Posted in Adult Life, Challenges, Growth, Learning, Love, Patience, Society

Finding joy in house chores

When living in urban-India, if you do not have 2 or more maids working in your household, then you’re probably having financial issues – This is the general Delhi-mindset. Working woman, working in corporate, have kids at home, you ought to have a cook and a cleaning help. Sometimes, a full-time help taking care of the kids and general dusting. This has become a social norm.

I’ve belonged to the same category, ever since I started living separately from my parents.

But, recently, I moved into my new home. As fate would have it, my cook bailed out, and I didn’t get anyone for dusting either. Now, let me tell you, it all was only a phone call away. I just need to call the society guard and I would have a queue of maids ready to take the job at my doorstep. Somehow, my intuition kept telling me otherwise and I did not make the call.

It’s been two months now since my cook had to leave urgently for her hometown. And, I’ve been cooking ever since. Preparing two meals, sometimes three, every day, is no easy task. There were days when I returned home so exhausted, I didn’t have the energy to even prepare rotis. (The veggies I cook in the morning itself.)

And, cooking is not all that’s to be done at home. Clothes, general cleaning, stocking up your house, dusting, the list is long. Plus, the unpacking of the boxes in shifting. I can keep writing and will never finish.

So, why did I do it?

1. In a new house, unless you work yourself in the kitchen, you can never get it set the way you want. You need to use it to make it functional.

2. With a cook taking care of my kitchen for almost 2yrs now, I wanted to take control of my kitchen again. See if doing things myself made any difference.

3. The cook was very good. I wanted to wait for her than let a stranger enter my house and teach her.

So, that’s how the two months of cooking, cleaning, owning my house started.

And, as unbelievable as it sounds, even to me, I’ve enjoyed this. The feeling of contributing to the general care of your house is amazing. To see your child say ‘yummy’ to food you cooked, you have another level of satisfaction. To see your husband’s appetite go up, you know this is making a difference. The wastage in my kitchen has significantly reduced. The general hygiene that I can take care of, no employee can. Cleaning the glass doors and see them gleam, to find your body toning just with that physical exercise, you are surprised! It shouldn’t, but it does.

Today, I and Anay cleaned all our house glass-doors. I’m tired and exhausted. The job wasn’t completely perfect either. We need some improvements in the steps we took. But, the whole activity was satisfying and enjoyable beyond measure. To see your child learning that not everything needs to be outsourced and house work can be done yourself, its deeply satisfying. Reminds me of how I used to see my Mom and Dad do stuff. Nothing was what they couldn’t do.

I don’t know how long I’ll be able to continue this. My exercise and yoga has stopped because my time is all taken now. The time I and Tarun spent walking, talking, is now gone taking care of the house. So, probably I’ll need to get the maid back.

But, I enjoyed this. I hope I’m able to find a balance.

Love,

Hope

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Posted in Adult Life, Ambitions, Challenges, Fake, Growth, Hatred, Jealousy, Love, Philosophy, Self-growth, Society

Why hatred is expensive but love comes cheap

Becoming a Manager is one thing but living the life of a Manager is not easy. In India, where if you want to grow in your career, you’ve no choice but to become a Manager, this becomes even tougher. You don’t have the luxury of following your passion. The Darwin’s theory of ‘survival of the fittest’ plays a major role in deciding how your career and future will shape up. And, if survival needs you to become a Manager, then so you shall be.

I was never forced into Management, I wanted it. I dreamt of it. And now, when I’m living the life, I realise – everything comes with a price tag.

So, I interact with people and deal with ego-clashes, mean attitudes, backstabs – all in a span of the day. And it seems to be getting to me. I sometimes wake up in the middle of the night feeling depressed about the guy who didn’t join. Or, the guy who did¡ Sometimes, sleeping becomes an issue. You remember all the things people said. You remember all things you tried to do for the team member who decided to ditch you, when it was finally seeming to be working out. And now when you’ve become an adult, you no longer have the blessing of ignorance. You can actually differentiate between people who’re actually nice to you and those who’re smiling to your faces but snickering at you behind your back. That gets to you too.

For how long do you keep telling yourself that it’s only job and it doesn’t matter. How long do you give people the benefit of doubt. For how long you accept that everyone is fallible and everyone is gullible? There comes a time when the mind shrieks – “What about me?”

You seek revenge. You feel like doing tit for tat. You feel like being as mean to people as they have been to you. Show them you’re not a door mat! Show them you’re not the fool they can take for a ride every time. You won’t be used anymore! Now, I’ll use and throw!

