एक गुल्लक रख रखी है मैंने…

एक गुल्लक रख रखी है मैंने
अपने सिरहाने
बड़ी सी…
रोज रात को सोने से पहले
भर देती हूं उसमें
दिन भर का दर्द,
किसी के ताने, किसी के उलाहने,
किसी के लिए जलन
और किसी के प्रति गुस्सा,
सब ही समाहित हो जाते हैं
उस गुल्लक में
और यूं ख़ाली हो जाती हूं मैं,
खो जाती हूं , सुंदर सपनों में।
जब भी दिल भारी होता है
उडे़ल कर सब बोझ
उस गुल्लक में
हल्की हो जाती हूं मैं !
एक और गुल्लक भी है मेरे पास
उसमें जमा करती हूं मैं दुआएं,
रोज सुबह उसमें से कुछ दुआएं
निकालती हूं..
दिन भर खर्चती हूं
फिर डरती हूं कि कहीं गुल्लक
ख़ाली न हो जाए।
भरती हूं दिन प्रतिदिन उसे
लोगों की दुआओं से
कि आड़े वक्त यही तो काम आएंगी!!!!❤️

Hustle, bustle for next 2 months

My parents reached Australia yesterday. I am meeting them after 2.5 years. They have aged so much. This morning M and I were discussing on our breakfast that they have aged so much. Mum looks so much tinier and Dad looks so lost and tired. It aches my heart to see them struggle when they get up, move and hear (for my Dad).

At the same time, our household has suddenly come to life. Suddenly we have an urge to leave our room, mobiles and be out with them. Today she made the younger one eat 2 chapattis with Aaloo Gobhee (potatoes with cauliflower)…something my younger would never eat. She made me eat my lunch (which I often skip). Yea, mu Mum is my lifeline and my Dad is the essence of my being…my Dad has a huge part in building my character.

Charlie has gone berserk. All he wants to do is circle around Mum and give my Dad kisses. He comes and licks my Dad’s face even before Papa realises. He can probably smell me in them and he knows they are family.

Are we still living in 20th century?

This afternoon, I had to drop the elder one to her college. She had big bags of plaster of Paris and concrete that she needed for her project and couldn’t carry on public transport.

On our way, she started venting about the fact that she is unable to enjoy her life. The fact that we don’t allow her to go to clubs, night-out with friends, road trips and all. The fact that we still question her about her assignments, way she dresses the way she does, the food she prefers, etc. She commented that we are probably looking to impose restrictions that were applicable to children in 1980s.

At first I tried to reason with her; but then I went silent. I let her express her frustration. She was fine by the time I dropped her. On my way back, I thought are we really in 1980s.

But in 1980s, our parents weren’t worried that they didn’t know anything about what’s going on in their children’s life, there were no strangers lurking behind computers, there were no drugs in schools and no date rapes. I totally understand her frustration as she sees her friends enjoying and she can’t.

What she can’t understand is the concern behind these restrictions. Who wants to see your child sulking? I dread the moment she comes out of her room excited with a new idea and query. I hate saying no to her. I trust her completely; but not the world outside. She is too precious for me to take chances with. Having said that I pick her up from her Uni in midnight; from her Uni get togethers and friends’ birthday parties at midnight. But where I am comfortable with her safety. Road trips…no not all. With someone of her age driving..no not at all.

So is 21st century better than 20th century…I don’t know. I know in 1980s my whole world was in my parents. I was a very happy child…content being in my home. My whole life was study, eat and sleep…but I smiled a way more than I see her smiling. I feel guilty and often question our parenting…makes me sad.

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Visit to a Pakistani Restaurant

This weekend, M shared link of a Pakistani restaurant. For long, I wanted to try out their cuisine. I and kids agreed and we went there yesterday. My daughter and I wore western dresses…didn’t even think otherwise.

The ambience was very different from what we are used to. We looked very different and eyes from all the tables were set on us. All the women in the restaurant had Hijab on; or they had their scarf on their head. My daughter and I were in western clothes, which made us look like outsiders. This made kids very uncomfortable and they started insisting for us to leave. But M encouraged them to stay on.

