Conversations on Death

Every Indian is helping CBI solve the Sushant Singh Rajput death mystery. News channels are all over it. Covid has taken a back seat as the novelty of the virus and the deaths associated with it has worn off. I guess human beings have always loved solving mysteries which explains the innumerable tv shows and films on murders, crimes, horrors, thrillers and what not. In fact I struggle to find a few good movie for N and myself to watch. Not the childish ones but not yet adult shows. ( Recommendations always welcome!)

Scrolling through corona updates on Twitter, it did shock me to read about Sushant Singh! Not that I’m interested in how he died but the death itself! I was neither a fan of him or his work, but our connection started from his first work, the tv show Pavitra Rishta. I was newly married, recently shifted to Bangalore and jobless playing with TV remote whole day. I accidentally started following the tv show from the start as the female lead was also named “Archana”! Though I discontinued it when the Saas Bahu drama strengthened, I kept following the fresh duo (or Best Jodi as they say) and their journey from being on screen lovers to a real couple. As like any other fan girl, I was thrilled to know Ankita and Sushant were dating in real life! I couldn’t follow much on their dance reality shows due to timing mismatch, but was disheartened to know that they broke up after so many years! Also, “Kai Po Che” was one of the rare movies we saw in theatres, as mostly it was an adaptation of Chetan Bhagat book (as part of the CB book phase) and also because of Sushant!Continue reading →

Ten thought Tuesday

Never knew there was a popular tag in blogging world to jot down random tidbits which I frequently do on this blog. After a very long time I wrote today the real “morning pages”. Writing in the balcony, breathing in fresh breezy cold air with chirping birds for company, feels like catching up with a long lost friend!

  1. If I reflect back to my initial blog posts, I realise I was too carefree to bother about the implications of what others will think. For me, blogs was a medium of sharing your thoughts and musings about things that you loved or about day to day activities but over the time I feel it became less personal and strategically written essays of money making business “content”.
  2. The corona effect maybe playing havoc on my mind as I am deeply immersed in distractive techniques like playing games on tablet! Specifically Cooking Diary and Farmville 2 Country escape! Earlier it was films, tv shows or web series which has now shifted to these iOS games! I wonder everyone would have similar guilty pleasures which they doesn’t share much in public. Or am I the only one to feel shy and awkward about it?
  3. That reminds me of the mindset due to our conditioning. As you search more on self help, you stumble across some words like ego healing, inner child nourishment, mindfulness etc. I end up nodding my head every time I read those articles. We all have been through a similar emotional journey, and yet not willing to change ourselves due to the hard work involved.
  4. Amidst the corona times as we had to travel back and forth, my balcony garden has gone for a toss. Not that I had much to begin with but when you have very less plants and they dry up, you are left with lots of pots and hard soil! Like a dried up desert within a city!
  5. The good thing about the travel was that I ended up reading few books on kindle as internet was slower in Kerala than a snail in the garden. Not that I saw a snail either but yes, we did saw chameleon and variety of birds of which I don’t know the name. Piggybacking on my habit, the kid too ended up reading on kindle a bit too much!
  6. Twitter has been my solace to rant about in these months. The only reason to tweet is that I have not personally known any of the people from the twitter world. The comfort of the unknown when it’s the most dangerous thing you would not let your child to do. Does it sound like a shady business? Okay let me try stop labelling myself!
  7. And the one habit that has been slipping from my hands often is the meditation practice. Heard and read lot much about it and even experienced a feel-good calmness feeling after doing it for few days too. Yet I still struggle to make it a daily practice. Neither the “power of habit” or any “atomic habits” will help me bring the change unless I make up my mind about it. Have you struggled with any habits?
  8. The overdose of fitness freaks doing gym, yoga and marathoners are making me go blind. I wonder is it my state of mind of rejection which is shutting out these inspirations or helping me identify and be aware of the bubble they are in. Isn’t excess of anything worrisome?
  9. The free time has made my ruminations much more deeper though without action. For example, is a purpose really needed to live a life? I have always struggled with that one. I am close to realising that it can be a mirage for a few people, which is also a possibility why some others end up chasing it. The strong willed trees on the roadside grow large enough to provide shade and fruits while some can walk along on the empty road without a destination too. Isn’t that possible?
  10. The one thing which is constant before and after corona is my cooking skills. The chore has never interested me and I still go nuts deciding what to make everyday. With all the extra help in the house (read as the other half) it still seems like one activity I detest. No escaping it though and have to bear it like the ramblings of the ageing friend mainly due to survival reasons.

Have you noticed how this blog came to a new life in these months? Changes in life clearly creates ripples everywhere, even the smallest crevices!

Invisible friend

3 am friend
Where art thou
You need to mend
Not the heart though

Mind is in dumps
Sleepy and lazy
They call us
Mental and hazy

Get up. Walk around
Make your mind
Is all they say round
So I never mind

The pill I take
In the game I fake

Longing is for the call
To speak up and talk
Judgment from all
Stopping from the walk

Poke me all you may
I may not budge
Continue, I’d say
Either way
It’s not a grudge!

Tweet and play
Is what I do
Time dwindles away
Reaching out today
Is all I could do!

Settlement contrast

Years of living outside Kerala in the metro cities being exposed to a different way of life, has now made me rethink my affinity towards the native home. The nature and the healthy food, with all round moderate climate, with people talking the same language as you, all looks tempting and all. The reality sinks in when we live here for weeks and months and not just for a vacation! Maybe my noticing abilities have increased over time owing to how much I miss the necessities.

