Sunday, 27 November 2016

More than a soul mate for me..

‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

I admit for the fact that it was not “love at first sight” for me when I met my husband. And I know that it never was for my husband. It was not like any fairy tale that he saw me through some window and decided that I was the one made for him. The idea of soul mate seems more suitable for movies and poetries where love eventually leads to becoming a soul mate for anyone. Of course, this is my perception and I respect those who believe in the ideology of finding soul mates. I know my husband since my childhood. But it was not a childhood love in our case. As the time unfolded and our circumstances brought us closer, we realized that it was a relationship more than just an old friendship. And we got married.

Early in our marriage, I and my husband were thrown into situations where we found our relationship slipping like desert. Those days were neither romantic nor easy for us. As life went further, we experienced tough nearness challenges and road blocks. And those days forced us to be very clear-cut and stony. Our initial "ugly love" made us so real with each other which is not at all like we see in movies or on social media. We didn't romance like new couples, we didn't go on frequent dates and dinners, we didn't post pictures on social media and we didn't try to flatter each other.  But 'we were in love' and soon we realized that those few gloomy and backstage moments eventually made us good performers on front site. These moments when we criticized and supported each other, created a strong backbone to strengthen our partnership. Although it was difficult but I don't want to erase those days from my life. They have become part of our love story. From that time, I started looking a silver line behind every ugly moment.


I feel there is no as such definition of who is a soul mate. Movies and stories never go beyond finding a true soul mate. Sometimes happen when a person is so much in love with someone, yet somehow, someway, totally unhappy. There are lots of adjustments, compromises and problems come in syncing love and commitment. We are not perfect. Circumstance can change what we feel for anyone even if that person is the most loved one. So rather than saying that I have found soul mate of my life, I would like to say that I have found a person who can love me even if I am wrong. And He is my husband. This doesn’t mean I always expect him to be cheesy and doing lovely talks. We are in real trek and we face challenges of thinking differently. At times we argue and end our day on a bitter note. But soon we clear our misunderstanding and move on. For me, this is more than becoming soul mates. And yes, it may not feel as fanciful as the movies make it, but according to science, happiness and long-lasting love come with trial and error, ups and downs, and a ton of rewards.





Friday, 25 November 2016

My Love Story

I know my husband, Mr N, since my childhood, when I was 4 and he was 8 years old. We were family friends. But I realized his love for me when I was 26. I guess my wisdom tooth is responsible for it. It came so late.  



We used to live in the same colony and our 2-room flats were also nearby. Because of this, our families used to visit each other frequently.  I remember my mother-in-law used to come to my mother for new designs of sweaters. Mr N used to be an average- looks guy and his dressing sense was like 10 years older than his age. His love for comic books was the first thing which attracted me towards him. Mr N used to collect comics from his friends and used to offer me for reading. I enjoyed this comic reading until I reached in 9th standard. Now comic reading stopped but he continued to come to my house. We used to talk about studies, food, songs and other happenings. We grew together and being older than me, he joined his professional course when I was in graduation first year. That was first time when our communication broke for some time. But my fate was somehow connected to him already so I joined the same course which he did but in a different college. 

By this time he had started his career and was living in Delhi. As my college was also in NCR, my caring father arranged his cell number so that I could take help from him, if needed.  I don’t know how but I started talking to him every day. I was homesick and I found him as my sounding board. I used to discuss every of my problems with him whether studies related or any other. With at most interest, he always heard me, guided me and consoled me when I needed. We used to talk a lot but dumb me; I never realized that he liked me. After completing my course I joined my first job. We continued our talks and now I used to bitch about my office mate with him :) Mr N was eternally with me, like a best friend, best mentor and best well wisher. He was doing well in his career and he moved to US for client site work. Going US used to be the dream of every IT professional and he was living his dream. In between our communication broke for good 2 years but he found me again. Let me admit, till this time I was not sure about my feelings for him. But he had changed a lot. He was smarter and handsome. And I was dazzled looking at his new look (I admit).



Being in different time zones, we used to talk in India night time, like from 1 AM to 3 AM. We were in touch but none of us admitted our feeling for each other. After few months, Mr N came back to India and he started meeting girls as his family wanted him to get married. You wouldn’t believe but I was with him when he met with a girl Roopali. After that, I couldn’t call him with the thought that he would be busy in all wedding preparations. But soon I came to know that he had said no for Roopali. I was relieved, honestly. I was, in fact, happy that he was not getting married. And I was genuinely in love with him πŸ’—πŸ’—

But my happiness couldn’t last long and soon I came to know about another girl Maahi whom Mr N was going to meet next. This time his father (my father-in-law now) was coming to be with him. The date was 24 Nov 2011, I can still recall. I was restless like anything. I went to my office but was not able to put my mind there. I wanted to talk to him but I couldn’t. Around 5 O’clock evening, I saw his name flashing on my phone’s screen. Without giving any second I picked up the call. He told me to come at the place where he was going to meet the girl Maahi. I couldn’t deny him. He said he would confirm the time later but he wanted me to be ready for the evening. Finally, at 8 PM, I was there, again wearing the same suit which I wore when Roopali came. I am not superstitious but I gave it a chance. That day Mr N denied for Roopali and I wished the same response for Maahi.


