Life is What You Make It

10 06 2011

This bestseller by Preethi Shenoy makes a good read and is different from many other recent popular Indian fiction in that it deals with an acute mental affliction – Bipolar disorder. The novel is about Ankita Sharma and what her life has brought to her since her graduation period.

While I definitely appreciate the sentiment that “Life is What You Make It”, I also like to stress on the significance of family’s and friends’ support to a person who is psychologically and/or psychiatrically affected because without help from outside, it’s almost impossible to handle oneself on one’s own. Some degree of understanding, empathy, support and kind words are highly critical. After all, the problem itself is with one’s mind/brain; it would be unwise to assume that one can snap out of it, if only one tries enough. However, no treatment or words will be effective if the person doesn’t desire enough to get cured. Life indeed is what you make it but you need help from others.

I can relate to the protagonist’s sinking feeling,  of being in a vacuum, of wanting desperately to get out of it but feeling helpless to do anything about it. I’m sure it’s a nightmare. While bipolar disorder may be an extreme case, I feel that mild and intermittent forms of clinical depression are way too common in today’s world. In our society there is still a lot of stigma against it but the need for more awareness and empathy cannot be overemphasized.

Preethi’s prose is eloquent and makes the book an easy read. One thing that amused me is her, kind of, obsession with Philip Kotler, the Marketing Management guru. She must have mentioned him at least 10 times. But doesn’t Management include many other courses other than Marketing Management? She could have at least mentioned Peter Drucker, even in passing. A mention of one or two other courses would also have seemed appropriate. 🙂

I liked the following thoughts from the book:

  • Life is too precious not to do what you want to do. 
  • If you do not laugh for a day, if you have not made someone’s day happier, if you have not appreciated something good that has happened to you and if you have not felt thankful to be alive, then you have wasted that day of your life on earth.
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2 responses

23 06 2011
Vineela

I did not read the book, but I liked the 2 thoughts you liked about the book. They are very true.

20 07 2011
Haritha

good quotes…

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