Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Imagine



Imagine that you are healthy
It isn’t hard to do
Close your eyes – hop, skip and jump
Imagine and it will come true.

Imagine that you are wealthy
That is an easy task
Driving a Porche, wearing a Prada
Imagine and you won't even have to ask.

Imagine that you are happy
Don’t we all want bliss?
Think you are in a park, laughing out loud
Imagine and you will attain happiness.

Imagine that there is only the good
And it will come bouncing back
STOP feeding negativity
Imagine and get your life on track.

Thursday, July 11, 2019

This Blog is my Therapy

I started this blog more than 12 years ago to chronicle my life. In the beginning, I forced my friends to read every single thing I wrote. Unable to decline my repeated threats, most of them obliged.

A few months into the blogging world, I made some friends. We were there for each other in thick and thin. When no one was reading our amateur stuff, we were lauding each other's work and found immense happiness in doing so. Readers/fans were easy to come by.

A lot of these people quit writing. Their blogs became ghost towns. I use to wonder what is happening in xyz's life after he/she stopped coming online. Those were the days..

Blogospere became a tad commercial with the rise of Indiblogger and Blogadda. I participated in contests trying my best to combine my personal life into brands to win prizes. There was a thrill attached to winning. I wrote a lot of fictional posts also. It made me happy - wasn't that the purpose of this space anyway?

There was a time when I thought I should write about more 'meaningful' posts. Everyone around me was writing on Feminism, Politics, Finance, and things that could make a difference. Pen is mightier than the sword they said. So I tried. And failed.

It is not that I don't have an opinion. It is not that I don't think my blog matters. I just wanted to be here and talk about me! Narcissistic much? Nah, it just gave me a space to vent out and talk about my feelings!

I have thought about this - If I am writing only personal stuff, I might as well write in a diary. Why do I need to put it out in the world to read?

It is very simple - I got a message from a bestie today. She told me she read my blog and thought she had missed out on a lot. She asked me about my life and what was going on. She inquired about my health and how I was coping. I told her the truth.

Had she asked me in general how I was, I would have given her an indifferent 'I am fine'. When she read my blog, a space where I am most real, she dug deeper into understanding what was really going on. We connected at a more sacred level for which I am extremely grateful.

And so I still write here and talk about everything I feel like talking about. It doesn't matter who is reading and who is not. It is these moments that matter. It makes you feel that the universe cares about you and you are absolutely fine in every way. It re-instills your faith in your friendships, in the written world and the world beyond.

Needless to say, this blog will exist till the end of time. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

The Power Within


A person with a chronic ailment does everything that he comes across to heal himself. It could be a persistent cough or a physical weakness or a life-consuming disorder, each one of us is fighting a health issue that we want resolved.

And when an illness starts from childhood, your parents take you to all doctors, yogi’s and tantrics to make you a healthier baby so that you can lead a normal life. I went to more than twenty such people.

I remember each one of them clearly since I spent a significant amount of time with all. Me and my mother use to go with utmost faith to any person who had healing powers…or so we were told. We tried all sorts of Ayurvedic medicines, Accupressure, Reiki, massage, special diets, feeding a cow on a full moon night ...the list is endless.

Yes, doctors were there, but medically there was no cure. And when you can’t find answers in medical science, you look upwards. We did our karma, did the best that we could and left the rest on God.

When I got married I looked no further than medical science. While it kept things in check, it did not heal. After a point in time things began to get worse and it took a toll on my mental health. I began to worry about my future and nothing in the present made me happy.

It is then I thought I will start to learn meditation for I knew everything starts from your head. I started looking out for videos on youtube, for internet is where you go to these days, not tantrics and yogis!

Incidentally a friend of mine called me to tell about this Life Coach cum Spiritual Guru cum Brahma Yog expert who takes online lessons for people who cannot meet her in person. I thought it would be too much gyaan that I already have and hence was reluctant to start the sessions. After three days of sitting on it, I decided to give it a go because I had nothing to lose.

