he looks upwards slightly as sweat forms on his face.

The leaf floats and touches the branch and stays there.

The branch creaks, breaks and falls.

Wide shot of branch falling into the valley as the man’s screams.

The other 2 men look down at him in horror.

Scream grows faint and ends in a thud.

Scene 2

A feather is floating towards the branch where Man 2 is hanging.

The feather approaches the branch. Man 2 shoots a nervous look to Man 3.

The feather touches the branch and settles on it.

The branch creaks, bends downwards and falls.

Wide shot of Man 2 falling in the valley. He screams. The scream grows fainter and ends in a thud.

Man 3 gulps hard.

Scene 3:

A truck full of Pepsi light passes by on the road above the valley. A can of Pepsi light falls off and rolls down, off the road and towards the tree on the edge of the valley and free-falls towards the branch on which Man 3 is hanging.

The man looks up in utter shock and force shuts his eyes, preparing for the fall.

He tightens his grip on the branch.

The can approaches the branch closer and finally rests on it.

Focus on the man’s; his eyes are shut and his face is riddled with worry. The branch creaks, but doesn’t fall. He opens his eyes and looks up. The can is resting on the branch and the branch is stable.

The man breaks into a laugh.


(Black screen) A can of Pepsi Light floats onto the screen (towards the left of the screen)

Text appears in white to the left:

Pepsi Light: Truly “weight-less”

Fanta TVC

Product: Fanta Soft Drink

Client: Coca-Cola Company

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad Type: TVC and print stills

Duration: 30 seconds

Imagery and animation:

Fanta is shown pouring out of a bottle in abundance and wave like gushes.

Cartoon-like caricatures are shown riding the Fanta waves on surf boards, boats, jet skis and floats.

They seem very happy, like they are enjoying the summer sun on the beach, wearing colourful swimwear and attractive sunglasses while playing in the sea of Fanta.

People will be shown dancing on surfboards, couples with floating hearts around sipping Fanta together in boats and families, with little kids splashing in the sea will capture the essence of happiness and summarise the objective of the visualization.

Depiction of the happy people using large straws to sip the Fanta directly from the sea will be focus.

The concluding frame will be a wide shot illustration of the nozzle of the bottle, through which the Fanta is flowing,, with all of the people sipping Fanta from the sea together and a happy. The frame widens as the Fanta is shown being poured into a wide mouthed glass, placed on a table.

As the frame becomes wider, one can see only the Fanta in the glass, without the people, just bubbles of fizz rising.

A man is shown pouring the Fanta into the glass (with his back to the camera and a beach in with young, attractive people with shades and swimwear). He puts the bottle down on the table, takes a sip from the glass, and turns his head to the camera, smiles and winks.

Text appears on the screen:

“FANTA-SEA; Spice up your reality.”


Fanta Logo appears on screen.

Man appears on the screen drinking Fanta from the bottle, sitting on a chair in front of a study table and lamp in a dimly lit room, takes a few big gulps, smiles and wipes his lips.

Dialogue and text on screen: “What’s your Fanta-sea?”

Just Dial TVC Script

Product: Just Dial App

Client: Just Dial

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad Type: TVC

Duration: 60 seconds


Ext. / Day

Huge waves of water have hit a big city. Buildings are crumbling. Cars are flying. People are trying to outrun the waves of water that are gushing through the streets.

Camera narrows to a man, who is amongst the man outrunning the waves. He looks behind, glances at the approaching wall of water, turns white with horror, sprints forward and opens the Just Dial app on his phone.

He searches for a skateboard vendor while running, opens the directions to the place that appears closest to him, and runs in its direction.

He reaches the shop, grabs a skateboard from there and slides down the rail of a staircase using the skateboard. He whizzes past panicking people as he sees an injured dog. He skates closer to the dog, lifts him up in his arms, searches for a vet close by on the Just Dial app, skates in that direction and drops the dog off in the vet’s arms, who looks at him stunned.

A girl standing outside the vet’s office notices him, smiles at him and starts running beside him. He searches for a bicycle store on the Just Dial app, jumps off his skateboard, holds her hand, and runs towards the store.

They both get onto the bicycle. The man continues to cycle forward when he sees water approaching him from front. He looks behind, there’s water there too. He turns left and cycles ahead while he checks for a place to rent a boat. He starts cycling towards that direction when they hit a bump and the girl holds him tightly.

