Posted in m@dness

As old as it gets

Last evening, I spotted a strand of white on his bald hed. I’ve known him since i was 4, and the first signs of greying made me feel weird. We’ve grown up together, but growing old…is definitely different. He has always been bald. But there were a few strands of here and there that convinced me he wasnt born bald. Those few stray hair he had was black. On a few occasions that I have cornered him, he has confessed that he had dyed them a few times just to make him look young. Little did he know that to me, he was the most adorable person I had ever met.

I have always wondered, even when I was a little kid, what it must feel like to be old, to have grandchildren and to not feel young any longer.When I’d see my grandmother’s withered skin and snow white hair, it was difficult to imagine she could have ever been young. But her sepia toned pictures from younger days made me think about what I would look like when I grew old. I even remember asking her how she felt at 60, how it felt at 60. I don’t remember what she said but it wasn’t good enough for me to not think about how I’d be at that age!

And honestly, I feel old already – older than a lot of adults around me. 😦 And I already wish I was younger by at least 5 years! And I still wonder what I will look like when I grow old, what I will be like. Will I be lonely and cranky/ content and caring/ sick and senile – what?When are they ever going to invent something that would tell us exactly what we would look like when we are old! Bah!

When I see him ageing, it scares me. I see he’s no longer able to walk that fast, his body give up sooner than they used to, his joints ache and hurt once in a while.hE seems to be more prone to diseases.. He’s not the same and it bothers me sometimes. I’m selfish and I don’t ever want him to grow old!

I don’t want to live forever, but I’d rather die young than grow painfully old. Maybe, I’m a silly coward not prepared for life as it is. Maybe 60 will seem younger when I’m there! I hope so…

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Posted in m@dness

Spiritually yours

I was in my 8th standard(my friend says its 7th) when this incident happened. It however made me more spiritual than religionist. I would say, it’s the reason I believe in a god and not call him names.

So going back to the incident, the school that I studied in, my almamatter was very spiritual religious. They made it mandatory for all students to learn the Bhagavad Gita ( the holy book of the hindus) whether they were hindus or not. I remember my friends who were non-hindus cribbing about it but nope our Principal was very stubborn in this case. So every Monday and Thursday morning we would stand in the assembly and recite the Gita or the Vishnu sahasranamam. Yes its nice to start the day thinking of god but come on you cannot force someone.

So on that day, a Monday morning, I was standing for assembly in the crisp brown skirt, white shirt, brown tie and polished black shoes, when the guy standing in the next queue poked me. We used to have one line for girls and another for boys of each class. He kept poking me till I turned. He had forgotten his gita book at home and noone was willing to share their book or give one to him. Poor thing. Well its another fact that even though we were in the same class for over 2 year, we hadn’t yet spoken. So me being the ever giving type(yes really, that young), I looked around to see if anyone was watching and tore my Gita book into two pieces and gave him one half. He smiled. It was more of an acknowledgement than a thank you. Grrrrr

The leader, a senior girl came to check if each one of us had a Gita book and caught him first for having a torn book in hand. Then she asked him if it was his, to which he could have said yes and gotten away. He said no and to top it, looked at me!!!! Oh if I was a little taller and stronger, I would have hit him! So we were both taken to the Principal’s office. What happened next changed my very view of religion.

The principal started by saying I had committed a horrendous crime and that it was unforgivable. Yes, she had let him go. I was the scapegoat. To think I had such genuine intentions when I gave him a part of that book. Kindness and sharing, you know. She said she was going to call my dad which would have been fun considering how religious he was! When she realised there was no point calling my dad , she sat me down in her office and said that she would have forgiven me if it was any other holy book! Yes, she meant that if it was the book of any other religion, she wouldn’t have had a problem. But because I was a “hindu” born into a very royal nair family, I had shunned and disgraced my caste and religion by performing such an act.

She went on to say that Hinduism was the primary religion and that the gods in Hindu Mythology were supreme and that all other religions were just copying us etc. I was 13 years then and to this date, I have not forgotten that day. The only thing I told her before I walked out of her office was that the Gita taught us to share and be kind to all of mankind and not just to hindus.

