Friday, September 14, 2012

No redemption!

I stood beside his casket, apologizing profusely in my head. I had wronged him and he didn't even know it. Didn't even know I existed. I had stopped him from getting close to probably the one true love in his life. She stood next to me, fighting to control her tears. Her eyes, when she looked at me, were full of hurt and accusation. She stayed away from him and his persuasive loving perusal because I told her I had a bad feeling about him. Something about him didn't sit right with me. The fool that I was had made this assumption without having met him, without getting to know him...and the fool that she was she believed me. After all, I was supposed to her friend, wasn't I? As I watched his sister stroking his rigid, cold face I wondered - if I hadn't kept them away, would he have died a much happier man? She would be upset anyway, but would she be content in the knowledge that she had loved him with all she had in the short time they had together? Were his last thoughts about her? Would she ever forgive me for keeping her from such pure love?

About 8yrs down the line, I don't even remember his name but in the still of the night I feel him...feeding slowly off my guilt.

Stephen.R.Covey says “We simply assume that the way we see things is the way they really are or the way they should be. And our attitudes and behaviors grow out of these assumptions.”

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Amusingly Assuming!

She wore a beautiful bright red saree, slightly worse for wear, but lovely all the same. A bundle of books under her arm and an assortment of neck and finger ornaments completed her look. There was a shrewdness in her eyes and those piercing, investigative eyes first drew my attention. Nothing seemed to escape her gaze. She had already assessed me and made up her mind even before she approached me.

She took in my flushed face and blood-shot eyes and told me reassuringly - In the name of Goddess, I shall only tell you the truth. Let me read your face and if you like it, let me read your hand and tell you your future. I just smiled and told her I wasn't interested, but she persisted. My mother walked up behind me and put her arms around me and tried to get me to walk on, but this lady stopped her as well. She told my mum too the same thing she had told me and on a whim I decided to indulge her.

Now that she had our attention, she began her usual act. This was familiar ground and she knew that getting the attention was the hard part - the rest she knew how to handle. She reassuringly put a hand on my arm and told me not to worry. She understands the reason behind my tears and told me God was listening. She told me that she saw great things in my future...marriage to a good man, three kids with my first born being a boy, that I would live like a queen in a big house with all material comforts...etc...etc. My mum and I exchanged glances. I took out Rs 10 from my purse and put it in her hand. She protested and told me this is not enough for all the good things she had predicted...

All that drivel did bring a smile to me face. I looked her for one long minute and just walked away from her. She caught hold of my mum and told her that she would have to pay her for all the nice things that she had told us about me.

So I asked her in all seriousness - So chechi(a respectable way to address any woman elder than you) when do you think this marriage will take place? She smiled her all knowing smile and told me - For that you will need to pay more ... Rs 100 at least... I know you are anxious to know. I am - said I - because I need to inform my husband about this wealthy man who is going to marry me, just to give him a head's up! After all he put up with me for 4years, I owe him that much, don't you think!

The lady had taken in my non-thali(symbol for married Hindu women) clad neck, no vermilion in my hair, the age I looked and my tear stained face and decided that I was an unmarried woman getting on in age and upset about it. Although she had predicted perfectly, she was just 4years too late. Probably didn't think that I could be a person who cried for no reason in temples and wasn't really upset about anything in particular.

Aren't a majority of us like this - quick to judge and come to conclusions because we take things at face value.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Sweet my child, I live for thee!

