Through the eyes of my kid

In the elf’s eyes, The world is a beautiful place. I see that changing as he has come to the conclusion that there are some bad people in the world. But he doesn’t know about poverty, suffering, death and pain.

Like all Indian kids, he sees his quota of beggars mostly at traffic signals. I see his curious eyes look at them. The one who always has a question about everything is quiet. He asks no questions. At least not yet.

I struggle with how much to tell him. I want him to be compassionate yet dispassionate. I feel In a country like ours, you can’t afford to be one of the two. You can’t ignore the poverty and suffering, but you honestly can’t weep at the plight of everyone.

I want his world to be beautiful longer where the sky changes the colour and the moon and the sun share the sky.  I hate that he knows that some people are not always good.

So the other day we were at a signal and a blind man was begging. The elf was up to his normal games and trying to attract the attention of the auto driver by tapping on the car window. I told him to stop tapping since the blind man would probably think someone was calling him to give him something (in my defence I was driving and my wallet was in the backseat – no way could I have reached for it)

Elf: Why we have to stop tapping?
Nut: Because this uncle can’t see and will think you are calling him. We shouldn’t trouble him
Elf: Why he can’t see?
Nut: Coz he has no eyes

By now the beggar is near my window and I can see the Elf eyeing him. He can see the eyes are different. I wonder if this is too much of information for him. Is he too young for this? Will it shake his belief that Mama and God can make everything ok?

Elf: Why he has no eyes
Nut: Baby you have have to ask God that
Elf looking at the sky: God God, Why this uncle don’t have eyes ?
M<omentary silence and then he looks at me and says – Mama, God says that he didn't have any eyes.

I am struck by so many things. who told him god made people, who told god is in heaven – but more importantly who taught him to be so logical and find an answer to a question I don’t know how to answer.

I want to know but I don’t ask him more questions. I know that the next time we are at this signal, he will remember and ask about the uncle again. He told his grandmother about the uncle when he reached home.

But he isn’t traumatised. His world is still beautiful. Sure it has some people who don’t have eyes in it.

But his simple answer reassured me that he will figure it out and it will not break him. It reminds me how important my answers to his questions are – In making him a good strong person.

In parenting – they don’t exaggerate when they say every minute is making the person they are tomorrow.

The diary of a Stay At Home Person

So its been 45 odd days since I started this stay at home business.

In this time, I have rented out our apartment, sold a car and a crib, painted a house, packed up 6 years of existence in a house, said goodbye to my city of 8 years – come to another city, unpacked and settled in to the house almost entirely and the point is

….I dont feel like I have accomplished anything.

My mind is conditioned to believe that the work I did in office is “only work”. The rest is extra curricular activities.

I havent had time to thing what i want to do next. I am busy – i dont know doing what. I am hoping that once the elf starts school, i will have time to think.

The child and his questions give me no free mindspace. My mind feels cluttered on most days.I am trying to get organised and be the fantastic put together stay at home mom’s people are.

except i refuse to be a stay at home mom – i will be a stay at home person – because while being a mom is fabulous and the best thing ever and all the things which people say. I am still a person, not just a mom – I still trying to figure out me and what makes me tick.

Today is the beginning of the rest of my life

So yesterday was my last day at work, I have taken a year long sabbatical . I am taking time out to figure out what makes me tick, what my passion is or I I have some ounce of talent in me

It helps that the reason for my sabbatical is that the Tall one has found a job in another city.

I am grateful to have this opportunity, nervous I won’t do enough, nervous coz I have never not worked – never had a time in my life at least after joining school where there was no intangible goal .

I am a little scared of the unknown. I have tonnes of thoughts but no plans. 1 year seems like a long time but can be gone so soon.

The world tells me I will figure it out but I think the world over estimates me. I am not so sure.

5 years down the line I hope I don’t look back on this decision with a tinge of regret.

Keep me in your thoughts! And wish me well…

A whole new world awaits me !

Marine drive – Mumbai meri jaan!