That evening, back at home, after I narrated the incident to my dad, the only thing he told me was he was proud of me for offering help and that he wanted me to be spiritual and not religious. He explained to me that religion was made by man when all god wanted us to be was spiritual. I don’t know why but since then, I have always been spiritual. My god does not have a name nor does it belong to any religion. I pray to god without calling him a name and he does listen. I haven’t visited a temple in years and nor have I gone for any spiritual awakening classes. But I have learnt that every religion teaches you the same thing. Kindness, patience, faith and love for everything/everyone.

Posted in m@dness

Of Old friends, Distance and Telephone Calls

Its raining here now. Don’t know why but rain always makes me write. An old friend messaged me today and was telling me how we don’t talk and spend time together like before. It bought me back to my school days. A time when the most complicated things in life were a one chapter test the next day or a school badge going missing or a torn holy book!( I will write a post on that someday)

Till about 4th standard, my grandma was around to help my dad bring us up, my brother and I that is. Well it was mostly me coz my brother was not around too often as he was away at college. A year and a half I went straight to my aunt’s house from school and when I began to totally hate it, I somehow convinced my dad that I would come home straight from school. So when I was in class 7, I came home directly from school everyday for the next 5  years. Empty home, yes! But empty home came with a gift of sorts, freedom. School was till 1:20 p.m and I would reach home by 2:15 latest. Lunch was noodles almost every day unless I got fed up and made eggs and had it with bread. I still have that emotional bonding with noodles!

I used to watch tv till about 3;00 pm and then take a nap till 4;4:30. THEN the phone calls used to start! I wouldn’t use the word gang coz we used to fight and make up and fight and join other gangs all the time. But I had this circle of about 4-5 people and we used to call each other up every single day like the next day was coming to an end. The phone would just ring non stop! When one call ended, the other would ring. There was no facebook at that time and the only was we could UPDATE each other of our activities were to call each other. No conference call either. So if we had to share some piece of info(read gossip) , the only way was to call each of them up! Now when I think of it I cannot help but laugh at the number of times we were shouted at and reprimanded for the times we called each other up! Jyo, my closest buddy since school and I used to call each other almost 30 times every day. This inspite of meeting in school, travelling in the same bus and staying just 2 minutes away from each other. It was fun. Great fun. Gossiping, sharing the most intricate details of everyday, updating each other by the minute on the activities, deciding who to target the next say, crushes, daily crushes, teachers etc.

Today, we are miles apart, both by distance and mind. We hardly talk once in a week. Updates are seen on facebook and the like/comment is used like read receipt. We meet once in three months, that is four times a year. Catch up on old times, but the distance is there, screaming at my face. We tried every trick to reduce the gap, but sometimes time just gets to you.

When I was a kid, I had just a few people and I was happy and contempt and felt like I didn’t need anybody else other than these people to live. Now, a grown up woman that I am, having so many friends and circles, I feel lost. Somewhere hidden inside is a girl who is still holding on to a phone to get that call of life. A girl who has walked beyond yesterday but not yet reached today.

Posted in close to heart

11 words- A thousand miracles

A long time ago, I had written about 7 words that changed my life. As years passed, I realised though these words did change my life at that particular time of my life, it didnt last long. But there were a string of words that did change my life very many times and helped me during my weakest times. Yes,it was said by different people but it gave me a much needed push during those times. That’s why I thought of writing about it. It helped me overcome, what if it helps someone else too.

Let me begin by narrating a personal story. A friend of mine just started driving her car. And though she had taken driving lessons several times in her life, had a valid driver’s license, was certified by the driving school as a competent & cautious driver; and also understood the theory of car driving..
There was ONE BIG ISSUE – She still lacked confidence to drive through busy traffic-intesive zones in the area.

So here’s what she did when she drove her car:
1) Drove at times of the day when the traffic would be minimum – And she’d get into elaborate planning to achieve this! Even sometimes if it was impractical or inconvenient to her and others!
2) Took routes where she could avoid / minimize the peak traffic – Even if they were longer and hence took more time and fuel!
3) Take someone along with her in the car (who knew driving). And when she felt uncomfortable with driving through areas with heavy traffic, she’d stop the car and ask him / her to drive. And they’d usually oblige!

