Thursday, 27 August 2015

Parenting from same page


Last week my son ( 11 months old now) faced hard time because of viral fever and congestion. Each time he was coughing, he was crying with pain. And it was very difficult for both of us, me and my husband, to see our kid in such a situation. He was on medicines and was not ready to sit or rest. So we both were carrying him in arms and were continuously standing to calm him down . It’s like hell to see babies crying in pain so I also cried once and prayed God to lessen his discomfort. I saw tears in my husband’s eyes as well. He is a tough man but our son’s screaming broke his heart. Next day I went to our kind neighbors who helped us in taking my kiddo to their old family doc. It was a thank you visit and there I heard something which actually made to envious with my husband. Lady said that she saw tears in my husband’s eyes and said that he is a father better than a mother. She keeps an eye on what is happening at each of her neighbor’s house and that ways she knows so much about how we are raising our son.  I am married in a family where equality of husband and wife makes no sense. Kids are mother’s undertaking ..from nappy changing to getting their homework done. Everything from A to Z comes under the onus of mother. I found my husband different from his family. From the day my son was born, my husband is always around his son. First 7 days he didn’t sleep because whole night he was talking to his son and was waking me up for feed ( I was not well after delivery). He was learning how to change his nappies, how to burp him, how to hold him properly, how to change his cloths. Whole in-laws family were surprised and shocked actually to see his behavior. I got this as a lovely co-operation from my husband. I feel myself blessed as he understands that parenting is a team work.He became a strong athlete of our parent team. Any parental partnership is based upon three things, co-operation, communication and problem solving ability. And my husband is getting full marks in every of his parenting responsibilities. He doesn’t wait upon me to change nappies and feed our baby ( who is now on top feed). He can do everything like a super father, singing lullabies, making baby food, bathing the baby, changing cloths, taking baby for evening outing, anything you name it. As a mother my soul is for my little one. But when people notice my husband's contribution, they adore him and I feel out of the world.




I think, today’s fast lifestyle needs fatherhood as equal and efficient as motherhood. In the past and in the society where we breath, it was usually one kind of partnership: father in charge of making a living and mother in charge of looking after the house and children. That worked for many years and, for some families, it still works fairly well. But now mothers and fathers are more likely to share many roles. We both, husband and wife, work and sometime I get busy with work in office. But I am always assure about one thing that my rescue ranger , my husband, can deal with it. He’ll look after our son. This is of course a matter of proud for me to share this with my friends so that they can also understand that we should change after becoming parent. Sometime my friends ask how we come to a common decision because parents often have very different values about how to raise kids. We do have different thoughts and sometimes argue because we have differences in our personalities, cultural backgrounds and our childhood experiences are different. But for us it’s not the matter who is right or wrong. We accept our differences and do what is best for our son. I don’t like my son watching TV but I accepted it because as per my husband it’s okay to watch TV for some time. Being in IT world we are always working under different “Projects”. The more you work the more you understand it.  For us, child rearing is also a project that we share and we work for it together. Together we are experiencing the ups and downs, joys and frustrations. We are understanding and appreciating each other better because same thing is important for both of us, our son. Although this is our first parenting experience but we read, ask and share every aspect of raising our son well. We empathize, express gratitude and apologize to each other. I once read somewhere that “ The relationship between husband and wife is the foundation on which kids build their sense of security, their identity, and learn to relate to each other.” So for me, coming on same page means a solid bond between me and my husband. We are still learning and we accept it’s only beginning of parenthood for us. Lot more will come in future with challenges and complexities of raising a kid. I believe Co-operation, communication and affection three keys can help in unlocking any issue. And true is that “Good parenting is not how the kids are behaving, good parenting is how parents are behaving.”

Friday, 21 August 2015

Nutrition Labels on food items : Facts

The day I started keeping an eye on what I am eating ( for losing fat I got after pregnancy J ), I started noticing "Nutrition Labels"  on back of every food item. This was to check how many calories I am consuming. But to be honest it was so complex to read it !! I have mastered reading complex software code in these many years but this was something out-of-the-way. There were many other terms like "trans-fats", "Preservatives", "Stabilizers" which were pure "X" to me. So I read about it and collected the facts. Here are few points which can help you in understanding how these "Nutrition Labels" are hiding facts and making us fool:

1. You can start your label reading adventure by looking at the "serving size" first. If a half-cup serving has 50 calories, but you usually eat a one-cup serving, you'll be getting 100 calories.

2. Low Fat : Be careful as 'low fat' may not always mean 'low calories'. More often to make up for the fat, food manufacturers can add other ingredients to compensate for the flavor, like sugar, flour, thickeners, and salt.

3. Natural Flavors : "It’s so natural, let’s have it in good amount!". Aren't we all attracted to labels that scream the word - Natural? It's important to note that both artificial flavors as well as natural flavors have chemicals. The point is where do these chemicals come from. In natural flavors, the chemicals have to be derived from a plant or an animal (something that is eaten) whereas artificial flavors are derived from inedible sources. So It’s not so natural and it has a complex chemical composition.

4. Stabilizers and Thickeners: These are added to improve and stabilize the texture of foods. These are found in jellies, ready-to-eat foods, desserts, frozen foods and salad dressings and they neither stabilize your health nor preserve it.

5. Preservatives : Preservatives prevent the growth of bacteria in foods during storage. And they actually have no nutrition value.

6.  High Fructose & Corn Syrup: This is a top favorite with the packaged food industry. You will find it everywhere, in ketchup bottles, biscuits, baked goods, dairy products, carbonated drinks, you name it! High fructose corn syrup is an artificial sweetener made from corn. It's popular because it is sweeter than sugar, is relatively cheaper. Fructose is worse that sugar as it leads to belly fat as well as high bad cholesterol.