Sitting by marine drive

The place that represent Mumbai for so many of us.

Looking at the dark waters I wonder how many secrets have they hidden.

How many couples have loved, fought and broken up at its shores. Some for ever, some to be united again here.

So many of us have stared into these waters building dreams of our futures. Some became millionaires and some failed. They probably all came back and remembered the day they dreamt.

As I sit on marine drive with my almost 3 year old, I wonder if the waters remember the 15 year old who stood by marine drive and dreamt! I don’t remember what I dreamt, but I wonder if I am the same person.

I wonder if the waters remember the ambitious girl who had just started working trotting down the drive in uncomfortable heels after a day at work. I KNOW the ambitions are different, I don’t know what changed.

The young couple starting off their life together, siting in silence as they enjoy their togetherness and the black waters. We still sit in silence but the silence in broken by an endless chatter of a toddler

Mumbai or Bombay my city. Where I grew up in so many different ways. symbolised by the beautiful marine drive.

A piece of my heart will always be part of marine drive.

Day 10. An evening stroll

My eyes are shutting but I want to post something. I am going to be a fraud and pull out a draft which has been written when the elf was three months old – a draft 2.5 years old.

The strange part is while going over my draft I remember this evening. Nothing unusual, it good be any evening in my building yet these moments stayed with me. I don’t remember though why I didn’t publish it

So here goes… An evening stroll through the eyes of the nut.

Lovely breeze – heralding the rains perhaps

-> A father plays catch catch with a group of the girls. As they chase the “uncle” around the compound, their laughter pure joy. The littler ones running helter skelter pretending to be very “useful” in the cause of chasing the uncle

-> one of the young girls has a mobile around her neck

-> A doggy sits with his head out of the window waiting for his turn to come down for a walk. When he does, he sniffs all in his path, wagging his tail and showing his puppy eyes so that all who pass him smile

-> The new mothers pushing strollers acknowledge each other with smiles, often stopping to check on the age, name and sex of the baby. Each seems to walk away thinking – my baby cutest.

-> The grandmothers – putting out plastic chairs, enjoying the breeze while they talk. Snippets of their discussion – “Hamare samay mein” and of course the unabashed stares as they assess everyone who passes them

-) The younger ladies huddle together while their kids play around and then break into pairs of 2-3 (special friends and all) and start their “health walk” health walk – the fast walk with the intention of keeping fit

-> An Elderly couple matches step for step while another couple watch the world go byv

-> A cute little baby watches everything around him, a little puzzled at this breeze thing hitting him and then falls asleep – Yes Yes that one is all mine

And the sun sets – day 9

As the sun sets on the first full week of the year

,

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I reflect on it

Work wise – a very tiring week. I am exhausted, tired …

But world events r playing on my mind. It seems wrong to say something light hearted at such a time.

I feel horrible about the world we are leaving to our children. A world full of fear.

A world where it seems common place to kill to prove the supremacy of your faith.

A world where some will be maligned for their faith coz someone else acted like an idiot.

Or maybe this is the turning point where we as humans will stand by each other and say I will ride with you. Or stand up and say my religion doesn’t preach killing. Maybe we will stand up and say my religion tells me to accept that people have different faiths and that’s ok.

Maybe we will learn to just respect another life.

One day maybe the sky won’t look so ominous and there will be rainbows…we owe it to our innocent children .

Let’ keep our fingers crossed. Tomorrow Mumbai is on high alert for terror.

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What have we come to? Day 8

It’s scary right…

That you could be sitting in a cafe

That you could be at work

That your child could be at school

That you could be sitting at a restaurant or shopping or awaiting a train

And someone can just walk around

… And start shooting

We always knew death was inevitable. But early death now does not seems like a one in a million scenario.

My mind runs through the various places my family and dear ones are at – schools, hospitals, offices, malls. I mentally try to convince myself why these are places that won’t be attacked. I wonder how to react or behave if I am caught in this scenario,

I give up – I don’t have an answer.