And then one day, she was driving in her car at a peak traffic time along with her husband. Just before she was about to hit a very busy junction, she requested him to take charge and drive the car.
Just when she was about to stop, he said “Go On! Drive through..I am right here.. If anything happens, we’ll face it… ”
What followed was that she did drive through one of the busiest junctions in the area amidst peak traffic!
A small personal triumph – Nevertheless, it did wonders to her self-confidence in her driving abilities..

As I mulled over this, I realized that what stood out from this whole episode was the fact that she heard the words “Go On!..I am right here.. If anything happens, we’ll face it... ” at the time when she needed to hear it the MOST! At a time when it really made a DIFFERENCE!

And I can tell you from personal experience that there is MAGIC in these words… I know I have been in situations where I probably took the MOST IMPORTANT STEP IN MY LIFE simply because someone said “Go On!..I am right here.. If anything happens, we’ll face it… ” It was either my dad, my best friends,someone who was standing by me when I was struggling or just myself!

And in the journey of life, there will be one / many situations when all that is required is someone to say these MAGICAL words to you.. It does not matter who says it – Friends, Family, Colleague, Stranger, etc.It does not matter the medium through which they say it – Phone, Mail, Face to Face, etc.
What really does matter is the conviction with which they say it, the time at which they say it.
Say it early and it does not have the REAL IMPACT!Say it late and the MOMENT is GONE!

I have had real tough times in my life. Times when making a decision was the hardest thing to do. In all these times, these 11 words uttered by people who didnt even  know the impact of these words have made me stand up and live life without a fear. I know i have passed on the magic of these words to atleast a few people. Have you?

Posted in close to heart

Baby Talks

Don’t get fooled by this…

This post is dedicated to all my girl pals and to those of em who have become moms and to the would be mom’s.

Conversation 1

This was a conversation we had in Class 3(Age:8)
“Do you know why we are all so attached to our mothers?” Carmel Miss asked

I considered the question too unworthy to answer as I was more ‘attached’ to my father. So I concentrated on trying to pull Aparna’s hair.(Aparna- A friend, then. Now, a girl who used to sit in the seat before me in class.)

“The umbilical cord is the link. We were all once attached to our mothers through that. Now it’s the heart that continues the legacy”.

“What cord?” Aparna asked me. “Which part of the body is she talking about?”

I pressed my finger to her navel and tickled her. “There”.
She giggled.
Carmel Miss frowned.

“I finally know from where babies come”, said Aparna.

Oops! I stopped what I was doing. I was the educator. And I wasn’t too sure. I knew the region but not the location.

Lifting her shirt she pointed to her navel, “This cord thing, it’s like a door. First the baby is inside and when its ready- it kicks. You can open it and take it out. And…” she paused for emphasis, “You have to cut the cord. You can’t walk about with a baby dangling can you?”

 Conversation 2

This was while I was doing my graduation. (Age: 17 going on 18)

Girl talks during college was survival. What a time it was. In hostel, during my first year, we were a gang of  5. It was a group comprising of The Educator(Me), The Know it Alls( D, another D and N)and The Dummy(V). Our conversations mostly revolved around  all the know how on ahem ahem you know…the birds and the bees.

On One such Day:

“ Ugh I cannot even think of getting married”, said V.

“ Why is that? It is such a nice thing to have someone to share your life with”, asked D.

“Ya ya that is nice but see, if you get married, you have to have kids right. And the thought that my kid will have to go undergo such a torture is not nice to think about”, said V.

“What torture? You have to play around with your husband a little bit and then you have to go through the torture dumdum, not your kid”, I shot back.

Getting up from her bed and walking to D, pointing her backside, V wailed“ Noooo. My kid has to come through shit hole na. Poor thing. After those many months of sleeping inside the cave in my stomach. Imagine its plight when it realises it came from my backside/shit hole!!!!”

And by god, what a laugh we all had that day!

 

Conversation 3:

A conversation during Post Graduation (Age: 21-22)

 

The 4 of us was a talk of the hostel for the things we used to do, for the messes we were never caught for and for enjoying life at the same time scoring marks: Tee, Gij, Tan n Me.

So while supposedly studying for a VIVA, we were discussing on bollywood and the steamy scenes they have when Gij suddenly said,

“How do these heroines go around kissing men like this? Don’t they realise how much of a risk they are taking. No wonder heroines eventually get married to these heroes only.”