7. Coloring Agents: Food coloring or color additive is a substance that adds color to your food. Vibrant colors make food more appealing. Synthetic colors do not add to the nutritive value of the foods. According to Rule 28 of The Prevention of Food Adulteration Act in India, the colors that can be chemically produced are red, yellow, blue and green. Also, they can only be used in specific foods like ice-cream, frozen desserts, flavored milk, yoghurt, biscuits, custard powders etc. No one follows this !!

8. Artificial Sweeteners: Artificial sweeteners are synthetic sugar substitutes. Saccharin, Aspartame, Acesulfame-K, Sucralose, Neotame, Glycerol, Erythritol, Maltitol, Lactitol are some of its substitutes. Sweet is not sweet for our health, you know this well.

9. MSG or Monosodium Glutamate:  It is used as a flavor enhancer and is found in salad dressings, ready-to-eat soups, canned vegetables and chips. It has been known to cause various side-effects like headaches, allergic reactions, nausea etc. Our favorite maggi also has this item.

10. Partially Hydrogenated Oils: Partially hydrogenated oils are full of trans-fats. We think it's partially hydrogenated but it actually means that the oil has been heated to stay longer and it's the worst form of cholesterol.

After reading this, hopefully the next time you see a drink which says naturally flavored, you will not presume that it's full of natural fruits? You could also see a product which screams 'low fat' but is filled with calories that are nutritionally completely worthless. The trick is to learn to read between the lines.

Thursday, 20 August 2015

Eating With Your Hands: Facts

Feeding kids with your hand

When Vibhu started with semi solids, my mother told to use my hands to feed him. Frankly I never liked it before as well but as every elder in the family is doing this manner I just accepted it. I used to go to my Dada ji's places in my summer vacation and there we used to have our food with hands. When my mother told me to follow this for Vibhu, I did some research and found interesting facts.In quest of it, I asked my mother about it. She told me that first of all, it improves bonding with the baby. Second, as per our Hindu culture, it's believed that on the tip of fingers is Goddess Lakshmi, on the base of fingers is Goddess Saraswati; in the middle of fingers is Lord Govinda (Shishu Mandir Girls remember Karagre waste Laxmi... Slok). And all these deities bless the food so having it, is like having a “Prashad”.


Here are the points, which I think are good enough for me to accept it for Vibhu :


Vedic Facts

Eating is an elaborate ritual in India and certain traditions creates our cultural identity. Eating with hands, serving food on banana leaves, considering food as art are some of the cases which separated Indian food traditions from other countries. Every food traditions here has its meaning and reason as well. Eating with hands has its roots in Ayurveda. Our hands and feet are said to be the channel of the five elements ( space, air, fire, water and earth) and each finger is an extension of one of the five elements. Through the thumb comes space, through the forefinger, air; through the middle-finger, fire; through the ring finger, water and through the little finger it is earth. Eating with fingers stimulates these five elements and helps in bringing forth digestive juices in the stomach. So it improves digestion.



Scientific Facts

1 . When we eat food with our hands, our fingers come in contact with our food before we put it in our mouth. Our nerve endings in fingers sense the temperature and texture of the food, thereby preparing our brain for what we are going to be eating and triggering the release of the appropriate digestive juices and enzymes.

2. Our body is thought to have a certain kind of bacteria that protects us from the other harmful bacteria in the environment. This bacteria resides in places like our hands, mouth, throat, intestine, gut and the rest of our digestive system. When we eat with our hands, this pattern of bacteria is maintained and we are protected from harmful bacteria. Of course, it is important for us to wash our hands before and after we eat, to ensure that they remain clean and hygienic.


I try to do this with Vibhu. This way I can also ensure that food is not too hot before putting it into his mouth. He also enjoys it and now when he is facing his teething phase, he bites me sometimes. After biting my finger, every time he smiles like he is intentionally doing it as playing with me :)

Wednesday, 19 August 2015

BHU Exam and our experience - Part 2 ( Final one)

Have you read Part 1 of this story ? NO ?? Then please go ahead and read it else this post will not look meaningful to you (Part 1). Ahh.. you have already read the first part ?? Great !! Then you can definitely see what happens next.

