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Guess what? I am now a proud owner of a coloring book and a box of color pencils. No, I have not gone back to kindergarten. This here is a coloring book for adults. Oh no, no, no. Don’t  you go and let your imagination run wild. It does not have nude pictures or anything of the sort, just that it is meant for adults to color. It has the same flowers and leaves and trees and stuff like that just as in the books for children, except that the patterns are a little more complicated, intricate, and what have you.

The question now arises why I need a coloring book. No reason at all, except that I love coloring and haven’t done it in a long, long time. So when I came across a coloring book for adults, I thought, why not? Especially since I am a certified full grown adult past her prime and hence a well-deserving candidate. Besides, I had heard somewhere that coloring is good for relieving stress.

Now comes the next question. Am I stressed?

If you ask me, my answer would be an emphatic ‘no’. Long back, yup the same old fifteen year old days when the monkey and the ice-cream incident happened (could be a year or so later), I owned a white tee-shirt which had a skinny, black cat with an elongated body and the words, also in black, ‘I am a cool cat!’ on it. You may not think so looking at me, since I don’t go around mewing and rubbing against people’s legs with my tail in the air, and also since I don’t have a tail at all, but I really am a cool cat though in human form. I don’t get agitated about things. Not at all, not me, sir.

Well, on second thoughts, may be some of the time, about some things. But those times never last more than twenty-four hours. That’s the cut off limit for me. By then I  have invariably found a solution to whatever is causing me agitation, even if it were that there is no solution in sight. What’s the use of worrying about things you cannot change? So you get back to your life and go about living it as best as you can. That always has been my policy.  After all, there is only this one life and no other. Yes, you are right, I don’t believe in after-life.

But the doctors! They kept asking me on my visits, ‘Are you stressed, Ma’am?’ ‘Are you stressed?’ Each time I shook my head emphatically and said ‘no!’ wondering where this particular question was coming from. Perhaps they *assumed* I was stressed considering I was at the age when everyone around thinks you are depressed (even if you aren’t) because your nest is empty and you have no chicks to feed and cluck over. Like, really?! *big eyeroll* Then all was revealed when I was told about my hypertension. That was what had been prompting those questions from the doctors. Ahh….

So I thought, a cool cat I may be, but a cool cat with hypertension, and what she needs is a stress reliever. Tada! Coloring book and pencils were in order. I placed the order pronto and was so thrilled when the book and pencils arrived, much to the amusement of the L &M (“What? Hahahaha!”) and the artist son (“What? Hahahaha!”).  I have started filling in colors. It is not easy, me the winner of drawing/painting competitions as a kid! Not having held a pencil in my hand for decades altogether, this really is a challenge. But then this is only the beginning…..

©Shail Mohan 2018

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