Exams begin Today

Today my kids begin their exams and I can’t tell you how relieved I am, so are my kids. The preparation is steady, it’s time for battle. ‘You have worked hard, try to remember all you learned. Don’t worry, just focus and write’ I told my kids.

And in my heart, I’m happy that exam began, because, if it has begun, it will also end. I guess that’s how it is.

My kids love sports and activities, I totally support that. They get good marks, not excellent and I totally appreciate that. I want them to enjoy their school life to the fullest.

As a mother, it’s my part to make difficult things easy for them and make them learn to work hard on the doable things. I help them with their projects, I don’t teach, I facilitate. I believe when it is about creativity, just facilitate and support. I read some where, ‘Children are born Scientists’.

But what do we do about the difficult part, I call it the ‘Theoretical Part.

So we started revision 3 weeks ago. There were weekends when we started studying as early as 8am and closed at 11am. A bit of cartoons lunch and again another subject in the afternoon. Lapse of concentration starts around 2pm, so we shut shop.

While they take an afternoon nap, I start typing the revision question, print copies and staple. If you have ever typed practice questions for your kids, you will understand how insane this job is. It’s not like typing a complicated email at work, it’s not like presentations, not even like the huge excel sheet you work with.

It is lines, underlines for ‘Fill in the Blanks’. Boxes for ‘Choose the Correct Answer’, brackets for ‘Match the Following’. Forget not, it’s cursive writing and larger font. According to your kids handwriting you will have to leave space for answers. And if it is Mathematics, then it is triangle, rectangle, slanting lines and what not. Languages, I will have to write and photo copy, sigh……

These precious papers will take care of the accountability demanded from my 5yr and 7yr olds, I smiled. During week days, a video call in my lunch break will check progress and make up for my absence, I thought, as I logged off the system.

If it is hard work for me, how much more is it for little children. It must be monstrously huge. They are filled with fun and life, how difficult it should be for them to learn and then execute.

I’ve come to understand that there are 3 Big Stressors for a Child, – Ambiguity, Time and Judgement.

Ambiguity: A Clear understanding of the concept or subject is the foundation to learning and remembering. Technology comes to your aid, Smart Class, the latest Education Systems, apps and even online videos. They love to learn visually and creatively. I’ve always depended on them, they are great helpers.

Time: You cannot expect a kid to chase deadlines, so start early. For that matter, a little bit daily. A well scheduled study plan will be make things simpler.

Judgement; I’d like to present one request to all parents. Discipline the child and nurture the virtue of hard work in them, but if for whatever reason, they underperform, do not judge them. We as parents need to find out, why the child has underperformed, or is unable to put it on paper. And if they are disinterested or dyslexic, may be they are a different type of Genius.

But the tough part still remains, the learning of the mind has to be put on paper, we call it Exams!

So, after the nap, it’s playtime for my munchkins. Let me do a quick check, I thought. I asked my elder one, ‘Baby, do you remember that answer, What is the _____ of the ___ called?’.

Which one mamma?

Which one?… My heart skipped a beat, all my hard work gone? Wait, it’s not just not my hard work, he also has worked very hard. I felt….. not anger, but compassion.

I decided to surrender to God for whatever plan he had for my kids. All I know is that if they know how to choose good over evil and do what is right, if they have love, humility and compassion, discipline and hard work, they will be blessed.

At night as I was serving dinner, my elder one, running around the house is making a song out of the answer, ‘The _____ of the ____ is called _________”. He was singing it.

I did not rejoice because, he remembers the answer. I was at peace that he will be Good.

Judgement – The Lion and the Lamb

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This picture does not need a description. The lioness attacked a deer herd and was rewarded with the feeblest member of the clan, the fawn. What happens next is life and the fact that ‘Survival of the Fittest’, is still the only law of the world.

As I dwelt on this brutal reality, my mind started weaving a story. The central character of the story is neither the lioness nor the fawn, but it is the photographer who captured this image.

The photographer set his camp in the wilderness, he braved into the thicket hoping to get an award winning picture, he should be happy he did.

He was always well equipped with a gun to save his dear life, some concern for the wild made him carry a tranquilizer, a diary to write his thoughts and a camera, the sign of his passion.

He would not set foot without these four things, the gun, tranquilizer, camera and his diary.