So we three me,Alka and Pooja were at Harendar Chacha's company and were enjoying it fullest ( kidding..). We were actually scared. Finally we had dinner and were planning to sleep so that we can go for exam next morning. By that time we had heard so much about Harendar Chacha from his lovely wife only so I was not in favor of trusting him for any further help. As electricity cuts were continuous so Harendar Chacha decided to arrange beddings at terrace of his flat only. Actually his flat had half portion open and half had construction of rooms. Beddings were arranged at floor and we all settled down. I was trying to talk to Papa and somehow Harendar Chacha was not letting me do this. He was keeping Papa and Alka's father busy somehow. I was badly looking for a chance to talk to Papa sothat I could warn him about smarty Harendar Chacha. Unfortunately I didn't get any time to talk to Papa and we all slept. No exactly!! We were not able to close our eyes as we were hell lot of scared. We had taken many books,notes with us for revising stuff before exam but we couldn't do anything. We were under pressure of Harendar Chacha's superb personality and attitude. All rape scenes of hindi movies were in mind. I was having cold feet with thought of being abducted. They had a drum full of drinking water placed outside of room. We three drank all of the water in whole damn night and believe me I didn't go for washroom any time. I was afraid of going loo in dark ( electricity cuts had created dark everywhere). Finally at 4 AM morning time, I noticed my father was going washroom. And at the same time I heard Harendar Chacha snoring like Dracula.I thought this is the time I could talk to Papa. As papa came back from loo, I went to him. In short I tried to tell him that in any case don't stay here after exam. I had overheard Harendar Chacha convicting Papa and Alka's father to stay for one more day sothat he could take us for Banaras seeing and famous " Vishwanath temple". I still remember one line I said to Papa " Papa Harendar Chacha Theek aadmi nhi hai esliye rukna mat aur aaj hi wapas chalenge". Papa got the indication from my lines. He said I did the right thing by giving him the clue about the situation and now he would handle all this. With the name of Lord Shiv, finally it was 7 AM morning and Papa started saying for packing things up quickly. Harendar Chacha was also awake and I could see his face with surprise. He was continuously saying for not packing our bags. As Papa had already told the whole angle to Alka's father so he was also saying for quickly rapping up. We somehow rushed and reached BHU campus with bag and baggages. Papa and Alka's father stayed outside with bags ( Shukla unclue was also with us). I was literally sleeping during exam. Simple question which I had mastered in B.Sc. was looking intricate to me. All I was doing simply passing the time.I am not sure what Alka and Pooja felt while exam but I was totally out. Exam got over and we came out to reach our fathers.
We were in hurry because there was a train to Raebarely at 2 PM. It was already 11.30 AM. In haste of running from Harendar Chacha's place we couldn't do breakfast so we all decided to have something first. As we came out of BHU campus we saw Harendar Chacha standing outside in front of us. "Think of the devil and the devil appears." He was looking for us only. My goodness he was behind us with all means !! This time he was not alone. Few odd looking people were accompanying him. With his cunning smile, he requested Papa to join him for breakfast but Papa denied and said we were going railway station directly and there only we would eat something. This was actually a lie. Harendar Chacha started forcing us. I don't know why but Papa and Alka's father averred to join him for breakfast. "Bad Man" Harendar Chacha took us to a strange hotel and he himself ordered "Idli Sambar" for us. My father didn't like it but that day he ate it real quick. With thought to see around I took my face up and realized we four ( me, Alka, Pooja and Shweta) were only ladies sitting there. I again got tensed what if Harendar Chacha had planned this to catch us here. He might have mixed anything in this "Idli Sambar" and what would happen if we got faint after eating us. Any how I found myself absolutely okay even after eating whole "Idli Sambar" plate. Now again Papa stated saying let's go otherwise we would miss the train. And troublesome Chacha was behind us for convincing us to stay. Thank God he left us as Papa started calling autos. I could remember Papa saying " Jaldi Auto me baitho, nikalte hai". After reaching some distance away when I saw no Chacha's shadow, I was relieved to some extent. Finally we got free from Harendar Chacha's trap.

We didn't go to station directly. Rather we went to Vishwanath ji and after dharshan we left for railway station. As we reached there we saw a long ticket queue. It was 1.30 PM and we were not having any ticket. That was the only train to Raebareli that day and we couldn't afford to miss it. Shweta's father told us to reach near ticket counter and to request any lady in queue to buy tickets for us also. I didn't like the idea. No one does this actually , buying ticket for anyone else!! Shweta went there and requested a fatty cute lady for tickets. Vishwanath was happy with us so she agreed to buy tickets for us. That was real sigh of relief after 24 hours. Aftre sitting inside train, I thanked God for saving us. Else we would have been serving Harendar Chacha till now. I didn't get the answer of few questions yet , was Shukla uncle aware of all this ?? Was he knowing his brother's activities ?? And was he not worried about his own daughter ?? Was he evolved in planning this conspiracy against us??

We didn't get selected but I was more than happy. Being saved and being not selected where people like Harendar Chacha lives. 

Tuesday, 18 August 2015

A story like love story..

Hey Guys! Look there ,who came? Ms. Soniya Ghandhi from raebareli. He said with a cunning smile to other boys and girls sitting in the classroom, when I entered. Everyone laughed. I have told him when I first met him that I am from Raebareli, constituency of Mrs. Indira Ghandhi and Mrs. Soniya Ghandhi ,with some pride in my tongue. I hav’nt even guessed that this will give me a new nick name for all my years in college.


And who you are? Mr. Lalu Prasad from Bihar, I said with fake anger in my voice. Everyone laughed again. It was our method of greeting each other.


Sanjay, yes it was his name. A boy from Bihar, with around 6 ft height, fair complexion and warm attitude. He was not the topper of the class but was topper of some toughest subjects of electronics engineering. Once he solved a numerical of subject Signal and Systems, which even teacher was not able to solve. Each girl of the class was his admirer.


He met Shakshi first time in the Chemistry lab. He was not able to believe that most beautiful girl of the college was in his group. He thanked his father to give him a name started with the letter “S”. Shakshi  was from Delhi, only child of her parents. Each girl had envy with her , because of her looks. She was very attractive with long brown hairs, big black eyes, rosy cheeks and beautiful pink lips. Sanjay was aware that many boys had proposed her, but she had broken hearts of all of them. She was not very talkative. Sanjay tried to talk her many times, but could’nt got success beyond some very normal questions like, from where you are? ,what about your siblings?, and some questions related to chemistry . She was staying with her maternal uncle in the same city , where college was situated.


One day Sanjay saw Shakshi going to the library. He followed her and acted as he was searching for some book there in the same row where Shakshi was . Hey Sanjay! Have you seen that Control System’s book, which our teacher had in his hands in class, she asked him without any greeting or other formality. Oh that book! Let me check, Sanjay said. Here it is.


Oh thanks a lot! Shakshi told with a smile, her pink lips seemed more beautiful to Sanjay. Would you please come to cafeteria with me for a tea, sanjay asked her. No Thanks, I don’t like tea, she answered.