He smiles and searches for a bakery, picks up 2 cupcakes on the way and reaches the boat rental office.

He rents a boat, and climbs into it with the girl, just in the nick of time. The water reaches them, but they float peacefully in the boat as he rows the boat and the girl sits relieved opposite him.  He looks at the cupcakes hungrily, opens the Just Dial app one more time, finds the number or an oarsman and calls him. The oarsman instantly appears, swimming in the water; climbs into the boat and starts rowing as the man and the girl sit next to each other in the boat, comfortable enjoying their cupcake.


Just Dial Logo

Text on screen and voiceover: Discover everything you need at the tip of your fingers.

(Visual of the just dial app operating in a phone screen)

Download the just Dial app and find the world through your phone.

Just dial with Just Dial.

Godrej Safes TVC

Product: Godrej Safe

Client: Godrej Group

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad type: TVC

Duration: 60 seconds

Scene 1:

Int. / Night

(A 70 year old man is sitting in his living room on the sofa, wearing white, holding an urn of ashes in his hands. There is a picture of his wife hanging on the wall opposite him with a garland on it.)

Action: The man looks sad. He looks up at the photo of his wife then looks down at the urn. Looking confused what to do with it, he gets up from the sofa, walks to his closet, opens it and there is a Godrej safe inside. He puts the urn in the safe and locks it.


Scene 2:

Int. / Night

(The man is sleeping on a bed on one side. The other side of the bed is vacant. The room is dimly lit from the light coming from the window)

Action: While the man sleeps, his wife’s ghost emerges from the closet door, and hovers over the man. She then goes and sleeps on the empty side of the bed next to him.


Scene 3:

Int. / Day

(The man is sitting on a small, circular table eating milk and cereal. The ghost of the wife is sitting opposite the man, looking at him)

Action: The man takes a bite of his cereal, glances over at his wife and looks back down, continues to eat.


Scene 4:

Int. / Day

(The man is dressed in a crisp shirt and pants with a belt and shoes. His hair is slicked to the side)

Action: The man opens the door of his flat and is just about to step out when the door of the opposite flat opens too. A woman of roughly the same age, dressed in pastels, with a purse in her hand looks startled at the man and stops with the door ajar. The man and the woman look at each other and smile. The ghost of the man’s wife, appears from inside the house and peers over the man’s shoulder as the woman walks down the steps of the building and leaves.


Scene 5:

Int. / Night

(The man and his neighbour are sitting on the circular table in the man’s house, opposite each other. Dinner is laid out and is served in 2 plates)

Action: The man and his neighbour pick up the spoon and take a bite of their food in synchronization. They then look at each other awkwardly; both turn their heads and look up at the ghost of the wife awkwardly.


(Text on screen and voiceover)


It’s better to let go of some things.

For everything else, we have Godrej Safes.

Scene 6:

(The man is standing with his closet door open, looking at the safe and the ghost is standing next to him)

Action: The man and the ghost look at each other and give a brief smile. The ghost steps away from the man as he opens the safe and removes the urn, while the ghost vanishes in a cloud of smoke.


Godrej logo appears.

Vodafone TVC Script

Product: Vodafone 4G

Client: Vodafone

Discipline(s): Advertising

Ad Type: TVC

Duration: 60 seconds

Scene 1:

Int. / Day

(A man in a magician’s cloak and hat is holding a piece of paper in his hand and standing in the kitchen of his house. There is a pot with on the gas in front of him. There is a recipe written on the paper, titled; “Mumma’s Special Biryani”)

Action: The man tries to read through it, cut the vegetables and cook the biryani. But gets frustrated mid way and takes a step back. He then removes his hat, takes a wand out from his back pocket and waves it over his hat and mumbles a spell. His mother appears in a cloud of smoke. He smiles and helps his mother prepare the biryani.


Scene 2:

Int. / Night

(The Magician is sitting in a dimly lit restaurant wearing his cloak and hat. He is eating alone and seems unhappy.)

Action: He looks around to see all the couples dining together. He looks across at the empty seat opposite him. He removes his hat and wand again. Waves the wand over the hat and mumbles a spell. His wife appears from inside the hat, sits across him an they dine together.