The photographer thrilled, the hunt began. He hid in the safety of his vehicle as the lioness chased the deer herd and in a moment the fawn was in its embrace. The photographer was kindled with excitement, to see the ‘Lion and the Lamb’ in the same frame, in this case the ‘lioness and the fawn’. He gloried the beautiful creation, as the little fawn lay in the arms of this dangerous stranger.

The photographer immediately seized the image, which he knew were the last moments. ‘This will make a great story’, he thought.

The lioness does not kill the fawn; she seems awe her catch. The photographer grabs his diary to write his thoughts, his emotions flow into his words.

He raised his head to see the fawn still breathing. He could not look away from the tender fawn, its innocence and beauty, his heart is filled with pity. In a moment of sudden rage, he reaches for his gun, loads it and aims it at the lioness. He could not shoot. He takes a deep breath, puts his gun down. ‘How can I do this’, said he.

He then frantically searches his bag. It was as if he is grief stricken. ‘The lioness will kill it any moment’, he thought. He looks and sees, the lioness wickedly caressing, the fawn still alive. Again he searches desperately and finds the tranquilizer. He sets it and is all ready to change the fate of the fawn.

He stops, closes his eyes, breathes slowly, wipes the sweat of his brow, starts his vehicle, the fawn in the arms of its killer. He leaves the forest.

 

For Dear Life Sake – Unspeed

Long day at work, can’t believe it’s Friday.

Can’t wait to get home. Life is beautiful on a holiday.

I wait and wait, and no cabs… How dare!

A taxi round the corner, I think life is fair.

Hopped in with innocent excitement like a kid.

The taxi takes off, like a rocket and there…. We Skid!

Oh brother, please drive slow, I want to live.

“Sorry madam…”, a sheepish expression, that’s all he can give.

With Quantum Energy, he continues his driving pursuit.

I hope the Police don’t think we are criminals and thus us shoot.

I see everyone racing, but now they have to slow down.

I think, the bad road ahead will make them frown.

This road is known to give a back pain, you’ll feel sick

And make an appointment with an Orthopedic.

Now this bumpy, ravaged road will teach them a lesson.

Alas, they continue to speed. I guess spinal health is not enough reason.

Swarming traffic. “I’m not reaching on time. No way”.

Driver thanks his stars, when he sees a subway.

The freeway just unleashed his violent streak.

All I can do is sit and freak.

There is no stopping, the car speeds, screeches and squeals.

I feel my life is at the mercy of his wheels.

We come out of the subway and see cars trying to funnel.

My scared mind – “Did not the Princess meet with an accident in a Paris Tunnel”.

I look out and can see, other drivers on the road.

All on a mad rush, while walkers scared and toed.

The way they ride, you know, who wears the car like a precious stone.

And who drives a vehicle, he does not own.

You can tell the sober from the reckless, without guilt or sigh

And the one who is struggling to pay the car loan EMI.

While I muse looking out of the window

Sudden thud and bang. Bingo!

The driver just got a neat escape, he hit a lumber.

I said, “Brother, please don’t slumber”.

“No madam……..”, there begins the game of blame.

I remember I had to file the Life Insurance claim.

I thought, this is the end, I would have died.

Because all the driver had, was his personal goals in mind.

Well, all is well that ends well.

I just managed to get off my ride from hell.

My highest respect to all the careful drivers.

A word of caution to all the speed thrivers.

Speed is a very tempting syndrome,

But please remember, someone awaits you at home.

And so I pray for myself and those I love.

That God may have mercy and protect us from above.

My dear life, a lot has been entrusted to you, so please take care.

The next ride without Divine Protection, I cannot dare.

Caring for yourself and your loved ones is a blessing indeed.

For Dear Life Sake, please Unspeed.

Nominated for Sunshine Blogger Award!

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The year has just started and this is so humbling. My first nomination for Sunshine Blogger Award. So grateful. The biggest award for me is that my thoughts are being liked.

Thank you Twali for nominating me, I love your writing and your blog is a beautiful place to be. This is Twali’s blog, https://cafeavectwali.wordpress.com/

Twali has written some really ‘tough love’ posts as she calls it, they are sensitive and strong. At the heart of the post you will see that she cares for people. Wonderful effort of love Twali. Stay Blessed always and keep writing.

About The Sunshine Blogger Award

The sunshine award is given by bloggers to other bloggers who are inspiring, positive, and creative.

Rules of the award

1 .Shout out to the blogger who nominated you with a link to her blog.