I reached HaldiRam and saw Mr N sitting there. He had already told me that his father and Maahi’s family had left. He waved for me and immediately I asked him about Maahi. He was silent for few minutes. Suddenly his phone rang and he stood up for going outside to take the call. With his gestures, he apologized me for going out. I was thinking this must be his father’s call and he would be asking about Mr N’s decision. I was getting anxious. After complete 10 minutes, he came back. Strangely, he was looking relaxed now. I asked him what happened and I swear Mr N’s reply actually shocked me. Ignoring his father’s expectations, he had put thumbs down for Maahi. And then happened one of the best things of my life. Mr N asked me if I wanted to marry him. I was speechless actually. My wish came true. He told me that he had denied his father anticipating my decision. I was in seventh heaven after this. I said a big – big Yes. That was actually “Jab We Met” day for us when we both expressed our hidden love for each other.



My belief in destiny is even stronger now. There was a reason why I was connected to him throughout my life, until our souls became one. All thanks to Mr N, I never got my proposal photograph clicked in my life. Our families already knew each other so our proposal photographs never got shared. Most of the relatives of Mr N’s family had to wait till our engagement to see me. After this lucky day, my life changed and now Mr N is my super technical husband and I am his foolish wife 😊😊 .

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

Forward and get good luck in return

A few days back, something happened with me that made my faith even stronger on my thinking about social media. “Don’t follow it blindly.”
Last week on Thursday morning, I woke up and started checking my piled up WhatsApp messages. One message because of its strange assertion made me sore instantly. “Forward it to 5 more groups immediately and get good luck in return. If you ignore, this will cost you so much.”  I really abhor such messages. And similar ones on Facebook where they claim a bad luck if people don’t hit like on them.
Then my morning chaos started and I got lost in getting ready for office along with my son. After reaching office and dropping my son at his daycare, I jumped upon my breakfast. While having it, I was watching the news on TVs which are placed in my office cafeteria. And no wonder there was a single topic flooding on every of the new channel, Currency ban. I want to write a separate blog on how I see this Demonetization. But for the current story, I am sticking to what I thought while watching the news that day. I was actually thinking to withdraw some cash from my office ATM as a day before people were displaying their 2000-rupee note like a trophy after coming out of ATM. I asked few things to ATM guard and finally I was in the queue at 10.30 morning. As per guard, everyday cash comes around 11.30 so 10.30 was the best time to secure a place (a chair) in the queue.
It was 12 PM and I was still standing (actually sitting because cafeteria has a good volume of chairs so everyone was comfortably sitting and waiting) in the queue. Not finding me in my seat, my manager called me for daily update meeting. I replied that I was waiting for cash van. Hearing this, he got a bit agitated and in response, I also got miffed. Rudely I told him that I would come only after withdrawing cash. I never want to mess up with my manager but it happened. And then everyone , waiting in the queue, was informed about NO CASH that day. We were informed that respective bank didn’t give money and that’s why cash would not be coming. Suddenly I recalled that WhatsApp message that ignored and thought “It is big for not forwarding a message.”
I was back to my seat and saw my teammates were grinning. I was not LUCKY to get cash despite I stood there for 2 hours and had an argument with my boss. I resumed my work and some problems started coming in building the code (I am in software profession). Again that silly message knocked my head. “Is it a bad luck incarnated over?” I asked to myself. Somehow the day passed and I was thinking about the nomination which I was about to give for taking part in an interoffice singing challenge. “Should I do it tomorrow as today is an unlucky day for me?”  “Oh.. I have to ask Vandana Ji first. What if she denies?” With all these thoughts I reached home. Vandana Ji is an artist from my neighborhood who takes singing classes.  With so much of mind turbulence and fear of BAD LUCK, I went to Vandana Ji. And she happily agreed. “ Ahh. Everything is fine and my luck is also fine..” I muttered.
When I was getting the dinner ready, my husband came to me and showed me a few new notes of 2000 rupees. One of my neighbors are boys who are working and still bachelors. They had exchanged the old currency for us. My husband had a wide smile on face and he said “How LUCKY we are!! We got our money exchanged without standing in a queue.” For sure bad luck was not chasing me and it never can because of any wacky WhatsApp message. It was my tender mind which connected these dots.
These messages which want people clicking “Like” or forwarding them further only plays with emotions of people. And the superstitious minds of common people many times believe on them. However, I am back on my belief of ignoring such messages. I know deleting them will not make me any less of God believer and will never hurt my friends who send me such insane stuff.


Saturday, 19 November 2016

My Best Birthday Ever

‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

Ever since my childhood, I love to celebrate my birthday. During my school time, I used to call my school friends at home for the celebration. My mother used to cook delicious food (Chole, Puri, Kheer etc..) for us. She is the best cook honestly. I used to get new clothes as well and that was all about celebrating a birthday. No concept of cake at all. Actually, the cake was very rare among the families around us.  A few years later my younger sister started demanding cake on her birthdays. She is the youngest member of our family and no one wanted her to feel unhappy so my parents accepted this. And cake cutting used to happen only on her birthdays.  After I got married, first my husband’s birthday came and I celebrated it with so much of enthusiasm. Next month it was my birthday and seriously, I was so excited and curious how my husband was going to surprise me. My husband loves writing and he used to write his thoughts almost every day that time. Somehow I got to read what he was planning for my birthday. Believe me, I was in seventh heaven. He had properly created a list of items which he wanted to do on my birthday. And that list had things started from morning till night. I thought I was going to have a blast this birthday.

