Reunions

It has been a while since I posted anything here ( well what is new about that right?)
It has been two decades since I graduated from high school. This buzz of 20 years started a while back. Discussions about when to meet, where and all that started doing the rounds. Facebook pages created; school mates reminiscing. There were those who came out of hibernation. Some still are in their caves ( don’t even know where they are!)
Everything was fine as long as it was online. When it came to the actual event which happened in Chennai yesterday, I was apprehensive.
Reunions also are about what has happened since graduation; what you are up to ( how you look too!). Me the libra was quite ambivalent. I must say I have been in touch with quite a number of my school mates. So, they pushed me to make the decision.
D-day I was there in school. It felt good. Fifty odd of us turned up with some actually coming from out of town. It was just overwhelming to see all. Yes, didn’t recognise some faces but it turned out to be one fun day.
As a friend said, there were no pretences. It was genuine pleasure to see all, share laughs, pull each other’s legs. The guys who organised this chapter of the reunion did an amazing job!
I can truly say that I will look forward to the 25th year reunion. 🙂 If by any chance fate takes me to the US venue of the 20th year reunion in July, I won’t shy away!!
Friends from school know you. They are not judgmental of what life had dealt to you growing up! It does not matter what you wear, how you look, what you do. Of course we did exchange notes about what we were up to but it was no big deal!! Thanks to those who did make me land there!
Now it feels nice to be reunited to my blog space writing a happy post! 🙂

Is it just me?

Is it just me? I am told that I think too much, over-think and what not! I am just worried about making more mistakes and messing things up for me. More importantly, I do not want to mess things up for A.

I am facing a crucial decision. Do I leave A here with my parents to pursue my so-called career? Do I change things yet again, take him along (struggle with the nightmare of school admissions in India, after school care with me working late almost every day)? Do I not take this up, quit & find something else to do (have nothing right now with not many prospects for a person like me)? Is my so-called career that important?

I may be mad. Questions bog my mind down. I really am tired of trying & failing over and over again. I am scared! This is a time I wish I did not have A in my life so it would not make a difference even if I failed.

On a different note…..What is it with some people?! They behave a certain way. If you do the same to them, they are all how can you? What is wrong with you etc..?! I am just tired of social interactions even. People seem to want to interact just if they want to. I am tired of people who I now feel are so superficial, artificial!! I find way too many people treat others as “use & throw”. Any kind of relationship seems to come with an expiry date! It is scary to even think of becoming someone’s friend. One wonders when will one become unnecessary…. ready to be thrown away! May be I am just tired of being the one who tries to keep it going – pinging/mailing/calling. At a point, I do feel like am I that desperate? Why can I not just not bother and only answer if the other contacts me?! Everyone does seem OK with this on & off kind of behaviour at all levels of relationships! I am not!!!

I guess it is just me!! I don’t know when this will end? My never ending questions & doubts….. probably when I end?! May be people like me should be extinct?!?

 

Inclusion & Diversity….say what?!

Another office blog post being re-blogged. Written this morning September 20, 2013

Are we really living in an inclusive society? Are we open to being inclusive? How many of us really accept diversity?

India prides in “unity in diversity”. One who reads that would just say “yeah right!!” looking at the news in the media (or the way politicians behave…let’s leave that aside though). The United States prides on being the melting pot. One would definitely wonder about this after reading about the racist tweets on a brown skin winning Ms.America. These are just two of the examples. Is Apartheid really over? Are we all really that open?

I caught the local radio show this morning while driving (yes, but this is not another post on driving 🙂 ). There was this differently abled person who heads an organisation here in Chennai speaking about what she thinks is inclusion. Definitely food for thought. She said simply that they need to be part of the normal society – not be treated special, they too have the same emotions like any body else. Jokingly added not all “special” people are goody two shoes & there are those who just are not. She said people have to be sensitive not cautious or condescending.

Talking of inclusion, I do distinctly remember a conversation among a few friends. Two among us were expecting our first child. I was yet to find out the sex of the baby while the other knew she was having a boy. The guys were talking about living in the current society. We were in the USA then. Their statement “We don’t care who my son brings home – white, brown, yellow, black…whatever but he must bring home a girl!”. I was left quite flabbergasted. These were supposedly educated people. I asked them what if he did bring home a guy? Would you ostracise him? Will you love him any less as your son? They did not answer. May be they just were afraid to face my wrath & the debate that would ensue if they said what they were actually thinking.

