The imperfect life..

The red rose in its perfect curls looked as though it is laughing at me. Trying to cheer me up. My mom had bought them for puja. Mixed with red roses were yellow chrysanthemums. But roses were the ones that caught my attention. As I always love roses. Early morning in my dream I was fantasizing a long drive on the bike with my love. And when I was about to climb on to the pillion something happened as though the scene drastically changed into present situation that my son is lying down weak along with my other two kids looking silently around under a tree.It seemed to me in the dream that riding on the bike was just a past memory and and…. The present is this horrible helpless situation of myself with my kids…Where is he? Their father? Did he ever leave us into the darkness of difficulties of life? No.. He never did that. We always dreamed of good things. But in real life events turned to be always bitter. And sweet moment, only one crystal of sugar hidden in a heap of sand. Negligible enough to relish the sweetness… The common experience has been bitter. And seems like its never ending. Am afraid of getting up in the morning. Facing the sun,the life, shouldering the responsibilities which have been challenging of late…
I wanted to wear the rose onto my hair which I have actually cut short because everyday I m forcing myself into head bath as my daily visits to hospital seems like inevitable till now. No the rose would look nicer somewhere else.

Not now. Now my heart is aching. Cannot enjoy the subtle happiness the rose would offer me.To that extent I am unlucky.I packed some food for my son who is struggling for life presently in hospital, a victim of vital organ failure… I need this situation to change desperately. If only God can allow me to write my own nice story full of love ,fun and adventure. But no….. The harsh reality everyday here is to hear the sound of ambulances and crying voices, tearing off my heart. Beeping monitors,the typical scenes of hospital staff ever working with PPE s. And then my son lying helplessly on the bed with multiple pains and swollen body an array of endless investigations waiting for him every day. Days are scary and so are the nights until sleep takes over and into a fantasy dream dimension where I feel happy and safe.
So where’s the fear of Covid now? Amidst the universal fear, me and my hubby are forced into this hospital environment only for the small hope of saving our son. The experience of being a doctor is different from being a patient or patient attender in a hospital. All I want now is that he should win over his illness.I want him to overcome all the pain. Survive for a time when he can accomplish whatever he wants to. Contribute something to the mother earth that has given him,me and all  a chance to breathe and live…
I am sad. But I hope to smile. Praying God to give us strength.

I entered into the ward and relieved my husband to take some rest and freshen up. And the sun and the stars are doing their chores as ever. I m not an exception…And if I love roses I must accept the thorns…

To surrender…

Some say “Never Surrender” and some say”Surrender”.. The word itself is a positive as well as a negative one I feel.. Or it depends on the way we think about it. What to Surrender and What not to Surrender??

I understand this way. Maybe never surrender means do not surrender yourself to the thought of not able to achieve anything you want to achieve in your life( something like,”A goal”).And To Surrender, I mean to do my duty and leave the results of it to The Higher Being, the GOD. Way back when I was in my first turning point of my education that is SSLC, I had got so scared of the hearsay words that somehow my answer papers would be lost, I might not get good marks because the person correcting the paper might not be in good mood… All such crazy and scary thoughts. I ended up crying every day after writing my exam and my dad would say every day the same words to console me. That is an excerpt from The Holy Bhagavadgita. He said” Lord Krishna has told that we human beings must do our duty and should leave the fruits of it to the mercy of Him alone. So you write your exams and don’t worry about the results.” Even though he was not very much into worshipping God, it was strange for me that he told me so..He would not sleep till I finished my revisions late in the night. He would get me whatever I demanded to eat.My mom would prepare anything I asked for. My sister would not argue if the lights were on till late night. Unlike other usual days of life.That is the privilege of being in SSLC or PUC!Everyone at home would be stressed out and the student will be most pampered so that he/she would study well! Even though I ended up giving my best performance, somehow fear would take over my mind and my intermittent crying episodes continued till my results were out.. But I didn’t cry in front of anyone at home after the exams were over. It was only me and my stupid thoughts which I exaggerated myself!

And I don’t remember myself praying in front of God as to the fate of my results. It was my mom’s turn to pray and ask God. And I was very much relieved when I topped my class with 91 percent marks… What a great relief that was! Then all those scary thoughts just vanished into thin air! After all “All is well that ends well”. Later on as time passed by, even I realized that “Prayer” is very much essential if we have to find moments of peace in life. Surrendering ourselves to a Higher being is a gift we can give to ourselves. Because it instantly gives us a sense of relief,a sense of being protected.