Finally, it was 12 AM night. He brought the cake and a card for me which he had place secretly after coming home. He didn’t invite any of our friends because he wanted to celebrate it with only two of us. WOW!! I was on cloud nine and at the same time snoopy about the card. As I took the card out of the envelope, I thought to see it again. It was an “Anniversary Card” :) . Somehow he purchased an anniversary card in place of a birthday card. I didn’t ask anything to him that moment thinking he might feel bad. I didn’t want to spoil his plans which he had made especially for me. My birthday morning started with a rose. Again it surprised me (I knew it because I had already read his planning list). I went to my office and after reaching I noticed something in my office bag. It was a color box. I love crafting so he gifted me a set of awesome color pencils. Everything was so well timed. After my office, I reached home and pinned the card at pin board of our room. When he came from office and noticed that it was an anniversary card, he came to me laughing and told me that mistakenly he brought an anniversary birthday card. I then accepted that I had noticed it only when he gave it to me.


Actually, he was little apprehensive about getting a birthday card for me so he asked for help to one of his married friends. They both went to the card shop and with his friend’s help, my husband started selecting a card. He was so busy in reading the card matter of inside that he didn’t notice what was written in front, “Anniversary Wishes”. It was super funny. The whole day went very well and with known surprises. Whenever I remember this incident, it makes me smile and feel that “Love is blind” :) But it was the best birthday ever!!


Friday, 18 November 2016

It’s international Men’s day tomorrow

It’s international Men’s day tomorrow. We hear a lot of buzz about celebrating women’s day every year but why not people aware of any such day or they look interested in celebrating Men’s day? Last year also, I blogged about this day but that was very specific to thanking my husband for being the second best man in my life. The first one is, of course, my father. This year, I want to express my thoughts on how the tussle of gender and rights equality is changing the picture of MEN in our society.

On women’s day everything from shops for markets, from offices to online stores, goes pink.  They give discounts and even insurance schemes pop up for the welfare of women. This year in my office, every female employee got a pink rose with a women’s day card. There was even a small party only for women employees. That was really so much! Men might have different interests and pink roses are not their kinds. But where is their recognition? Today I shared with one of my friends that it’s Men’s day tomorrow and her next reaction was “Every day is Men’s Day in India.”  Although I agree on some point that circumstances are bit more difficult for women in our country. But this doesn’t mean the average man don’t face any struggle as the average women fronts every day.

I feel, with chasing equality, we,women, have started hating manhood. And in the back of our minds, we have shifted the blame on men for not getting equal rights (when needed) in society. Women these days try to prove themselves equally able and empowered everywhere as men are. However, we are so insecure that we can’t allow sick or injured MAN inside metro’s ladies coach. Women passengers can  even throw a man out of a moving train for boarding a women’s special train. Was that a fight for gender equality?

The stereotyping of men today has reached to a questionable level, which sometimes looks scary to me. I agree, some of them are still stereotyped. But I find most men having a caring, protecting, helping and respecting nature these days. I know it’s a big point of debate whether men are responsible for the condition of women in our country or not. But with standing for getting my rights as a woman, I also want to stand in support of men’s rights.  We talk so much about the abuses a female child goes through. But very less we discuss the abuses that a male child faces. We assume only a woman is not allowed to get higher education or pursue a career. This happens to men as well. This is cruel that the society throws at men for many reasons which may or may not apply always. On the other side, a common man slaves at work and fights an inner battle to cope up with the targets the society sets for men. And even in relationships, they are getting cheated often these days. As per researches, a married male is killing himself every 9 minutes. I see every reason to worry and get more vocal about the flaws in dowry and domestic violence laws which now getting heavily used against men by wives. These false cases have a sharp rise in last few years. But don’t you think a life is a life, be it a man or a woman?

Since ages, we have been debating over our men oriented society. But this doesn’t mean we should not applaud for our fathers, husbands, brothers or other roles that men are playing around us.  See, it is not about celebrating masculinity. It is celebrating the other half in our lives. Men have an equal part and importance in making this world. There is no need to be overly insecure. Not every man is a marauder around there. A rapist or a chauvinist cannot define who a man is. So let’s celebrate this Men’s day for those men who are good, the men who wish to walk hand in hand, and not go ahead or follow. Let’s come forward and show some love and respect for men. Life would be indeed unreasonable without them.




Why today's parents are educating their daughters?

