MY CREATOR

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MOM…!!!

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Amma. That’s what I call my mother and in my opinion, it’s the sweetest word in any language.

Whenever I utter the word to call my mom, especially now that we’re living in two different countries, a range of emotions swell up inside me.

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There’s absolutely nothing in this world that equals a mother’s love for her child. That’s a universal fact. But we never seem to understand the magnitude of it, for a mother is often the most ignored despite the numerous quotations and proverbs indicted to extol her virtues.

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I was prone to doing it as well. When she scolded me for not spending enough time with books, I viewed her with contempt. When she admonished me for not finishing my lunch at school, I rebuked. When she chided me for not cleaning up my room, I was annoyed.

But now, what I wouldn’t give to have her roam around the house ticking me off with her constant grumbles. She visits occasionally but never stays. Her memories linger though, and there isn’t a single day when I don’t reminisce about our little disagreements and arguments that usually culminated in her becoming a child and me trying to quell her ire.

She never took a break all through my childhood and cared for us like we were precious gems. Even now, she doesn’t intend to rest. She dreams of cooking my favourite dishes whenever she’s here, instead of relishing the interlude.

In retrospect, I realize that I have never been fully worthy of her immense love because I have never valued it enough. Like most kids, I have taken it for granted. She nurtured me into a self-sufficient individual while I being a difficult child, still remember the trouble I have put my parents through in the process. My sister successfully managed to pull off the goody two shoes act but sadly, I couldn’t; blame my irascibility.

(My sister stole my share of mangoes when she was ten and I was sleeping like a log. You thief!)

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All right, okay, that was immature of me but the weight of watching my little one walk away with the Miss Noble title while I’m taking the blame here is too onerous and I needed to get it off my chest. Phew!

So, essentially my folks endured that immaturity and more.

I can try to atone for my mistakes although it wouldn’t amount to much because their love can never be quantified.

I want to serve them just like they did when I was a child. I want to pamper them with presents and nag them when they neglect their health. I want to love them like crazy.

Despite me living 2000 miles away from her, I still endure my mother’s protests about my disregard towards my health, and carelessness when it comes to spending money. Sometimes it’s grating. But immediately, I remember that this is what mom is all about. Who would feel responsible enough to pester me like that?

She grouches about my love for fast food and I’m miffed. But then who else would berate me for my poor dietary habits?

She raves about my photographs despite me looking like the Grinch most of the time.

She goes gaga over my hairstyle even when it resembles a porcupine’s backside.

She loves to goof around in Snapchat.

She contributes to at least 100 views for each of my blog post. So when I see the stats and the views are 100 but the visitor is 1, I instantly know that it’s my crazy darling, mom.

 

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I cherish every single reproof, all jokes—both funny and inane, countless banters, myriad laughs together, silly accusations, ambrosial dishes and the proud moments when my friends envied the splendid beauty of my mother and called me lucky. Well, I’m lucky with or without the beauty. She’s an angel, who has come to demonstrate what a heavenly privilege being her daughter would be. It’s time to return the favour to the best of my capabilities.

A word to my Amma—because of you, I came into existence; without you, I would be inexistent.

 

 

 

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HAPPY BIRTHDAY

PRIORITIES

Realize the importance of family and relations before it’s too late.

There are so many relations in our lives that we tend to forget to prioritize and end up ignoring the most important ones. Parents, siblings, spouse, friends, grandparents . . . everyone deserves a special attention—especially the ones you’re sharing your lives with.

 

Imagine going home to a negligent wife, who doesn’t care whether you had your lunch or not.

Wouldn’t it feel terrible when you go out alone to get groceries, don’t turn up at home until four hours later and your husband doesn’t even bother to call why you’re running late?

Think about a bullied child’s misery when the tech-savvy parents are busy fiddling with their phones instead of asking the kid how their day went.

Scary, isn’t it? But that’s the situation of our present world. We are so caught up in our own affairs that we don’t bother to take a peek into the life of the person living under the same roof.

Let me tell you a story.

Meet Tanya, a garrulous woman, who loves to talk and keep everyone around her engaged with her vivacity. Her family, which consists of her husband, C, and an adult son, J, is the complete opposite of her. In fact, they’re sometimes repelled by her volubility and take her warmth for granted.

Tanya does notice that her husband is quite talkative too but only on phone. Her son is bustling with activity too but only around his friends. She often wonders what she did wrong to be ostracized by her own family but that doesn’t urge her to retaliate because if she does, then they won’t be a family anymore.

She would strike conversations with J’s friends much to his chagrin, discusses her views on politics only to be made fun by C, expects a compliment on her new dress but receives none. Yet the smile on her face never leaves.

One day, Tanya meets with an accident and slips into a coma. Of course, C and J are worried because after all she is their family. The doctor tells them that her chances of recovery are favourable but the time it might take is indefinite.

