GRATITUDE IS RICHES

I am not your driver,” Gaurav slammed back to his wife Reena as she coaxed him to drop her and their daughter Palak to a friend’s party. His frustration was genuine as he had just reached from office after spending more than one hour in heavy traffic. Driving through the snail pace traffic was indeed tiring, physically and mentally as well.

Reena was flabbergasted by Gaurav’s reaction and wished she could drive. It’s not that she never tried driving, it was only the fear of driving alone on the busy roads. She instantly picked up her cell phone, booked a cab and went with her daughter to chill with her friends. Throughout the party, one thought kept haunting Reena that Gaurav wasn’t her driver. She HAD to learn to drive at any cost. 

The next day, Reena enrolled herself in one of the driving schools where the instructor was impressed by her previous learning and was very sure that she would be a perfect driver within two weeks as she only lacked confidence. 

The next month Gaurav had to go abroad for a business meeting. Reena had started driving already and used to make trips to the nearby grocery store. 

One fine evening, Reena was busy preparing dinner when the doorbell started ringing continuously. “Palak, stop doing that,” Reena shouted, thinking that must be her only. 

It was Palak’s neighbourhood friend Ashi. Before Reena could say anything, Ashi was panting “Aunty, aunty…Palak…”.

Ashi, what happened?” Reena asked in surprise.

Aunty, Palak fell down from her bicycle”, Ashi said, grasping her breath.

Reena turned off the gas stove and rushed downstairs. Palak was already surrounded by her friends and was crying loudly.

Reena could make out that her daughter was in deep pain. She mustered the courage to see her. Thankfully, there was no blood, but she was holding her elbow. The skin around had turned darker. “I am getting the car keys, just look after her,” Reena instructed the kids.

She picked up Palak and drove to the nearest hospital. The x-ray was done and it turned out to be a hairline fracture. They returned home after getting the temporary plaster.

Thank you Gaurav,” Reena said in her mind as she felt that it was only because of him that she could become a good driver. The sense of gratitude filled her with joy.

THANK YOU STRANGER FOR THESE WINGS

Dear Diary,

15 years back I had a very comfortable life, my husband was earning well and kids were doing good too. My role was that of a provider to the demands like housewives in our country are expected to do. I always aspired to be a dancer but with marriage, I packed my aspirations in a bag on the way to my new address. And really never got a chance to open up that sealed bag (smiles). Responsibilities piled up so does the monotony and mundaneness of life. At the end of the day, I had this feeling of being hollow from within. But no matter what, I had (still have) this habit of visiting the local library every 15 days. There I met this stranger. She was searching for a book on Indian classical dance. And coincidentally I was reading the same genre. She came to me and quietly (almost in a gesture for we were in a library) asked, “in which corner did you find this?”. I showed the directions and got busy with my book again. In a  few minutes, she came back and sat reading. As we lifted our heads from our respective reads we passed smiles at each other.

She was very young, around 20 years. Now I saw her more often at the library. We slowly became friends despite the age gap between us. I found out she had an inclination towards Indian classical dance like me. She was pursuing her dreams. I was in awe of her. I told her “Roshni (so apt to her which means light) you are so lucky to be able to live your dream. I am in awe of your family too.”

She smiled and said “I don’t have a family. Born to a sex worker, rescued by a good samaritan, called names by the society, it has always been a struggle to survival. But that has made me strong only, strengthened my resolve to make it better for myself and likes.

I was left dumbfounded. I could only say and all this while I have been complaining about my life when it is so comfortable. She chuckled hard at my words. Days passed and I eagerly waited to meet her again at the library. But she never turned up again, instead of left a note with the librarian addressed to me.

Don’t belittle your problems by stopping to dream and only complaining. Thank the hurdles in your way, thank the taunts and insults hurled at you for they might appear to be stones but you can make them into stepping stones to your success and happiness. They might appear to be dust and twigs directed towards you but you can make them your wings. A comfortable life doesn’t always mean a happy one too. If you’ve got one such life make better use of it and don’t waste it slogging through years. Your happiness is your responsibility. And show your gratitude towards God by being a good human and having humanity.”

