It has been more than a month since my last post. The decision was to take a break from this attempt of mine at blogging, while I tried to figure out what the purpose of this was, the direction I wanted this to take going forward. While I do not want to attach a ‘this’ or ‘that’ label to this space that I have come to love dearly, I would prefer if it had an outline at least. The work on that seems to be an ongoing on!
The world is a different place than what it was a month ago. We are witnessing something magnificently powerful at the moment, with a worldwide cry for solidarity tearing through ceilings that needed to come down long ago and a pandemic is wrecking havoc through our civilization. People and their resilience are being tested to the limits and while hope seems to elude us at times, it also encourages us to be our best and how can one not respond to that call. As an eternally optimist soul, I believe and have to keep believing that this shall end and shall end for good.
I hope to be back more often! Till then, here are some photos I took while I was away and it feels so good to be able to share these with you. I also have so much catching up to do, going through your blogs and I can’t wait to start! A month’s break was good and though I had wanted it to be longer, I hadn’t realized that I would be really missing this community this much:)
Thanks for stopping by. Stay safe, be kind.
Last year, when we found out we were expecting our second child, it made us ecstatic. But that ecstasy was somewhat short lived as we realized the pressures of bringing up two little ones (our older one was just about 3 years old at that point) in a land where we had little help and no grown ups (read- our parents) to guide us and hold our hands when we would falter! And then there was the fear of our little boy’s reaction, though I knew that he would be the best big brother one could hope for. And I was not wrong. Ever since he found out that his Ma’s tummy had a little special someone for him, his curiosity knew no bounds and neither did his love. Kids ask the strangest questions and at times their thoughtfulness takes you by surprise too! Our boy had the usual inquisitiveness about the new member and his actions often melted my heart. If we were out buying him clothes, he would without fail mention that we should also get something for his sister. If we were eating out, he would ask me to make sure that what I ate was not too ‘jhaal’ (hot/spicy) for the one in my tummy. And every night before going to bed he would kiss his sister goodnight and wish her a good morning just the same way. Every single day. Emotions at times ran high as the good man and I tried to make space for our baby girl and our voices would rise. Not a scream or any kind of verbal altercation …just raised voices of two freaked out people trying to get a lot done in a short span of time! But, if the little boy happened to be around, he would come rushing by and gently remind us to not raise our voices as there was a baby in Ma’s tummy and loud voices could hurt the tiny baby’s ears. And the day I slipped and fell down in the bathroom at 11.30 pm, four days before my due date, our little boy showed us love and gave us strength that I could not have imagined. A million things were rushing through our minds as we called the doctor and got ready to leave for the hospital while a visibly disoriented little guy was trying to take everything in his stride. My parents were with us and he put up the bravest face he could manage in the middle of so much chaos and trepidation, and waved us goodbye as we left for the hospital at around midnight. I did not have a lot of time to explain everything to him and he too did not ask for any. I watched him as we got into the car and while my heart was racing for our baby girl, it was also beaming with pride for our little guy. Baby girl was fine in the tummy and when we came back home in the morning after being kept at the hospital overnight for observation, I could see his face just light up and the first thing he asked was if his baby sister was alright.
Our baby girl turned one a few days ago and the little guy was very ill with a viral fever. He still blew up a balloon and drew a little something for her special day. Every day has been a treat watching them together and while I know that this is so because they are both still little, it warms my heart. Our little guy has grown so much and we couldn’t be prouder. It is a matter of time before the “i don’t like you-s”, “he is mean”, “she is not letting me do that” set in and the expression of love might not be so simple then! But for the time being, I am soaking in this unadulterated love… a love so different, so unique…this love between a soon to be five year old big brother and his one year old sister. It has taught me to be kind and brave, no matter what. And it grounds me in humility and puts the faith back when hope seems to be drifting away in this crazy life.
Summer evenings are getting shorter and there’s a slight nip in the air already. Sunsets, though, continue to illuminate the sky in brilliant hues of yellow, purple, orange and grey and I, mesmerized, keep clicking, as my love affair with the sky deepens.
Thanks for stopping by!
A couple of photos are there in older posts! This last one is special since my little guy clicked it this afternoon:)
Have a good weekend and thanks for stopping by!
Drum roll indeed, Amanda…what an interesting thought for this week! This Friendly Friday Photo Challenge is a fun and fantastic photo challenge co-hosted by Amanda and Snow (who will also be joined by Manja…yayyyyy!!!).
Join in when you can!
I am not a sea person…I am afraid of the water, I tan horribly, and the heat just toys with my sanity it seems! Mountains are more me. But I do still love going to the beach as long as I am at a good distance from the water and have a nice umbrella to keep the sun away! It is our favorite thing to do as a family during the summer months here that we unfortunately get very less of and so on a good day, you will find us on the beach! The milieu is always so upbeat with kids and grown ups running after beach balls, making sand castles, having picnics or just goofing around…all adding to their tales to be added to their pocketbook of memories.
