I WISH THEM TO STAY HAPPY FOREVER

Children are no doubt one of the beautiful creations of Almighty. The innocence and their mischiefs can be cherished forever. Well, my parents say when I was a kid, I used to ask numerous questions. For that reason, I was quite curious and tried to learn everything around me. My mother says this annoyed my family members at times. Hearing this I thought, “O God! Did they use to get annoyed by my question? How could they?

Well, I understood this after I saw my niece Mishti and nephew Vasu doing something similar to what I used to do (according to my family members). Mishti my darling niece is the apple of my eyes. She is my little angel and I wish to see her happy as always. But sometimes she becomes annoying when she gets mad at her mother or on other family members. The reason why she gets mad is, she gets to hear scoldings from us. At times, she won’t listen to us and will do things that she is not supposed to do. This makes us angry and we eventually scold her. Once you have scolded her, she will stop talking to you, till she forgets her anger. 

My nephew Vasu too does things that will make you laugh. One day while I was talking to my nephew on call, I asked him ‘where is your grandpa?’ He said, ‘Don’t you see? Grandpa is sitting beside me. Eat vegetables then you will see.’ I was amazed after what he said. Not because he asked me to eat vegetables but because he knew eating vegetables is good for eyesight. He always advises me to cross the road properly, though he himself is three years old and can’t cross the road on his own. Also, he will make sure that you are wearing tidy and presentable clothes. If not, he will ask you to change your clothes by saying, “Go change your clothes, otherwise, I won’t go with you.” I love listening to his talk.

Both of them behave like elders and will then give their own adorable opinions.

There are many more incidents and sweet talk of my niece and nephew. I wish them abundant happiness and love. After all, children are no less than real angels.

PRECIOUS PRINCESS YOU ARE ❤❤

Talking about my four years old angel, my daughter Nandini.  2015, June, she came into our lives and since then it’s been a fantastic journey with her.

Four years of age but she is independent, smart and confident. Being a mother I shouldn’t praise too much about my own child because Nazar Lag Jaati Hai (cause jinx). Its too much fun with her around.  Few shades and incidents of her I would love to  share :

She is an independent girl in the making: Me “Nandini let me hold your hand while we are walking to school“. Nandu (we fondly call her):  No thanks. And that’s a subtle way of saying Mom mind your own business 😁. She chooses what she would wear everyday (of course I enforce a lot 😉 to convey who’s the boss 😎), from brushing her teeth to wearing her jacket she learnt it quick.  I remember this particular incident where she somehow missed my line of sight in an indoor play area. I was attending my son and on realization that Nandu is no where to be seen we searched hysterically every corner of the play area.  And then the idea struck me “search the toilets” and I was lucky on that day to have my husband besides me as we had to search in gents toilet too and Madam was found there as she couldn’t make out what’s the difference and it was urgent 😁 and she is independent enough to know where the toilets are. That day I told her clearly “giving information before action is important ” 😁.

Never fails to surprise (sometimes shock too 🤪): One day she took scissors upstairs.  I let her because I was confident because those were craft scissors and she knows very well how to use them. Few minutes later she called me showing scissors in one hand and held hair in the other and said “Mom shall I cut my hair?” I immediately ran upstairs to stop her while yelling “No!!!!” and I thought I saved the day only to find that she already did the act with a bunch on one side and hair was lying on the floor 😱.  Luckily that wasn’t a lot so that we didn’t have to rush to a hair dresser.

She teaches me ethics:  She follows what’s been taught. Sorry, Welcome, Excuse Me, No Thanks, Thank You, It’s Ok and all the basic etiquettes she is trying to implement them as a good student, thus trending the right path. And this is not the news. But what amuses me is that she reminds me of those etiquettes when I miss the mark. It was yesterday only when we were doing an activity together. She passed me the mosaic sticker that was supposed to be pasted on a cardboard.  I took it and was busy pasting it and she interrupted “Mom you should say Thank you ” and I was left chuckling “my little princess!!!”

And smartness yeah!! She uses the card “Sharing is Caring” to her advantage very well.  When she is done with her portion of ice cream or chocolate she would run to me or her brother with her mouth open and saying “Sharing is Caring ” while vice versa with her favourite stuff rarely works 😁.

