Being human

 

He who makes a beast of himself gets rid of the pain of being a man, said Samuel Johnson, an English poet. 

Last night, I was wondering how this quote stood relevant in my case. I chose to be a human and the result is that I find myself in pain for humane choice I made in this life. It takes a lot of guts to brace oneself for something that I am faced with. Living in hatred, growing up in the heat of grudge and spitting venom on life is never easy! 

It drains you.. It tortures you.. It makes you feel bitter. 

Nonetheless, what I am faced with is my choice and I made that choice. I chose to be a human. Believe me, being human never takes you away from yourself. It brings you closer to your strengths. It infuses self respect. 

Is it just a feel good factor? Time will tell!!

See you all soon!

 

Happy birthday to me!

Birthday and childhood are bound by a common chord and seem inseparable. That common chord named nostalgia takes me to my past, into my life, 33 years ago, every 19th day of November… my birthday.

On this day, when I walk down the memory lane, hand in hand, with a few loved faces, some of who have checked in at some other world..have settled well and may have also set on to begin a new journey, a brand new life.

Those loved faces are that of those few loved people who still mean so much to me. In their life they made my life so special and every birthday, so… so memorable. I’d like to fondly remember them and smile at their memories.

Nani, my maternal grandmom clapped like a kid while I cut my birthday cake with my twin. Never found a single grey hair on her head until she was close to 80! Perhaps, greying of hair is about greying of the heart and has nothing to do with age. Nani loved spoiling us with love. On an instance, I remember, how she chuckled in her teethless mouth, while narrating to my mom, how I stole banana from a vendor. I was 4 then. I also remember after that how she bore with a half an hour lecture on parenting from my mother. Nani is one among those few I miss so much on this day!

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Nana, my maternal grandfather, was a health conscious man, who’d wake up at 4am everyday, whether summer or winter..he is the one who taught me to try and feel content all the time. Smile through life’ s unpleasant surprises.. He taught me to look straight into the sun whenever I felt low or drained. He used to do one thing,  which I always thought was strange unless I understood the meaning of inner potential. He used to stand in front of the mirror, look into it and join his hands in prayer and muttered something. We saw him doing this all the time. It was much later, when I grew up, I asked him why he did that. He said something really powerful that day and that stayed deep within me since then. He said, ” I pray to myself, my inner potential to give me what all I need – peace, happiness and prosperity. The real god is hidden in all of us.”

Dhula mama, my eldest maternal uncle, who was my official story teller. Earlier also, I have written a blog post on him, remembering him fondly. Besides amusing us with his engaging stories, he taught us how a flower drawn on a sheet of paper could be made to look real with crayons.. he taught us to colour. He used to gift me and my twin something that I still long to get as a gift. He gave us a packet of milk bikies biscuit gift wrapped in a neespaper..or may be a pencil and a rubber. He made my birthday a perfect one by blowing balloons and putting them up on the walls.

Baali mama, another maternal uncle was few years younger than dhula mama. I can never forget how his loud gargles woke me up every morning. As a kid, I found it very uncouth and annoying. After all, my mornings began with that wierd sound! He was the one who always motivated me to become a journalist when I dreamed of becoming a lawyer. Years later, when I became a journalist, he was the happiest one in the family. Now when, I go home, that is, where my family lives, I miss that loud gargling sound he made. Can I trade anything to have him back? Yes, I know I cannot!

As I am writing this, my heart is not heavy, I dont have a lump in my throat… instead I have a smile – cheek to cheek, thinking of the warmest memories I have of them.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO ME :)

Love you all… smile and shine!

Love, once again.. possible?

Love and affection are in a way, synonymous, I think. And that makes it very obvious or normal to love or feel affectionate towards any one.. irrespective of your age, marital status including all possible societal norms, that prevent and don’t support.

Well, a friend of mine, who was going to marry her childhood sweetheart, one day confided in me saying that she feels emotionally drawn to a colleague and finds it extremely uncomfortable about the whole situation. I remember she had asked me if I thought that she was confused or committing a sin?