It is undoubtedly a fact that educated women spend a better life. And the benefits to education are not restricted to being financially strong and living a good life, better-educated women are more likely to have healthier, better-educated kids. So today’s parents are providing good education to their daughters and encouraging them to unleash their potential. However, is this only reason parents are working hard to educate their daughters?
I feel, with a booming economy, increasing groom prices and dowry harassment have become the weighty reasons why parents are trying their best to provide higher education to their daughters. I am not saying that parents don’t want to see their daughters settled and financially strong even when they are not married. But Dowry is still prevalent in many parts of our country. Still, happens where parents claim that their daughter is being killed by her in-laws for dowry. A few days back only I read the news where a 20 years old girl in Odisha was killed by her in-laws and the reason was given dowry. Although, the investigation is still in progress. 
I always believe that every custom made by our ancestors have a reason behind it. So I think in the early days dowry used to be an institution in which gifts and presents were given to a girl at the time of her marriage when she was leaving her parents’ home and join her husband’s family. But, in course of time, it has become a crude reality resulting in female killing, suicide, bride-burning and other cruelties. Strangely due to culture and society pressure, if a girl is not working (not earning money), parents feel low and count it a reason to agree for dowry. On the other side if she is working and is independent, parents raise their voice against giving dowry.  The equation of marriage has become “good education = marriage in good family” now.
I find today’s parents willing to educate their girls and in most of the cases want them to pursue jobs so that they can fight with this evil practice of dowry (and many other). Also, they know that educated girls are less likely to be victims of domestic and sexual violence or to tolerate it in their families. Although a reality is parents often do not directly benefit if their daughter is working and earning money. But for the sake of her future security and peaceful life, they spend all their savings in providing higher education to their daughters. The flip side of the coin is harassment of girls even being in so-called good families. But in those cases, if a girl is educated and aware of her rights, she seeks help legally and doesn’t suffer in silence and waits for better time.
I know people claim that there is a fall in dowry cases now and even false complaints are coming. I am not denying them. However, in this post, I am not trying to judge and comment on how people are using/misusing laws given by the government. I am trying to convey my thoughts why girl education is becoming important for parents, and unsafe-unhappy marriages are unexceptional reasons. For such girls living in an unhappy or abusive relationship seems better than living on the streets without money. And getting education empowers girls to take control of their lives, their families, and their future!  
“The fastest way to change society is to mobilize the women of the world.” — Charles Malikleo.

Thursday, 17 November 2016

A new outlook towards a Divorce

Recently we heard Angelia Jolly splitting from her husband Brad Pitt, using the term “irreconcilable differences,” And I find whole media and a bunch of feminist bloggers going wild over writing about it. “Is this a correct step when you have half a dozen kids? “, “Reason revealed, Brad is having an EXTRA marital affair.” Many more verdicts came out when the crowd saw a celebrity couple getting divorced. While some of them appreciated this step for coming out of a disturbing marriage. Most people scoff them off for using a new-age approach to what is necessarily a dark, painful life event, a divorce.



The demise of a long relationship is really a sad step and its effect on kids and other family member is obviously a negative thing. But I feel with time we have advanced over each and every aspect of living except separation from a life partner. As our thinking and lifestyles are getting cutting-age, people are getting open in every matter. They are open in expressing their life choices. Many of them are open about expressing their love (even in public). Some are even candid about their homosexual nature. But we are still old fashioned about seeing divorces. We have accepted “love marriage” as a modern marriage institution yet we are closed about seeing the brighter side of separation in most of the cases.

Divorce is intrinsically hard and I have no doubt on it. But our cultural beliefs and attitudes make it even harder than it needs to be. We often consider the wife bad charactered and rebellious if she is asking for it. We assume the husband careless and freaky if he wants a separation. Guilt, shame and a sense of failure significantly raise the emotional cost of divorce, and that’s why many of the women and men are forced to carry an unhappy and abusive relationship even today. Still, the divorce rate in our country is low. I don’t think this is because everything is brighter in marriages here. Interestingly, divorces granted by the family courts increased in metro cities in last few years. But why this disparity, why marriages have turned more fragile in last five or so years, still not breaking into pieces easily?

The obvious reason is the high cost of divorce, particularly for the wife. Gone are the days when husbands used to buy property/house in the names of their wives. Now everything is his asset and a wife gets very less for living her further life. Though there isn't a fixed formula to quantify the alimony amount, generally it is in the range of one-fifth to one-third of the gross earnings of the spouse who has to pay alimony. This is worse in the case of non-working women. Such women may have nowhere to go after divorce, except to her parents’ place where too she is unwanted, particularly by her brothers, who are claimants to paternal property. The flip side of the coin is wives misusing divorce laws for getting a share in husbands’ property. Court trials which are mostly biased towards wives leave very less room for husbands to prove them innocent in the matter. And divorce being a costly affair, from hiring a lawyer to courts proceedings, goes as a painful business than relieving.

I am completely against on even thinking about divorce on petty differences between couples. But I also feel the society has to get a bit liberal towards divorce as a procedure. If a couple is going towards it, we should not just assume that they didn’t try to resolve their mutual issues. Without understanding the matter, no one should raise a finger over the wife or the husband. We should take a more empathetic look at the end of a marriage. What is your take on it?



Sunday, 13 November 2016

I want those days back..

‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’

I have plentiful of childhood memories that I can even write a whole book about them. All my sweet and salty memories are around my family and my friends. I often narrate those stories (even repeatedly) to my husband and get nostalgic. What a time that was!