When food was served, we loved it. As we indulged into food, I could say their guards lowered and they loved the food. The servers were polite and we came to know that a young chef is the owner. Before we left, we complimented the food.

I must say one thing though…we say we were the same. But we aren’t any more. We were clearly the outsiders there. Our countries have now drifted apart.

Garbage Can

When it comes to doing something in your life, we should take clues from the phrase ‘Garbage Can’ synonymously used for garbage bins.

When even garbage can (as opposed to cannot), then why can’t we. Each one of us can add our contribution to kindness and positivity in the world.

E.g. yesterday I was in office, when S called. I was surprised to see her call as she knows its my working hours. She was very happy as she has been promoted. Why did she call me…as I always encouraged her to reach out for better roles…If my words of positivity helped her improve her career, just imagine if we all decide to be spread positivity in the world…how beautiful this world would be…

Preparing for Mum Dad visit

My parents are visiting us in a couple of weeks. This weekend, I tried get the guest room ready for them…it is so difficult.

Its amazing how and when did I gather so many things that I didn’t need. A huge bag of clothes went to local charity shop. It had all the unused clothes which I kept for years.

The cleaning is still pending. It will take more than a weekend to clear up the mess. But I can’t wait for mum and dad to come 🥰🥰

Lonely battle…

In India, when we look for a partner or matrimonial match for our children, we see physical compatibility. The height, complexion, looks, personalities, family culture should match. We go for looks; but do not go for mental compatibility. No thought process goes into finding out if the views match.

And then we tie the knot…and leave the couple grapple with that incompatibility. The result is often one person in the couple ends up sacrificing their values, beliefs, and opinions in a quest to achieve a common ground. Parenting becomes another source of clash. Both fight a lonely battle…sometimes with each other and sometimes with oneself.

Dream’s mystery

On Saturday night, I saw my niece crying, even though all was well in her world. I woke up with that bad intuition. Something was not right. Obviously my daughter would have known about it as my niece and she talk almost everyday.

I grilled my daughter and she blurted that my niece might break up with her ‘soon to become fiancee’ boyfriend. I talked to my niece and comforted her. I will always have her back. I am always there to support her.

But the dreams continue to forewarn me…

मेहनत से उठा हूँ

मेहनत से उठा हूँ, मेहनत का दर्द जानता हूँ, (I rose from labour, and know the pain)
आसमाँ से ज्यादा जमीं की कद्र जानता हूँ। (And that’s why I know the value of ground I walk than the sky I aspire for)

लचीला पेड़ था जो झेल गया आँधिया, (I was a flexible tree and survived the storms)
मैं मगरूर दरख्तों का हश्र जानता हूँ। (But I know the consequences of the trees that refused to bend)

छोटे से बडा बनना आसाँ नहीं होता, (Its not easy to rise from trenches)
जिन्दगी में कितना जरुरी है सब्र जानता हूँ। ( I realise the value of perseverance and persistence)

मेहनत बढ़ी तो किस्मत भी बढ़ चली,(my labour rose, and so my good fortune)
छालों में छिपी लकीरों का असर जानता हूँ। (but I still know the effect of blisters on body and soul)

बेवक़्त, बेवजह, बेहिसाब मुस्कुरा देता हूँ, (I smile anytime, without any reason innumerously)
आधे दुश्मनो को तो यूँ ही हरा देता हूँ!! (And defeat half of my enemies)

काफी कुछ पाया पर अपना कुछ नहीं माना, (I have achieved a lot, but don’t consider it mine)
क्योंकि एक दिन मिट्टी में मिलना है ये जानता हूँ। (as I know my final destination is to be dust/ashes one day)

Borrowed from Facebook post! But felt it was written for me.

My life has been full of struggles. I still grapple with issues that cannot be solved. But one thing I try not to forget – be kind and keep smiling.

It true and I am not boasting. I am highest paid person in the entire friend circle and family, relatives…but no one realises that. No one can find out that and no one will. I smile when they put me down, everytime. But this is one thing, they will never know. I don’t want them to think about me in the light of my achievements. I want them to judge me a person I am.

For value of a person is from their character and not money they earn.