And, it makes you sleepless even further. Your heart is hurting with all the anger and your mind is busy plotting ideas on how to get back to that bitch/moron. The sleepless nights now turn into days of mulling and conniving. And, you see evil everywhere.

Bahh!

And then, realisation strikes! You are wasting so much time on a person who deserved not even an iota of your time or energy any further. You burnt and boiled your blood. You wasted all those minutes thinking of doing something that’ll perhaps have no or little impact on the person. All the time that you could have enjoyed with your work or your loved ones or enjoying the beauty around you, you wasted on hatred.

And I remember my own words from the past – ” Hatred is a two way sword. The harder you push into the other person, the more it tears your own soul”.

Singing the song – “Where is the time to hate, there is so little time to love!”

-Hope

Posted in Adult Life, Ambitions, Challenges, Growth, Personal, Relationships, Society, Uncategorized

Of choices

Dear Diary,

Life is back to normal again. After a long time of upheaval and uncertainties, it is where it was, and it seems, the sea is calm, yet again.

Normally, times of upheaval /difficulties usually signify the time of improvement, growth. So far, it usually ended with some significant change in my life – a milestone. This time, however, it hasn’t changed much. Maybe I hit the rock bottom and I am back to the surface, breathing, so that’s a big achievement! Not sure, though.

As I reflect on those times, I do try to gather what I learnt (coz there must be!). The first one and the only one so far, is it was all my choice. The times tested which way I go, and I made my choice. Whether it was about supporting my husband in his venture, or not-leaving my job for my ailing child (who is now fine), or not moving back to my in-laws house because of societal pressure, or about not-giving up when everything seemed to be going wrong at my job. I took a stand. I decided for myself. It didn’t seem so when it was all happening. But, now, I can see that that is how it all went.

As I always say – ‘ There is no right or wrong a choice. It is about what actions you follow it with, which decide whether the choice was wrong or right’.

So, when I did decide to move out of my in-laws house, it was a major decision. A decision which most would term as ‘wrong’, but by working extra-hard towards keeping the relations healthy, happy, I could heal them. I could make the decision right. Now, not only am I happy, they are able to find their happiness in this setup too. It wasn’t easy. Neither for me, nor for them. But, if the intentions are right, and if you value the relations, it does work out. Today, we’re considered a happy unit again (‘us’ and ‘them’ together).

When Anay fell sick, and had to be hospitalized, everyone questioned our decision of moving out. It made sense to keep the child home instead of sending him to the day care and opening him to so many infections. That was a time even my husband thought that it’s the right thing to do, to move back. But, I knew, I had made a choice. And, it was time to make the choice right. So, I decided that we won’t undo what we had done. I decided we will try to make it work by working it out with our offices. And, it seemingly did. It was tough. Both our careers were at stake. But, when you have a baby, you don’t have it to give away to your parents to take care. You take care of your child. And, if you cannot take care of him/her because of your career, then you need to figure out how to make it work. Not brush your hands off the child by handing over the responsibility. Yes, my child requires his grandparents and their love. He needs loads of them. I keep visiting. I let him have his way, a lot of times. But, I don’t want to use it as an excuse to get rid of my responsibility.

Because of this part-time story, my job went into a deep shit. Things went out of hand pretty suddenly. What came as a warning sounded more like a death bell. While moving to a different job was an obvious choice, it would have meant accepting defeat and letting go of all the hard work I had done in my past 4 years at the company. I was ready to move-on in terms of job. I wasn’t ready to leave on bad terms. I didn’t want to leave because I failed at the job I took. I wanted to prove I was worth it. I wanted to prove it was a phase that I went through.

‘And, it does not define me’.

It took a lot of courage, lot of self-introspection and letting go of personal limitations to get over it. It meant facing people head-on. Having arguments of personal level and yet keeping it totally professional. No tears, No emotions. They say, once relations go sour, it is almost impossible to mend them back. This time, I can say, I mended them. I would never be able to forget the scar, but I mended it enough so that I don’t have to run from my current situation. I can work. I can go to a happy place to work. And, if later, I want to switch because I would like to, professionally, then I would. But, for now, there’s no rush.

Well Well! So, that was my last adventure. And, as I see my calm sea again, I wonder and yawn. I wonder what the next adventure would be, and when it would be. Because Life is the only adventure which keeps my adrenaline high.

Hoping for a rocking life ahead! Coz I ain’t done yet! 😉

-Hope

Posted in Adult Life, Ambitions, Challenges, Growth, Personal, Philosophy, Self-growth, Society, Uncategorized

Losing hope

Dear Diary,

I find myself too confused lately. Unable to follow my conviction. 2016 was a hard-year. I’m not yet ready to write about it. Maybe I just want to forget it. Well, I know, they are invaluable lessons of my life. Part of my growing up. But, for now, the memories are too painful to talk about. A lot of it is full of guilt and self-realisations. Because of that, I no longer am able to trust my intuitions, my conviction, my mind, or my heart. This hasn’t happened since, well, 2009.

