I have been observing a lot of my friends taking up this interesting tag on Facebook lately where they are listing down 3 things that they are grateful for.
I have not been tagged by anyone yet, and I am not regular on Facebook either. But I am quite tempted to take it up all the same. So here I am, listing down what I am thankful for, right here on my blog.
– I’m grateful for my daughter who has this knack of adapting to any change or situation with the wonderful ease that’s worth imbibing. As some of you know, we have recently moved countries. And it is not easy getting used to a new place, that you are learning to call home, as is the case with any shift. But Namnam teaches me and my husband with her resilience and her willingness to adjust to her new life with a smile on her face, that it’s not so difficult either.
– Every visit to a temple, every little conversation I have with God makes me positive, makes me grateful for the life I have been blessed with, for the people I have been blessed with in my life.
– I’m grateful for my husband who brings in an amazing sense of calm in me every time I make use of his alternate role as my vent-board! 😉
Yes I’m talking about our ingrained habit of judging others. I say ‘our’ because I think judging is something we all do. Yes howsoever much we say we dont, we do. And its normal. Ok, normal may not always be right though. You see things, get affected by them enough to form your opinions and then blurt them out. Sometimes people agree with our opinions and sometimes they dont. Thats when the whole ‘judging’ angle springs up.
I see parents hitting their child, I judge them. Why, because hitting or slapping or beating is something I’ve strict policy against while raising my child. I have friends who hit their children and I do make a fleeting remark about how I dont believe in hitting a child to make him/her understand. They either choose to agree with me or ignore me. Fine by me either way.
I get into an argument with a friend whose religious beliefs differ from that of mine. I judge her. And yes she judges me too. But that doesn’t stop either of us from deviating from our beliefs. And that certainly doesn’t stop the two of us from being the best of friends. She chooses not to pay heed to my arguments. Why? Because she believes in her convictions. She is extremely comfortable with the choices she has made. So am I with mine. And that makes our friendship even stronger.
I meet people talking in fake accents, even using flowery language liberally. And I judge them. I dont feel comfortable being around people who swear. Fake accents I can still tolerate though :D. Does that stop them from not swearing? Do they stop talking in fake accents? NO. Why? Because they dont care what I think or how I judge them, right? Rather they are too comfortable with themselves to let it bother them. What I choose to do, however, is ignore them also and just stay away.
Yes I too have been judged many a times by a lot of people for my actions and decisions.
I felt I was judged when I studied in a school where my mother taught and my school-friends hesitated to confide in me with their secrets. The reasons invariably being, ‘ Oh, she is our teacher’s daughter, what if she spills it all to her mom?’ I remember being terrible bothered by it. But gradually I came to terms with it and learned to ignore such remarks. And whats interesting to point out is that the friends that I did make in school eventually didnt bring that fact up even once. For them what mattered was our friendship. And today they are my best friends, friends for life.
I was judged when I chose to quit my work and stay at home to look after my daughter. I have nothing against working moms. Believe me, I have the highest regard for them. Its just that this decision is what works best for me, my child, my family as a whole.. nd what matters to me is just that- that my family and I are happy and comfortable with this decision. So long as that is achieved I dont allow any regrets or guilt to dominate me.
Similarly another area where I’m invariably judged is when I see the perplexed expression on people’s faces when I tell them that R & I have decided not to have any more children. The judgments range from how we are depriving Namnam of a sibling to how she will grow up to be insecure to how the family will look complete with one more addition to how its time to welcome a ‘beta’ in the family and so on and so forth.
R & I took this decision because we felt bringing another child will not be feasible for us. We would not have been able to give him/her as much time, energy and security( financial and emotional) as we are able to give to Namnam now. In which case it would have been gravely unfair of us to be depriving the child of the same environment that his/her sister would have enjoyed being in. So we decided to give it our all to the one child who came into our life after much yearnings.
I know its complicated and not many may agree with me. But the fact of the matter is that this works best for us. R & I intend to stick to this decision, unless of course God has other plans :D. But for now we are done. And we are confident that we will be able to bring Namnam up to be as secure and happy a person as any child with a sibling(s).
The reason for this long rant of a post is that, as the days for my Delhi-trip get closer, I realize that I’ll be fielded by my well-wishers’ as always with umpteen questions about these very decisions. All I want to tell them is that they can judge me all they want. It doesnt make a difference to me anymore. I know I’m happy with the choices I have made and thats what matters.
In the end what I’m trying to say is that its fine if people judge us. So long as we are satisfied and HAPPY with our decisions, its time we learned to ignore those who judge us.
So to cheer myself up,I decide to go on a nostalgic trip of my own and bring out a post about what I associate the season with.Hence a ‘Part2’! Thank you,Sols,for the suggestion.
Autumn, to me, is about:
1.Listening to the sounds of migratory birds and rushing out to see them fly high up in the sky signalling the arrival of winter.
2.Father and I announcing the arrival with a new-found fervor,to mother & brother who would be sulking at the thought of having to wait for 6 whole months for summer.
3.Taking Razais(quilts),Sweaters,Stockings,Mufflers & Shawls out of divans and putting them out in the sun.
4.Gorging on boiled kappas(tapioca) with spicy,finger-licking green chilly chutney prepared by Amma,over a cup of hot tea on a chilly evening!
5.Achan waking me and brother to get ready for school/college with a loud call out from his room,while he stayed in bed snuggling up cosily inside the quilt to catch up on that last 5 minutes sleep…God,how annoyed we would be that Amma allowed such injustice to prevail in the house!!
6.Waiting for the school-bus on a sleepy-foggy day with zero-visibility and feeling wee-bit disappointed at sighting the bus’ bumper light suddenly glaring out of the fog…it meant another ‘chutti’ went down the drain!
7.Greeting friends with puffs of fog-smoke!The more fierce you could let out the smoke on each other’s face,the tougher you were considered!!
8.Rushing to the terrace,when the sun is out,spreading out the cane mat and enjoying the season with my favourite book in hand.
9.Walking from Mandi House to Canning Road or from Chanakyapuri to Dhaula Kuan with soft,cool breeze brushing my face all through making me feel fresh as ever.
10.Last,but never the least,its pure bliss.Its about feeling happy,gay,romantic,going on long drives with my beloved sitting right beside me and beautiful soulful music playing in the car.
Namnam is yet to experience autumn and winter in the true sense of the word.Although winter,here,is not as intense as it is in India,Europe or the Americas,it,still,is enjoyable.
Heres hoping she gets to enjoy and savour the season in her own way this year.
That’s it from me,people.How about you?What does Autumn mean to you?Lets have a Part3,Part4,shall we?
However,let us not allow this pandemic to take our lives over to an extent that we forget to laugh,stay positive or be happy.So,let me share a work of a cartoonist-friend,who,like many of us,has been as disturbed,with the deadly virus having reached his country of domain,Oman!!
On that note wish you all a very Happy Independence Day in advance!Do stay healthy and take whatever precautions needed to keep the dangerous disease at bay.Please watch out for the slightest symptom and make sure to report yourself to the nearest health care center.Please do NOT take even a minute sneeze lightly,if you are or have been,in a swine-flu-affected-area.
Ok,I think thats enough of my preaching for the day. Have a wonderful holiday,people.Lets hope and pray,next year,same time,the deadly virus will be far behind us!
EDITED TO ADD(14Aug):I remembered this song in the morning and thought how well it depicted the essential feature of our nation-‘UNITY IN DIVERSITY’.And what better occasion to hear the song than the Independence Day.So heres to 62 glorious years of freedom.Once again wish you all a Happy Independence Day,people!