I have taken four sessions so far. A, my teacher, has started with trying to train my thoughts with acceptance and trust in my good destiny which, according to her, all of us are blessed with. We work with her guidance into life and subsequently opening of chakras. At first I thought this was the proverbial satsang and I am too young and intelligent for that. Then I realised that I know but I really don’t apply anything!

She has told me to trust her approach. She has told me to work really hard. She has told me that I will become the first person in this world to say that I was cured of this particular disorder.

Do I want to be able to say that? Do I want to trust her? Do I want to work hard? Yes, yes and yes. It takes a special amount of courage to start trusting again that things will be okay when you have been in and out of the same situation multiple times and that too in childhood – the precious time when things get ingrained in your head. But I am willing to make that leap of faith once again. I want to be like my parents who did the same for me every single time. I want to be like the little girl I was who saw a glimmer of hope at the end of every tunnel.

Maybe I am still that girl who believes even Green tea can work wonders. Faith can move mountains they say. Trust might just be what I need in my life.

Let the sessions continue! 

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Be Yourself


As a country we are obsessed with approval. Our self confidence was broken by harsh rulers who ingrained white superiority over us hence making white the better colour. 

Patriarchy made girl child the inferior gender. Women were responsible to cook and make babies. They were considered the weaker sex and always put second. The sole purpose of a lady was to get married and bear children. Any disability to do so labelled her into many things which were far away from pleasant.

It is not just an Indian thing. Many societies have biases based on colour, gender and race making us constantly seeking approval of those whom we consider above us. I have seen very few people in my life who are comfortable in their own skin fearing no one, asking no one and needing no one.

So what makes a person strong enough to love who they are without having the need for reassurance that they are good enough? How are they wired differently from those who desire day-to-day confirmation that they are smart, beautiful and strong?

Well, it all starts at the very beginning. Parenting is tough and here it is where it all begins. No matter how you have been treated in your life, you must let your child know that he is and deserves the best.

There are parents around me who want to put their 4-year old on diet because he looks too fat. I see women trying face masks on their young ones to brighten their skin colour. There is comparison every single day with the boy next door who is better at alphabets than their kid…

Each parent of the new generation is of the mindset that they are cool. They believe that they don’t compare their children and are giving them the best upbringing. While it is a good thought to have, there needs to be consistency with what you practice. If your child will not get approval from you, he will start to seek it from outside. And that is where every parent will fail in their first and foremost exam.

We don’t need to put our children on a pedestal. We don’t have to tell them they are amazing or better than other kids. We just need to tell them that they are good enough.

The constant battle for ‘likes’ in our generation is a testimony to the fact how flawed our confidence is. We want ‘comments’ from friends and family to justify our existence. The popularity of a person is judged by the number of followers he has or how quickly he can get a thumbs-up from a large audience.

Isn’t it sad? For a few people in this world we waste our time and energy which we could have used to make ourselves better. We lose touch with our inner selves, our inner personality just to please others. Whatever happened to love yourself first?

Life is too short to think less of yourself. You are God’s unique creation and are here for a purpose. Surround yourself with positive souls who lift you up. Be yourself and have no qualms about it.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

The Good Life


These last few days have been a mixed bag. While I fret over a lot of things, there is plenty more that make me feel blessed.

Every evening, while the Boy and his parents take an evening stroll in the walking path nearby, I sit at the neighborhood Starbucks and watch the world go by. No I am not lazy, I just do my exercise with a therapist and this is what is advised for me for the rest of the day. Did I tell you how much I love my therapist!?

I browse through my next holiday plans while sipping on a decaf. You see, coffee after 5 p.m. gives me a sleepless night. Wow, I sound like such a snob while writing this post - I promise, I am not one!



Since the parents are visiting, I cook every meal for them. The housework has increased probably by three times but I don’t really mind it. I cook, load the dishwasher, load the washing machine, play good movies for them while their son is at work and just watch a lot of election coverage with them. It is far from my usual lying-on-the-sofa-and-chilling-out life, but my therapist is happy that  I am moving more.