Even the WHO stresses upon the “Spiritual dimension of Health” apart from Physical,Mental,Social and Emotional dimensions.We the human species have been describing ourselves as the most intelligent animal.But still, we have our limitations.

At some point in time, when nothing seems to work, we would long for a guiding lamp,a soothing hug, a smiling angel that would help us in times of distress.It is nice to imagine such a thing happening. And sometimes it works when we fully believe in His mercy.

I remember one of my moral science parables wherein a person dreamt one night that he was walking along the sea shore and he could see flashes of many incidents of his life and he also observed that there were two sets of foot prints one was his and the other was God’s. But suddenly he also observed that at times when he was saddest, or most distressed in life, there were only one set of footprints. He was deeply hurt and he questioned God as to why He left him alone in times of distress. And then God answered his question by saying that He never left him and in fact carried him on his shoulders and the one set of footprints he saw was not his but God’s.

So with this story, I would like to say that God is with us always and he has better plans for us.. Cheer up!

God loves you.

Finding happiness…

Defining happiness the dictionary way is not my intention.Happiness means different things to different people and for the same people things can change with time. One thing that would make them happy now, may not necessarily do so after few more years!Happiness is simply a way of keeping our big smile with a cool head by way of being happy for the whole time that we are happy. And happiness doesn’t stay for long too. I bet. That is because our brain cannot sustain the same elevated mood for a longer time. Indeed it is hard to trigger the reward area of our brain with the same dose of stimulus every time.. At this point I remember a famous story of Charlie Chaplin. Once he told a joke to the audience and all people laughed. He repeated the same joke for the second time when few people laughed and then when he repeated again no one laughed.Strangely enough,we tend to remember sad things and keep brooding over them for a longer time. So he just asked everyone that if a joke cannot elicit the same laughter with repitition then why do people cry repeatedly remembering their worries and sorrows. So he urged people to enjoy life in the present moment.Indeed with time every bitter memory will fade.

Before any sadness takes over,we can train our brain to find happiness in small things around us which gives us happiness. No one can deny the fact that a baby’s innocent smile can bring happiness to any sad person at least for a few minutes. Likewise, if we pay our attention towards simple things around us like birds chirping on a tree, children playing in the mud, even our cute little teddy bear with a big smiley which we would have hung over the showcase,( but never bothered to have a look at it once in a while!), a pot of aromatic mint leaves , a beautiful painting and the list can go on.

It is for us to develop the habit of seeking ” happiness”in small things and change our mindset to enjoy the present moment. Once I read in a motivational book that even after a person dies, his cart of responsibilities will not be empty. And then someone else would handle them after he/ she is gone. So, no one can claim to have lived a perfect life and fulfilled all their responsibilites.

“Perfection itself is imperfection.”

Vladimir Horowitz.

Finding happiness is not as hard as finding the lost Nemo by his daddy fish! So let us try to be happy for a while at all times.I mean to say that our happiness is nowhere else in the external world but it is hidden within ourselves and we have to find it all by ourselves.

Nemo…hidden!

The Corona panic. Cont’d…

How I wish that the talk of Corona panic would have ended as early as I posted a blog on this topic. But no… It has continued not showing any signs of ending soon. We have been forced to learn the art of Being Patient…. Or Patient?

With lot of experts offering webinars and online courses and learning materials available to update about the Virus right from its birth to its two naming ceremonies and then how it continued to grow far beyond the boundaries across the earth causing much trouble to the most advanced species so far.. The human-being. Even the astrologers take this moment as a chance to test their predictability. Everything seems interesting to apprehend,to analyze,to nailbite and then to finally sleep in exhaustion without even burning calories as we would earlier to this!

We are afterwards left with a simple reminder of ” Be careful about yourself and others around you! Follow all instructions given. Then what happens next we don’t know.”

No doubt that it has also created many poems and proses about itself. Rarely do we get an idea to personify a virus and talk to him(or her?) about the ways he/she has been successful in bringing down our economies, causing an all time breakdown of almost all regular day to day life activities forcing everyone to lock themselves at home or else get nice beatings from policemen if we dare to venture going out for an unwanted or a most wanted stroll. “How to stay at home and be happy forever” must be the most wanted topic nowadays.

Can we do this just to keep ourselves happy for sometime?For tricking our brain to not panic (not for official use but for our own perception), we can say like this.

“Holiday from work”is a better term than “lockdown at house”.

“Practicing good hygiene” is better than “Washing hands repeatedly”

“Protection from safe distancing” is a better perception than Social distancing.

We can ourselves reframe many more sentences.Why? Because the reframed sentences would give some positive vibes and encourage us to go on..