These are few drops from the ocean of awesome moments I had with her.  And did I mention she is interested in every activity under the sun. She wants to paint, dance, play football, swimming, act and what not. In short she is Mini Me – interested in everything. She mimics, poses for pictures, dances with crazy steps leaving me surprised and happy or surprisingly happy. And the best thing with her around is that she says “Mom you are my best friend” and I am floored. She is indeed my princess and a friend to cherish for life, my support who understands me.

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“Fairy” by Nandu😁

20191112_112819.jpgFingers dabbled on canvas

WHO SAID THEY ARE STRESSFUL?

I know parents won’t agree with me if I say, “kids are not stressful“. They will definitely retort back, “Oh, you never know how stressful these little ones can be!” I can understand what they mean by that, but at the end of the day, they will also agree with me acknowledging the roles of their children in their lives.

Children are the best stress busters. Whenever I feel low and drained out, I usually sulk into my own world or I just go to my brother’s place to play with my niece, Mihika.

Trust me, her activities take away my stress considerably. I don’t run around with her, but capture a number of her poses that she makes for my camera. Her mother has bought a few story  books of different cartoon character. And she keeps pointing at each character and their names with her most amusing pronunciation. Being a story teller, I don’t lose the opportunity to weave stories seeing those characters to amuse her and she attentively listens to my funny squeals while explaining. And some times, she simply doesn’t pay any attention to me especially when she is watching her favourite cartoon shows on TV. 

I love to hear her calling me, “Badababa“. And as her Mom usually calls me, “Bhai” she would often try to imitate her mother and call me “Bhai”, to which I always oppose and she immediately calls me “Badababa” again. That exercise as well rejuvenates me. 

Mihika is 21st Century girl. She was born with a smart phone in her hand. And she loves to watch cartoons on Youtube. Her mom sometimes allows her to watch the videos on her phone. Whoever has a smart phone and if they allow her to watch Youtube on it then she will ask the phone everytime. She will say, “Vido…Vido…Vido…“. But she never asks me my phone because she knows very well that she won’t be allowed my phone at any cost. 

That 20-30 minutes of time that I spend with her unburdens me of my that day’s burden momentarily.  And I return to my home feeling lighter. 

As we grow in life, we get complicated and complex mentally and emotionally, in fact, in every possible way. Our soul longs for that simplicity when we are stressed out. It longs for that innocence which is our very nature, very attribute as we were created by God’s image. And children reflect that innocence which we long for… 

Friends! Don’t miss the opportunity to strive for innocence by spending time with children…

Keep reading, keep commenting…

Stay Blessed!

KIDS WILL BE KIDS

Kids will be kids
In their thoughts, words and deeds

Hearts of purity and sincerity
With no traces of depravity

Life for them is all fun and play
Whether with people or toys or with sand and clay

Quick in imitation
They observe every move and action

Some are compliant and obedient
They will never give you scope for complaint

A ‘do it’ will be done
And a ‘don’t do it’ will be left undone

Some others throw tantrums
Till you agree to dance to the beats of their drums

Tell them a ‘No’
They process it as ‘Why not?’

A few kids give real headaches
You lose it till you give ‘em some spanks and shakes

And then their wailing
Brings neighbours to your window railing

Kids will be kids
Shower them with love and treats

Hopping jumping and playing
It is the phase when things are easy-going

A game of peek-a-boo
Makes them even to hide in a loo

Their squeals of laughter
Make adults forget all tiff and slander

To expect kids to behave like grown-ups
Is treachery – it sucks!

For every adult has this secret wish
To return to the golden days of carefree bliss

DEEP WITHIN – XIV

All seem to be falling in place for everyone connected to RPCA and the on going tournament. Having Aman back in the team and Punit showing the right attitude of the game, the morale of the team was boosted high and they literally conquered every match they played. The opponents fell apart in front of their team spirit and skills. Sooner the tournament ended with the team lined up by RPCA lifting the winning cup.

There was joy and celebrations everywhere but there’re two persons who were still struggling with mixed emotions deep within their hearts. They wear plastic smiles while celebrating the team’s victory amidst the whole bunch of youngsters yet they didn’t have peace of mind. One was struggling with a guilt conscious of giving family ahead of ethics and another one was dealing with his decisions being thwarted again and again. 

The night of the victory ended with lots of merry making but a few of the very chosen people received one SMS from Mr. Vikram Shah, inviting all of them to his house for an urgent meeting the very next day around 6 PM in the evening. 