I honestly don’t know how I can change our society – to make it more open, truly inclusive. I do promise to not be prejudiced. I guess in this way I must say we must be inclusive of people who are closed in their thoughts too – right?! 🙂

This is one random flow of thoughts on the topic- well that is sometimes (ok most of the times) that my brain works.

Anyways, the morning talk show was to promote the Ability Fest organised by the Ability Foundation.

Ability_Fest_2013_poster_sep2013

Those in Chennai can catch this film festival which screens movies next week (September 23-26) from around the world that depict the differently-abled in a sensitive manner. It includes movies like the French Intouchables, Tamil Haridas (with audio description for blind people), Iranian movies and more….

The foundation hopes to help increase sensitivity and make people understand true inclusion through such festivals.  I have been blessed to have met some of the Ability Clan. (They have their visiting cards with one side in Braille – said it is very simple & not expensive either….there is inclusion for you!). They do have workshops to see how well your office/home is diabled friendly (was surprised on how even the display board colouring can make a huge difference to people who are partially blind.)

Hope we can join together and truly build an inclusive society (not just for the differently abled/ LGBT but truly be cross-cultural…. sounds too utopian?! )

Driving in the Rain

This is a post I wrote in my office blog on September 11, 2013. Reposting it here….Thinking there will be some reposts happening every time I write something there 😉

Having been up almost all night listening to the rains lashing, thunder roaring & watching the flashes of lightening; I was dreading that I was in for a really bad drive to work. As expected, the schools were declared closed. Less traffic on the road came to mind. Knowing Chennai, I expected the roads to be water-logged, people driving badly – honking & yelling!

Drove out of my street, so far so good…no hold-ups. Smooth flowing. Listening to the radio where traffic updates were being given, was thinking “Hey! good thing am not on those roads where people had been stuck for an hour or more…I am moving!”. At the back of my mind I kept telling myself, that I am saying it too soon. Usually clogged up roads were ahead.

FYI, I drive on one of the arterial roads which leads to a highway-bypass, about 30 kms one way to work. I pass through quite a few bottle-necks which test one’s patience & driving skills!!

As I kept going forward, I noticed the traffic was well-behaved. In fact I was thinking if something was wrong as I didn’t hear much honking!! Am I sleep-driving? Dreaming? People were signalling, giving each other way! In general, I noticed the drivers/riders were obeying rules!!! Of course there are always exceptions, but there were way too few of these today!

I reached work and took less than the usual hour I take. There are times (on clear sunny days which are the norm here) where I have been stuck & taken close to two hours! What was different today?! I expected it to be the worst case scenario. Roads being flooded and they were in most places. There are more potholes than roads. People were cautious. They were more patient?! I didn’t see as much road rage as there usually nor people cutting in, driving like they owned the roads.

This really got me ruminating. Same road, I believe same people (most were heading to work & they take the same road everyday?!? Logical?! 🙂 ), bad weather & road conditions. Yet, traffic flowed, the traffic cops (bless them! standing in the rain) managed fine at one of the busiest signals. I have decided it was my expecting the worst. So, even a slight improvement made me look at things in a positive light. Also, having expected the worst, I had decided not to lose my patience which I believe helped. I was also quite prepared -mentally & had checked the car (wipers/lights).

The preparation, other people co-operating (don’t think they knew they were 😉 ) and some wonderful weather with music in the background certainly made it a pleasant drive overcoming the waterlogged roads with potholes (some say potholes with roads in between).

Has left me wishing there were more such days!!

PS: I really do love the rains!

I crave normalcy

This morning my WordPress App pinged me to say there is a new post… Normal is boring said the title. I never miss reading a post on Saying it Aloud  whether I comment or not 🙂

Now having read the post, and considering what is happening in life now, I crave for what people say is normal. I wish I had followed the “normal” path. I wish I have not been hatke (hindi).

I wish I just was not fighting each day to prove. I don’t even know now what I want to prove to whom! To prove to me that life is worth living?!?