This entry is a part of BlogAdda contests in association with

I am a mother…There in that one line I have summed up all that I need to write about – Love, Adventure and Miracle. Being a parent is the one of the most exhilarating and heart wrenching adventure of them all. About 90% of the time, I feel like I am standing at the edge of a precipice, anxiously waiting to see what my little devil will do next…and mind you he doesn’t disappoint. There is never a sense of anti-climax when he is around, no matter how much you wish for it.
A baby is a miracle. Wanted, unwanted, planned, unplanned – these words become insignificant at the sight of this amazing creation. No matter how much science tries to de-glamorize the whole procedure, I am still in awe. To think that I can create a living, breathing person, who is unique, yet so similar is amazing. Now if that isn’t the greatest miracle of all time, then I don’t know what is!
My love affair with my son wasn't quiet the love at first sight that I had heard so much about. Yet in the span of then next 18hours he had me eating out his teeny tiny palm. I would happily get up at all odd hours if that was what his majesty desired - without so much as a murmur. I, who loved my slumber and would viciously attack anyone who dared to disturb it, was now a very happy zombie and loving every minute of it. Those trusting, admiring eyes; that beautiful smile (no it wasn't gas, he was smiling at me!); that firm finger wrapped around mine - they carried me away on a wave of emotion unlike anything I had ever experienced before. It felt good, damn good...and I never wanted it to stop.
Once I realised that I had a living breathing child and that he was healthy, I thought to myself - "I'm so glad that is over. Now we can all go home and rest!!" Hah!! What an innocent creature I was!! Little did I know that my adventure had just begun. All I had to do was hold on tight and pray that while I hurtled into motherhood at the speed of light (time flies when you have kids), I would emerge with all my faculties intact. I thought that was the least I could ask for...sometimes the Present Me just wants to look at the Past Me and say - "Really woman, were you that naive!! Shouldn't those puppy eyes and your desire to please have been warning enough?"
It has been almost five years since he moved lock, stock and barrel into my heart and I know he is going nowhere. I have also come to realise that I need him more than he will ever need me - a fact that I think he is also very aware of. His smiles and hugs have more healing power than any holistic or spiritual healer alive and this isn't just mummy brain (inability to see and think past your child) talking...I suggest all of you try it for yourself. The unconditional love and joy in them will beat the crap out of any sadness in you and make you want to smile right back at them.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

A prayer

Hi Ambatty...Please don't show me and my baby Jaguar any bad dreams...Ok Ambatty...Act like a shield and push away all my bad dreams...Do you know what a shield is Ambatty? It is the one that Elo uses...u know on Disney Junior? Ok Great Ambatty! Please let me see only good dreams and be able to sleep well and wake up fresh so that I can go to school and play with Smee and Sharky! Do you know Smee and Sharky Ambatty...please act like a shield for their bad dreams also!
Ok Ambatty...Good night...sleep tight...Don't let the bed bugs bite! I know Amma told me that bed bugs only come on old beds because they are sweet...and this bed is new...but if bed bugs come, please stop them. Acha is old, but he is not a please don't send bed bugs on him!

Ok Ambatty...Great please be nocturnal and look at my bad dreams. I love you Ambatty and also my Amma! Amma, when you pray please make sure you invite Ambatty to my Christmas Story assembly OK! Goodnight!

N's nightly ritual! With all the clarifications to God and the confirmations this takes a good 15mins or more...but is always hilarious although I try my level best not to laugh! On some days he even commends God on a job well done - a night without bad dreams!!

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sleeping Beauty and the Prince!

Was in bed trying my level best to get rid of the headache, who was turning into a constant companion. Just as I was drifting away into the lovely world of slumber, heard my son pushing his rickety truck down the hallway towards the bedroom. Was about to call out to the husband and ask him to stop this racket, but realised I didn't have the energy. So I drifted back to sleep.
Woke up all of a sudden to sweet kiss being planted on my forehead. My son stood there, concern writ all over his face. When I opened my eyes he said - Ma, you are Sleeping beauty and I'm Prince Changu...wake up!
I know kisses don't cure headaches, but mine was completely gone. I realised that it is days like this that make being a mother totally worthwhile...and there is no greater way to be woken up than with a kiss of a loved one.

PS: also realised that not only did that kiss of his wake me up from my sleep, it also revived my blog from a sure death. The powers a 4 year old has!!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Universal mother - Myth or reality?

Can you be a “universal” mother and a true and unselfish giver only if you do not have children of your own? If Mother Teresa and Florence Nightingale had children of their own, would their path in life have been different? Would they still have had this calling? In short, if you have children of your own, is it possible to love someone else’s like your own?