2. Answer questions given by the blogger.

3. Nominate 11 bloggers for the sunshine award , with links to their blogs.

4. Don’t forget to notify your nominees.

5. Come up with your own questions and tag 11 other bloggers nominating them to do the same.

6. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Awards logo in your post.

Here are the people I nominate for this award:

Twali – https://cafeavectwali.wordpress.com/

Tina – https://thetinaedit.com/

Sreejith – https://shipswake.wordpress.com/

Priya – https://priyasingh91.wordpress.com/

Grace – https://myblessingbygrace.com/

Laurhan – https://laurhan.wordpress.com/

Chris – https://therenegadepress.com/

Jodi – https://lifeinbetween.me/

Visible Spectrum – https://visiblespectrumblog.com/

Christy – https://whenwomeninspire.com/

Sonya – https://followyourshadow.me/

Now, answering Twali’s questions for me:

  • What has your experience been so far with blogging?

Blogging is like speaking to myself. I had this habit of speaking to myself and imagining stories around me. My sister’s knew this and would laugh at me, they would just walk in and say, “oh i’m sorry to disturb you, I thought you were alone.” So now I speak to the world with my posts. Love this.

  • What topic would you love to see more bloggers focus on?

I’d like to see and read stories and articles from people’s personal life, their own life or others, you can definitely change names, change a bit here and there. There is power in Truth. “Truth is stranger, than fiction”.

  • What do you hope to achieve in the blogging world?

I want people to read my post, think and feel a DejaVu. Something like, ‘I understand’, ‘I’ve been there’ kind of feeling. If I can comfort some one, make someone laugh, I’m happy.

  • Have you met anybody from a blog in real life? If not, who would you like to meet?

I have never and would love to meet all my favorite bloggers. It will be great.

  • Who has been/is your role model? Why?

I don’t have a role model. Because we all are imperfect. Trust me, I have learnt so much from a person, whom everyone called ‘good for nothing’. You can learn from someone’s success and someone’s failure.

  • Favorite spot to relax?

My mom-in-law’s house. Very quiet place. Away from the hustle. It’s like a weekend therapy.

  • One thing you can never get tired of eating?

I’m Addicted to French Fries.

  • Do you wear something you’d feel empty without? (watch, necklace, cap, shades…etc)

A Thread String like Necklace. Almost weightless.

  • Do you let everyone around you see the real you?

Not always. I stay composed most of the time around strangers.

  • Would you ever go to a nudist beach?

Nay Nay never.

  • Where would you rather be right this moment?

My mom-in-law’s place.

My questions: 

  • What’s your new year resolution, tell us something you don’t mind revealing.
  • What is the most difficult part of blogging or being a blogger.
  • What is topics do you enjoy reading and writing.
  • What do you think is your best quality or ability.
  • What do you think is the most annoying trait you have.

I thank every one who has liked my blog. Its wonderful to be appreciated. God Bless you all. 🙂

 

 

 

Beauty and the Beast – Modern Love

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Anya, full of life, sharp eyes, pretty face. She would not tread on earth, loved to live in her beautiful world. A 26 year old who was too breezy and fairytale-ish for her age. Let’s just say, she does not want to let go of her unbelievable dreams.

Brought up in humble situations, but that didn’t stop her from dreaming. Anya believed that nothing is impossible. She was waiting for her prince and sure enough she behaved like a princess.

Fast Forward, Anya in an arranged marriage meeting with a prospective groom.

Her best friend’s recent marriage disaster had shut down Anya’s thinking process, she has lost faith in marriage and love, but every girl has to get married. Hence, the Beauty found herself sitting in front of the Beast.

The guy and his family will confirm if they liked Anya shortly.

After the meeting Anya tried to remember how he looked like, she has a vague image of him, because she did not want to remember. It’s a ‘Yes’ from the guy.

Best friend files for divorce, Anya says ‘Yes’ to marriage. ‘All marriage are disasters, so be it’, thought Anya.

The first meeting between the guy and Anya.

Beast : Hi, How are you?

Beauty : I’m good, how are you?

Silence…….

Beast : Are you happy with this marriage?

Beauty : I am a bit nervous,

Silence…. The guy was not one bit extra chivalrous, nor did he try to woo her. It was as if he had come for a project meeting. The project name being Marriage. ‘This is a nightmare, I think I’ve seen the worst of him’ thought Anya.

Now someone has to speak, so Anya decided to..

Beauty: My dad really liked you. Was it your mom who liked me?