Yes, I still love her. And no, I don't move less usually.

I came back from my girls-only trip three weeks back. While it was awesome of my besties to take on the task, I don’t think it’s fair on both me and them to manage my comparatively lower energy levels with their enthusiastic selves. The Boy has learnt his way with me, I don’t want anyone else to compromise.

Anyway, I just wanted to update while sipping on my cuppa. I am super duper happy that I am going to travel next week. It is going to be amazing and I cannot wait. I will be updating this blog with my travel stories from the last 3 years in the month of July and August - the schools will be closed, all my friends will travel to their native land and the child-free me will be sweltering in this desert heat. 

I don't think I will come to Starbucks then. I only like to sit outside and the weather would make it difficult to even breathe. So I would write from the comforts of my air-conditioned apartment or would sometimes go to the pool-side with ice-cold water to sip on while I type on my regular Asus laptop.

No, I don't have a Mac. My priorities are set.

See you soon!

Thursday, March 14, 2019

F**k the Fear

I have always been a very optimistic person. If there is anything wrong with me, I experiment with different things and find a way out. My experiments are not successful entirely, but they do have a positive affect. I've been very happy and that proves that they have worked.

However, lately, negativity has been residing in me like a determined guest who refuses to leave the house even when I fail to feed him!

I don't know if it is aging or something that I did or did not do, my health is getting worse. Everything is slowly becoming more difficult than it was before and it kills me a little each day. I am doing everything that is in my hands - I exercise like I've never exercised before, I eat healthier, and I experiment some more. But when I have a bad day, I become anxious and stressed over the state of my health in the coming time.

And this stress that makes things worse. So I started listening to more music, doing pranayam, watching inspirational videos, the works! I told you, I try everything that I can. I even go out when I don't feel like going out because I feel change is good, meeting people is a distraction and that it will help me.

The other day I was watching a video in which Sonali Bendre describes her journey with Cancer. With each disease, you don't know how it is until you go through it. The take-away from her story was how she has become fearless in life because she faced the hardest challenge in her life and came out triumphant. She said she does everything that she fears because that makes her a stronger person.

I've been fearing a girl's trip. Yes, yes.. who fears a girls only trip? I do! You see, I have several difficult moments in a day which the Boy handles with much elan. Right now I'm teaching my girls what all they will have to do when they do travel with me. Sweethearts that they are, they are ready to manage everything. Should I buy them a gift? We'll see!

The second take-away from her interview touched a chord with me as well. She said she was not at ease when she lost her hair during chemotherapy. For a public figure who endorsed all hair-products, this was a massive blow. But Sonali Bendre, very courageously, came out with her bald appearance and inspired a million others to be comfortable in their own skin. She said that she told herself that I am not comfortable, but I will be.

That is what I've been telling myself too - I am not comfortable, but I will be.

I saw a few more videos after that and just learnt that don't feed the pest called anxiety. The more you repeat the issues in your head, the roomier it gets for them to thrive. Instead, tell your fears how you are stronger and how you will not let them win.

I have a new mantra for me now and it is called F**k the Fear. I try to repeat it, smile often, and do the best that I can do. I do my Karma. There are times when I forget all the good things I have read and seen and hence feed the pest. I have sleepless nights. But I know it gets better, I tell myself. I repeat.

So I am here..albeit after ages..repeating it.. telling the world. Writing it makes it permanent, doesn't it?

Write woman, write more and do F**k the Fear!

P.S. I don't swear. This is the only time I've been using this word in this blog or in real life. It's time.

Sunday, January 6, 2019

The Story of an ignored Smart Watch


I use technology, but I don’t get technology. I just know rose gold and slim device and little bit of megapixels, but you talk dual core with me and I’ll avoid you for the rest of my life. It is like cricket: I watch it just to see Virat Kohli sending out flying kisses to Anushka when he hits a century.