A funny incidence I remember is when I got lost in a crowded fair. It was a village fair which used to be so big that reaching home from there was kind of impossible for a 6 years old kid. I somehow managed to reach my grandparent’s home with taking help from a milk man. He made me sit on his cycle and dropped to my grandparent’s place.  My parents spent whole 2 hours searching for me anxiously there. Phones were very rare those days so they came back to my grandparent’s home hopelessly. I was already there and as Amma(my mother) found me sitting inside, she hugged me and thanked God loudly. I was as selfish as a child; I was feeling happy that I got lost at least for some time. I was on top of the world without even thinking that something bad could have happened to me. All my family members were applauding for me as I managed to came back safely from a huge fair. Everyone was attending to me only which was making my younger sister feel envious.  

My sister, Sona, has always been a jolly girl, always smiling and always looking fresh like a flower. We both used to enjoy a lot during our childhood time. We never had any big fight and till now she is the one whom I miss every day. Sona was little rebellious in nature in her childhood so she used to get more scolding from Amma(my mother). When Sona was in class 7th, Amma started teaching her how to clean utensils. She decided that Sona would clean evening tea cups (only 3) every day. But Sona kept on avoiding it with giving a new excuse every day. Now Amma decided to teach her a lesson. One day Amma cooked pakoras for us. She served it to Papa and me in plates. But she gave 4-5 pakoras in my sister’s palm. When she asked why not in the plate, Amma explained him the importance of cleaning utensils. She said to my sister that if she couldn’t clean them, she couldn’t use them. Papa and I were laughing over Sona’s situation. She had hands full of pakoras but was unable to eat them. She got a lifelong lesson from Amma.

There are many more such tales that I cherish and get happily sentimental. As a child, I always wanted to grow up, but now I realize that broken toys and lost pencils were much better than busy friends and hassles of today’s fast life. I miss all those moments whenever I recall them. However, I would say a part of it is still with me right now in the form of my son. As my son is growing, I am also living my childhood days again.





These few lines are best to explain the time 'when I was a child':

My childhood was the time when I was innocent…
when the world seemed to be fair….
when my universe was around my toys...

My childhood was the time when I lived in dreams…
when everyone was selfless …
when everyone appeared to be a friend...

My childhood was the time when my life was full of colors…
when sorrows never knocked my door..
When smile was gift presented to everyone...

My childhood was the time when love was pure…
when there were no obligations…
when tenderness prevailed... 

My childhood was the time which is long gone…
I get emotional when I go back in memory lane…
That beautiful childhood will never come back but…
I wish the child in me will always remain the same...




Friday, 11 November 2016

#ChildrensDay A story for touching your heart

"Hey, young lady! What are you doing?  Don’t touch those flowers." Asked Mr. Sharma.


"I am sorry Dadaji , I am not plucking the flowers, just wanted to get some fragrance." Little Ruby answered shyly and she left immediately .



Mr. Sharma was a sober person in his early sixties, who was retired from his job before 2-3 years.
His garden was the topic of discussion among his neighborhood. He was devoting most of his time to maintain his garden or playing with his dog TOFFEE. 

Toffee was a Labrador, which Mr. Sharma had taken from his friend when it was only a few days old. They both loved each other so much and this creature was like a family member to him. But Mr. Sharma’s daughter-in-law was not very happy with the dog, as she used to think that Toffee was the reason for her few months old son’s frequent health issues. She requested her husband, Mr. Sharma's son, to leave Toffee somewhere else or give it to any of his friends.

Mr. Sharma’s son was a kind hearted man. He knew very well how much his father loved this dog. One evening somehow, he managed to tell his father all this. Initially, Mr. Sharma was reluctant to this idea of giving Toffee to someone else. But then he agreed to leave Toffee with a heavy heart. 

After two-three days he saw some movement in his garden.

"Oh, I am fed up with this girl. I will surely make complain to her parents. If someday I will catch her red handed, I will surely punish her."

He came outside angrily to catch Ruby. She was a seven years old girl with long curly hair, round face and twinkling eyes from Mr. Sharma’s neighborhood.

"Where have you gone? Today I will beat you for sure." Mr. Sharma shouted while coming to his garden. Ruby was not there, she managed to escape somehow. As Mr. Sharma reached there, he found a piece of white paper on the ground. He lifted it up curiously and read it,

“Dear Sharma Dadaji,
If you want, you can play with my puppy Chikku anytime.
And I miss Toffee too. “  
                                                              
The little girl was trying to console a 65 years old man. There was a big smile on Mr. Sharma’s face and few drops of tears in his eyes. The roses were still there in the queue of plants. His garden was still untouched..