I am a huge advocate of adoption. A trip to an orphanage made a huge impact on my life. I built a strong resolve in me that once I was married and had the means, I would adopt a child. I didn’t really care which gender, but a girl child had the most number of votes in my head. Along with my pregnancy, the urge to adopt a child became stronger too. G just didn’t get it! He kept saying – “But we are going to have a child now. Why do you want to adopt”? Then I had this brilliant idea to adopt the opposite gender to the child I would have. My mum gave me her thumbs-up, G ignored it. But to me they were all brilliant ideas – all in my head…somehow seemed impractical in the real world. At least in my world!

Once I had my son, my mum was a totally different woman. Grandmas are a force to be reckoned with and she told me outright and she might not be able to love an adopted grandchild with the same genuine force that she loved her grandson. My mother-in-law seconded that. G continued to pretend that it was my hormone talking and they would fade with time. I was outnumbered. How come no one saw it? How come no one understood that we would be giving a new chance of life to a child who would otherwise maybe not even have a life at all?

So my mum posed a few questions of her own - Now you might never tell this child that he or she is adopted, but someone might. What then? You might shower all your love on this child, but can you guarantee that G and others will? Won’t you be putting a child into a life of suffering, through no fault of hers? Can you be sure that if you catch both the children having a normal sibling spat, you will remain impartial? I argued till I was beat that these things would never happen in my case, till one day when my son was about 15 months old and his 17 month old cousin beat him like crazy as kids tend to do apparently (so I was told!). As I stood holding my wailing baby in my hands I knew I wanted to beat the crap out of that kid –someone who I love very much by the way and dote on. So maybe I was not really cut out for adopting after all.

So my question to the world is this – Can we only be mothers to our children? Is it only those who do not have a family of their own that can embrace other children into their life with ease and selflessly dedicate their lives to them?

Or the question begs to be asked – Am I the only selfish one around?

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Figuring it out!!

I have been full figured almost all my life-too full!! For a long time I had no idea why I couldn't look slim like all my other friends. I started relying on fad diets very early on - because I felt a quick fix was what I needed. My parents enrolled me for badminton and karate classes when I was in school, but somehow the weight just wouldn't come off. I actually felt invisible on many occasions, when people would just look past me as though being fat also made me invisible. On one occasion I heard one of the boys in my school call me a Road Roller...that's when I learnt to laugh at these jokes. Self-depreciating humour has always been one of my specialities since then. I also become an extrovert - became loud and a bit flamboyant, just to make sure no one would take advantage of the introvert I really was. The more troubled I felt, the louder and aggressive I became. All the while the shy person inside me was slowly retreating into a shell.

One of the basic flaws of self-depreciating humour is that somewhere along the way, you even begin to kid yourself into believing that barbs don't hurt anymore. You listen to random people coming up to you and giving you tips on how to lose weight and how much it will benefit you, people talking about how your weight affects you looks, makes you look older and crack fat jokes around you, you kind of tune off and a kind of numbness sets in. My cure for numbness - Ice cream! So it was more like a vicious cycle. Sadly, in all these taunts, barbed, veiled comments I never saw the motivation to lose weight and show these "well-wishers" that I can do it too. Had my moments where I would work out like crazy and eat well and lost tons of weight, but soon enough they would come back on again.

Then I think God took pity on me and decided to give my condition a proper medical name - PCOD!! Hurray!! Now I could tell these people exactly why I was how I was and if I said it the right way, could even make it sound like a grave debilitating illness. Now I would  have the last laugh...until I used this on my aunt. She looked at me sternly and said - L, this isn't a disease. It is a condition - a condition you have the power to control. So stop acting like you have 3 days to live and go do something about it...and while we are on the topic, if you feel bad when people talk about your weight, TELL THEM. They will stop. It is only when you laugh along that people think we can handle it. If you put yourself down, so will others. Do you understand? Properly chastised I decided to do something about my attitude before I did something about my weight. See how my lazy body comes up with ways to avoid working out.

Am still working on my attitude, but have also started working on my body. Years of pseudo-extrovertism is difficult to shed off and letting that shy, quiet person inside me to get the courage to see the light of day is still a work in progress.

Being a mummy

Full time Mummy!!