You see, I always want to be in the game, always in the know, but I am a regular girl with very girly characteristics and this is the story of my fitness band:

Four years back there was a contest on Twitter. I participated in it with all my creativity. It was related with technology and how, being a wife, I hated it when my husband paid more attention to it. It was a very emotional subject for me and I went all out.

My wit wanted the mobile phone to turn red when my husband looked at the screen for more than 15 minutes. Genius idea was stolen by the applications world and they now have app locks. I have one for my Instagram wherein if I look at Taimur’s pictures for more than 15 minutes a day, it locks it.

If you are judging me right now remember that there are three fingers pointing right back at you.

Anyway, coming back to that contest, my tweet won me a fitness watch. Yes, four years back, when the world had not even started sauntering 10,000 steps every day.



My first instinct was to sell it. With the money, I could buy a dress one size smaller, look at it every day and then become fit. This dress would have more power than any gadget showing me how much exercise I did during the day.

Laziness took over -  the watch was in my closet for a year or so, clothes were bought and discarded, and my size increased as usual.

On a certain Diwali cleaning, I found the watch in a corner and thought I will gift it to my brother since newer models had come and no one would buy this old dude now.

Laziness is in the genes - my brother never got around wearing it. Also, free things seem to give him diarrhea, my nani use to wisely state in a very proud tone.

Come 2017, some 2.5 years after I had won the watch, my mom did her Holi cleaning and found the unlucky band hidden in a corner. She asked me if this was mine. I rolled my eyes and replied affirmatively. She dumped it in my bag and so I had to bring it back.

Imagine my euphoria when I discovered that the charger had been lost in this process. Now why will I invest in a thing from Baba Adam ka Zamana. If I did want to wear a watch, I will get a new, swanky one. The prudent husband got into my brain, pulled out all my devious plans, went online and bought me a charger.

This watch now looked too huge as compared to all the sleek ones around. Imagine using the Sony Ericsson phone of the 90’s in this era. I made up some silly excuses and forgot about the watch yet again.

Then, on the eve of November 28, I was at the airport waiting for my friend from 8 years back. We had not met during this time but had kept in touch due to awesome technology. She had grown from a newly married girl to a mother of two and I was excited to meet her.

She walked out gracefully with her husband and two babies and did not look a minute older than how she looked 8 years back. I kept complimenting her on her fitness and told her how I was totally inspired.

Her only reply – Mehnat karte hain (We word hard).

I wanted to find chullu bhar paani and drown in my sorrow. Here I was - loving my life, living each moment, enjoying my child-free existence and completely ignoring my health. While she was doing it all, and how!

My girly jealousy kicked in. I wanted to fit in that dress I had worn with her on a particular New Year’s Eve some 8 years back. Ignoring all my egoistic tendencies, I asked her for tips.

She gave many but the two that stuck around were that she logged her calories and used a fitness tracker so that she at least does her steps every day.

I went into my locker, took out the grandpa watch and its charger. I handed over my phone to the husband so that he does the Bluetooth stuff and set the watch for me. He was laughing on the inside and doubting my commitment to it.

I told him I will wear it for a month and if I am successful in doing so I will get a nice golden one from #GetFitWithFlipkart.

This was me on the first day of wearing it. After a month, I am happy to report that I am on my way to ordering a Smart Wearable from Flipkart.



As you can see from the messages exchanged, I did lose a kilo. I am more active than I was in the whole of 2018. I am now looking at Nits, Outboard Storage, Battery Life and a lot of other technical terms.

But mostly I am looking at that Fitbit pendant, Luxury fitness watch in Rose Gold and all the girly things that only a FIT girl can buy…





I am also looking at some crazy #SmartHomeSolutions so that I can Ok Google, play dance numbers on YouTube without having to find the remote and only concentrate on shaking a leg or two to burn some calories. 

But mostly I want a Google home and Smart lights to go with it because increasing step count by switching off the lights doesn't go too well with my lazy personality. 

After all, it is all about the balancing it all, right?