Posted in close to heart, The Chronicles of A

Going from One to Two

One of my closest friends is pregnant with her third and another one I know is pregnant with her first. The former can’t remember what month she is on and the latter knows the week and date to the t. And me? Well, I am going from one to two and boy the difference is night and day. I know many articles and blogs have been written about the difference between first and second pregnancies and I will not talk about whats there. This one is for what it has been for me.

Before I start, Ami, my girl, you will always be special. It is not just because you are my first born but because you were my teacher, the reason for me having so many of my “first” and “aha” moments. For teaching me that unconditional love is the purest form of love.

There is something about the first time that is just sort of magical. With us, it was just Ami and me. When Ami was born, I didn’t shed a tear because I was happy to see my friend of nine months finally in my hands! I was filled with an anticipation that will likely remain unmatched for the rest of my life. At every step of those nine months, I knew what week I was at, what fruit size the baby was in my tummy, what were those measurements on the scan report, what to eat, what to avoid, what made the baby uncomfortable, when was the baby most active etc. I would write down the changes each month, make a number of checklists, list of baby names from month 2, had a hospital bag ready by 7th month, thought about what dresses to buy, what to wear and my the list can go on! To cut the long story short, I was too occupied and happy and excited to think about anything else but my baby.

This time, its different. I wouldnt say it is a bad thing but things are very different. From announcing my pregnancy to getting that hospital ready, everything has changed. I have become paranoid! No, I’m certainly not worried about what fruit size my baby is or what week I am on or what my baby is feeling or doing. I am on 33 weeks and I haven’t done any shopping. I haven’t decided a name, I havent thought about anything at all! Checklist you ask? The only checklist I have are all work related! At this pointI’d like to say to you Baby 2, that its not because I dont love you already, it is because I am too worried about your well being! Now, because I know what its like and have been there done that, I know the risks, I know the signs, I know its not a cakewalk. Remember though, that I am like this because I love you to bits already.

Last evening, I spoke with my mommy-of-2 friend because I had to speak to someone who had the experience. I wanted to ensure that I was normal! I have been thinking about what would happen to my family if something was to happen to me? What if something went wrong with me? What is the husband going to do with a 3 year old and a new born and a dog! I mean, he cannot even take care of himself for a day without goofing up! I had never really thought of dying and have never been afraid except for now. The thought had began to affect my sleep, my work and my whole life. I would on some days look at AMi playing and silently shed a tear. My friend said its okay. It happens and its perfectly fine!

This morning, as I woke up and made tea, I realised that even if I didn’t consider myself of any value, those few human beings certainly needed me around. I suddenly felt very wanted. My fears seem to slowly fade away. Today, I live.

So, my advice to the moms going from one to two, take it slow. One day at a time. To feel scared is normal. It just shows you care too much for those human beings that need you. To the first time moms, enjoy while it lasts! Savor every moment, cherish every kick and nibble. This one is special.

See you after I go from one to two 🙂

To my Two,

I’ll love you forever, I’ll like you for always, as long as I’m living my babies you’ll be.

Amma

 

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Posted in The Chronicles of A

You are One!