OK, No problem , Sanjay told with a smile while his heart was restless inside.


There was fresher’s Party in the college. Shakshi came in a purple saree bordered with kundan work, she was looking prettier than ever. In the whole place , Sanjay  was looking her only.


Sanjay, next is your turn, where are you looking, are you ready? A senior boy asked him. Yes Sir , I am, he answered. He went to the stage and sung an old Bollywood song in his soothing voice. There was silence for minutes , when he was singing. When he came back from the stage, everybody was praising him. that night, Shakshi stayed at the girl’s hostel with her friends. Every girl there was talking about Sanjay only. Next Monday, Shakshi came to him and told, you sung very well that day, I am your fan. Sanjay laughed and thanked her. Do you mind becoming my friend, sanjay asked her. Why, ofcourse, she said and they shaked hands.


After class, they went to cafeteria and ate ice-cream, with their normal talks. It became their daily routine. Shakshi , are you dating Sanjay? My roommate Nidhi asked her once. No my dear, we are just friends. On the otherhand, Sanjay was in the air. All boys in his hostel were teasing him with questions about Shakshi. He used to smile at them only.


Shakshi, I love you! Sanjay told her one day in cafeteria after finishing his tea. Shakshi still had ice-cream in her mouth. She gave him an ashtonished look with her big eyes and finished ice-cream in her mouth. What are you saying Sanjay, we are just friends.


But I really love you, I thought of you everytime, I miss you every time.


But that does’nt mean that it is love. Shakshi said in a low voice so that no one could hear them.


Then ,what is love?please explain.


You are mad Sanjay, she swept her mouth with a blue hanky and went outside straight.


They did not talk each other in the next chemistry lab .Sanjay tried to call her once but she did’nt picked up.


Sanjay, please don’t become mad, you are weeping like a girl , one night his roommate told him.


Everybody in the class was talking about their breakup. My dear friend! There was nothing between me and Sanjay, then how could we breakup?, Shakshi explained to her friends.


Actually they both were thinking about each other but stopped showing that they even know each other. Now, no one in the boys hostel was asking Sanjay about Shakshi.


In the fourth semester, one day a senior came in the class and announced, Boys and girls, Next week college is organizing our annual function “Spandan”. I am here to take participations from your class for singing dancing and other activities. Faces were brighten. There will be great fun, my friend whispered in my ear. We both looked each other and smiled. After giving some more detail about the events, Sir pointed towards Sanjay and said, Hey my boy, your singing performance is a must at the opening ceremony. No Sir, I am not singing any more, Sanjay said with a serious face. Why, I am your senior and this is my order. And for a change ,this time you will not sing alone. I need a girl volunteer to sing along with Sanjay, he said in a high pitch. Many girls raised their hands including me. I knew many girls in class who were good singers than me , but who cared, after all this was for singing with Sanjay.


Hey Shakshi, I know you sings well, why not you are coming forward. Sir was from same school in Delhi from where Shakshi came. No Sir, please, I was singing in childhood, but not now, Shakshi said. Fine , but I have already put your name , he said while writing something in his notebook for other girls disappointment. You both could practice in the hall at ground floor.


Sanjay and Shakshi started practicing in the free time in a corner of that hall ,with many more other students, who were participated in the events. Some times Sanjay used to correct her , other wise there was no talks between them. They used to finish their practice and return to their friends. Sanjay was thinking of her eyes, her lips and her voice again but he did not talked her. Then the day came ,when they had to perform. They both were some nervous. They wished each other all the best and smiled. After a very long time they smiled together.


Their performance was great. Everybody there was screaming for once more. All teachers praised them. Next evening, they were again at the cafeteria together on their same seats , they used to sit previously, and with same chocolate Ice cream. The only difference was that they both were in love this time.  Boys in the hostel started to tease Sanjay again and girls were astonished to see blush on Shakshi’s cheeks.


Semesters came and went, they got good marks in all their exams. In the final year, every student was concerned about  campus recruitment. Many companies came to college and Shakshi got selection in a good MNC. Sanjay was working hard, but had not got selection in any of these companies. Shakshi tried to console him that he will surely get a job. He smiled every time but was depressed a little bit. After some more failures , he got a job in company. It was not his dream company but he was happy. Then there was the farewell party in the college. Shakshi came in a saree again , she was looking very beautiful. Sanjay was not able to look anywhere else. They danced arm in arm and then they kissed.



After college, Shakshi started to live in a girl’s PG in the city, where she got the job. Sanjay did’nt joined the company, in which he got the selection. Because it was far from Shakshi’s place. He joined a small company in the same city in which Shakshi was living. Sanjay used to go her place as her cousin to meet her and then they used to go movie or shopping.


One Sunday, when they came out in a local park, Shakshi informed that her parents were looking for her marriage. Sanjay gone mad on hearing this . Really ,he said, then why don’t you told them about me, and even we are not big enough for marriage. Sanjay they have already choosen a boy for me, he is a businessman and earns very well, she said. But what about our love Shakshi?.


We can not spend our whole life with love only. I need everything in my life. Now we are grown ups ,don’t you understand, Shakshi said in a cold voice.


Have you gone mad Shakshi, how could you say like this.


Sanjay, becoming emotional everytime is not an intelligent thing.


But being emotionless is not same with being Rude. And you are behaving rude,Shakshi. Have you ever loved me really, Sanjay questioned her.


Yes, I like you and I am not going to forget you ever , but I have some responsibilities for my parents. So ,Its better that we should move in our lives separately.


Sanjay was shocked totally. He was not able to understand that he should cry or laugh at this moment.