They return home and are hit by the sudden realization that there’s no Tanya greeting them with her Cheshire cat smile and irking them with her “How was your day?” “What did your friends say about your new shirt?” “How was the food at the restaurant?” “What did you eat?” questions. It feels odd and lifeless.

They face no problem with food as they take on a cook, who makes dishes of their wish. But the food lost its magical touch lent by Tanya.

They face no problem with house cleaning as they employ a maid to scrub the house spotless. But there’s no Tanya running around the house arranging things, and dusting tables.

Without her voice echoing through the walls, the house feels like a graveyard.

Without her bright face beaming at the threshold, going home feels stale.

Without her dainty form offering to fulfill their every whim, desolation becomes their constant companion.

They set aside their duties and jobs, pack bags and decide to spend a few days with Tanya at the hospital doing her favourite thing—talking. They would fill her in with the details about their lives, which she craved before, they would hold her hand like she did whenever they were upset and assure her that she would be up and about in no time.

They promise that once she wakes up from sleep, they would treat her like a queen and would put her above all.

The moral of the story is—never ever ignore the person who loves you. Being a priority is a blessing. A gift that’s rare and should be treasured.

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Your friends on your contact list can wait a minute or two for your response to their text messages. But the person sitting in front of you, hoping to catch your eye and share their day is much more important.

Those TV shows you’ve been binge watching all day, ignoring your mother, ain’t gonna vanish by tomorrow. There’s always tomorrow. And if there isn’t then what are you gonna regret more—an unwatched episode or a one-hour long colloquy with your mom?

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Share with your spouse, make time for your grandparents, giggle with your sister, peeve your brother, adore your mom, worship your dad, meet your friends, play with your cousins, talk to your kids, have meals together, make memories because these are what matter over the long haul.

Realize the importance of family and relations before it’s too late.

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A quick note to my readers.

My next blog post is going to be on Sunday, two days from now. You’ll find out why

 

IMPORTANCE OF THE UNIMPORTANT

I’m writing this blog post in a sleep-deprived state. So, you could expect multiple declarations of love towards sleep.

The staggeringly gratifying feeling you get when your head hits the pillow at the end of the day—aahh

The amazing sensation of dwelling in slumberland as your anatomy relaxes after a tiring period—whoa

The tears of gratitude your exhausted eyes shed as you let them snooze—uplifting.

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Sleep is spiritual. We tend to take it for granted. For example, during the weekend, I watch movies endlessly and read books tirelessly, ignoring all sorts of pleads from my eyes. I go to bed feeling accomplished because yeah watching all my target movies and finishing the novel in hand are the primary goals of my life and they’re worth sacrificing the fundamental routine of my life.

So, what happens when I hit the hay late at night but have to wake up early in the morning?

It’s a battle of witless excuses that I give myself to feel less dumb and idiotic.

Okay, in my defense, the chapter ended in a cliffhanger.

The hero turns out to be the villain. How can I not watch a film like that despite the clock ticking to one?

I can be an hour late for work tomorrow. The company won’t shut down in crisis.

And the classic, Just five more minutes. 

I see myself doing that five hours from now.

But seriously, we take everything that comes to us easily with an air of negligence. Sometimes when there’s so much to do within so little time, I wish I were an insomniac. Just so I’d get a couple more hours. But ask an insomniac what it is to wait for that pure delight of daze that comes with sleep. Ask a wakeful student preparing for final exams, how it feels to be incapable of having a full night’s sleep before giving the test.

I should be careful what I wish for because clearly, I love sleep more than food and water. After a long, sleepless journey that lasted about eleven hours, I now want more to crash out rather than to eat or even perform ablutions.

We waste food, water, love, everything that we’re supposed to treasure. We perceive the most significant possessions in our lives as inconsequential.

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We are bestowed with the power to think. So spend a few minutes in retrospect and we’re bound to realize the mistakes we have made and have been making in terms of our choices and priorities. I did and became aware of the fact that there’s nothing and I mean nothing in this world that’s as important to me as sleep right now.

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Hey, hey, hey, before you judge me, to each his own.

Jokes apart, I think we’re born with the nasty attribute of ignoring the important things in our lives. Parents, for instance, are blatantly disregarded by their children in spite of the limitless love they shower on them. We come to sense their ubiquitous influence only during their absence and nothing can bring them back to the present. We can only cover the distance through various means of communication but can anything equal the comforting touch of Mom’s hand and edifying support of Dad’s shoulder?

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It’s important to prioritise and recognize the significant aspects of our lives because just like we take them for granted, they could evade us too when the time comes.

 

MY SUPERHERO

A father is indeed a candle that melts in order to spread light to everyone.