Very commonly and aptly used as a metaphor for our lives, representing its highs and lows, life unfolds through ebb and flow…through the holding on and learning to letting go. Life has taught us all in some form that we are not in control of all things and acceptance of that fact is crucial in moving forward. The more we try to hold on to things beyond our control, the more they slip away causing distress and anger among other emotions that impact negatively on our well being. Life ebbs and it flows too…we just need to gently remind us of that and while it is easier said than done, it is still the way to move forward…to living a fuller life. We all adapt to circumstances and teach ourselves to face our fears and ride out the storm…we all do it differently, but nonetheless we get it done. Life oscillates between the good and the not so good and sometimes it’s downright cruel. We scream at the top of our lungs, gasping for breath on this roller coaster ride and we also calm ourselves down…we navigate, putting one foot in front of the other. I have always believed that there is a bigger picture to be looked at, a lesson to be learned and while many may roll their eyes and shrug their shoulders, I choose to continue to believe in this, especially when circumstances pin me down and I feel like there is no strength left to get back up.
Thanks Amanda for this week’s beautiful idea.
Somewhere in Maryland
Cape Cod, Massachusetts
I found this today at a burrito place, Baja Burrito, where we had stopped for lunch this afternoon and it caught my eye:)
Have a good week you all and thanks for stopping by!
Continuing with my ‘Monday Motivation’ post!
It was ‘Mother’s Day’ yesterday, and I was determined not to write anything on that topic. I have had several conversations with close friends on the importance and validity of such a day and those discussions have had interesting outcomes…let’s just leave it at that! For me, motherhood has been and is a huge part of who I am. It defines me and I have no objection to people rolling their eyes at that thought. Because it is true. At this point in my life, that is who I am and I proudly embrace it. It is exhausting and endless and yes there are times when I feel overwhelmed but at the end, every drop of sweat is worth all the craziness and ask any mom and she will happily say the same.
The importance of the role that mothers play in the lives of their child/children is undeniable and it nurtures and shapes the young mind. However, we all have women in our lives who have played/play an equally important role in guiding us through the ups and downs, who inspire and lift up people around them and without whose presence we would not be who we are. They are present as aunts, grandmothers, family friends, cousins, teachers, neighbors, nannies, friend’s moms and play a variety of roles as our confidants, our friends, our role models and at times who raise us. They too deserve as much love and appreciation on ‘Mother’s Day’ as sometimes their stories go unrecognized and they are left in the shadows while the world celebrates the mothers only.
My mother was raised by her two of her aunts and uncles and the love that she has for them is just the same, if not more, as that for my grandmother. Her aunts never had children of their own and were unmarried and my mother was fortunate enough to grow up in a household that had a bunch of people who all played the role of equally devoted mothers and fathers. They nurtured my brother and me too and loved us with their whole hearts, celebrated our victories and wept in our sorrows. I was more close to them than I was to my grandmother and I know that’s true for my brother too. They loved just like a mother does and I know how much my mom misses them, now that they are no more.
To women all around fighting their unique battles, however big or small, to women driving change, to women taking a stand, to women celebrating life, to women standing tall in the face of unfathomable sorrow, to women pausing a bit to take it all in- you are invincible.
And here are the two pictures I took today!
The thought that I want to leave you with, this week-
Have a happy week, folks!
I am bad at many things… riding a bike, drawing, writing a poem, small talk…the list can get pretty embarrassing! For me, people who can draw are superheroes of sorts. I can look at videos all day long of people creating magic through pencil or brush strokes. And people who can write poems belong to a different league altogether! And here I am not talking about the greats whose works of art have mesmerized generations…I am talking more about regular people who harbor such superpowers, while going about their lives in an unassuming manner.
I am always mortified that someone, maybe my kids, someday will ask me to draw a picture of something. And I feel nervous just thinking about that! Same with writing poems. Ever since I have started blogging I often come across posts with beautiful poems that evoke so many emotions and then there are prompts that add the element of surprise and challenge too. And people write in response to those challenges making the act of writing poems seem so trivial while I stay as far as possible from such endeavors. Not my cup of tea!
But the other day after a blog ‘conversation’ with Manja , I decided to make an attempt at trying to write a poem, of sorts. And I feel uneasy to say the least. I know I am probably making a fool of myself but as I have recently decided to put myself out there with respect to trying things previously unimaginable, I am going to go ahead and post this first ever ‘poem’! Thanks Manja for the encouragement!!
A smile can carry one a long way
Or so I have heard.
It masks the worrisome mind well
And helps heal a troubled heart, that is not yours.
Wear a smile, they often say
It is beautiful and it cares.
Smile at the person you just walked by
It may be all that she needs to turn around just another ordinary day.
Unspoken words that a smile brings
Can comfort the weary soul that has traveled far
Looking for that of which he is not sure.
When darkness comes and fear strikes a note
Smile through the fear and smile through the pain
Look around and hold on.
You will hear a tap, a gentle knock.
Who’s that, you may ask
It’s me, Hope, is the answer you will get.
Pause, to smile a bit
And through teary eyes and heaving heart,
Let her in.