Don’t be so tensed Sanjay, you are not a child. I am leaving now and will try to meet you soon. Shakshi said and went from there.



Sanjay was feeling like hell,  he skipped his meal and wept all night. He thought of the time when he was with Shakshi in the college. This could’nt be real , she could not do something like this to me, he said to himself. He felt like talking her immediately but controlled himself as it was 3 am in the morning. He waited for some hours and then called her. Hello Sanjay, Shakshi said from the other endwith no emotions at all, what happened? Why you called me so early?


Shakshi, are you really going to marry that businessman?


Look Sanjay, I love my parents a lot and I am not going to make them disappointed.


And what about me?


You will be fine after some days. You will get a beautiful wife and then everything will be fine. This time she said in a strong voice and cut the phone.


Sanjay did’nt slept properly for whole next week. He refused all his friends to meet. He was not doing properly  his work in office and responded every person in auto mode. Then one night a thought came to him. Next day he went to Shakshi’s PG. Ha had a beautiful buke of red roses with him. This is for you ,he told her .Then after a few seconds ,he picked up a pistol from his pocket suddenly and shoot at her. A bullet torn Shakshi’s left hand. She became faint and fell down on the floor.Then he put the pistol near his ear and shoot himself.


Next day , he found himself in a hospital room. His mother was sobbing beside him. His father was rubbing his hand. Are you alright my son? he questioned. Sanjay said nothing, he is alive, he realized. How is Shakshi? He asked his father. Her father took her to delhi with them, she is fine, his father said with some anger in his voice. Sanjay stayed for some days in the hospital , then he went his home.


How could I did this? He asked himself. I should have thought for my parents at least. A girl, whom I know only for some years does’nt deserve my life. Years of my life are gift of my parents, I will not waste it any more.


After a few days , Sanjay  left for his workplace. Before leaving he touched his parent’s feet. Love you my son, take care of yourself, his mother said with tears . Don’t worry mamma, your son has been grown up now, Love you too, he hugged  her and then left to start for a new journey.

Monday, 17 August 2015

BHU Exam and our experience - Part 1

Have you ever thought of being trapped anywhere? I have and I was not alone. Our known friends Alka and Pooja were with me. After B.Sc final year exam, we all were appearing in different next level entrance exams. We three, Alka, Pooja and me were to go BHU for our MSc ( Math's) entrance exams. The test was to be started at 9.30 AM morning time so it was impossible to reach to Banaras this early. In any case we needed to be there one day before so that next day we could appear in exam. My father was looking for someone who belongs to Banaras in his office ( I.T.I.) and came to know that Shukla Uncle was from there. His daughter Shweta was also our class mate. But she opted Arts as medium of studies.From Shukla Uncle only, my father came to know that she was also going for BHU exam. It was for MA Economics. Now our problem seemed to get fixed. Papa ( my father) requested Shukla Uncle if he could manage we three there for one day ( to his relative's place). And he agreed. He said that he had some cousin brother's family there and his brother could manage our stay there. Good going so far. Papa and Alka's father discussed with each other how to plan this travel. So everything got decided. Me, Alka and Pooja along with my father and Alka's father joined Shweta and her father for going to Banaras. It was a train travel and we reached there at around 3 PM after noon. It was high time of summers (June) and Sun was smiling over us like any thing. After getting down there, our first destination was "Harendar Chacha's" place.Shweta's father had address with them so we took auto for "Mahesh Nagar". Auto wala dropped us at the road near to entrance of Mahesh Nagar. We started looking for flat number which Shweta's father told us. And now mystery started.  To our great supersize we roamed round whole colony but there was no flat of such address and no one knew Harendar Chacha. As per Shweta's father, Harendar Chacha worked in "Aaj" news paper ( remember this news papaer ??). What the hell.. we took 2-3 rounds around the colony but no luck. We didn't get to Harendar Chacha's flat. One kind lady was noticing us and I am not sure was she kind or was curious about all of us. As my father asked her about the "missing" address, she showed us thumbs down. She was not knowing any one named Harendar. But she told my father that why they are wandering in such a high sun time. She suggested "leave all girls with me and you all fathers find the flat". All fathers agreed and we all me, Alka, Pooja and Shweta entered at her place. She offered us water and asked " Dera mila ?( did you find the address). We all grinned at her way of talking. Finally our fathers came smiling with success of finally finding the place. We reached there and I was shocked. No name plate, no flat number was written there outside.  It was two floored house with Harendar Chacha living at first floor. And ground floor was for keeping cows and buffalo's. Guess what it was already 6 PM by them. It took 3 hours to find and enter into Harendar Chacha's house. This is not the only "eye popping" thing happened to us. Some other stuff was yet to come. Now the story was going to be full of action, drama, excitement and romance.