Scene 3:

Int. / Day

(The magician is standing in a shoe store, wearing two different shoes on each foot, looking in the mirror, trying to decide which one to buy)

Action: He looks over to the salesman who smiles a wide, goofy, forced smile and gives him a thumbs-up. He looks into the mirror again, puts one foot forward, then the other, weighs his options and looks very confused. He finally sighs, removes his hat and wand, waves the wand over the hat and mumbles a spell. His friend appears next to him. He points to the left foot, smiles, looks at the magician and nods confidently.

The magician purchases the shoe and they both walk out of the store.


Text: The Magicians have their tricks…


Scene 4:

(Montage of clips)

(The magician without his cloak and hat)

Clip 1: The guy is standing in his kitchen over a pot on the gas, video calling his mother and preparing biryani.

Clip 2: The guy is sitting in a restaurant, video calling his wife, and drinking soup..

Clip 3: The guy is in the shoe store, video calling his friend and selecting and purchasing the shoe.


Vodafone logo appears on screen.

Text: For everyone else, there’s Vodafone 4G


(Text on screen and voice over)


Enjoy uninterrupted video calling with the fastest 4G network and remain connected with your loved ones always.

“Vodafone: Works like Magic.”


I’d like to start by just saying that this was an incredibly difficult blog post to write since it brought back all the emotions I went through in the times I here recall… But I feel like it’s also important for me to write about a few things in order to let go and move on from that space.

I have spent most of my life living in a small but thriving city. I was blessed to attend one of the premier schools, where I got several opportunities to explore various passions that I possessed. I dabbled a bit in arts and craft, enjoyed dancing, even took up classical music for a few years and ultimately found true joy in acting and being on stage. With the encouragement and support that I received from my teachers, friends and parents, I managed to become the President of the Student Council in school and the 12 years that I spent in my hometown gave me a lifetime of memories, great mentors and friends who seemed like family.

But the thirst to do something bigger and achieve something greater in life landed me in the busiest cities of India, Mumbai. I was lucky enough to make it into most of the college of my choice, and with the guidance of relatives from Mumbai; I chose a well known and highly recommended college.

Here is where the true struggle began. Coming from a place where I knew every face I saw in the school premises, to a place where everyone else knew everyone else, but I seemed to be the only clueless one, the transition was tough and took time. So the first year passed in trying to get into the activities that I wanted to be a part of and getting to know the people who already knew each other.

As the second year arrived, I fell into a trap. I lost a few friends, and fell into some bad company. I started to compare my life with others for all the wrong reasons and as I struggled to maintain my own identity, I kept going into a shell. This was not the kind of person I was. I was a very free spirited, fun and friendly person who loved to talk to and get to know new people, but now I had become this person who felt like she had no one to talk to and who was scared to face the world.

I lost myself in this new city. I was once confident and strong, but now I felt lost in the crowd. Every thought I had in my head, felt like noise, echoing through my brain. I began to push myself harder and harder into internships and work to make up for the loss of belief in myself. I felt like I just needed to be doing something every minute of every day or else I would fail.

I began to lose touch with so many old school friends, and never really paid a lot of attention to making new ones. I felt that by working on projects and taking up internships and fests, I would feel the sense of achievement that this new city had devoid me of.

6 months went by, and I kept fluttering around, trying to find something that made me happy. But nothing did. I kept feeling lonely, and the noise in my head kept getting louder and more chaotic. And like a fool, I thought that the only way to quiet it was to find bigger aims and purposes in life. But being such a small entity in such a big city, with no one really to pull strings for you, makes accomplishing things a little more difficult. There were places I wanted to be, things I wanted to do, but not the right contacts and resources to do them. And this helpless feeling made the noise in my head bang louder against my brain, and nothing I did seemed to quiet it down, until one fateful day in April, year 2016, I fell very ill.

It took the diagnosis of a rare genetic disorder, the acute failure of every cell in my liver, and a liver donation from my mother, for me to realise that I had changed as a person. That I was not the girl that once left her small hometown, but that was expected. But I wasn’t even the girl that I hoped the strange, new, big city would make me. I had become someone I didn’t recognise, someone who was the complete opposite of the person I wished to be. I had messed up my priorities in life and started to get involved in petty issues that could never possibly contribute anything positive in my life. I had lost sight of what mattered and who mattered and stared this endless and futile struggle to fit in with and please people that were nothing like me and that would never understand the place I was coming from. I surrounded myself with so much negativity that I started to question my own decisions and doubt my own instincts, not knowing that trusting myself, my faith and my upbringing was the only thing that would help me survive the tides of life.