It is also better not to watch the Breaking news about Corona virus too often and go on with it the whole day. It is too disturbing and distracting. Instead we can just watch only the headlines or take some breaks with a cartoon show or a comedy show.

Ultimately the graph has to end somewhere sometime. In the meanwhile, I came across an image (originally from UN covid-19 response) which I feel worth sharing.

Soft copy vs hardcopy..

I still wonder how I ventured into blogging because even though I opened my account almost 3 years ago, I could not do anything. But now I determined that I must write. Not only for others but for myself too or the other way round! Whatever it is, my passion for writing will be fulfilled and I will be happy all the more!

When I was still young, during my high school and college days I fancied collecting Archies and Hallmark greeting cards.. That was the only thing for which I spent my pocket money which my father used to give me .The heart touching messages written on them would attract me towards them. I would read them over and again until some other more important work would stop me from doing so! Whether it was happy birthday,anniversary wishes,or Thank you cards. Nowadays wishing online is the trend. E-wishes.

I agree, “Save paper Save woods” is our motto behind going paperless. But it was mentioned on some cards that they were made from recycled paper. The “feel”of a real greeting card is not available over the mobile or system. It is only the visual effect. The touch effect is gone. Some of the “touch” we encounter in our life are unforgettable! Whether it is a paper or a book or the feel of a favorite dress or someone’s hands too!

Today I hardly have any cards collection. And my books collection is also mostly e- books. Now most of the things are available as “e” to be frank. Except few. Kids born out of surrogacy is imaginable but born to e- couple, is it ever imaginable?!Smart technology is quite over powering so to say. Like if I uninstall “Talking tom” from my mobile, my son gets furious and he re-installs it. Artificial characters are far more interesting for today’s generation. I insist on real things for real happiness. I do because it is my nature. I also want to understand the limitations as our natural resources are getting depleted fast enough that a kind of fear prevails in everybody now that will we ever allow some animals or trees or birds to live long enough for our great grandchildren to see? Even the water we use daily. Is there enough left for future use? Before we humans started to exploit nature, all of today’s near extinct species were living in their own natural habitats. And we made them to go extinct and coined the word extinction! Only with the advent of some industrial technology did we start exploiting our natural resources much to make our life easier.

In a greed to fulfil only human requirements, we definitely forgot how to preserve our natural resources like forests,water,animals,birds and anything else in the ecosystem. Only a handful of people get really interested and they start campaigning for SAVING our earth. But again if only everyone around the globe could understand their duty towards the environment not necessarily being forced by law, but by their own conscience!This is the only way we can succeed in the long run. Change should come from within.

When it comes to books and paper, there is still a long way to go to totally forget a book and pen I think. Wherever it is possible to prevent overuse of paper there definitely it can be done. But altogether to shun paper or book is somewhat I am not able to imagine. Is it that my grand children would be going to school with only a tab or some other newly invented device where reading,writing,learning,playing everything is packed in that device?

Definitely it would reduce the burden on their back. (I just can’t bear the heaviness of the school bag my daughter lifts daily for school. Only now during the holidays its a great relief.)But still if everyone stops writing and starts typing what will happen to that part of the brain which controls such fine activities as writing and drawing?

I am definitely for saving our woods. But can there be paper not made from wood in the future?I honestly don’t know while I am writing this if anyone has started to invent such a thing today. But I have seen this magic board and pen but its fine only for a kid’s play. I don’t feel like wanting my next generations to forget the art of writing or drawing.. Technology is growing but it should not deprive us of the natural joys we derive from writing with our own hands.

CHANGE..Good or not good?

“There is nothing permanent except change.”

-Heraclitus

https://www.brainyquote.com/authors/heraclitus-quotes

Change is viewed as good by some and not good by some. I belonged to the second category. By this I mean change in and around our immediate surroundings.

When I was a child, when I was taken to the school for the first time,(it is really strange that I still remember the first day of my school after 40 years) my mom had left me inside the classroom of my new school and I was crying and crying. I didn’t need that change. Now just 5 years back, my daughter was a replica of me when she was sent to school. It was her dad who got her put on the uniform and shoes and drop her at school in his bike. But then sometimes he had to catch an auto to leave her at school as she screamed at the top of her voice and resisted to go out of the gate holding it as tightly as she could..And he had to catch hold of her with all his might! I could see him wet with sweat. But then after few more years,her younger brother,was too happy to go to school the first day and he was all smiles.. Strange are the genes that guide us!

I remember that even when it was time to leave the high school to enter into college,I kept crying the whole night with the thought of my friends getting scattered to different colleges. Those were the times when only landline connections were there.And very few had one. The only possession of old memories is the slam book (no idea why it is called so) where my friends wrote their messages for me,which I have preserved with me till date.