Beast: After my father passed away, my mom has always given me the freedom to make my decisions. It was I who said Yes. I like you.

No change in expression, he could have said, “I like the project, so I decided to invest in it”.

Beauty wanted to put on wings and fly away from the Beast’s castle. Alas. How on earth can a guy say “I like you” without any emotion?

Anya had a long list for qualities she looked for in her Prince, which the Beast definitely does not possess.

Traditional Marriage, Grandiloquent Loud Reception. Beauty and Beast Smile, say cheese. Photographer takes a good click.

Beast: Can we talk simple; my English is not so good.

Beauty: ya no problem.

Humility – Check

Anya’s great Uncle comes on stage to wish them. According to tradition, Anya touches his feet to take his blessings. Shocked to find the Beast standing still not willing to take blessings. He comes forward, hugs uncle and greets him.

Beast : I don’t believe in this ritual. Respect need not be Fear.

Self Respect and Respect for others – Check

Beast: Ours is a huge family, the photos are going to take time, would you like to freshen up. I’ll show you the way to the rest room. (Same serious expression)

Beauty : Yes please (‘Wow, my mom didn’t bother, I think he is ok or may be nice’, thought Anya)

Care and Concern – Check

Anya happy to take a short break. Comes back to find the Beast show off his awesome dancing skills.

Beauty : Hmmm…..Why didn’t he dance when I was here? May be he does not bother…………

Superb Attitude – Check

His office friends and acquaintance make a beeline to the stage to wish him. Beast thanked them for coming, introduced Anya to them. They were so many that Anya had to move off the stage so that they could have some photo fun.

Anya did not fail to notice that his friends were from every age group, right from 25 to 55 years and all of them really liked him a lot. So many people can’t be wrong about him. Thought Anya

Goodness – Check

After his friends finished the photo session. He got a call and had to get off the stage to speak. Anya’s nosy aunty informed her, that he has taken care of all the wedding arrangements himself.

Responsibility – Check

Mom-in-law wants Anya to change her dress, so that they can take more pictures. Anya was ready to oblige. Beast tells Mom, that Anya is already tired and they can take pictures tomorrow.

Balance between Mom and Wife : Check Check …

Now Anya is smiling, blushing, her eyes try to glance at the Beast every now and then. Anya is now Anya Again. She is beginning to feel like a princess again.

Is this the beginning of a fairy tale….. I don’t know but I’m willing to bet my emotions on him…….

Now this is beautiful, Anya noticed that the, Beast’s eyes are also Anya, secretly.

Love is in the Air – Check Check Check

The guests are leaving and it’s just the bride and groom’s family sitting and talking.

Very playfully, Anya tells her mom, “Momma, I want to come home. Let’s go to our home”.

Beast looks at Anya, “This ring you see in on your finger, is the symbol of our marriage….. You are now my wife, your coming to our house.” Same tough look on his face.

Anya could not stop blushing, “that’s it now, I’m going with this guy, that’s it…….”

Beast turns around, looks at Anya. Anya struggling to keep a plain face.

Beast : “When I said I like you, I really mean it”.  Smiles with a cute smile.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Case Acute Perfection

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Gas is switched off, door is bolted, Gas is switched off, door is bolted, ……… Repeat.

This the story of Sarai and her paranoia for perfection.

Perfection is the state or quality of being perfect. Void of any error. ‘It is Humane to err’, they say.

Sarai wanted to get things right, but the problem was she wanted it right every time. She took pride in her perfection, but she did not know that this was becoming her Pet Paranoia, which she did not want to let go of.

An office runner with an adorable daughter and a dotting husband. Life was beautiful. She made sure it was beautiful. She watered her life and turned it into a flowery garden. People saw her life blooming.

She was an example of a wise and good, wife, mother and daughter.  Sarai believed in ‘Work first, then Enjoy’. She would keep the best for the last. You should see the bliss and pride on her face when she sits down after completing her work. There is a sense of fulfillment when you see a pristine clean house, everything set for the next day, all payments ready, new investment options settled. She moved most of her food items from normal to super food list and said to herself, ‘We are good’.

She would not quench a twig without a reason. All smiles and hearts for all her best friends, good friends and nice friends on FB. Words of encouragement and listening ear to her family and extended family, even when eyes are closing and body is dysfunctional for lack of sleep.