The time finally came, when all the invitees arrived with many questions in their heart for such urgent call by the most respected man of RPCA. They all were welcomed by Trisha, Punit and Shobhna as courtesy without being aware of the reason themselves. When they were inquired by the invitees, they had nothing to say except to express their ignorance about the invitation.  

When everyone gathered and took their seats, Mr. Vikram stood up as all others remained quiet. 

You all must be surprised of this sudden invitation from me. That was obvious. The tournament was won despite of all the turmoils in the beginning of it but there were few things that we kept undone and had poked me all these time… I want to make everything straight and clear before all of you, those who were very part of the trains of events that we all went through.” Mr. Vikram was looking very grave and serious making everyone’s heartbeats skip. 

They all waited desperately for him to continue further so that they can understand what actually he means. Among the invitees there were Manan, Aman, Sanjay, Mudit, Mr. Sharma, the coach and two of the most respected and trusted board members of RPCA. Even Mrs. Shah, Trisha and Punit were expectantly waiting for Mr. Shah to proceed.

My son, Punit is very dear to me, but I could not spend much time with him thinking her mother will be looking after everything. That was a mistake on my part to take things for granted. My absence in my son’s matter didn’t help him with his mannerism though he learnt it in a harder way. I apologise to her and to two of my adorable children for all these.” Mr. Vikram lowered his head as Trisha walked up to him and hugged him tight saying, “Oh Papa… you are the best. Don’t apologise to us in front of so many.” He hugged her back and replied, “A crowd to witness what we promise and confess always stay in our minds engraved, my baby.” 

Shobhna was sitting quietly with her son alongside her. They both exchanged looks with each other, feeling sad about their most loved one, yet felt very proud of his presence in their lives. 

Mr. Shah asked Trisha to sit down as he intended to speak more. He turned to two of the board members and said, “You both were my closest and most trusted friends, why did you then just nodded in agreement with whatever I said or decided? I am annoyed with you both…”  

Both of them were surprised and looked at each other without even uttering a single word. 

Don’t look so surprised; you know I was not right for selecting Punit, my son, over Aman, the more deserving, yet you allowed it, just because I said it so… But I apologise to you both for making such a bad decision and apologise to Aman for doing something which went against him though he showed immense character to subdue the negative feeling and played spirited Cricket to his full capacity. But his pretending of a fractured leg did disappoint me.” He added…

Aman could not say anything as well and was feeling embarrassed to hear such a respected man apologizing to him. “I am so sorry, uncle… I mean Sirr…” He could just say that and lowered his head.

“Mr. Sharma, I disappointed you the most.” Mr. Shah looked at the coach who was already expecting him to address. 

No… Sirr… You didn’t… If you would not had taken that decision then we would not have got Punit back on track.” Mr. Sharma responded quickly as he was the most straight forward man as Mr. Shah was in that room. 

You are right, Mr. Sharma. But still my decision was wrong and I didn’t even look at the dossier prepared by you. So I apologize to you as well.” Mr. Vikram said with a gentle smile on his face. 

Mr. Sharma stood in respect and folded his hand and acknowledge it giving Mr. Shah full respect. 

We all had thoughts, emotions and grievances deep within our hearts, yet those who are bold enough, spill it out in the right manner. I thought of doing so as I was troubled deep within my heart for going against my ethics, my morale.” He added with command, as he felt relieved sharing his heart. 

Aman will be the future captain for next tournaments, hope he won’t be sitting with a fractured leg…” Mr. Vikram said, as all laughed finally after such a long serious pause.  “And I know my son will have no problem with my this decision…” He added looking at Punit who smiled knowing his father’s heart.  

They all joined at the dinning table to savour the delicacies prepared specially by Shobhna, the woman of the house. The joys of victory was more evident today than yesterday as all of them present in that house felt it deep within their hearts before retreating.

THE BEGINNING

DEEP WITHIN – XIII

It was the reunion of the Shah family that brought the winds of change in their household. They made the rule to have breakfasts and dinners together so that they all could stay connected, and there was no communication gap between them. It brought Vikram back to Shobana, made him realise that she can’t do it all alone, she needs him, his support. The frequent fights, the arguments, the rows of heated exchanges died down, and a healthy, happy atmosphere emerged in place of it. And the most significant change was in Punit, who had learned to be kind, yielding, humble. No more tantrums with the maid, no more lashing out at the driver.