#ChildrensDay Let kids play freely

Yesterday I missed my office and enjoyed the day with my naughty toddler.  I and my husband were playing with him and while playing he did a funny thing. He said “Abhi Baby ko base pasand hai (the song) lagata hu..” He went to the front wall and put his finger inside a wall patch and came back. As per his play, this was switching on the song ‘Baby ko base pasand hai’ which happen to be his favorite song these days. We, husband-wife, laughed madly noticing his silly play.
Kids around the world, those living with the most sophisticated families in big cities to those living in remote villages; spend much time 'just playing.' And only we adults can use this word ‘just’ with playing here.  We assume nothing is happening when kids are playing, mostly when they pretend to be a doctor, a mother, a fairy or a firefighter . You must have seen kids holding their arms like wings, making motor sounds, and running about, pretending to operate airplanes or a bike. The reality is, a lot is happening when kids are ‘just’ playing.  They develop skills, habits, and attitudes while playing and this will stay with them throughout their lives. During their plays, kids learn to cope up their frustration, to share with others, to give vocal expressions to their thoughts and to use creativity in using limited resources. They play and keep. Kids use best of their understanding about this world to design their unique plays.  They don’t need to be taught how to play.
For kids,the play is actually their work, and they give a tremendous amount of energy and effort to do it perfectly. However, they do not play for any reward, money, or food for playing good. They play because they like it. If we look at the definition of play, “Play involves a free choice activity that is non-literal, self-motivated, and enjoyable and process oriented.” So if we are instructing kids to make a word with using letter A, it’s not playing. When we ask them to label the colors of their paints, instead of using them to create a picture, they are not playing. The play actually means less use of external aspects, materials, and instructions.
With increasing competition around us, it is seen that more and more parents expect their young kids to be learning specific academic skills. And they push more academics and computer instruction on young kids. Ironically, at the same time, they are eliminating free plays from the formal education of their kids. There is no afternoon plays allowed for kids which we used to enjoy in our childhoods. Consequences are, many of our homes become dominated by passive TV watching for studies and computer games. Kids now don't want to walk aimlessly in the park, throw stones in the water to see the ever-expanding ripples, build muddy castles  or a frontier fort with their buddies. Believe me, it’s not a good sign for coming generation kids. They might become masters in operating computers but they may lose their creative vibes.
I feel this world will keep on getting more complex and more technological, but to succeed here, our kids need a solid foundation based on plays. This only I am not saying, this is a fact based on a study of child physiology. We, parents, should be very careful about advancing them too quickly into abstract skills and inhuman concepts like computers and smartphones. Lots of free play at an early age enables kids to develop the wide, integrated foundation required for their future academic success. It also will develop in our kids a love of learning new things, a passion that is desperately needed by kids who are going to spend 12-13 years of their life in playing challenging academic strikes.                              

Thursday, 10 November 2016

Empathy - A story

"Hey, young lady! What are you doing?  Don’t touch those flowers." Asked Mr. Sharma.


"I am sorry Dadaji , I am not plucking the flowers, just wanted to get some fragrance." Little Ruby answered shyly and she left immediately .



Mr. Sharma was a sober person in his early sixties, who was retired from his job before 2-3 years.
His garden was the topic of discussion among his neighborhood. He was devoting most of his time to maintain his garden or playing with his dog TOFFEE. 

Toffee was a Labrador, which Mr. Sharma had taken from his friend when it was only a few days old. They both loved each other so much and this creature was like a family member to him. But Mr. Sharma’s daughter-in-law was not very happy with the dog, as she used to think that Toffee was the reason for her few months old son’s frequent health issues. She requested her husband, Mr. Sharma's son, to leave Toffee somewhere else or give it to any of his friends.

Mr. Sharma’s son was a kind hearted man. He knew very well how much his father loved this dog. One evening somehow, he managed to tell his father all this. Initially, Mr. Sharma was reluctant to this idea of giving Toffee to someone else. But then he agreed to leave Toffee with a heavy heart. 

After two-three days he saw some movement in his garden.

"Oh, I am fed up with this girl. I will surely make complain to her parents. If someday I will catch her red handed, I will surely punish her."

He came outside angrily to catch Ruby. She was a seven years old girl with long curly hair, round face and twinkling eyes from Mr. Sharma’s neighborhood.

"Where have you gone? Today I will beat you for sure." Mr. Sharma shouted while coming to his garden. Ruby was not there, she managed to escape somehow. As Mr. Sharma reached there, he found a piece of white paper on the ground. He lifted it up curiously and read it,

“Dear Sharma Dadaji,
If you want, you can play with my puppy Chikku anytime.
And I miss Toffee too. “  
                                                              
The little girl was trying to console a 65 years old man. There was a big smile on Mr. Sharma’s face and few drops of tears in his eyes. The roses were still there in the queue of plants. His garden was still untouched..




(Thank you dear Aradhana for this story)

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Weight Loss with Loving myself..

