Thursday, July 28, 2016

Life Lessons from an infant

My boy is now 7 months old. And he knows what he likes, who he likes... and there are several in the list. Everytime he sees me or the husband he smiles... everytime single time. Sometimes I feel bad when I have to leave him to do some work. And then when I walk back to him, I am welcomed by that lovely smile. I think, I leave him a lot, just to know someone becomes so happy on just seeing me... and he does that with his father, his nanny, other maids... all familiar faces. I wonder when did we forget to smile for people? How come we welcome our loved ones with, "You are late, yet again" or "Did you bring the grocery I told" and not with a smile?
Lesson 1: I like you. I smile for you... then I frown if you forget to bring the grocery. But first, I smile

I get so bored... even when i have so much to do. If my internet is down for a day and I don't have a good book to read, I will commit suicide. There is no 'may' there. I will do that. What can you do, if you are on bed the whole day through. You can't sit, you can't stand. You wait for someone to come and pick you up, even for a change in scenery. If you want to reach out to something.... that shiny little ribbon or that box over there... or the flower on the bedsheet... and you can't. You do whatever you can. You lift your head if you can. You kick your feet in the air, you turn... but you do whatever you can to stay engaged. 
Lesson 2: Find something to stay busy, If you can't... create something to keep you busy. Don't die just yet

This boy finds everything fascinating. The way a newspaper flutters when the fan is on, the bright yellow colored flower on my dress, the way adults drink tea from a bright green mug, how someone mops the floor.... everything is fascinating... worth noticing, worth watching, worth being curious about. When did we stop getting fascinating by stuff and treat everything mundane.... No rainbows, no butterflies, no flowers entice us long enough. I am reminded of Sonu Nigam dressed as a beggar . How many of us would have stopped and noticed the beauty. Do we ever smell the flowers in our mad daily rush.
Lesson 3: Stop waiting for big things to interest you. Curiosity and fascination are good for all. There is more to life than that paycheck or that annual vacation

The guy is also turning into a drama. He knows what he wants and nearly how to get that. I hope, wish and pray with all my might that I am not raising a Kejriwal. I work from home now. And the guy knows which room I work in. So, all of seven months old- he wills to be taken to that room. And when the nanny picks him after his nap (45 minutes putting to sleep and 15 minutes nap), she takes him to the hall to play with him. As soon as he crosses my work-area, he would start cooing, asking her to take him to me. Its mandatory that they would stop at my room. He will see me- give me that lovely smile- I will melt and take him- no matter what I am doing - cuddle him for a while- both of us not wanting to let go and then I will get a ping on chat or a reminder for a meeting- bringing me back into reality.
Lesson 4: You want something. You make it known. If a subtle coo works- wonderful- If not throw some high pitched cry. But don't sulk in a corner if you don't get the promotion you didn't say you wanted.

When I don't trust someone, I don't trust them in any scenario. Untrustworthy gets etched in my memory. There is a cross reference between that person and the tag -the-one-shouldn't-be-trusted.
When the boy's nanny changed, he wasn't comfortable with the new nanny putting him to sleep. He still doesn't like it, but he now gives in when he is extremely sleepy. But back then, he won't sleep with her... He would fight sleep... cry a lot when he couldn't fight the sleep any longer and needed to be put to sleep- wait for me to step in, take him in my arms and he would sleep in two minutes. But even then he would smile at her, play with her, go in her arms, do everything but sleep. He had trust-issues (?). But that was situation based, not person based. 
Lesson 5: Don't hate or distrust in absolutes. If you don't like an aspect of someone, there is no need to hate them completely. 

I am sure there are tons of other things this 7 months old baby is going to teach me. I know if I learn too well, I will become a better person. Here's to that hope....

An infant with a smile...

Soon you'll have a character of your own
Soon you'll be a toddler with tantrums
A child with wishful eyes
A teen with some demands
And then you'll be gone...
An adult with a life
For now you are just my baby
A simple innocent trusting being
One who laughs when he farts
And cries when he pees
Smiles at all that he sees
Happy and kicking just to be alive
One who has so much joy to give
I so wish I could keep a part of this
Treasure every moment and keep it still
Hold on to all your gestures and all your moods
Savour the toothless smile and wordless talks
I want you to grow up, But not so fast
Let me learn from you how to live

Saturday, July 16, 2016

There has been a fun competition to post tales in less than 10 words.
Got me thinking... 
Here are the ones I thought..
Not all were shared there. But this is my space.

And now, since, I am not posting anywhere except here, I don't need to have 10 words limit. Still these would be short..

Saturday, July 9, 2016

His first love

We were made for each other...or so I thought.
He made me believe in perfection that life was to become.
I never doubted him.... and happily married we got as the world believed.

It wasn't until later that I discovered that he was married before. And had no intention to leave his first wife. I protested at first, but then gave in to her presence in our life. I thought he would get bored of her someday and ours.. his and mine would be a happily-ever-after. I compromised in the beginning. So much so that we shared our bedroom. She didn't move... she stayed... He wanted her to stay. I thought to act like an understanding wife and gave him time to"figure it all out".
Then I couldn't take it any more... and we fought... time and again. Hoping he will understand, But theirs is a commitment beyond words. He just can't leave her. After a bitter fight. He will vouch to leave her. It takes 3 days without seeing her face and he is on his knees... begging her to speak. And she complies... every time. She is probably the docile wife he always wanted. One who gives unconditionally, never questions and just exists for his happiness. She never questions his absence, his fidelity or lack of it. Just lights up as he comes. I can't be like that. I am just not wired in that way.