The year 2014 was when we celebrated our 1st Anniversary and it was a real roller-coaster year. In the midst of all that chaos, we had you. You were our sunshine. The reason we held on to our sanity and the reason we had a smile. You see, your father and I celebrated you. Over and over again, we celebrated your arrival. We spent months planning, talking about the type of parents we wanted to be, the things we would do with you as you grew up, the things we wanted to teach you.
Becoming a mother has been life changing for me. The minute they pulled you out of me, a part of me started living outside of my body. You came into this world and you made me want to be better. So much of my attitude and quite a lot of my character has changed and I can’t think of anyone else in this entire world that has that sort of power over me. I have made mistakes and I know I am not the perfect mother. But you my dear has been the perfect little daughter. I have gathered my strength from you and you have given me the courage whenever I have felt that I am not doing a good job.
My dear Ami, I look at you sometimes and see how innocent you are. In such a short span you have managed to teach me some of life’s biggest lessons. You fall and get up a zillion times but manage to keep trying until you are up on your own. You smile at everyone and everything and force me to believe that there is goodness in the world after all. This world isn’t always a pretty place and I look at how you’re untouched by the negativity in the world and I wonder how or if this world will change you. I pray it doesn’t.  I pray you always know how beautiful you are inside and out, and how amazing you are. I pray that God keeps you safe always. There will be people that don’t believe in you, but I believe in you.  There will be people that say things about you that you may not like, things that hurt your feelings or make you feel a certain way, but I believe you’re strong enough to ignore them and continue down the path that is destined for you.  You’re destined for amazing things and I truly believe that whatever you set your heart and your mind to, you will succeed.  You are our daughter and we will make sure you are equipped with the things you need in this life to be a good person with a huge heart. I want you to be good to others. I hope you always lend a helping hand to someone in need. I hope someone will lend a helping hand to you when you’re in need.  I pray that no matter where this life takes you, you always know your mom and dad are here for you, and that you always have a place to call home. No matter what happens, we will stand by you. I want you to count your blessings everyday and say thank you for all that life has given you.
Its been a tough year Ami. The only nice thing that has happened, is you. However, I am grateful that your dad and I were around to see your first smile, to see your first set of tooth, hear you say “acha”, watch you roll over and stand up.
Oh Ami, I pray so hard for you to one day find someone to love you the way your dad and I love each other. I want you to know that unconditional love does exist. I want you to see that inspite of all the hardships, turmoils, fights and arguments that your father and I have, we love each other and stand by each other at all times.
I’m still so very uncertain of whatever I have done to deserve such a beautiful and amazing baby girl. You are the center of our universe and that will never change.We love you more than anything in the whole world.
Happy first birthday my dearest. We love you forever and a day. May you always smile and may you always be blessed.
Love always,
Acha and Amma
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Posted in m@dness

How I regret

Sitting on my porch waiting for the pregnant clouds  to push the rain out, oh such a nice picture. But it is the map(literally) in my hands, the places-to-go on my mind and the stops that I make that give me a purpose to it all. With all that lucky feeling inside, I’ve very nearly no regrets in life so far. But the few that I write below must be the only ones, but I like them. They’re the stops I missed while I fell into a slumber and keep reminding me to sit up, keep my wits ever so sharp and watch out for exciting turns!

I regret outgrowing a few things. Dad used to carry me n walk until I was in 4th standard(I was a thin kid, then). And I loved it that I could smell his hair. In all those frightening moments, I could hug him like I’d hug a never-to-budge-rock that he is. While he watched news on TV with all seriousness, I could sit beside him and note all those features on his hands until he’d affectionately yell – “What’re you doing?”. That I could be endlessly hover around him while he made crispy ghee dosas . Lie next to my mother while she sang to me, wrapped in the free end of her saree to feel safe. The love of one’s parents is the one absolute version of it and I feel full of regret to have outgrown it. To the point that I perhaps don’t need it any more. What a pity, indeed. But then, perhaps it isn’t meant to be drawn out of for ever, nor returned. May be meant to be passed on. I think I am going to spoil my prodigies!

Dad used to wake up early and make breakfast for me and send me off to school. HE would carry my bag all the way till the bus stop. After he’d drop me off he would, he’d come back, put his feet up on the coffee table, slouch on his couch reading the newspaper! And I wanted to be my dad then! Wondering if kings had it any better :p. I dont seem to have time at all! The only time I get to read the newspaper is while I am waiting at some place. At the tailor, the dentist and the likes.

The other last regret is also the much bigger version of the tiny little bit of jealousy I feel towards all those people who have serious hobbies that they’ve nurtured for all their lives. Some of my friends can play instruments, some paint, some do sports and some create endless nice things from nothing. I see such serious indulgence in things of interest to be one additional layer to one’s personality that I so regret not having. Probably the last of the layers when one’s denuded of all others; the one that lets you gracefully and self-assuredly use your time even when everything else is a little dud. I hope reading counts :p! And then, perhaps I should start singing more!

See how nice it is to have regrets and also the remedies to it? :-).

Its raining now!