Weight loss for me is a touchy subject. Yes, I am little obese and I am still trying to shed my pregnancy weight. But, I feel trying to eat healthy (or I should say which don’t add to my extra deposit) makes me lonely.  Just imagine I am having boiled Lauki and my family having delicious Puri Sabji.  In these two years, I have tried many times to stick to my weight loss regime but I gave up every time. Reasons are many but mostly because I was unhappy eating all those boiled and tasteless food. 
Yesterday I came across a WhatsApp video in which actor Akshay Kumar is telling how we can save our coming lives from being shaky as most of the people today have an unhealthy lifestyle. After watching that video I thought for a while and I would say those points really inspired me to go for weight loss habits AGAIN. But I have a different ‘pilan’ (plan) this time. For next few months I am going to do below things for losing my weight without feeling lonely and troubled:
  1. Finding an exercise that hits my soul: Honestly, I don’t have time to go to the gym. And I always give this as the biggest excuse when it comes to doing workouts. Although cardio exercise like running is ideal for weight loss, however, that doesn't limit my options to running alone. Who likes to invest her time in something she doesn't enjoy? So I am going to dance every day for 15-20 minutes on peppy Bollywood numbers and that’s my favorite workout.
  2. I am not going to be obsessed about weight loss: Yes I will be doing many things for weight loss. But this doesn’t mean I should go mad about it. I am not going to scale myself every day. I would weigh myself only when it's necessary. To be frank, I am not going to rely on the scale for my progress. Instead, I would recognize how my body is feeling.
  3. Simplifying my life a bit: What a better time to rid myself of negativities than during this weight loss process? So I am going to clean my closet and give away extra clothes to needy people. I am going to make the distance from negative people of my life. This would be like detoxing my life. Having fewer complexities in life always help in focusing on important things.
  4. Find the right audience: Discussing my weight loss deal with my husband doesn’t seem a good idea to me. So I would go on this journey with someone who can understand me. Like my friend who is also working on losing her extra gains. And for the same reason, I am documenting my plans and sharing it with readers out there. It is said that there is strength in numbers, and taking on a weight loss challenge with others will give me the motivation I need to stick to the plan.
  5. Don’t care what others say: It’s my journey. And I am going to decide how I want to go through it. So I don’t care what others are commenting over my diet. I don’t need to change my lifestyle for anyone. I am doing it for myself and I want to stay happy throughout. So my plan my way.
  6. A Little cheating is allowed: I don’t want to beat myself for eating a piece of cake on my friend’s birthday. I know I should cut down my sugar intake but I want to ease into a healthier lifestyle slowly but surely. I once read somewhere that sometimes our stomach (and the smell of good food) can overpower our desire to stick to your healthier diet. So I would treat myself time to time during my trek.
  7. Write my goals: Writing is very powerful as it opens the doors which we never know. Writing down my goals and continuing to keep up on it can give me the clarity on I would need on the days ahead. I would write down my little achievements and all those challenges which come on my way.

Most importantly I want to love myself during this weight loss excursion and that’s going to be my biggest motivation. Fingers crossed :)

Monday, 7 November 2016

#DearZindagi A Letter to My Life..

“I am writing a letter to life for the #DearZindagi activity at BlogAdda“.

Hello Dear Zindagi,

With aim of writing a letter to you, I recalled few lines from a poem written by famous poet Gulzar :

Hai lau zindagi, zindagi noor hai
Magar ismein jalne ka dastur hai...

Ravayat ye hai ke zindagi gehna hai
Ye heera hai aur, ise chaat-te rehna hai
Ke lamhon mein marne ka dastur hai..

Adhoore se rishton mein palte raho
Adhoore se saanson se chalte raho
Yuhin jeenay jaaney ka dastur hai..

Hai lau zindagi, zindagi noor hai..


How true is that!

My trek so far has been absolutely normal with few ups and downs. And I feel these crests and troughs give a person reasons to live and look forward to every coming morning.  Dear life, with this letter I want to convey my feelings and warmth about this journey over which I am going with you.



Dear life, you gave me most caring parents of this world, who never disappointed me and never failed me when I needed them.  I witnessed a beautiful childhood which was full of fun and enjoyment because of a younger sister and many cousins.

Dear life, you gave me the chance to prove myself as hard working kid who always tried to make her parents and teachers feel proud. Because of your desire, I could break rules of that conservative society who used to support caging girls inside the home. I came out, pursued my professional studies and now doing an ideal job.

Dear life, I can’t thank you more for giving me such a nice husband. You know well that early on our marriage, we faced many hardships and nearness challenges.  But 'we were in love' and soon we realized that those few gloomy and backstage moments eventually made us good performers on front site. My life, you have seen me crying and laughing at the same time. But the best part is, you never let me feel hopeless and that’s why I am living best years of married life now.

Dear life, what can be best than giving me a chance to become a mother. Motherhood has made me a complete woman, really. You gave me a jolly boy who unconditionally loves me. It actually feels so good when I see him growing day by day, showing his naughtiness and caring for me so much. The smallest man in my life is the biggest reason for my happiness you know.

Dear life, I have everything I ever desired for. You have given me everything a girl dreams for.  Now it is my chance to say "thank you" from the bottom of my heart for all this. Thanks a ton for making me happy and contended. I wish coming years that you are going to write for me shall also be full of stars and moons. I don’t fear difficult times but I request you to give me enough strength to deal with them. 

Thank you dear life for giving me fee will to love and to be loved, to make my own decisions, to learn from my mistakes, to laugh when I am happy and to cry when I am sad. Thank you once again for giving me all the vivacity of this world. There are ups and there are downs but still for me Zindagi Gulzar hai..

Love you my Zindagi :)



Making memories for our kids that they remember

We all have our favorite childhood memories and we love to recall them again and again. On this Diwali when I was at my mother’s place, my mother started telling me my childhood incidences noticing my son’s naughtiness. Although she has told me those tales many times yet I love listening to them more and more. When she was telling me how she spent those five days when I, as a newborn, was in the hospital, I realized that all my childhood memories are around my parents only. I find no one else in my memory clouds when I look back, although I used to die for many other family members. A face book post saying “Kids don’t remember their best day of television” suddenly flashed in front of me.  And then my guilt trip started thinking am I giving enough memories to my son for his future?