I don't think she means any harm to me. She is just oblivious. And probably stupid or may be too smart to even acknowledge my presence. All that she knows is how to play him and that she knows wonderfully well. Honestly, I don't resent her. I just hate their time together... their camaraderie. I tried to befriend her and play it as a team. But soon I would realise I am an outsider and would always be. I have given up on that. I can't see it anymore.

Long long ago, when I was a free spirit, I always thought that if my partner would cheat on me, I would leave him. I would never beg any one to stay. I am far more worthy than that. I am not sure anymore. After years of begging him to value me, to talk to me, to at least give us equal time, I have give up. Here I am, living in the same house with him and her. The only thing I have achieved is that she doesn't sleep in the bedroom and I don't talk to her anymore. And he doesn't talk to me either. Such is life.

He calls her 'TV'

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Our missing Women

This post is not about female infanticide and skewed up sex ratio of India. That's for another day.

This is about a section of females that is getting extinct in India... Females who had the luxury of time.. Females who were available... those with knowledge of things passed through generations.

The mummy, aunties, chachis of our generation. Usually house wives, the elder generation knew how to cook, make pickles and papads, stitch clothes and make sweaters. They knew what to do when you have common cold or eye infection... generation of dadi maa k nuskhe passed along. Home remedies and easy help available without google. They would add charm to all family functions... From weddings to festivals, they would take charge and add colour to the world. Expecting a baby... Is your mother coming or are you going to her place. That's the default question. Help and time are not a question. Elders are unwell... bring them home and they would be taken care of.

I wonder what will happen when my generation has to take the baton. I don't know any folk songs... something I love during the weddings. I don't know any skill worthy enough to pass along. My kids will have everything readymade from food to clothes and sweaters. Most of my friends are working and we don't have the time or skill needed to look after others. We are going to be the generation that did not pass traditions and made everything a bland colour of market made stuff and short cut celebrations.

Would I trade my independence and carefree world for all this? Probably not. But, I certainly do feel a tinge of guilt everytime a see a century old tradition that my generation would be last to enjoy...

Sunday, April 26, 2015

No courtesies please!!

I have worked with Danes for a long time. And there are few awesome things they teach you, one being courtesy.

I have worked for long at a place where work stopped at 7, no one worked on weekend and calling people out of office hours was acceptable only when sky was falling. It was a place where people had all the luxuries in terms of time.
No hurry... smell the flowers... smell the coffee... talk a while. You also had time for sorries, thank yous and pleases.

Now, I am working at a place where people are working at full throttle for long hours. Things are fast, frantic and flying. There is just so much happening at the same time. I am being told this is the real world!!
But, when you have 10 different things that you should be doing and 15 where you are delayed, the first one that slips is courtesy. Initially, I thought people are rude. Only to realize its not so, its just not the highest priority at that time. The realization was a sad relief.

One good thing that comes out of being this busy, is that there is no time for dirty politics. You don't have any time to breathe, let alone talk and plot! You don't care if anyone takes credit, if they take some bit of load too. Its a lot cleaner. I would say better with confidence too, had it not been so draining. I guess that is the price of peace of mind.

I wish with all my might that there was something in between, but, guess perfection is just a myth!!

Sunday, February 1, 2015

TOW Friends

Courtesy technology, its so darn easy to stay and make friends. Over 500 Facebook friends and 200 in phone book, we are rich in friends or so we believe!
And it is true as well, depending on your definition. People on your Facebook Friends list are your friends, isn't that the definition?

I believe I am fairly, 'Friendly'. I do not come out as hostile or arrogant, I am easy to talk to. But I hardly believe I make new friends. 
There is an inner most circle, reserved for friends cherished over years. People who I can crib and bitch to. People I can drop by unannounced and not think twice. People I would not fuss about, those I can and would go to great extent for. My 2'O clock friends. Those who know me inside out and still like the real one.
I hardly think there would be too many new additions in there over years.

In Hindi, there are three words to define 'You':
Aap: The most formal one. Used out of respect and distance.
Tu: The most informal one.
Tum: The one in between.

Over the past 4-5 years, there hasn't been any addition to people I refer as 'Tu'. Its still for family and friends I made years ago. Rest all are 'Tums' and 'Aaps'.

I have made several mistakes in past. Foot-in-the-mouth disease is something I have suffered for long. Its still there, just a lot more controlled. And probably its the fear of this disease that I suffer more from. I say something which is rude or arrogant or not taken in the right spirit. I should much rather not say things that don't offend me too much.

I very conveniently claim that its not easy to make good friends in the corporate world because of all the politics and pressure. You say something in confidence and next thing you know, its floating around in air. But then I wonder, would I even trust myself or my clone in nature if I met her? Am I the same person, I was 8-10 years ago? Yes, I have had many experiences, several pleasant and some unpleasant. 

I have built a thick guard around myself in office, one which is not penetrable. So much so that now I don't even realise I am not laughing as much as I used to. I am not talking as much as I do outside. There are no PJs, no comments, no sarcasm in my talk. Things which are (were??) my defining trait.  Often, I do not understand them as well. Like there is a switch which gets turned off and in comes a mask. 
Yes, I still can't deceive or lie. I still have my conscience in place. I still don't like petty games.
I still have the same characteristics. I just don't let anyone come close enough to know that.

It may be a need for survival. But, I don't like the fact that I would not befriend myself in the office. I would not bitch to someone exactly like me. And I miss someone like that :(