Chachi was like this
We all reached to first floor and we saw a girl hardly looking 16-17 years old came outside of the room to greet us. We though she must be Harendar Chacha's daughters. She offered us water and something to eat. We badly needed that. We silently ate that and was taking a sigh of relief that finally we were inside some shade. We then came to know that the girl serving us was actually Harendar Chacha's wife. Oh I forgot to explain how Harendar Chacha's appearance was. He was a tall,dark,obese man with beard and mustache. With his outlook, I got a glimpse of villain of hindi movie. Loud voice and stubble face!! Next minute only, we heard a kid crying. A boy looking 2-3 years old came outside from another room of the flat. And we were mouth opened as the boy was Harendar Chacha's son. Means the teen girl "Priya" was the mother. OMG how is it possible ?? She was looking so young and she had a son. That to from Harendar Chacha ( Yekk). Any ways it was not our matter of concern. I was little miffed with Shewta. She knew Priya already and she didn't tell us before Priya herself told us everything. It was getting dinner time and Harendar Chacha demanded good dinner to his wife. She started preparing for it and with thought of helping her,we three joined her. Hold on your seat belts and from here I am going to take you to a air tour !!!
Imagine Chacha like this
Priya started talking and made us almost fainted. She told us that she got married with Harendar Chacha by eloping. She started her college and there she saw Harendar Chacha contesting student union election. She got crush over him and tried to connect with him. Having said that, she started finding something. She was looking for a CD. I don't remember how she got in touch with Harendar Chacha but all I can remember can she said that it was so much fun to ran away from home. Specially when her father was well settled person. She was babbling like a kid all time smiling and laughing. While she was doing all this childish talking we three were looking at each other. The story was getting hot as she started playing a CD. It was her "honeymoon" recording. She told us that after getting married with Harendar Chacha in a temple, they went to Nanital. Where they took a hotel and they celebrated their first night. She was laughing like hell. I was getting my head boiling with all this non-sense. We saw in CD play that she was wearing yellow sari with red duptta and was sitting on bed. In video as well, she was smiling only (Gurr!!). We three got scared of watching blue film. First Night video of Harendar Chacha's wedding (felt puking). Suddenly electricity cut happened and honestly after long time I thanked God for this electricity cut. God saved us from watching that "P**n". One after other, 2-3 electricity cuts happened. Priya Chachi ( I had accepted her as Chachi after watching that CD) started hurrying for dinner.She also had a domestic help boy at her place. Dinner served and swear to God I was not able to have it. I was recalling everything what happened. In between electricity cuts Priya suggested us many things. She offers us to elope and took help from Harendar Chacha. She said her husband is a real "Gunda" of Banaras and he had many contacts to bad people. These bad people were evolved in helping couples to ran away, kidnapping, and "murder". We could sense that Harendar Chacha is not a person to trust upon. We all cursed Shweta and her father for taking us there.

This story is getting long and super exciting. I am breaking it at here and will be posting the next and final part in another post :)  

What is the meaning of freedom : By Priyam


What freedom means to me : By Shipra

Independence means something different to each of us. It means the right to act, speak, or think as one wants. It is also a state of self-control or self-ownership in which each and every person has legal right to speak and act freely. My definition of freedom always changed with stages of my life. During my childhood, not doing homework was my biggest freedom :). In my teenage, spending limitless time with friends was a real feel of my freedom. When I started working and started taking laws and government seriously, I always thought that our country is so great. It has given us “Right to freedom” which includes speech and expression, assembly, association or union, movement, residence, right to practice any profession or occupation and right to life. I did my studies in the way I wanted. I had freedom to say anything to my parents. I started doing job the way I liked. I traveled many places for participating in different competitions because I wanted to participate and my parents had given me this freedom. I made my own choices and experienced my freedom with plenty of rope. I was fun, I was free and I was loving it! But being a girl from a middle class family, I always believe in putting boundaries in freedom. This liberty doesn't allow me to do anything in this universe without caring things around me. Thanks to my parents and teachers who became the periphery for my freedom so that I could enjoy it fullest, without getting me in any trouble.
After I got married, another beautiful stage, my husband became the edge of my freedom. I can work, I can go for outing with friends, I can sleep till very late, I can spend money as I wish all this because I have license to do it. I can do what I want to do because I am an "Independent" woman. And he as a nice person always respects my freedom. Now I am into most special stage of my life, “Motherhood”. And honestly I think I have lost some part of my freedom. I am still working but I have to be home timely. I can still go with my friends for ‘n’ number of hours. But after spending some time, I start thinking about my son. Now my talks are mostly around Vibhu. I strongly regard that for a mother, there is no freedom. A mother feels happy in losing her freedom for her babies. Motherhood brings new, priceless gifts as well. A deeper capacity for love and self-sacrifice, increased sympathy for others, a belief in god, a fearlessness and confidence and inner peace which was never known before.

I have changed and so have changed my definitions of independence. Now independence means “pursuit of happiness” to me. If I can do what makes me and my family happy, its freedom. I can still do things which I used to do to kiss my independence but now I see how these things affect my family, specially Vibhu. I now cherish my freedom in servility of my son. I enjoy my freedom under the supervision of my husband :)

I feel proud for what I have and where I am today "Free and Happy" :)

Friday, 14 August 2015

FREEDOM : By Aradhana

FREEDOM , Freedom means liberation from external controls
We can act and think according to our will. We are free to pray any God, whom we believe. We can dance on the roads in marriages of our friends, we are free to eat anything we like to eat. We are free to choose our clothes, Indian or western or burkha. We can choose whatever job we want to do. We can walk in the rain. We can go anywhere in our county using any transport. we can shop own or sell anything. we can educate ourself or our children from any institute. we can go movies, markets restaurants with anyone. Every day we watch different kinds of news, media is independent to show any news on tv. Why. Because we are living in free country, India is a free country. All these things are seeming very small, but ask a prisoner the importance of all these things. Ask a caged bird what freedom is.
Our forefathers had fought for this freedom and sacrificed their lives for this freedom. India had been ruled by Mughals and British for many years before we got the freedom. In my childhood, I have heard many stories from my grandmother of that age. Farmers had to pay good amount of their earning to the rulers. British officers use to make Indians as their servants. Girls were not allowed to go outside. Now a days, we are free to live our lives our own way.
Being free is a great feeling but I have seen people are spoiling it by taking it for granted.
With Freedom comes responsibility and to sustain this freedom, the most important thing is discipline. Freedom means no external controls. But we require to maintain self-discipline in order to make this freedom worth.
Yes we have freedom to eat anything, but what if everybody throw the leftovers over roads and public places. We are free to be educated and learn things, but what if people start to write their messages on public places like boundaries and trees of a park or roadside hoardings.
Being free is good but everybody should take responsibility of being a citizen of a free country. We should make our country clean and corruption less. We should follow rules and regulations of society and we should follow rules of roads also. We should help the less privileged peoples.
I want to pay my respect to our soldiers, who are continuously monitoring our borders and lands, without any fear of their lives. We are enjoying here freely, only because they are fighting there for us.

