They must’ve misplaced her mission statement — the one defining her sole purpose in life. It was obvious to Sandhya that every human was handed one the moment they forced themselves out into this world. Hers was lost somewhere between yanking her out with forceps and sucking the fluid out of her lungs. No wonder she hadn’t come out screaming like the others in agonized disbelief at the future awaiting them.

Maybe it would be delivered by a retired albino flamingo from the San Diego zoo, exhausted from his cross-country flight. Or perhaps it would pop up as a text message —
Fate: “ur mission in life is to create Wind-blowing Fart”
Sandhya: “say wha..?”
Fate: “oops! I meant Mind-blowing Art. damn autocorrect. lolz”

What of those cliches on life being a jigsaw puzzle? What would happen if she were to accidentally vacuum suck them along with scattered Legos or pack them into crunchy PB&J sandwiches? And those tea-leaf reading gypsies? They were clearly looking at the wrong place — the real answers could be encoded in venn diagrams left by tea mug rings.

Since life follows television, maybe her all-nighters spent watching Food Network battles would be interrupted by an emergency message just for her. After all, the TV seemed to know when a storm was heading towards her neglected bed of marigolds. It was the TV who, despite no indication on her part, rightly recommended she get addicted to What Not To Wear re-runs.

Sandhya knew, like always, she wasn’t trying enough. Curled up like a foetus on a thrifted couch would not result in rebirth with a fresh statement tucked under her pillow. Someone who really wanted to know her purpose in life would make a conscious effort to find the messages hidden around her, like recording the creaking hinges of the master bathroom and playing it backwards. And this time, she’ll be sure to make copies.

Edited to add: MIM, are you taking notes?