He daily went to school and then to the academy for practice. His team was no more doubtful about his position as the captain; they all could see this new person emerging out of Punit who was full of team spirit and dexterity and leadership quality. No one was happier than Mr Sharma; he could see his team winning the cup this year only if Aman was not sitting on the sides and watching the practice instead of being out there on the field. Punit often went to Aman to seek his opinion; his counsel and Aman gave it to him without any regrets. He could see Sanjay and Punit working together well.

It was a week before the tournament; it was Punit’s’ birthday. And unlike every year, where his father threw him a massive party at some exotic destination and invited the rich and the famous of the society, this year Punit wanted a simple get together with his family and friends at his home.

He invited his friends, his cricket team, his coach to his home for the modest party. He even told Aman to bring Manan and Mudit along. By evening Aman was ready, wearing his best shirt and his brother Manan offered him his watch and perfume. Aman didn’t know what could one gift someone who had everything, but he couldn’t go empty-handed and bought a vintage pen from his savings as a gift. He reached Punit’s house and suddenly felt very uncomfortable upon seeing the sprawling mansion. He mustered courage and went inside; people were already gathered inside, and Punit welcomed Aman in with a hug when he saw him limping inside with his foot still in a cast.

“Happy Birthday!”, said Aman and presented his wrapped gift to Punit with a shy look.

Punit took it with a polite, “Thank You!” and unwrapped it then and there. Punits’ eyes went wide with happiness, “Whoaa! A vintage pen, I never had one, always used those with refills. How thoughtful Aman” said Punit and gave Aman a small hug. Aman felt relieved and felt at ease as he sat with all others, chatting away and laughing.

Punit got his wish on his birthday; he wanted his house to be filled with laughter and friends and love. A few minutes later, Punit’s’ mother laid the table along with the maid with trays of snacks and sweets and glasses of juices along with bowls of soups. The aroma was mouth-watering; everyone was drawn to the table at once when Mr Vikram Shah very proudly declared, “kids, all the delicacies today are made by my lovely wife who once again proved that women could manage work and home with perfection at the same time. Now! Dig In!” He said with a smile and everyone filled their plates with Cheese Cutlets and Potato Jackets and Sesame Fingers. Punit helped himself, but he didn’t miss the smile his mother gave his father.

Punit introduced Aman to Trisha and Aman couldn’t help but feel awed by her. She was just the opposite of what Punit was; she was minimalist, down to earth and soft-spoken. Her beauty was very different from what he thought about rich girls. She wore absolutely no makeup, and her dress was a conservative one. Trish herself was filling everyone’s plate over and over with food, and she made it a point that Aman didn’t have to get up from his seat, bringing him everything right there.

Time flew by, and it was the time to cut the cake. Trisha had made it herself as she was into baking and was carrying it down the stairs. Everyone was huddled around the photo booth where Punit was clicking pictures, and no one noticed when Trisha twisted her ankle. The cake fell from her hands, she was about to fall the flight of stairs and hit her her head on the wall when Aman instinctively leapt from his chair and climbed the steps in a flash and caught her mid-fall.

Trisha’s cry for help caught everyone’s attention, and they ran to help her, but there she was, sitting on the plastered foot of a very guilty looking Aman who wouldn’t dare look up. Trisha’s father held her hand, and she awkwardly climbed down the stairs, feeling sorry for her cake but thanking Aman over and over again.

“It’s….it’s nothing, please.” He said feeling a little heroic

“Sorry, Bhai, I ruined your cake.”, she told Punit.

He hugged her, “Come on, Trish, I am happy that you are okay.”

Mr Sharma had a patronising look on his face as he asked Aman, “Would you climb down yourself or do you still need help?”, his tone was bordering on a tease.

Aman got up, and everyone clapped for him. They were all happy that he was not hurt after all, and that meant he would be playing in coming games. Punit was laughing along with Sanjay, and all the other team members were whistling and catcalling. It was an embarrassing moment for Aman, but he was happy nonetheless. His whole drama was for a purpose, and the purpose was solved. Mission Accomplished!

It was the first match, RLCA vs PCCI. They were in the dressing room. Mr Sharma was boosting everyone up one last time before the game.