The last few days/weeks have been making me think I should go back and probably start somewhere in high school to change the route I had taken…..gone the way most of my peers went taking up either engineering or medicine. Fine I didn’t then, may be I must have stuck to my major & went on to do my post graduation. – Pointless thoughts I know!!!

I guess in all, I wish I had never married especially the way I did & stuck to my career path then. Yes, I would not have had A!!! May be he is better off without me who right now is feeling like I have failed in every single thing and I am tired, exhausted.

I wish for a normal life. A boring life –  so be it. I wish to get off the roller coaster. I feel sick of it. I do not want to be an outlier.

I know that even as I pen all this down, I am also thinking more off the ordinary for the problems I am having in life right now. Wondering what is in store and throwing my hands up saying I cannot take anything any more!

Hope A has a normal life at least as he grows up. Methinks he has enough of not being normal!!

Time. Precious?

A is going for his summer coaching. He has chosen cricket. I know it is just spring time as per the calendar :). These coaching classes started yesterday and go on till mid-April. Starts at 5:30am IST.

Yesterday I saw parents bringing their kids in even a little after 6!!!! I thought maybe because it was the first day people were taking it easy. It continues today. I remember it was the case last year too.

This has got me thinking. I have been embarrassed many times when it has been pointed out that punctuality is not a part of the Indian psyche. I have even argued that it cannot be generalised. That said, in all honesty, we Indians are lackadaisical when it comes to keeping time. It is ok to make someone wait. I think I have written about how wedding receptions never start on time & people actually were surprised about my ignorance of this fact!! The invitation says 7PM means it will probably start at 8PM if we are lucky!!
It is weird that the same set of people cannot wait a few seconds at the traffic signal. People honk, start moving even before the light turns green. The don’t stop when the light turns red. All because if they stop, they will waste those precious minutes!!!! (Guess traffic etiquette is a whole different blog post).
So when and how will our kids learn the virtue of punctuality? Do I say the kids had not woken up to get here on time or do I say the parents didn’t enforce the same? I can understand if it is a stray one or 2 kids coming in late (something must have held things up! ) I find it is a whole bunch of kids!!!
Since parents are not allowed to watch the kids at the camp, I do not know if the teachers there reiterate the importance if being on time. I sure hope they do.
Having been brought up with this fact drilled into my head; I find it hard to accept the nonchalance in general. To my grand dad or mother, 5:30 is that on dot. Be early but never late. Respect the other person’s time. Make the effort. These are what had been told to me.
In the case of this camp, the kids have been enrolled because they want to ( or the parents want them to 🙂 ). Either way , shouldn’t the effort be taken to just show up on time?!?!
I am sure there still will be kids coming in late day after day till the end of the camp. Just wish they show some commitment in getting to the school on time!! Teach them young we are told!

Freedom!

I have written about how compulsive I am when it comes to phone calls or messages. I don’t ignore any of them. I would rather pick up & give a piece of my mind than let the call go. So one can imagine how much a part of my life my dear mobile phone has become.

It has made me feel less lonely (theoretically someone is just a phone call away). I think I have ranted enough of how people don’t have the etiquette to return calls/messages or just pick up the phone and call. So will spare my readers that….

I resisted adding an internet package to my phone saying I don’t want to get addicted to being online all the time. Well, I buckled and did that too! I jumped from one fruit to another and back. I love my gadgets (another known fact now to most of those friends who still visit this space).

So, why do I feel free? I was not talking about me being single now… 😉 Yes, my phone broke down. I have an iPhone5 now. It just keeps searching for my mobile network. Everything else works fine. I know am going to hear look you spent so much on a phone that just breaks down and all that crap (excuse my language…). No…I wish I would get freedom from that kind of attitude but hey everyone is entitled to an opinion!! 😀

I felt I would miss my phone like crazy! I did for say an hour. I went for offense is the best form of defense & before anyone could ask, I ended up saying oh my phone is not working saga!! In reality though, I just have this sense of how do I put it? relief?!

I hardly get one or two calls a day. I keep in touch with a couple of friends on whatsapp. Otherwise, I nowadays just seem to use the phone to check facebook, tweet or play games (getting addicted to temple run2). So, it seemed fine that I was not accessible. Don’t think anyone even would have noticed!! LOL!!