With all the present inventions I am a part of Whatsapp group of my medical college friends. Not the previous ones. They all are only in my memory. At home,I was not obliging to get any grocery if at all my mother asked me to. Sometimes my dad and my sister used to ask” Why are you sitting at home like a broody hen sitting on its eggs?”to which I had no answer!

Later, during my marriage I wept during the whole lot of the rituals even though I got married to the person with whom I wanted to. I just can’t enjoy seeing the wedding album as I am only weeping and weeping in all of them..

I can now say that I have been a person who resists change…After kids and all the stuff, when I observed that things were not as they were earlier, even for such things I had been crying to myself that Why?? Why should everything change? Why can I not be as happy as childhood days? Why should I have to work hard and make my living? Why my husband no longer presents me with roses on our wedding or engagement anniversary? Why do people change the way they talk and behave? There are so many questions I asked for myself. We hardly get any answers.For some it is so easy to change and adapt. For some like me it is as if I have to lift a heavy weight upon my heart.

Now about the quote that” Nothing is permanent except change! “

There is no other option… Now after many years, I am trying to accept this fact. Change most of the time implies getting ourselves out of our comfort zone to which we have been attached for years. For girls in India and many other countries as well, marriage is one of the sudden change to which the girl is expected to get quickly adapted (to the new people and place of the in -laws). Now, thinking of the brighter side… Change of place,of people,of anything ought to be taken as a chance to explore life in its other colours and forms. World is full of new things. Why not go for the adventure?

With new things come new experiences and we have new lessons to learn. And slowly the brain will teach us to adapt..So finally Change is good for all, as the wise men say!

A WOMAN AT FORTY..

A woman at forty,

Is always busy in her duty

Can never dream to be naughty

Cooking and cleaning, all in her kitty

She rarely finds her time to party.

She’s bothered by the bills so hefty

And also of her growing obesity

Though she looks quite pretty

She can hardly admire her beauty

She maybe brainy and witty

Still her heart feels so empty

Her man is not calling her “Sweety”

Oh! the reason for all for the self pity

She is praying to the Almighty

To grant her in the entirety

Whether at forty or at fifty

Aging with grace to become a reality!

Feeling low…How to deal with it?

Feelings or emotions are the one thing that distinguishes we humans from every other living being on this planet. Do animals not feel? Do plants not feel? Yes they too have sensory perceptions but the higher mental functions of man cannot be equal to any other being.

Feeling low is something every person will go through often in life. How to jump off that feeling? How to start feeling good instantly? We crave for this to happen. But many times we end up continuing in to the frustration of whatever we conceived as the bad thing that happened to us either in the past or in the present.

I started searching for those things and what I found about this in simple terms was that it is not the external world that is affecting us but “the way we react to the happenings ” that is really affecting us a lot. But it is also true that in the first instance we cannot accept the fact that we must remain indifferent towards anything happening bad to us or to our dear ones( about whom we are more concerned all the time.)

So there is a way of approach to anything. We must really first try to correct ourselves before trying to change others. And the one thing others ( be it our close ones or others at work) are resistant to is “obeying orders”or “to change their way of living just for our sake”.In such circumstances,usually anger is the first response and then followed by sadness. Let us find out about ways to curb anger first.

Try these:

1. The next time you get angry, start counting from 1 to 10 or 20 or any number until the time your impulse to shout or express anger in other ways has come down a bit.

2. During an argument, consciously resist the feeling to continue feeding the topic by trying to remain silent. To break the argument between two persons, it is necessary for any one to stop. Do this consciously. If you allow your old nature to take over again, you will repeat the same mistakes. Remember that winning an argument does not always mean that we won the situation. It can even worsen.

3. If you still cannot be without expressing your words better go away from that place to maybe another room or your garden or a plant. Sit there and write out in a book or even on the mud or sand. Like “I did not like this.” ” I want you to do this”… etc whatever you feel like.

There are more things like daily meditation and all other stuff that you can learn to reduce your anger.

Now how can we change this?

I will quote a small example that usually happens in our daily family life.

One day Ms X wanted something very urgently and she asked her husband Mr Y to get it for her. He was in some other different mood and he said ” I cannot go out now,I have no money, Why didn’t you tell me before?… Now Ms X fired back by saying things like ” You don’t care about me,You don’t love me” and the argument continued. She started relating the present situation to past incidents. This worsened the situation even more. And she ended up crying and cursing herself and fell into the vicious cycle once again. This is nothing but feeling low.

