All At Once

As I boarded the train,
It hit me all at once.

The cacophony of children
Playing carelessly in the streets till eleven
The biggest virtue of growing up in a small town
And here I leave this harmony behind
All at once.

The faces everywhere
Familiar to me in some way or the other
Assuring me safety, never teaching suspicion
And now asking me to learn not to trust
All at once.

The family
Caring for me in the most oblivious ways
Spoon-feeding bliss to me all the while
And suddenly expecting me to be responsibly independent
All at once.

The home
Giving warmth in the coldest of corners
Smelling like a hug
Now closing its doors
All at once.

How can I grow up
All at once?

And the dilemma remains unsolved.

Anushka Pareek is a keen observer and an opinionated person who is currently pursuing history at the University of Delhi.

Featured image credit: Unsplash