We are free to express our feeling here, only because we are living in a free country. We should respect this freedom and we should take care of it for the next generations.

Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Good parenting is more than breastfeeding ( My Winning Story on World Breastfeeding Week Celebration)

Few minutes before I read what Deepika felt not being able to breastfeed the baby long. I am also a mother of same group " Formula Feeding Mamas group" :). For initial 3 months everything was absolutely okay for me but after that I as joined my office back, gradually lactation stopped. In my absence Vibhu was formula fed so he got into habit of it. He was cranky when I tried to hold him for breastfeed after reaching home. As lactation was limit, he was not getting enough to feel satisfied. I was also going mad why I am not able to produce enough breast milk in-spite of taking medication. After trying my best to nurse my baby when results were thumbs down, I took a decision to opt formula feed completely for Vibhu. But when you can't breastfeed the baby, you get into depression, honestly. I was also in same situation depressed, unhappy and heavy hearted.

Here are some points which helped me to come out of this situation :

1. Give yourself a break : Try not to beat yourself up, but do take the time. You need not to feel sad, mad, or any other emotion you may be experiencing.Stop "Mourn your inability to breastfeed".

2. Talk about your feelings: Talk to you doc. Talk to your husband and good friends. They can be a great sounding boards for your feelings. You'll feel light.

3. Spend more time with baby: Breastfeeding is a wonderful way to strengthen your connection with your child, but it isn't the only way. While you are feeding the baby, hold the little one close and make eye contact. Skin to skin touch is very important for establishing bonding with the baby. Show you love in whatever way you could. Talk with the baby. Smile as much as you can.

Final note, always remember that your relationship with your baby won't be based solely on your ability to breastfeed him/her. How you respond when he/she cries, how often you hold and play with him/her, and how you are as a mother matter more than how you feed him/her.

Wednesday, 5 August 2015

Childhood Love - Part 2

Sometimes I think to fall in love is very easy but to maintain it very difficult. As Cheenu and Duggu were going through a cold fight, they were not in talking terms which actually amazed everyone in the class. Their class mates teased them asking why they were not sitting together, why they were not talking each other. Both of them were actually not happy keeping themselves away from each other. But some kind of anger came between them and they were just going with it. Poor kids !! They were like this for months and annual exam dates got announced. This was something different happening. Silently Cheenu and Duggu were passing through exams without asking each other how it was going. They used to ask each other about questions inside bus while going back home. Cheenu always thought only about clearing the subject and contrary Duggu always thought to secure place in top 5 students of the class. It was last day of exam when Duggu decided to talk to Cheenu. Because they were not going to see each other for next two months of summer vacations. After exam, Duggu approached Cheenu saying how was the exam?? Cheenu tried to ignore him but when Duggu repeated it again, she said it was not okay! Duggu got troubled thinking it was because of him. What can be done!! They had to go away from each other for two long months.After few days of holidays results were declared for class third. Cheenu didn't go to school that day and her father was there to collect the result card. Duggu got fifth rank in class. After getting his result from class teacher, he looked fulfilled. Suddenly thought of Cheenu's result tickled in his mind. He went to Chenu's father and after wishing him, Duggu asked about Cheenu. Cheenu's father told him that she had already gone to her grand father's place. Duggu then wanted to ask about Cheenu's marks but at the same time he was little scared inside. Cheenu's father himself asked him about his result. In response Duggu showed him the result card. Cheenu's father appreciated him and wished him. By this moment he was anxious about Cheenu's result.  Duggu himself took the result card of Cheenu from her father and as he opened it, he was stunned. Cheenu secured fourth rank this time. Just above one rank he stood. Duggu wanted to talk to Chennu immediately. For wishing her, for letting her know that she is now above Duggu in class. But he went home guilt free that day. 


Kid's love is so pure. In-spite of getting less marks than Cheenu, Duggu was walking on air. He was flying high for his best friend Cheenu. Now came the first day of new session, class fourth. Duggu was the happiest boy who wanted to go school as early as possible. First day their school bus didn't come. Sad!! He went back home and his father took him to school. His eyes were looking for Cheenu only. All kids of class fourth were chatting with other about their vacations. Intemerate Duggu wanted to talk to Cheenu only and that's why he was ignoring his other friends. Next second only, he saw Cheenu talking and laughing with other girls of the class. He was relieved and cheerful now. Strangely he didn't go near to her and started jelling with other boys of the class. Whole day he was sunny and peppy doing boy like activities. It was now time to leave school as day was over, he got up in bus and like always reserved place next to him for Cheenu. He was eagerly waiting for Cheenu to get inside the bus. Cheenu came and to his surprise settled at the same place which Duggu had reserved for her. Though she was tongue tied but seeing her next to him was enough for Duggu. Cheenu being girl always liked to be at window seat so that she can have outside view. On the other hand being a boy, Duggu always sat next to her in two seater bus chair so that he can make play fight with other boys in the bus. Cheenu was mum and was looking outside from the window, without speaking a single word. Duggu noticed her stop is coming in next few minutes. Quickly he gave a peck at Cheenu's cheek. This abrupt act of Duggu left Cheenu addled. It was a kiss :)