Chaya finished her diary writing and glanced at the state award she received for her exemplary work in the field of humanitarian service to the sex workers and their kids and yes beside that award stood her achievements as a classical dancer, she always dreamt of. And in her heart, she thanked Roshni again “Thank you for the wings”.

 

 

 

Never Fail To Look For The Light, Despite The Dark.”

I AM DISAPPEARING

Cynthia: Hey, why are you staring at me? 

Lucy: You look beautiful.

Cynthia: Thank you! 

Lucy: You seem so happy. 

Cynthia: Aren’t you happy? 

Lucy:  I don’t look beautiful as you. 

Cynthia: What has beauty to do with happiness?

Lucy: No? See, so many people come to visit you. They are amazed by your beauty. They take lots of pictures of you 😦

Cynthia: You would have seen many who admire my external appearance. Have you encountered anyone who cares for me? 

Lucy: Oh! But why?

Cynthia: Yes, people are interested in their recreation but never think of what can be done to preserve us. 

Lucy: No? 

Cynthia: Well, no.  They aren’t even bothered if I am going to be extinct. Many of my fellow species have already become extinct. 

Lucy: Then I am the one who is better off here. At least some people are interested in giving food and accepting me as their family. 

Cynthia: Yes, you are lucky. 

Lucy: Most of our habitats are being occupied, I hope they stop doing this. 

Cynthia: Yes, sorry, Lucy. I cannot do anything for you. 

Lucy: Yes, you can. Please be happy

Are you wondering who Cynthia and Lucy are? This is their picture together. 

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(Image Credit – Pixabay.com)

From the moment I saw the picture, there was only one question on my mind. When was the last time I saw a butterfly in Bangalore? Except for parks, I have never seen them otherwise. I remember during childhood, so many caterpillars and butterflies were taking rounds in our garden. Now, we don’t have them. It is sad, the first thing I thought of is the butterfly extinction when I saw this picture. 

Butterflies do not need much from us. They have their own enemies in the form of birds and insects. All we need to do is not dwell on their habitats. Another reason why butterflies are dying is the use of pesticides. Fruits, vegetables, and nectar are the main staples for butterflies. The use of pesticides is causing genetic changes in the produce, that butterflies could not survive on them. During summer, when the temperature crosses 40 degrees Celcius, butterflies cannot fly. They lose their capacity to fly. If you see a butterfly in your balcony or garden, during such time, provide water and some corn for them to eat. They cannot survive otherwise. Butterflies are very beautiful, and future generations would have to only read about them in books if we do not become responsible. Hope to see lots of colorful butterflies coming season.

THE ROAD AHEAD

This is a very intriguing picture and I like to call it “The Road Ahead…”. One look at it and I felt this depicts life. Our journey through life and our future – the journey into the unknown…

 “The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say” 

― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Fellowship of the Ring

 

(Image Credit – Pixabay.com)

There are two ways to look at this picture. One could be the gloomy lookout. I sit in my room overwhelmed with all the problems I am facing, feeling depressed and thinking about my future. When I look at this picture I feel this aptly depicts my future. The sky is overcast with dark and ominous looking clouds. I can barely see the path I am treading yet I am zooming ahead full speed. Scared of what is in store for me. Wondering if the clouds will ever dissipate and allow sunshine into my life.

And the second outlook would be again looking at my future. But this time I am full of enthusiasm. This time I see these clouds as full of promise. The promise that the first clouds of monsoon bring to us. The promise of rains – the rains that bring us prosperity and abundance and hope that makes us zoom towards that future.

My mood changes my interpretation but one thing is for sure. I think there is a reason why God allows us to see only a little bit ahead of us and keeps the future hidden. This keeps our hopes alive and makes us strive for a better future.

As I wrote in an earlier article also. Hope makes the world go round…

LOVING WISDOM OF THE MOTHER HEN

Elusive, these days, are the sights of hens with their brood of chicks tagging behind them. But, if you go to the countryside, you’ll be greeted with such endearing scenes near farmsteads and in the fields. It is truly entertaining to watch the chicks following the mother hen wherever she goes. The mother hen, on her part, is wise in her ways to exhibit behaviours that her little ones would follow to learn.