Yes, I remember that today’s Sunday and not Thursday. But it’s also Father’s day. Here’s a post that’s a tribute to all the dads, who also double as superheroes.

Why is that there are innumerable quotes on the significance of mother but not many on the sacrifices of a father? Why is it that since childhood, we have been taught to regard a mother as God—as in the famous quote, ‘God could not be everywhere, and therefore he made mothers—but dads were relegated to the position of admonishers and disciplinarians? Why is a father’s love underrated?

A mother bears our weight for nine months whereas a father bears the collective weight of the whole family all his life. His sacrifices go unnoticed, his protection seems like suffocation, yet his love remains limitless. We rarely get to see our dads, as they’re always hard-pressed with work and responsibilities. We whine about how little time he devotes us but does he ever complain about the encumbrances that are compelling him to toil round the clock?

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There’s the cabbie, who shifted to a different country, far away from his family, only to earn daily bread and pay his children’s tuitions; the menial labour working at a construction site, who can’t afford to move his family due to the maintenance costs and limitations; the Navy employee, who misses the birth of his child and doesn’t get to hold it in his hands for another six months. Their stories make my heart ache because they are forgoing their comforts for the sake of their families’ better future. Couldn’t they just find some low-paying job in their own country, be near their families, eat home cooked food and play cricket with their children? A father is indeed a candle that melts in order to spread light to everyone.

We just see the candies and chocolates he gets for us on his return from work but do we ever think of the miles he has to drive to get them and the harsh sun he has to battle in the mid-afternoon? He pays the bills, takes us shopping, treats us at our favorite restaurants, cracks “fat” jokes at the expense of mom, unfailingly sends us the first “good morning” message on Whatsapp, gives us silly monikers, has an encyclopedic brain and still . . . and still, allows us to boss around and even enjoys being dictated by his children.

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He slaves and strives to provide but expects nothing in return. He is an epitome of patience and affection. An embodiment of love. He doesn’t show or express but his eyes betray the compassion.

My father, for me, is a security blanket. I need his presence, either in person or through phone, in order to feel protected. His jokes, no matter how inane they are, act as a break from monotony. His smile fills my heart with warmth and his laugh tickles me.

I’m an adult but will always be his little girl, seeking protection from the big, bad world. Please never leave my hand, Dad. I would be lost.

HAPPY FATHER’S DAY. I love you so much that no amount of words can describe it. I hope this post would make up for my wordlessness.

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THE THING ABOUT PARENTAL LOVE

Parents are gifts that should be treasured like priceless gems despite the mildly abrasive edges.

I’m gonna break off my Thursday routine this week.

On the occasion of Mother’s day, I’m writing the second blog post in “The Thing About” series. But it’s not going to be just about Mother.

Parents. Every one of us must have gone through or will go through the phase when we believe that parents make our lives a living hell and we would be better off without them. Then, comes a phase when we regret the lost moments and bruised hearts. Wouldn’t we give anything to reverse the time and mend the broken bridges? Fix the cracked bonds?

I’m sure we all must have hurt our parents at some point in time because each one of us inevitably goes through that diabolical phase. Would a simple sorry after all these years set right the damage? No. But it does give us some closure and would certainly convey to our parents that we didn’t mean what we did. Throw the blame on our hot tempers and raging hormones.

Now, we’re . . . well, I am ready to put up with my parents’ antics because they’ve endured worse. They could act like six-year-old kids, order me to hand them the glass of water that was within their hand’s reach, take control of the T.V remote and mess up with the order of my place. I would gladly embrace it all despite being slightly irked. I might whine a little bit just like they did when I was a child but they are my babies, aren’t they?

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When my father does something annoying, my mom would say, ‘It’s not easy to handle your dad. He’s high-maintenance. It’s better if we visit you for less number of days.’

Every time she says that I want to explain, ‘You’ve seen worse from me. This is like a walk in the park when compared to what you guys have tolerated. So, don’t ever think of yourselves as a burden. You’re my gifts from God. So, what would anyone do with gifts? They would treasure them like priceless gems despite the mildly abrasive edges.’

Yann Martel, in his novel, “Life of Pi”, aptly describes father as a tree trunk that supports its branches and mother as the sun above us. I was so enamored by those few sentences that I ended up falling deeply in love with the whole book and it remains my favourite till date. Those sentences made my eyes water. Those sentences made my heart heavy. Those sentences filled me with the fear of . . . can’t even say it. “Pi” survived the loss. But I probably can’t and won’t.

I love my parents fiercely and limitlessly. I accept their virtues and welcome their mistakes because they are the only people in this world who aren’t selfish for their own sake. They’re selfish for their children to flourish and prosper and hence, sometimes end up criticizing our choices, which they perceive to be wrong.

It’s our responsibility to take them in our stride and understand the thing about parental love.

HAPPY MOTHER’S DAY.

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