Has Cheenu started talking to Duggu ?? Be ready for next post for answer of this thought :)

Tuesday, 4 August 2015

Smile Meet Aradhana,your Sister

In my last post, I described my feelings for my lovely friend Pushpa. Yesterday Pushpa's kind comments made me feel that somehow I was a mystery for many of my school mates. I admit I was introvert and less talking person. In spite of being good in studie, I was in lack of confidence. Confidence in terms of self reliance and acceptance. With time I have improved myself a lot. I am now evolved :). Yesterday only I saw our pics which were being clicked by Pushpa at last Sunday when we met. One thing which is common in all pics is beautiful smile of our bubbly friend Aradhana. Thanks to my memory cells who are working perfectly till date, I can remember my childhood time with Aradhana. Perhaps I recently admitted that I want one thing from Aradhana. Her jolly nature and enthusiasm. And of course she is very intelligent. Be it studies or other activities, she always stood top and done very well. I am in touch with her since my first school and class. And I must say she has reflection of her mother's positivity. Aunty is really a loving person and whenever I met her,I always saw a smile on her face. We both, Aradhana and me, had our two rooms set home in I.T.I colony. Although space was little concern but happiness was all around in her house. I used to go to meet her after school often. I have eaten reasonably many times those home made sweets which Aunty used to give. 2 pieces were enough to make my visit sugary. She had a guava tree at entrance of her house. No one ever returned without having those red guavas. Uncle always looked little strict ( I might be wrong here so I am sorry if so ) but what a talented man he is!! Aradhana has inherited all his qualities and that's why she is up to snuff in areas other than studies. Whole family always looked happy and contented. I came to know from Aradhana only that Uncle once had an accident which had given him life long issue. I often thought that she might have faced challenges because of Uncle's problem but no could ever judged any such fuss or concern from her face. Over all she is a nice soul, very caring and giving person.

Aradhana you remember when we used to go to our school which was in officer hostel ( near our I.T.I. hospital and shopping center near SBI bank). Our shishu mandir used to run in two rooms quarter until they get new building done. One funny thing I remember is, we used to play "Aradhana Ki Shadi".  Any guess with whom?? The boy was "Naveen". Hope you can recall. Once I have been to her B Tech hostel in Mathura also. I went to her collage for appearing in Infosys entrance exam. Sadly I didn't get selection and because of so much depression I didn't go back with my collage mates. I decided to stay with her for one night. Actually I didn't want to face any one from my collage because I was very hopeful for selection and in preparation tests I always stood best. I became her admirer again when she introduced me with all her collage friends. And when any one asked am I not selected, she replied them suitably that "Koi baat nhi, aisa hota hai.Fir kisi me ho jaega." She was the only positive person around me that time. Mind one thing, by that time, she was already placed in HCL. Till our 12th class,we were together in school and coaching. Ravi Mohan Sir we can never forget and his special hand gesture :)

Many times she impressed me with her loving talks and nature. She is a mother now but no one can guess that boredom which mothers normally get after having a naughty kid. She is fizzy, vivacious and very active as always. God bless my sweet sweet friend Aradhana.

Monday, 3 August 2015

What friendship means

(Image from IStockphoto)
We have celebrated friendship day this Sunday. And thanks to my lovely friends Aradhana, Pushpa and Vartika for making this day meaning full after long time. I was not in touch with them since log time but God bless these smart phones, I got reconnected with them on WhatsApp. When I was going through many messages over WhatsApp, one incident clicked in my mind. We were in class 9th I guess and we all ( Aradhana, Akaksha , Pushpa and me) were in Bareilly.Girls remember ??? We participated in "Prantiya Khel -Kud". Pushpa our sports girl participated in many sports activities..race, high jump if I am recalling it correct. Also she got her name enrolled in "Art Competition". I am not able to get my neurons finding what was the theme for this competition but she practiced a paining I can still describe. It as having Tulsi Das sitting at river bank with something in his hand ( Pushpa don't get angry if my visualization is wrong :) ). Fine !! She is a creative personality and I appreciate it a lot. I was fan of her art skills from that time only. Sports I never liked though !! And girls let me disclose name of a friend who also had participated in art competition " Akriti Saksena" ( Am I wrong ??). Aradhana, please correct me if I am calling up wrong name. She was nice, cute girl with sweet voice.I must say she was also good in paintings. Now that incident which I was talking about.. After worst food of that school where we stayed, Akriti got sick. Loose Motions !! And our loving school with limited funds couldn't give enough medication to her. So she got real weak in a single day. By the way I still remember one thing. Akriti got "Dove" soap with her there. And after reaching Bareilly, we all went to washrooms for getting out hand washed and for other stuff. I forgot to carry my soap to washroom so Akriti offered her to me. That was first time I used "DOVE". What a soap, at-least better than my Lux soap ( I was bored off using that by that time). Continuing to Pushpa's story, she participated in her sports challenges and done very well. And talented girl Pushpa, secured prizes also. Now time and place of art competition got announced. Pushpa decided not to go for it and let Akriti contested it alone from our school. She took Akriti with her to the specific room where that competition was organized (as she was low because of loose motions) and didn't participate herself. I asked Pushpa why she is not participating.Her answer was real honest and above board. She said she had already secured few prizes and she waned to leave a place for Akriti not to contest against her. She said she was praying God for easement in Akriti's health and as she was little okay, she wanted to give her a chance to win that art competition. She actually didn't want to challenge her own friend, specially when she was not okay. That time also I was touched with Pushpa's thoughts and till date I really admire her good heart for others. This is real friendship. Sacrifice for friendship and love for a friend!!

You rock Pushpa..