Posted in m@dness

The afternoons that’ll never be

And so it was a looooooooooooooooooooooong weekend but had sooooooooooo much to do:) I’ll writ about it soon. Had to write this one today. Last evening while das and I were driving around town, having our usual chats, the radio made me listen to an old Malayalam song from the early 90’s.  It is not that I haven’t heard this song before. I’ve even hummed it quite a number of times. But today the song brought along with it a memory. Of a little girl and her mother, ears fixed on to the speakers of a cassette player. Pen and paper in hand. Amma. I dont have too many memories of her but yes this is one I’d never forget. She loved this song. It used to be in that one cassette which had a number of her favourite songs.
It used to be our afternoon pastime. Listening to old and much loved songs to take down the lyrics. She had this notepad that she used to write down lyrics on. She would play, pause, write, rewind, play and repeat. I used to learn them then, diligently as though I’d had an examination the next day! It was my way of impressing my mother. I’d always get the tune the very first time but could never get the lyrics at one go. Amma would correct my awful rendering in her smooth, beautiful voice. And I listened to her, awestruck as always.She used to sing beautifully. It is probably the only good thing I inherited from her. Those afternoons, when my brother was out or reading and my grandmother was taking her noon nap, was our time.
I used to sing at the drop of a hat, then. Now, I cant sing even when am forced to. I still remember her asking me to learn one song by myself and I did it real soon. I did it just like her. Play, pause, write, rewind, play….. It was the last one. To this day I cannot get myself to write down lyrics of songs. It hurts too much.
I miss many things in life. In fact too many things that it is probably unhealthy. Today however, this ranks supreme. The ‘our’ time. I think somewhere down the line, there are so many moments that I cherish, with so many different people. Which are simply not there anymore. And that makes it probably even more beautiful.
Posted in m@dness

Where it all began

It rained the night before I was born. An unexpected rain. Susrusha Nursing home found itself walked on by women with lifted sarees and men with their pants hitched higher than the high it already was.

Mother must have screamed, her first and perhaps only emotion when concerning me. And I cried for I hadn’t wanted to be born.

After the many nurses touched me, cleaned me and handed me over with forced emotion to my mother’s mother. It was she who first held me. I remember my grandmother mentioning years later that the doctor came out and said to her that my mom delivered a doll for her to play with. I’d fallen asleep in her arms, tired from my journey.

Taking one look at my not so pink cheeks and the lower half of my body that was wrapped snugly in a clinical white Turkish towel, she’d prayed that my father wouldn’t be too unhappy. The child being a girl.

Father was too high on  joy and cigarattes. He couldn’t have cared less. He was a father, once again! The elder one being a boy was more than enough for him. After all the boy would take care of all his needs when he grows up. What was the use of two boys anyway?

Before handing me over to him, my grandmother had pinched my cheeks to make them redder. And I’d woken up to cry in protest. Through his sleep deprived eyes, father held me uncomfortably and awkwardly. When placed into his hands that formed the most uncomfortable cradle ever, he looked at everyone around foolishly and showed me to my brother. My brother who cared a damn about what it was. it could be a cat for all he cared.He was annoyed because he hadnt slept last night coz he was in the car with mosquitoes buzzing all around him and more so because he thought all the attention his mother and grandmother had showered on him would now go to this thing. He thought.

Already in a strange land, I was moved from place to place. I’d stopped crying because I was tired of crying too- yes, even then.The last person to hold me was mother. And when she did I’d realize that maybe she hadn’t wanted me born either. After all, maybe she knew that eventually I’d be the one taking her life away. Maybe. The hostility and hatred penetrated through the warm folds of the blanket and making an effort through all the fear I felt, I’d screamed; terrified.

How do I know all this?
Because I remember everything. That’s the curse I am born with.

Posted in m@dness

Beauty aint even skin deep!

“For you my dear, coz you are special to me. I may not tell you everyday but you are my sunshine. I dont want you hiding from the world just because you think the world is too cruel to plump, zit faced people like you and me. Screw them! Trust me when I say, there really are people who know for a fact that beauty aint even skin deep. Its a lot more. “

There was a zit fest going on in my face – only on the left side though. Kind of made me look like Two Face. I wondered if I wasn’t not a touch too old for  pimples? I mean, I thought I was done with acne when I was done with my first love. And yet here I was, sprouting zits in my old prime age. I was thinking about this at the gym the other day, cycling, vacantly staring into the tv and counting my zits with my index finger when this seriously hot chick landed on the treadmill just in front of me.