Every challenge accepted and completed like a ‘Super Woman’, while everyone just cheered, ‘Sarai you are a miracle’, ‘How do you manage yaa’.

Sarai’s advice to her friends,  ‘Just ask yourself how difficult can it be, then no challenge is difficult.’ Her house was filled with, Out of the world gadgets. Guess a House Robot is next on her list. She din’t even want a maid. As a perfectionist, she’d say, ‘I’d trust myself or gadgets, Can’t trust people to do your work, you know’.

Sarai was a loving caring mother and wife, but her folly was perfection. Now her quest for perfection started telling on her health.  She was tired all the time, not amount of rest could help her. As if laziness had taken over her, she’d slouch anywhere, her active life was in the dungeons. Finally she started forgetting things. ‘When did I say that’, I cant remember where I kept the keys’.

One night, after finishing her work in the kitchen, she wondered if she had turned off the gas connection and locked the door, she promptly checked and closed the door. Feeling exhausted, she sat on the chair, checked updates, liked some pics on social media. Again, a thought wandered in her mind, she was shocked to realize that she just could not remember if she had locked the door and switched off the gas. She was embarrassed to check again, but she had to. She checked and everything was in order.

The problem just got worse. The sad state is, now before going to bed, Sarai speaks to herself, ‘Gas is switched off, door is bolted, gas is switched off, door is bolted’. This she does till she walks up to her bed, if not, she will have to turn back and check again.

Sarai was humiliated beyond words, what would her husband think if she told him about her forgetfulness. She was wise enough to talk to her doctor about this, who told her that this is called Brain Fog.

A positive Thyroid test hit her like a thunderbolt. The perfection that Sarai was, she did not want to depend on daily pills from now on. Determined to get rid of this condition she started looking for herbal remedies and started implementing it. However, the results are going to take time advised the herbal wellness clinic.

One of the many reasons for Thyroid, is extreme physical and mental stress, coupled with poor food habits. Sarai tried to fit so many things in her schedule. This left her no time to take care of herself. She knew she did this to herself. And one repercussion of Thyroid is Brain Fog.

Brain Fog is a thyroid condition, where the person is unable to concentrate and forgets simple things. Like you walk into a room and wonder, why did I come here. It can be dangerous when you forget something on the stove or Godforbid, forget to pick children from school.

Sarai knew that she has abused her strength and not listened to her body. Not because she could not afford rest, but because she wanted every thing to be dealt by her, everything should pass her hands, everything perfect.

Perfection with machines and digits is the norm of the day, but perfection with people is a strange disease. It affects the mind, body, heart, relations and thereby our life.

Sarai has now learnt to slow down. Humbly she has accepted life as it comes and even importantly she understood that everything need not be perfect.

No one’s perfect, True.

 

 

When life gives you lemons

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Heard this so many times, you think. Well when Life hands you lemons make lemonade. Why just lemonade. If life hands you too many then, extract the juice, freeze it. Drink, lose weight, add in a facial and glow, get the rind and make some salad.

This is not determination or courage. This has been the survival theory since humankind. We have complicated life enough. Do I mean that we have to be beings sans emotion. Definitely not.

Let me give you an example, the word depression became a lasting fad from the late 80’s. Ask a daily wage earner what they know about depression. They are clueless, because they are either happy and laugh, they are angry and fight or they are sad and cry.

But they never stop and droop, they don’t know what is binge eating, they don’t splurge shop, nor do they stare into nothingness for hours in depression. They just take stock of the situation, grieve over it, weep. They will do something if they can or just move on.

The most humane reaction to defeats in life is to move. Movement is the very thing life is made of.

Does that not make life simple? Different people faced with the same situation, but our reaction is different. It’s how we see things.

Diane and Dawn are two sisters; both are going through a bitter experience in their married life.

Diane says “Why me, what wrong have I done. My husband does not deserve me.”

Dawn says “I’m blessed, this could have been worse. I know my faults, I have received many undeserved blessings.”

A true and unbiased evaluation of oneself is the secret to contentment. Valuing ourselves more than we actually are is the root cause of all dissatisfaction.

The law of nature is humility. It is said, The humble shall surely inherit the earth.

Life is movement. The earth like an athlete runs its course, each and every single day, since its creation. The heart beats throughout out our life. The creation follows a course and a rhythm of life. This movement is the reason we are all alive.

It is this movement that is the essence of life. We also when we are faced with defeat, we should take the natural course, which is moving and definitely move forward for better.