I feel all SAH mothers are really lucky that they are participating in making beautiful memories for their kids. But for mothers like me who are working the story is different. Working mothers don’t spend most of their day with their kids. And they get very few hours to make their kids feel loved and valued. However, in past two years of my life when I was playing a role of a mother along with the role of a software professional, I learned one important thing. Guilt never helps. So we, working mothers,  should think about the moments we want our kids to remember in spite the sand clock runs faster for us. And try to make more of those happen. Let’s face a fact that sometimes we need TV, phone or ipad to keep our kids busy but we should realize the fact that phones and ipads can never replace acts of true love.
So after coming back from my office, I dedicate all my time to my son. I take part in his plays. I laugh at his silly jokes. I dance with him.  I feed him with my hands making stories.  And I make him sleep with only a single role of my life, a mother. When I put my son to bed I take some time to set my phone (and laptop) down and enjoy the warm snuggle of my toddler. I ask him about his day although I know he is too small to explain to me everything happened to him in his daycare. Yes, he goes to a daycare and best part is it’s in my office only. I tell him bedtime stories; I sing for him his favorite Bollywood numbers and my favorite bhajans. And this way I’m trying to make memories that stand out for my son.

I want my son to remember the time we spent in making buildings from his lego set, for painting countless sons and moons, and singing songs that he likes. I would love to do things which my son begs me to do over again. I would die to create the moments that make lasting memories in his mind. I hope my son remembers that even when I didn’t stop for doing all his stuff, he was always in my mind and in my heart. I hope he remembers that I loved him more than any human being in the universe. I hope he would meall this.

Sunday, 6 November 2016

Fear of Failures - Atychiphobia

I have been a studious girl in my childhood. And because of my deep interest in studies, I always secured good marks and ranks during my school days. From class 6th to 10th, continuous five years I secured the first rank in my class. Although class 10th board exam results were the first taste of failure for me when I was at fifth position in terms of overall marks percentage. Apart from studies, I was also active in other activities like debate, essay writing, and singing. I used to take part in various inter-school competitions and luckily I always got a prize, if not always first then either second or third for sure. My house of was full of trophies and medals. This success had made me a popular kid among parents of my classmates. My father used to feel very proud of me as I used to succeed in every test where I appeared till class 10th. And with success come the fear of losing it. Slowly I started hating failures. I wished to win all the time. I only wanted fame and recognition so if once or twice I didn’t get any prizes, I used to feel awful.

My 10th board exams were the first time when I was behind four girls of my class. After knowing the percentage of marks, I closed myself in a room and for next few hours, I cried badly. I was not ready to accept my defeat. But somehow my parents convinced me to look forward towards next two years of my studies. I had to change my school for these two years, class 11th and 12th and the new school was a government one. There were more than 200 girls in my class. As my half yearly exams of class 11th came close, I started thinking about my rank in the class after these exams. I wanted to stand in top three and I worked hard for it. Finally, results came out and I got the third rank in my class. When my name was announced in school assembly, all new girls of my class started making noise for cheering me up. They all wanted to shake hands with me. After a fall I was again on top of the world.  And again my journey of success continued till my post graduation final semester. I got the second rank in college in my graduation course. Post graduation was a professional course and was a completely new field for me.  Yet after first two semesters, I was in top three students of the batch. With each of these achievements, my hatred for falling down kept on increasing. Now the time came when I started appearing in recruitment test as I was in the final semester of my professional course. And my success story suddenly changed from that time.

I appeared in more than 10 recruitment drives but I couldn't clear any of them. In many of these on campus and off campus tests,  I was able to clear the written test but I failed in further rounds. I was failing constantly everywhere. I had passed my professional course with good marks and third rank in batch but I had no job in my hands. Whereas many of my batch mates had more than one offers in hand. As I was not having any good company offer, I joined a very small company and there I worked for more than two years. The environment of the company was not at all woman friendly but I had no other option. In these two years, I appeared in many interviews and tests for switching the job but my bad luck never lets me succeed in any of them. With so many failures, I had a new type of fear in me, fear of getting a lemon from my life. I was preparing for government exams along with my job but more than thinking about clearing it, I used to think about losing it. I was negative and hopeless. I even stopped giving interviews and test thinking I had enough success in my childhood and now was the time of getting flop everywhere. This fear of failure was so deep in my mind that I used to avoid my friends and relatives. I had fear of their question about my job and career.  I had no hope for my future and I was scared of my life’s checkmate.   

After two and half years, I changed my job which I was not liking at all. The new company was a lot better place to work. Slowly people started recognizing my work and talent. My managers started appreciating my involvement in other team activities. And again the graph of success started getting better for me. I was getting good appraisals, I was promoted well. But I was a changed person by then. I had understood that success and failure are two faces of a coin. If  a person is getting success today, he might get fail tomorrow. But we should not fear of failures. Failures give a person chance to learn and  improve oneself . I had understood that without failure we can’t understand the value of success.

Those few difficult years of my life gave me an insight towards living the life happily and without fear. I now take part in various activities and competitions but I don’t think much about failing in it. Sometimes I win and sometimes I fail. However, I remain optimistic and focus on giving my best. I have understood well that the greatest barrier to success is fear of failure. And I no more fear of any kind of failures in life.

‘This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.’