I’m a 16 year old, and in less than a year, I’ll have to choose where I go to college. This is a realization that strikes me multiple times of week and sends me into a frenzied, fear-induced panic. Recently, I’ve stopped looking at it this way. I think I’ve been coming to terms with it, and now when I look at it from a more calm lens, it raises some questions for me. More specifically, questions about fate.
“If it’s meant to be, it will be”. I’m studying for my SATs when suddenly I think ‘hey, if I fail my SATs, maybe it was meant to be?’ Of course, nobody wants to fail their SATs, but it was just a thought. I probed deeper. What if I make the wrong decision about where I want to go in college? The idea that flaws in my choices will permanently impact my future terrified me in a way that was so much deeper than the frenzied, fear-induced panic that was featured earlier. And so, I turned to fate. I’ve never believed in it. Until a few days ago, that is. When I kind of mulled over it far deeper than I ever had before. Because if fate exists, it would always be one step ahead of you. Maybe that erratic change of heart was meant to happen, and wasn’t just you making a choice. Essentially, this is comforting because it means there are no wrong choices- it was meant to happen. (I really hope I’m being easy to follow right now).
I began looking for examples in my life for fate, and found very few. One major choice that I’ve made out of almost nowhere (I shocked myself, frankly) was breaking up with my (ex) boyfriend while we were in a perfectly happy relationship. I don’t regret it. Broke my own heart, in some ways, but don’t regret it. Maybe that’s because it was meant to be? At the time I thought it was my own decision, and I still do find a different type of comfort in believing that your life is solely in your hands, but let’s face it- it’s more comfortable believing that fate is already one step of you, and that if it’s meant to be, it will be.
But I like making things difficult for myself (shocker). I like asking questions that shouldn’t be asked, starting weird conversations. I dread confrontation, but I also kind of seek it. And so, of course, I’m not going to let fate slide until I get a more palpable answer than that. I’m not going to believe in something just because it’s comfortable. I’d get nowhere. So, going back to examining examples from my own life, I found one more example that made the argument for fate a little more convincing. And that argument is me. I know right know you’re (wait, is anyone even reading this anyway?) probably shaking your head and asking why you’re following me. It all began when my mom was going off to college. She sought out the help of a fortune teller (fortune tellers were pretty common in Kerala at that time) to help her decide which college she should go to, of the ones in which she got accepted. Her fortune teller told her, go to the dentistry college instead of engineering. To he mother (my grandmother’s) displeasure, my mom went ahead and took engineering anyway, because she liked it far more. And where did she meet my dad? Engineering college. To add to this argument, she missed getting her seat in medicine by a few marks. Obviously, it wasn’t an ideal scenario at the time, but if she had went to a medicine college, would I be me? That’s one example of everything happening for a reason (her not getting into medicine) clashing with taking control of your decisions (her choosing engineering). And yet, this whole example seems to lean towards fate. Her “erratic” decision to choose engineering wound up working just fine, so I could argue that it was meant to be. note: I’m aware how stereotypically Indian it is to have ‘medicine’ and ‘engineering’ in the same sentence.
Yep, I’m confused about fate. More than that, I’m confused about going places and carving something out of my identity. But that all ties back into fate, and I still have no idea if I believe in it or not. I just think it’s kind of strange how I went from not believing in fate at all to being so confused about it.
Maybe it’s just a phase.