Somehow I couldnt help think about one of my besties. Anyway, I noticed she wasn’t exactly beautiful but within a few minutes I was lost – in awe of the even distribution of body mass in all strategic locations as opposed to the mad splattering of said body mass in some other people. Like me, for instance. And predictably, she was also tall (from where I stand, anything above 5’5″ is tall), had flawless, radiant skin and great hair. It’s unfair. If she were a fruit, she’d be a juicy,  luscious, deep-red apple that you only see in pictures – the kind that makes you crave apples even if you’re not an apple person at all. She didn’t even look too young – about 26 or 27, which is just how much I am too. So I ended up doing the most damaging thing you can do in such a situation.Yeah, as much as I sound intelligent sometimes, I can be really dumb at time too. Just some times eh.

I compared my blotchy, zit-ridden skin and ample cellulite reserves with her goddess-like body and felt all the endorphins I had worked up till then, quickly draining out. Thats when i remembered a convesation I had with Sin the other day. Madam Sin was threatening me with dire consequences ifI didnt take out her pics from FB and untag her! She told me she was feeling akward about the way she looked now and stuff. I wanted to shake her and scream at her and say- But you’re a mom! Sin, the girl with the godess like body was probably a rich babe (looked the part) gearing up for her wedding. She’s only luscious because she’s still hanging on the tree, waiting to be picked. You on the other hand, have been picked, bitten, chewed and spat out. Look at you! You should be glad you’re even alive with enough energy to walk, woman! Ha. That argument almost always ends the self-destructive thought pattern. Childbirth always wins hands down. I could write a hundred books before I die and even win the Booker, but as far as I am concerned, making, bringing out and being bullied by tiny human graciously, will always be the greatest accomplishment ever. This is probably why I think being a home-maker is the most challenging job in the universe. Because I can’t do it. It’s mentally, emotionally and physically draining, not to mention, thankless. No, I am not married and have no kids but I have been around a lot of mom to be’s wo have become moms eventually and have watched them with awe and respect and have learnt things that I am sure would take me a long way and thats how I know so much about the process of ” 9 months” and after.

I digress.

So, just because you are an excess 5 kilos and have a patchy face and look a lil dull, do not think the world hates you or that people will laugh at you. Really, beauty isnt even skin deep. To live a happy life, you dont need to be beautiful and you really dont need anybody’s approval that you are beautiful, all you need is a loving family who accepts you just the way you are. Blotchy and fat! When people realise that beauty aint even skin deep, the world will be a better place to live in and you would be a more happy person!

Anyway, yeah I cant make childbirth an excuse and stay happy coz I am already a bit on the healthy side(i like to use the word healthy instead of fat) inspite of being unmarried. This navy guy’s proposal that was making the rounds of my house apparently went kaboom because he wanted a slim girl! What can I say? Maybe he doesnt want kids, maybe he wants fruits for breakfast and salads for dinner, maybe cycliing and gymming are his hobbies. I think god wanted us all to be a little healthy which is why he has made earth abundant with chickens and meat and less of fruits and vegetables. Or so, I’d like to think.Well I have been gymming and making some serious lifestyle changes so hopefully I will be a bit more healthy! So,  like I was saying, only time will tell if aforementioned luscious apple will continue to remain so after childbirth. Actually, for many women, it doesn’t even take that much. Marriage somehow magically makes them pack on the pounds. So maybe luscious apple will look more like steroids-injected apple then. Giggle. I’m happy now. Life is fair and all is well again in my head.

I just hope I don’t find out that luscious apple is in fact a married, mother of three tomorrow.

Ouch.

 

Posted in m@dness

To Mom, with love

It wasn’t an easy task for her – I was not easy. I remember, she remained occupied with me most of the time. She’d hug me, kiss me, read stories with me. Make me jam rolls and and she inspite of being really sick, would teach me my daily lessons and teach me songs, sing to me and write notes to me. She was with me only till I was 5 years but the memories we made will last lifelong.
There is only one woman we see who has such beauty, charisma, and style. There is a woman, a captivating lady of such grace. A lady with all the love in the world to give. This exquisite human being has this heart, this enormous heart that is almost as big as her smile. Oh, and her smile can not only melt our heart, but fulfill our souls with such warmth and pleasure. Her eyes, her remarkable eyes. They show the impeccable strength and courage she depicts every day. They reflect all the triumphs and the strife she has encountered in her life. You see, this woman of such admiration is no other than your very own mother. That is correct. The bearer of your being.
And my mother… she was beautiful, talented, had a really sweet voice, was softened at the edges and tempered with a spine of steel.
You are no longer around, but I will always be proud to be your daughter. Love you amma.