Can we change the story with some other possible options? Let us try.

Ms X can realize that at the present moment her husband can be having some job tensions or something else is in his mind. And she can bring up the topic after a few minutes. And then again if the same thing happens instead of blaming about not caring and loving, she can consciously remain silent. After some time Mr Y will definitely realize his mistake and he would go and get the thing she wanted. But if the person is repeatedly doing the same thing, then instead of depending on Mr Y for the important things she can plan well ahead to buy or utilize other easy methods of online shopping if possible! Today life is far easy as compared to olden days and we can make it if we try a bit.

Many times we have the habit of depending on others for simple things and simple decisions and as days pass by circumstances change and without our knowledge by our old habits we would be causing extra burden or stress on the other family member on whom we depend.

I am just giving a small example to show that taking control of the situation is in our own hands. And even in the above example,I know that “What ifs”and “Buts”will be there..Our first conscious decision should be to pacify ourselves and then look for better options.

A person or situation cannot be changed. But the way we react to them can be changed much to our well being if we consciously try. That was the message for today. And after anger is controlled then the next consequence of sadness is also supposed to come down.

If the sypmtom of feeling low has progressed much beyond to an overt depression it is not easy to be consciously taking control. It is always advisable to consult a doctor and there’s nothing wrong in seeking help from an expert. Recognizing such symptoms early is a far better move.

Stay safe,Stay healthy..

I am grateful…

I am grateful,

To the summer and the  rain

To the winter and the sunshine

To the dawn and the bright sun

To the dusk and the full moon

To the  lovely roses with  the thorn

To the buttery spiced sweetcorn

To the sourness of the lemon

To the sweetness of the melon

To the peacock and the lion

To the parrot and the pigeon…

To all of God’s creation

To Thee who leads all to salvation..

Living with admiration…

Most of us always seek adventure big or small in our daily life and tend to view monotony and simplicity as so unbearable and in the process we tend to make life complicated. It is not wrong to seek adventure and change the colors and flavors of life much to our happiness but when it goes beyond a certain level then it quite possible that we may lose our way totally and looking back or going back becomes impossible.

My husband believes in evil eye and such funny things and was once bent upon tying sacred (called yantra)thread to my son when he fell ill suddenly. So, he took him to the Swamiji whom he believed. [The next question you would ask me is why being a doctor I accepted. When it comes to cultural beliefs it is very difficult to convince people. And our own family members would not listen to us! I have read elsewhere that it is OK to allow harmless practices.But harmful practices that cause injury I would never advocate.]And being curious even I too went to see what he would do.

Then there many people were in the queue. And he sat in front of him and said that this child has fallen ill and he should tie the sacred thread. He told that there are many problems in life so can he give solutions?

The swamiji was not in a mood to listen to the long story I believe. Because the queue has to be dispatched in time! So he just said one thing. “See my dear, Troubles do not come on their own. It is invited by us for ourselves. Family is nothing but an ocean.And a family man has to swim in it to take his family to reach the other side of the ocean(He meant destination or Moksha I thought). He has no other option.” He then tied the sacred thread and said that nothing will happen and of course he took his petty fees! I gave the required medicines too and my son was back to normal. But I could not forget his words about troubles invited by us and family being compared to an ocean.

This even I heard from my father that life is compared to ocean. In fact it is one of the quotes in our local language and so the old and wise who want to teach others keep talking such things. But we never take it seriously until our own family is in problems.

Man is never happy with what he has. He always aspires for having something that some other person has and he doesn’t have. Some pinch of inspiration from others is required but too much of a habit of not feeling satisfied all the time can lead to frustration and finally depression. So, we tend to forget the present completely and we keep worrying in the web of thoughts. It is nothing but a habit that we have cultivated without our knowledge.We complicate things by going on linking events and people to a single circumstance and now the ant starts to look like an elephant!It is better to forget anything that causes us discomfort and act as if we have short term memory loss.Let us remember only good that has happened to us.Thinking of good thoughts attracts good things into our life according to the famous law of attraction.Living in the present is a great gift we can give to ourselves. By engaging ourselves in many many good things we like to do, there will be very less time to make life complicated by overthinking.

Only one tip for today.

LET US TRY TO ADMIRE ONLY ONE THING OR PERSON OR QUALITY OR ANYTHING THAT WE POSSESS PER DAY STARTING FROM TODAY AND THANK GOD HEART FULLY FOR GIVING US THIS GREAT POSSESSION.[example:your beauty,your family,your hair,your car,your child,your coffee cup…and the list goes on!]

Have a good day friends!