The three of us knew it was going to be Gij’s day that day. And while Tan n me were already laughing, Tee managed to ask Gij, between the giggles, “n why do you say that?”

We burst out laughing with her answer which was,

“ Don’t these dumb girls know that you can have babies just by kissing?”

I cannot but laugh thinking that while a 22 year old did not know the story of how babies were made, then. My 6 year old niece, now asks me, “ Mai, do you know I came out through amma’s stomach through the hole down there?”

Ah… Baby talks!

Posted in close to heart, fiction, m@dness

Awakening

Why doesn’t she just leave?
It’s the first question people ask, when they come to know of her plight.She stays because she hopes it will get better. Maybe they can talk it out and make things work. Maybe she will make him happy again. Maybe he will find a way.
She stays because she is ashamed that they have come to this, that she has allowed him to treat her this way, that she has taken him back before.
She stays because she doesn’t have the courage, hope and willingness to start all over again.
She’s scared to try to make it alone in this big bad world. She is worried she has lost the time and has crossed the age to find life and love again.
She holds on because she is afraid.

He has told her that she can never leave him because thats the love she has. He says that his memories will haunt her no matter where she goes and what she does.He has warned her that the marks and scars, physical and emotional will be with her for the rest of her life.She knows that he means it.

But that was till she realized the love she gave was never acknowledged nor returned. That was till she understood that he was taking her for a ride. She cried her heart out. She screamed and howled and cried for missing him. She went over each memory she had with him and lived through it one last time. She missed him as much as she could so that the missing would decrease as each day passed.

That was till she gave up being the girl she was and turned into a fine lady ready to take on the world. She gained the courage, the wisdom and the skill to show the world she was not ready to give up just yet. She woke up to a new day, a new woman, a new dream and a new story. She told herself she would never ever give up on love and that she will never let a man bring tears to her eyes.

She started writing her own destiny, her own story.When she needs to know just how human she is, She will touch the scars, look at them and remember. And if she remembers enough, she will cry. Then she will ignore them again and go on being happy.

And I wish her this:

Someday she’ll find the man that she wished he could’ve have been.
And he’ll be just another heartbreak in her past that will lead her to the one that’s meant to last.

Posted in m@dness

To Acha, With love

This is about THE MAN who has been the tallest and strongest person for me. He relieved me from pain with sheer touch . He gave me strength that runs up n down my veins today.

I was a difficult kid. A single dad raising a girl is difficult. But he never ever failed. He sacrificed a part of his life that nobody will ever pay him back, not even I can. He took responsibility when everyone backed off. He raised me alone, all alone. Not one person would point a finger at him and say a bad remark about me or my upbringing. He was my dad, mom, grandparents and what not! He would become my brother for rakhi, my best friend for friendship day and my valentine when i didn’t have any!

Today I stand beside the same man and when I look at him he seems to have shrunken , his muscles are now weak .His hands doesn’t look like those pair of hands that used to throw me up in the air and catch me. However, Amidst all his pain  what  remains unchanged is the language of his eyes ..The shine that echoes in his eyes when he sees me around.

I may never match up his love , affection and patience that he bestowed on me during my years of growing up.I can never match his kindness that he had for everyone or rather everything around. Plants, animals n human beings alike!

I can never be selfless as he is for me and for everyone else around him.

I have shared a LOVE & HATE relationship with that man. I, like a selfish being loved him whenever he gave in to my demands and hated him when he refused to take up my demands.

Today at this phase of my life I decipher that he has never encompassed LOVE & HATE relationship with me. He has and always will love me for ; What I am , What I am not … What I could do , What I could not . Unlike other men who crossed my life.For him I will never be unreasonable , irrational , emotionally imbalance person . Despite my tantrums, pangs of anger & unexplainable mood swings I WILL ALWAYS BE HIS LOVE .

I know he cannot carry me in his arms but I know I can fall back and he will hold me. I know he will love me every single day of his life.

Today as I sit and write this piece ,  I have courage to shed tears at crowded place I wish I had same amount of courage to walk up to him and tell him

I love him

I Still need him beside me

I am still his Lil Daughter with a heart craving for Unconditional Love

I want to be HIS LOVE forever…………That is what I desire today to be

Love you soooo much acha…n thanks for making me soo much like you! I will make you proud,i will!