A psychologist by the name of Konrad Lorenz was intrigued by these sights. He keenly observed the phenomenon of some species of animals forming an attachment to the first large moving object that they meet (it may be any object, not necessarily a parent animal). After conducting intensive research, Lorenz came to the conclusion that this phenomenon is innate and programmed genetically. He named this process ‘imprinting’. Most animals acquire their locomotor skills by imprinting.

Imprinting is not proven in humans, though babies are seen to imitate their caregivers in various respects. Be it in animals or in humans, caregivers are known to train their young ones as they go about their day-to-day activities.

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(Image Credit: Google Inc.)

A mother hen ensures that her chicks follow her to the right places to pick on the right type of fodder. The chicks observe their mother picking on certain worms and insects and leaving out certain others. These, they understand are poisonous. Also, the chicks learn from their mother’s behaviours how to identify the predators and ways to escape from their clutches. Sensing danger and inclement weather conditions, the hen calls out to her little ones in her special language and the chicks hurry to the safety of their mother’s wings.

The role of the mother hen is to train, guide, protect and make her chicks capable enough to survive and fend for themselves in the world.

But, not all chicks are sensitive and obedient to their mother’s voice and behavior. There are those who prefer to go their own way. They are the ones who learn their life lessons the hard way. At times, they don’t live to learn the lesson!

Looking at this picture and penning these lines, I am reminded of God’s ways of training and nurturing human beings. He shows the footprints that need to be followed and calls out to each of us in languages that we can well understand. He points out where enemies lurk around to pounce on us. Those who are sensitive and obedient to His voice walk confident of their ways – may be in rugged terrains, but sure of the grip of every step they take.

However, there are those who choose not to be sensitive to His call and care. They opt to go their own ways. Still, God spreads out His love as a mother hen spreads out her wings to protect her chicks from harm.

Indeed, God is gracious and merciful in His ways – teaching us amidst myriad life events, the ways to live and emerge victorious. Are we willing to learn under His loving care?

MY LIFE IS THE CANVAS, WHICH THEY COLOURED WELL

When I think about colours, the only thing that comes into my mind is the ample colours that my children brought into my life. When I see them, they bring me happiness, the joy of unprecedented love and care.

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(Image Credit – Pixabay.com)

When I was given this picture, it just reminded me how my kids keep me happy and content about my life.

Kids never judge by anything, they shower joy to everyone around them. Last year, when I lost my dad to cancer, it was quite disheartening. It was something I could never live with, losing him forever. I remember as a child, there were times I would always wish that I don’t lose my mom and dad forever as I could never imagine living without them. Later when I had my kids, again I used to think the same.

When my dad was battling with illness, the only strength that held me stable enough to handle everything was my kids.  I knew that I would be losing him forever, but I could not just sit and weep, I should assure him that pain was just a phase, everything will be fine and he would be recovering soon. He too found to forget about the pain he is enduring inside when my kids were around. It was not easy for him though, yet I knew their smile was enough for him to just forget he was unwell for some time.

Whenever I am sad or upset or even unwell, my daughters come to me enquiring me what happened to me. They never let me feel alone or even lost. Even though am their mother, they take care of me, as if they are my guardian angels and I truly believe they are my guardian angels.

My daughters wash away all my sorrows, my agony and bring me sunshine in my life. Maybe at times, I might have failed as a mother, but they are overwhelmingly my greatest support and my backbone.

I recollect the days, when I am extremely tired and over irritated, my lil one just comes to me and hugs me and kiss me without being asked. It is like they know that I wanted them badly.

Kids do things without being asked, but they do the best. 

We as parents should permit to do things, as they feel like, rather than pipelining them into our own channels of discipline and other mundane things we end up doing. The more we let their imaginations run wild, the better humans they become.

Being a parent, I am used to be in a circle of moms, who are more panicked, anxiety struck, overwhelmed, scared and even confident ones. I admit I am a combination of all these. I know they will find their own way, I am not a mom, who wants just academics to be perfect, but I want them to be JUST HAPPY about what they do because I believe that they are the gems that outshine in my life.

My kids are my strength, who lead me in my life.

Like they paint the walls in my home, with their tiny fingers holding those crayons, smiling at me, as I watch them do all naughty things, even when they know, I might scold them at any moment. The just keep smiling and melt away my anger in no time.

My life became their canvas to paint the most colourful life for me with them as the colours I enjoy being coloured with.