“Punit, you are the Captain, I think you have made a great team and well-structured batting order. I am positive your fielding strategy and balling tactics would go a long way this time. But remember, the rules still apply, so no messing.” He said sternly, and Punit nodded without any rebellion in him.

“Sanjay you are the vice-captain. Remember if Punit is not there for any reason, you will lead your team. This is your chance Sanjay, show them what you have got and project your teamwork.” He told thumping Sanjay’s back, and he nodded with a smile and his hands in his pockets.

“Aman, you are our opening batsman, our star batsman. We are all counting on you. I know you will do your best and help us attain a score PCCI can’t chase. And yes, don’t get distracted by your fans in the stands.” He said with a smile, knowing full well Trisha would be there. Aman blushed and shook hands with Mr Sharma.

They all fell in line and rolled out on the field.

DEEP WITHIN – XII

Punit!! What are you doing here? You should be home by this time,” said Coach Sharma surprised.

Just came here for some clear thinking . . . didn’t expect to find you still here. But when I saw you, just thought to get some things straight,” said Punit.

What things?,” said Mr. Sharma with a low tone of suspicion.

Punit started with a lower that usual voice, “It was my father, right, who influenced the Board in my favour when you had already made up your mind about making Aman the captain?”

Look, let matters of the Boardroom remain within the walls of the Boardroom. I choose not to discuss anything regarding it with you. But son look, you are in the blooming youth of your life. The way you look at things now, the way you behave now will continue to impact your future. If you will have cemented good relationships now, they’ll always stand by you. However, if you continue to nurture your arrogance you will find yourself all alone one day,” said the coach wrapping his arm around Punit.

Tears streamed down Punit’s cheeks. He stared blankly at the ground with not a word.

Then suddenly, he got up to leave.

Punit . . . listen . . . Punit,” ran the coach behind him. But, Punit jogged himself quickly out of the arena.

He was unusually calm in the car as the driver drove him home.

For a change, his parents were at home that evening as he reached home. As the maid opened the door, he handed her the cricket kit and quietly went up the stairs. The driver and the maid exchanged quiet questioning looks.

Punit bolted the door to his room and flopped himself on the bed and wept inconsolably. The happy scenes from Aman’s house flashed before his eyes. The singing and merriment – it was such a different picture than what he had thought.

How wrong I was! I always thought that money gives happiness because you have all that you want. I thought that poor people are unhappy and miserable creatures. But, here, my family has everything – yet there is no peace, no joy, no love, no understanding, no one has much time for each other. And, Aman’s family literally has nothing compared to what I have. Yet, the peace I felt as I stepped into their house is unexplainable. Why is that missing in my house? I have hardened behind these hard polished walls. Punit went on tugging his pillow as thoughts flooded his mind.

Just then, there was a knock at the door. Punit continued to lie on the bed, ignoring the knock. The knocking grew persistent and louder. He got up from his bed and went to the washroom. He saw his teary face in the mirror and could not believe that it was Punit Shah – the one who boasted with his collar up day in and day out. What had become of him today? Why was he crying after all!

The knocking turned into banging. He quickly washed his face and rushed to open the door with a wet face.

What happened Punit? Its not that you slept off . . . you came in just now. What took you so long to open the door,” demanded his angry father.

Er . . . I was in the washroom,” mumbled Punit. It was unusual for his father to come up to his room and knock the door.

Mr. Vikram Shah observed Punit’s swollen eyes and understood that he had been crying for some reason. However, he chose not to raise it up and just turned and descended the stairs.

Punit left the door open and strolled back into his room.

The maid walked in with a tray of snacks and steaming hot coffee. The mixed aroma of deep fried vadas (Indian snack) and the coffee filled the room. As he walked upto the tea table in his room, the image of the hot samosas and merriment in Aman’s house danced before his eyes. Tears started welling up once again.

Hey, hero what’s up?” It was his sister who had entered the room.

Punit could not control himself any longer. With the half-bitten vada still in his mouth, he held on to Trisha and started weeping.

Trisha was taken aback. “Hey, what happened? Come on tell me, did someone tell you something.”

Trisha did not know how to react. She had never seen Punit this way – at least not since his childhood days.

Why can’t our family be happy? Why can’t we all be together?” muttered Punit tightening his arm around Trisha amidst sobs.