Nah, not giving up on my phone entirely. Hope it gets fixed. Fingers crossed but then I realised I am not addicted to it either. I can live without my phone and I am surviving. It really is no big deal. I can feel free…nothing to carry, no need to wonder if there is enough charge, spam texts not bothering me.

On my usual self analytic note, I guess once I accept that I have to live my life alone; it really might end up with me feeling free?! I probably will survive my ending up dead alone!! wow!! that is one oxymoron!! 🙂 I should just start telling myself it is that simple stupid!!

PS: For the very few (1 or 2) if you do read this space, I will be back to troubling you once my phone is set right!! No freedom for you!!

Who’s responsible?!

I am only responsible for what I say, not for what you understand

I read this somewhere, it struck a chord & I tweeted it immediately.

I am getting tired of explaining what I said. I find that most of the time, we will not change our perspective of what we heard. I am guilty of this too hence use “we”.

Do we complicate things unnecessarily? Think too much into anything said/ heard?!

I used to be one of those who took the wysiwyg in this case wyhiwyg (hear) attitude. Not delve too deep, this is because I say what I think. I don’t tuck in cryptic messages. So I am quite dense when it comes to understanding such messages. Guess am not the typical woman wherein when she says no it is a maybe?!? 🙂

Over time I realise others are not the same. I need to decipher the actual message!

Why not make things simple? Just say what you mean. Saves a lot of time & effort for everyone involved!! This will also save quite a few relationships!!!

Wondering now who is responsible?! The one who says something or one who understands something else?!?

Maybe it is just me….

Well, it has been so long since I even logged into WordPress!! Was taken aback by all the interface changes!! That is how long!!! 🙂

It was nice to see an award when I did log in!!! Been 5 years since I registered it seems!! Wow!! Just a few days back I thought time flies – A turned 8. I think it again today – Didn’t realise it has been 5 years since I registered here!!

Life has not changed much but it has too!! I start afresh yet again in a way tomorrow. Nervous about this yet tired of new beginnings. I just wish I had no more… I am at a weird place now. I want change but I don’t want it either. I feel lonely yet think am too set in my own ways that I can’t think of adapting to being with someone either….

A has been the one strength. I have poured out my anger & frustration to him yet he still manages to give me such a welcoming smile when he sees me. Never ceases to please me. Ever ready to give me a hug. As much as I have resented being the only one responsible for him, I love him to bits.

I truly wish my life was less complicated. Wish I could just enjoy the simple things in life. Days I want to see how A has grown up & what he will become. Days I just don’t want to wake up at all.

I have made some new friends yet, have started to think they are not going to be around either. It is not them…I think it is me! As a friend told me, I am not ready to trust anyone any more. Been left stranded way too many times.

Times I just don’t know what I want. One thing though…no more getting hurt & being used.If it means I don’t trust people or be called rude – so be it. I am tired of feeling lost, sad & many times breaking down into tears, feeling defeated. I may not laugh or smile but I do not want to feel crushed.

I do not think time heals! I don’t even think it makes me feel numb over time…may be it is just me!??!

Just don’t fit in!

This is what I have been feeling for quite a while now! Working in a company where the average age of the employees is around 25, I am old there! I did write that I found a few friends; then why do I feel like I don’t fit in….not there not anywhere.

I have come to realise why there are support groups with similar people coming together! I didn’t before this. Now I am a single mother living with her parents. My friends are single either living on their own or with their parents. So, there are times they don’t get it that I have a kid back home with my parents who I don’t want to act as parents to my son! I really can’t hamper their plans just because I have a kid, or make them accomodate the kiddo! My other friends who do have kids, well,  that is another story! They are married and have a proper standard family. I can’t really hinder them either. I do feel I am part of neither group!

At work, I am older in the company than what I was when I joined but still not old enough to be tenured! So, I don’t quite fit in there either. As much as I dread being alone, it appears to be my only option these days. I would rather not trouble my friends and make them change their plans or conversations for me!

These aren’t the only reasons that make me feel like I don’t fit in. There are quite a few more….one more; some friends of mine are so out of the box thinking (I don’t have that thinking but admire them for it!) or they are so boxed in (which also I admire as I can’t do that either!)

Seriously contemplating to shut myself out from everything & everything, keep to myself rather than feel uncomfortably about not fitting in anywhere! Saves me the pain & agony – that is for sure!