Solo Travel

It’s November 20th, 2017.
I’m in Bali, living out a dream.
Living out an adventure – traveling alone in foreign lands.

I never thought, that this little 14 year old Indian girl, who was obsessing over nonsense, can now enjoy a glass of wine over looking the Balinese rainforest.

And yet I don’t feel alone, I feel loved –

From thousands of miles away.

I still feel the love of my family, friends and the universe.

It was nice to give myself space away from reality. From people who may have taken my presence for granted. But this trip showed me that no matter what happens in my life, I can do anything. I toughed out huge spiders suspended over bed posts and pattering around the ground. I spent 20 hours in silence, with only the thoughts in my head. I opened myself up to strangers, and challenged myself to disengaged from technology.

I had been afraid that I would never find a person to travel with when my heart was broken. I never thought I would be able to survive a week without familiar faces and personalities. But I did it. I found that I can only love, if I love myself at my weakest. So I spent this week, falling in love with myself – loving all my weirdness, awkwardness, and apologized to no one about it.


They say traveling is eye opening, but it opens your soul – to accept the love and help of pure strangers. It opens your soul and your heart to accept mistakes you may have made, the preconceived notions you made about a race, place or culture.

Traveling alone, shows the universe that yes you’re vulnerable – but you are brave, you are strong, and you will preserve through adversity.


When you love

They say you never fall in love the same way you did your first.

They say you get smarter.

That when you love again – the second time – you’ve learned.

That you’re wiser.

But love is unintelligible.

You don’t think.

You just fall.

Fall for the sweet nothings.

And the careless whispers.

And fall for the stolen looks

No matter how much you try

To be smarter

And wiser

You just can’t.


When you love.

You stop thinking.

You just feel.

You just fall.

The Dying Man Gravitas

This is the end for me.

This is the end.

No. No we keep going.
We’ll get your kidneys working.
Then we’ll re-start chemotherapy. 


I’m dying.

Look at me, I’m a shell.
I’m a shell.

No no. I’m telling you there’s a good chance we’ll have you on chemotherapy.
We’ll give you time.
Don’t give up.
We’re not giving up.

This is my ending.
Let me choose with dignity.

Don’t say I’m giving up.

I’m not.

Do you think I want to leave my wife behind?
My kids behind?

I’m accepting my fate.
We all die.

I’m choosing to listen to my body.
I want to be with my family.
I want to touch their hands
Kiss my wife for the last time
Lay next to her in bed just one last night
In our bed.
I want to have my last thoughts be of my beautiful life

I don’t want chemotherapy to rob me of anymore time
I don’t want chemotherapy to give my family any more false hopes


I want them to see me at peace.
Because I know

I know when I take my last breath.
That image will always be in their minds.

They should see peace

Never pain Doctor.

No more pain.

He had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, chemo unsuccessful, bone marrow transplant unsuccessful, salvage chemo unsuccessful. Bedridden, swollen, acute kidney failure precipitated by chemo…and all he wanted to do was die. But every day, he had an oncologist pushing him for ‘more’ – but there comes a moment when you’ve done everything and all you can do is give a dying man gravitas. 

Two Souls Still in Love

Priya Kumar

She looked so beautiful in her midnight blue dress.

Her lips parted, eyes glistening under the incandescent lights — as she waited for my response.
And in that moment, I almost lost my resolve.
This woman that sat in front of me,
I had once loved fiercely;
but I knew I was here to do one thing —

Break her heart.

As if she realized that there would be no happy ending.
The tears welled.
Pooling. Spilling.

Each drop was her soul crying for the lost dreams —
This tear held the sadness of kids we talked about but we would never have.
This tear…was the white picket fence.
Oh, and this tear?
Was the dream of forever.

And as each dream fell from her soul.
She squared her shoulders and braced herself for the inevitable.

We had tried.
This past year had been all about trying.

To fix. To move on. To have the future we always wanted.

But somewhere we realized that there was too much hurt
and not enough love to save us.
And the worst part of this realization?

Two broken souls
Still in love with each other
Having to say goodbye to our dreams of happily..ever…after

I’m sorry, I said.
We tried, but it just wasn’t enough.

She looked away, as the tears spilled.
My first instinct was to pull this woman of my dreams into my arms.
But she knew any touch would break,
would shatter her –
She stood up.

Looked me in the eyes and said

             You will always be my dream.

And like that she was gone.

Now all I can do is repent my mistakes
that led to the demise of our relationship.
And curse the universe for still loving her.

I would hope he had felt that way when he stood there staring me in the eyes at dinner, breaking my heart. When my engagement fell apart, and I had lost the one I thought was the love of my life… How the heart heals – its beautiful. For you KB; may you find happiness – always. 

V. Tach

Priya Kumar

They say the only tombstones you see are at graveyards.
Erect, etched in stone –
Names of loved ones past.

They forget to tell you the tombstones on an EKG
…the ones that cause the blood to be drained out of your face
As you run into the room…

Finding your patient
slumped over:
Cool. Clammy. Pulseless.

How morbid.

Both foreshadowing the afterlife.
Both in its wake will leave pain.
One commemorates a life.
While the other robs it.

You start your ACLS and pray for modern medicine to work.
But just as fast a you saw it rise –
you see nothing now but glassy eyes.

Eyes looking up – you hope – at a light that’s warm and welcoming.
Not this fluorescent tube light.
Illuminating a room full of strangers dressed in shades of blue & green.

And as they call time of death:

They will never forget.
How quick that electricity went from –
To Vtach.
To Asystole.

So No.

You don’t have to walk through graveyards to see tombstones.

Sometimes all you need is a Tele Box
and a dying heart…