But the big white hospital rooms, the powerful anaesthetics and hallucinogens, and a whole lot of prayers from around the world, from people who I had once known, from friends I had lost touch with, from acquaintances, teachers, relatives and even strangers in the hospital corridors, changed me again. The next few months, I spent a lot of time in recovery on bed, dealing with new disappointments in life (more on that later).

But what I went through, and not just the fact that I almost lost my life, but the entire experience somehow concluded that one chapter in my life where I felt like a lost lamb in the woods. I still go back to that feeling sometimes. That 4 am vulnerable me that lay curled up in a strange bed away from her parents and her friends and her family. But now whenever I feel that way, the Mercedes Benz scar on my tummy swerves me back to the sole feeling of being grateful and just happy to still be alive.

It is time for me to get back to Mumbai now, but the city doesn’t seem so strange and new and intimidating to me anymore… I spent a lot of time thinking about our priorities in life. I spent a lot of time with my family. And I found my connection with a lot of people who made me realise who I am again. And even though I am more scared than ever to return to my college, it’s a good scared. Because I feel like this time around, things will be different…

One Regret

In the end… there was just him. A fragile soul, staring over a mortal body.

He sat down beside the cold corpse. He sat down beside… himself. The worried expression on the body’s face reflected the soul’s feelings. He was lonely and cold and tired and anxious. He thought about his daughter… who would make her milk the next morning. He thought about his wife, what would happen to her now that he was gone. He thought about the pending work in his office, the orders yet to be shipped and the inventories yet to be completed. He thought about the bills yet to be paid and the battles yet to be won. Bills! Oh, the bills! Money, you see, is the most potent driving force in this human world… Oh I must get back! I can still get his heart running! What was that show we used to watch? What did they do!? Pump… 2…3… Pump… 2…3…

He looked at the corpse, still grey. He lay down next to his own body. What happened? He was still in his own room… he was still on his own bed. No, there was no trace of an accident. He couldn’t see any blood. Was he in pain? He vaguely remembered chest pains right before his heart stopped. He remembered feeling choked and not being able to say anything. In the 50 years of his life… he had never felt so constrained.

The soul heard a noise outside. Who could it be? His wife and daughter were away visiting their grandparents for their vacation. Ahhh… a vacation. When was the last time he had been to one? Oh! Just last month… when his daughter had a long weekend break and they decided to take a road trip together… but no, he had to cancel because that big order came in suddenly and he was understaffed and… Oh! He did take his family to Delhi late last year… but that was hardly a break for him, he had to visit all those dealers in a matter of just 3 days! He was so worried he was losing business from that end that he had to grab any opportunity he got to meet up with his allies.

The soul sat up suddenly. He had forgotten to file the NOC for his new project! He quickly leaped off the bed and made his way to his phone! No battery. Why does this happen to me at all important times! Even last time when… ohhh… last time. When he had taken his daughter to the park and his phone switched off. He remembered teaching his daughter to climb a tree that day. And what fun they had eating those cheese sandwiches mom packed. That was one picnic he would always remember. His daughter… still a little baby.

The soul looked at his corpse again. The wrinkles… he thought… the frown. He was supposed to be asleep. Why did he look so worried while he was asleep? When was the last time he did not have that tensed frown on his forehead? When was the last time he wasn’t so anxious about everything? When was the last time he was happy together with his family?

The soul now looked at himself. He was light. He was air. He was done. It was time for him to go home. His own home. But he wasn’t happy.  He was finally free, but he was remorseful. Not of the bills he still had to pay. Not of the work he had left incomplete. Not of the battles he yet had to win. It just didn’t seem to matter anymore. The soul stood over the ashen corpse that was once his cocoon. You didn’t have to miss your daughters first play… you shouldn’t have found your wife asleep on the dining table with cold food in front of her, every night that you walked in. You could have made it home sooner. You could’ve been happier, you know. You could’ve lived longer!

The soul walked away, with just one regret.