My astrology readings tell me that 2009 was my golden period. It was the time my Sun was in my favour. And, the phase was supposed to stay for 7 yrs. Those 7 yrs have come to an end (obviously). Even the bad phases, like Shani are supposed to stay for 7 yrs, but they seem to be never-ending. I was reflecting on what I achieved in those 7 yrs. In the good 7 yrs. If they were my golden 7yrs then perhaps those were my most productive years too. Well – I got married, gave birth to a wonderful child, found success in my job. Perhaps, enough to stay contented for a lifetime!

But, for me, it seems too little. Oh! I can never be happy! What else could I get to make myself happy!? Truly contented?

But tell me, will any person ever tell you that getting married was the biggest achievement of there life? From all that I’ve gathered from my married life, happiness in a relationship is a constant endeavour. Just because you were married to a great guy doesn’t guarantee you will be happy with each other forever! A lot is how you handle it later and if your ambitions and paths remain connected all life long. And becoming a mother, it’s the best feeling and a blessing, but with a child born every second, in India alone, I fail to feel lucky about it.

When I reflect on the time and feel dismal about not achieving anything, I wonder what I wanted? Honestly speaking, I wanted to find my passion. I wanted to reach to the profession that I was meant for. Even today, I wonder what if I had pursued that MBA after all. Despite achieving success in my profession, I don’t find myself feeling like – ‘I’ve arrived!’. I don’t see that urge to learn more, to try more, to give it more. It’s just work.

I again want to branch out and try. After being working for 10 yrs, it’s not easy shifting. It’s not just that you would need to work harder to make your mark, there is no guarantee you’ll be able to make your mark, your place, as you were able to make here. The thought of leaving the safety net, of taking the plunge without the rope, the risk is too high. And, that makes taking the plunge even harder. Tarun is obviously against it. He tries to urge me to think again, to continue where I am. I feel as if he’s already stopping me from moving ahead in life. I’m sure he’s also concerned about the safety net, just as I am, but I want him to support me in taking risks, just as I did, for him.

But, this is no barter system. You can’t expect the person to do you favours because you did some by them. It’s a common life for both of you. And each decision has repercussions on all our lives. Not just mine.

I feel old. This country, this setup, they make you feel old and done with, in 10 yrs of your work ex. You’re already amongst the ones who have been there for long. And you feel this void, of there’s nothing more for me to achieve or look up to.

I don’t want that. I want to live my life like there’s no end. Even when it is the end. I want that energy, that passion, that hope…of a tomorrow. Forever!

 

Posted in Ambitions, Growth, Personal, Self-growth, Society, Uncategorized

Let the spirit rise above the ashes

Dear Diary,

It happens, yet again. And I’m reminded of all things that passed. Simple incidents. Meaningless incidents. And yet they have a capacity of causing your entire being to fall back into its original state of helplessness and negative loops. Why! Why is the mind so fickle!? Perhaps it’s not the mind but the soul which needs empowerment. Empowerment to overcome the senses.

It is only you and you only who can stop that loop which your mind falls into. Those meaningless conversations which keep going on in your head have no other result but a heartache and a pertinent headache -both of which hurt only you. The conversations which never happened and will actually never happen. They change nothing. Of no consequence. If it is so troubling for you, go ahead and reach out to the person and do that conversation ‘actually’, in real. And, if you do not have the courage or do not believe the reason is important enough, then stop. Stop right there.

You Are Capable. You can stop this decay of your being if you put your mind to.

I resolve not to let my spirit become a slave to my senses.

I resolve not to let my tongue/taste force me to fall sick further.

I resolve not to let my mind force me to believe that I can never be fit again.

I resolve not to let my injuries force me to believe that I can never dance again.

As long as I live, I will live it full.

Just start working, Stop thinking.

-Hope

Posted in Adult Life, Ambitions, Fake, Hatred, Jealousy, Personal, Relationships, Self-growth, Society

of hatred

Hatred is a two – way sword. The more you inch from ‘dislike’ to ‘loathing’ to ‘hatred’ for a person, more pressure you exert on the sword to inch further into the person. And as you put pressure, more the sword digs deeper into your hand – from the edge pointing at you. The sword can never hurt the other person more than you because the pain is felt first in your hands! 

So, chose the people you hate, wisely!