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For a moment I was myself bewildered by the way human heart behaves. But then, being a thinker, I believe, I can comfortably fathom the depths of human emotions without  being judgmental..so, I asked her if she loved her childhood sweetheart anymore, given that she now loves someone else?

She didn’t shock me with her response. But her answer definitely set my thoughts in motion.Guess what her response was!!

She said, ” I think I love both!”

Aah! Now what?? I gathered my thought for a while and blankly stared at her for a brief while. Then, asked her something that I was curious with since she told me that she loves both! I asked, ” What is the nature of your love for both?”

My curious question led me to believe that love can have myriad colours. Well, yeah! love can be in myriad shades. Which shade was this that both the men, in this case, are enjoying? By now, I was doubly curious.

She thought for a while before she left me confused with her response. After a pause of nearly 30 seconds, she said, ” Hmm… I think given a choice, I’d like to love both all my life, but, may be I’d marry one while may not marry the other.”

Brilliant!! But hey, that doesn’t answer my question.

Nonetheless, my conversation with her ended there with the promise to discuss and resolve soon. In the mean time I will have to head to the meeting room, while I leave you, scratching your heads. Share your thoughts. Let me know what you think. Suggest something to help her :)

Will come back soon with more on this intriguing subject very soon.

Can you really love two people at the same time??

 

 

Who says only elders can be right!!

The other day, my 5 year old little daughter, Pihu, became furious at her grandmom. She lost her temper and snubbed at her quite badly. My husband, Saurabh,  admonished her for being impolite with her grandmom while she cried profusely at being scolded. Obviously, Saurabh or any other parent will want his ward to be well behaved with elders in the family. So will I, for that matter!

But unlike Saurabh, I knew what transpired a minute before the whole scene. Actually, all of us were watching the popular show ‘ Junior Masterchef India ‘ on TV that evening. Pihu was also watching the show intently. In awe of little children cooking yummy looking dishes, Pihu commented, ” Wow! they cook so well. I don’t know to cook yet.”

On that, her grandmom responded subtly, ” Yes! But you don’t know to eat as well.” She was hinting at instances when Pihu was fussy with food. Well, no matter how fussy she gets with food, she did not appreciate the comment coming at that point. She fumed for a while and then displayed her angry self, which no one liked for obvious reasons. After all, anger is considered a vice and not a part of human emotion. And if it is about a kid, he is expected not to react/get angry or express displeasure at anything that might have irked him… just because the person who irked him is an elder.

biting habits go away with time.. so relax!

biting habits go away with time.. so relax!

I feel differently on a subject like this. Most of you may differ.

I think, as elders, we must consider little children as human beings first. They too come with emotions. If a randomly passed comment can irk us, how on earth do we expect kids to understand that piece of rationale and react accordingly?

What i mean to say is – don’t respond with anger on such a scenario. Instead, find out what prompted him/her to react that way. That might help you counsel the child into behaving differently next time. Encourage him to express displeasure but calmly. And when they express displeasure, ‘do not’ rubbish it.

I too spent some time with Pihu, heard her out and counseled her into being calmer in such a situation. By doing that, I earned her trust, instilled faith in her and ensured that she came to me every time she felt any elder has been unfair with her.

Talk to them, motivate them and be their guide!

Talk to them, motivate them and be their guide!

At times, we comment on our little kids oblivious of the fact that they too have a thought process, sentiment and emotions. Any comment that may seem very light might be a huge cause of hurt to him. If we can feel a certain way at being told something rude, why can’t kids feel?

Who says elders are always right and kids should not react at anything just because others in the family love them? Well, I’d encourage Pihu to react but with calm.

In fact, the moment kids realize that there is no one in the family they can depend on, they tend to misbehave even more. So, please, assure them that they will be heard, come what may!

In fact, I remember something my father in law quoted years ago and that echoed my feelings completely. At the age of 2, Pihu began expressing her anger by spitting. Everyone in the family found that quite worrisome. However, I and my pa in law believed that instead of scolding her, we must correct her politely 4 times out of 10 instances, and ignore the behaviour in the remaining 6 times. Believe me, we did that and it worked!!

