Deciding Fate

Ever thought if fate and destiny are actually the same things? I have once heard many stories about people's real-life stories, and to be honest I was so bothered.

How could life be so cruel? Growing up as a phase is not an easy task at all. Facing challenges and unforeseen circumstances makes it so anxiously capricious for many who worry about uncertainty. Esther wondered all the time when she heard the word "It is all fate." She asked her mother several times what fate was all about and why it determined people's lives. No matter how much her mother tried to explain, she could not understand the point her mother always tried to make her see. "Fate is the presumed cause, force, principle, or divine will that predetermines events," Gift read slowly and carefully to her as they both sat on a long, wooden bench situated at Gift's parent's back veranda.

"Does that mean the fact that we are sitting here to read about this now is predetermined?" Esther asked curiously, the tall, lean girl that sat beside holding a big dictionary in her both hands. "I guess so. That's what the dictionary is saying now," Gift replied, obviously taken aback by the unexpected question, with no definite answer to give. "Does that mean fate and destiny are the same things?" Esther inquired again. "The dictionary further said, Destiny; a predetermined state; a condition foreordained by the Divine or by human will; fate," Gift read out loud. "So, it is the same thing?" "It says here. So, I guess so." "So, Mr. Johnson, our neighbor who broke his right arm last month. That is his fate?" Esther's quizzical eyes inquired further as she looked up to Gift's mooned shape eyes for an answer. She felt she would know better since she was already in the senior secondary class.

"Hmnn. I guess so. Since it is said to predetermine events," Gift answered again, flipping through the pages of the dictionary like she was searching for something in particular. Her eyelashes flickered in confusion. She wished Esther would stop asking her questions now. "Thank you for the knowledge, Sister Gift. I'll see you some other time," Esther bade her goodbye and left, more puzzled than ever. She had a lot of questions to ask someone who understood much about these things. But first, her mind hitched in fear with a halted step when she heard her mother's loud, sonorous voice as she walked back with muddled thoughts into her father's compound. "Esther! Esther!! This girl has not done the work I gave her."

She was about to turn back to the gate and run to hide somewhere when her mum's head suddenly popped out of the house's front door, and she caught a glimpse of a left leg, hastily leaving through the red iron gate. "Come back here, Right. Now!" Her mother's enraged voice commanded. There, at that retreating position, Esther already had many concluded thoughts in her mind. Her mother would probably beat her for not telling her before going to Gift's house and for not sweeping the compound she had instructed her to sweep or understand her curious mind and let her go unpunished. Either way, it was her predetermined fate for that day.

If her dad came back from work, she would know if he could give her the complete pieces to her missing puzzles or just brush over them. She was probably in her fate too. And she asked her female cousin in the university, who she now remembered was coming over for a short visit. She would probably be able to give her a definite explanation. That was another fate that would determine if her cousin could finally break the ice. All those things she had thought of already seemed clear.

But staring at the long, slender, wooden cane her mother held in her right hand with a menacing look on her face made her quiver in fear. 'Run or stay, Esther. You get to decide your fate right now!' her mind told her.

But as she ran as fast as her heels could carry her, she wondered if running away from her mother now was already predetermined by the heavenly and written somewhere. Or, the fact that she even had thoughts of it has also been predetermined. There were so many things to know. If fate was a fixed variable or the fact was it was changed by a person was already predetermined, that someone will actually change it. Having those numerous unsolved thoughts already gave her a dream.

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