The mindset of smaller town is akin to newer generation youngsters complaining about the generation gap with the older generation. Believing that doing laundry with bucketful of water and beating the clothes on stone is better than using a washing machine. Washing vessels is a chore to be done outside the kitchen by squatting near the well, thereby not messing the kitchen sink. Sleeping together with family means, to be subservient and adjusting enough to sleep on a rigid mattress, which maybe labelled as somewhere between a single and double bed. Some people having a superiority complex towards city life and apartment living in general, because there is no backyard or soil of our own.

There are some similarities too. The government offices require the same number of multiple visits and requests which can drain our patience. We still have to adjust with our existing constraints as change comes around rarely and we end up exclaiming, “here it’s like that only”!

These thoughts all started when I decided to accompany the other half to a nearby supermarket. I had thought of upgrading the broken kitchen grater and to introduce something called chopping board to the house. I ended up buying nothing. As grater was not favoured because of the unpolished looks and the latter didn’t made its appearance at all on the market racks. My humble attempt at latching in and adjusting with the changes around me failed yet again. And I resign myself to a virtual world till I muster enough the courage to shake things up again.

It’s quite disbelieving that, these circumstances and native living was favoured by ourselves at a younger age. Earlier, it was assumed that after earning enough for retirement, we would “settle” down back native with family and relatives. Now that our minds has broadened, I wonder whether we would choose that option for the future. I realise it maybe the conditioning and narrow mindedness of the childhood that made it all bearable. The modern mind welcomes a new way of life that can make the living easier and doesn’t mind spending extra on such appliances. And when you are open minded, you start looking for solutions to incorporate both traditional and modern requirements of our lifestyle.

The mind swings between the duality prospects of the future. The first option is to settle in such non city atmosphere with relatives and family nearby, missing out on the luxuries. The second option is to settle in a city, far from the madding crowd of ours, alone and isolated among a similar yet different crowd, with all the luxuries which can make daily life much easy. The decision making is hard. Which one do you choose!?

The Corona Year!

The corona pandemic has pulled us all down into a gloomy atmosphere but an unusual sudden death in the family has changed our life course forever. To drive across states amidst a lockdown with calling around for inter state passes and to be in quarantine while grieving was an event I still cannot believe we went through.

And now we cannot move back home as we are in containment zone, and next maybe triple lockdown, or institutional quarantine and such. The world is throwing around so much jargons for the future historians to learn.

Days go by. The end cannot be seen at the horizon. Yet time goes by like a like a ticking clock sending me warning signals regarding future I am yet to witness or regret about. I hopelessly moan without the tears, wondering at the pessimistic state I am in. Looking for a positive note to hold on and to get out of this messy mind without drowning.

It’s so easy for others to advice about the better days. Or to remind you of being grateful by comparing with the poor living under pitiful conditions. Or to keep saying “reach out”, “hold onto hope” etc. But to come out of a negative mindset is damn hard. Why? Because it’s hard to break our conditioning and to force ourself to accept the judgments which will be passed around, direct and indirect. Yes, you may get help not in the way you thought and not at all crafted to our desired perfection, and again people will repeat to be grateful for getting help as such, as there are many who lost their chances.

And when you think you are better, the weather changes again with dark clouds as in the times we are now. Wondering when the sun will come again, we engage ourselves so as to avoid the blues. But for how long? The “new normal” now includes not only pulling yourself up but also the loved ones, the elderly who fears the end of their life, and the children who are deserted in their safe homes.

When things go really dark, I cling unbelievingly to an old quote which says “The sun always rises even after a dark night.” The pessimistic in me always cringed about passing the dark hours fearing the extreme, but the hope to see the sunlight has always been helpful till now. Thus, being grateful to the universe as others remind me, I wait for the tide to pass, hoping to see you in bright sunlight once again….

Reflecting about 2019

Another birthday went by. Also another year is nearing its end. This year when I look back, unknown to me, the focus has been on love.

It started in January when I read the book, The Forty Rules Of Love by Elif Shalak. Every rule touched a nerve in me. It left me thinking about the principles and the ideals I follow. During the summer vacation, I went to live with parents for one month with their grand daughter. Every moment of their living reminded me of the changes in them and me, and in general the miniscule of life.

By the time I returned with a heavy heart, I had started onto the famous Harry Potter series (which I had set aside thinking they are kid’s books) which teaches various shades and hidden layers of love. With such an overflow of love, I turned loving more towards myself, indulging in art which I wanted to from long time. But the tide didn’t last longer.

At house, seeing the kid struggling with the enormous educational materials, it made me ponder on how they view the life and how it differs from our point of view. Recently in one of the tantrum fights, I caught myself from a higher perspective, realising how every human being is struggling with ego, starting with such young age. Every kid wants to believe themselves as right and holds onto their belief. It took me back to my age when I kept complaining how Amma never understands my point. I had to calm myself and also the kid, by pointing out that she is right but that doesn’t mean I am wrong. Now that I look back, I realise no kid ever points out to their parents that they are wrong, instead what frustrates the child is, the realisation that he/she is considered a kid and their feelings always being ignored. Again I could see the tussle of power between ego and love. Instead if love is to take over, the belief that the kid will learn on her own with time and experience, will help us to calm down and will enable us to give the kids a chance to live their way.

Recently I completed the book, Daring Greatly by Brene Brown, and I realised I could relate to it completely. Most examples in the book are so realistic and I could sense the shields and masks, which is talked about in the book as something which I wear in day to day life. But all these reading or the inputs I received impacted more on my mind than my actions. As much easy it is to read and understand these truths, it’s that hard to implement in real life. As my therapist says, acceptance is the key to the change. In other words acceptance itself is the change to bring about.

Maybe till the next birthday, the theme could be the acceptance and the long drive could be on the road to freeing my inner spirit…