Do not allow the child to reach at a stage where his behaviour begins to affect others outside the family. Bad habits should be dealt with love for sure, but a polite assertiveness is also required.

Scolding, accusing, lecturing a kid or ignoring all his mistakes and ill behaviour ‘does not’ help at all!! Try something better.

All parents know their kids well and depending on that knowledge, be a guide to your children, be their friends. And stop assuming that only you or other elder family members can be right all the time!!

I know, I know… bringing up kids is no mean thing. But hey, being a little sensitive always helps.

Love to all

SB

Love me for who I am or excuse me!

Today my heart is not co operating with my mind. I stand divided between them, bare, with hands full of experiences, of people and times.

I go through such tough moments very often. I call them tough because these are those times when I am compelled to make a decision whether to ignore the mind or pay sincere heed to my heart.  And since I find this chore really tough, I find myself in a corner of this dark alley of indecisiveness.

Ok, let me add some clarity. I realise that I have beaten about the bush so much so far.

The decision that I am talking about is about deciding how much, some people in my life, are important to me. And if they are not, why do I care so much?

You see, only your family and dear friends will accept your mistakes and forget them too , for good old times sake. They will love you for whoever you are. And the rest, will judge you and can never love you, even if you may have traded a pound of your flesh expecting love and trust in return.

I spent the whole of yesterday, feeling low about how some people still judge me. That i need to wear a mask to be in their good books.
I wonder why? How does it matter what they think of me? The truth is, people who love you should matter. Rest can go take a hike. After all those who love you will never judge you, while those who dont’t will judge you anyway!!

Gratefully, my family, husband, a few dear friends and my daughter love me for whoever I am – brutally straightforward, honest and liberated!

Happy Diwali

Wishing all my blogger friends, a very happy diwali. Love and hugs :))

Saturation point – story of a working woman

Was watching this short film by Anurag Kashyap called ‘A day after another day’. People seem to be gushing about it but I feel there are many other issues that bother a woman besides safety and security. The biggest problem that an average, middle class woman faces all her life is routinism.

The routine of taking care of her child, her family, career and everything except her self. Yes, to those who never gave this a thought would call it a cliche. But trust me, once you experience this routine, you’d give a standing ovation to women.

It looks like some divine sermon landed from the heavens one day and this rule came into place that ‘only women’ are responsible for kitchen related work. I am sure most women, at occassions, go to work empty stomach just because they find packing their own tiffin and preparing breakfast for self feels like a mammoth task, after they have, sort of fed and taken care of the entire family.

Yes, I too do this most of the times.

Imagine the life of a working woman. She wakes up in the morning, grabs a cup of quick tea or doesn’t and gets into the kitchen to prepare breakfast, lunch, then feed the child, nag with her to finish the breakfast, ready her for school while constantly fretting about the fact that she herself might get late for work.

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Picture courtesy: Naree.com

In the evening when she heads back home, she is thinking of multiple things. She is already planning what she’d be preparing for dinner. That’s one big task, I tell you! She prepares the dinner, lays the table, feeds her child while her husband has already eaten and is either talking on his mobile phone or watching cricket.

All of a sudden, she realises that she neither had a good breakfast nor a wholesome lunch through the day. Tired to death, then, she drags herself to the kitchen to serve some food to herself. And clean the kitchen and table after that.

Trust me, most women would agree that their biggest fancy is to eat warm and fresh food. Mostly, its the cold food that she consumes. She doesn’t do this by choice. What would she do if there is none to hold the ship if she chooses to opt out?

The tiresome day doesn’t end there. She helps her child brush her teeth, gives her a bath/wash, changes her clothes, applies some moisteriser on her before laying the bed for a good night’s sleep. Telling a story and putting the child to sleep is also her responsibility. By the time, the kid dozes off, she loses her sleep for another 3 good hours. Who says sleep never evades those who are genuinely tired?

Before she closes her eye on the night, she is no more motivated for the next morning.

Life of a woman is far from being easy. Just sit back, recount her tasks of the day and you’d be shocked at the amount of work she does, all alone! So, at times, if she cribs or complains, let her express herself. After all, there is a term called ‘saturation point’.

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