Tag Archives: #help

Amma’s giving away and minimalism

It is a big joke back home that if you leave anything around for longer than an hour, my mom would either have cleaned and spruced it up or just given it off or sometimes discarded it.

Often have me and my daughter left a few pieces of clothing at her home, thinking it would be useful in the next summer visit or something and find to our shock that it is not there. Ask my mother and she would shrug her shoulders and say, ‘that lady you know has a kid of your age, so I gave it to her’. Good, I manage to muster while my daughter fumes in silence.

But her ability to get rid of unwanted items from home, makes our living space lighter and breezier as if the air can enter into small nooks and spaces and breathe.

Sometime in 2020 when I moved into my fifth room in a period of 10 years, I had managed to achieve some of that. What helped was my ex-husband’s thoughtfulness in visiting and carrying off all his hoarded stuff including his car. When we moved into our new home, we were surprised to feel it so much more lighter, happier and breezier that we decided to play some music and dance round to fill up the spaces.

So, except for my wardrobe which is somewhat bulging and the book shelf, there is really nothing much around in the house. it looks bare and is bare except for a few pieces of furniture, which I have a good mind to get rid off soon.

Saturdays are generally said to be a good day to move out unessential items, but freeing the mind space of unwanted thought loops was another simple, yet extremely useful technique I picked up from Being Supernatural, by Dr. Joe Dispenza that has lightened my living and my being.

We often hear of the need to ‘watch our thoughts’, yes, but how, was a question that I asked and found an answer to recently. So, here it is:

*Write down your thoughts over a day’s time

*Read them out to yourself

*Find out how far in the past these thoughts are rooted in

*Ask what have they done to you

*Ask are they of any value

*Ask is there something you want to do with any of those

*If the answer is no, call them out

*Next time the thought enters your mind, ‘oh poor me, ‘it’s always me’, ‘why’?

*Be rational and ask the thought to be changed.

*Primarily ask yourself, is this relevant now?, is that really the truth or are you just being dramatic?, I mean, you are still alive and breathing….

*Will you be lighter if you instead listen to a song?, yes of course, then go on and do just that. The thought has already disappeared and you are happier, lighter and breezier….

Of gratitude

To go back to studying when you are a full blown adult is not an easy choice. Yes, you take pride in having done justice to your parenting responsibilities, but you already are in that loop of EMIs and various other billing activities which tie you down, a caesura at this point is akin to harakiri, or so you think, or fear.

Then comes a mother’s heart calling out to you and saying, ‘ fear not child, do what you want for once, just do it’, and she laughs away all the fears saying ,’what are we here for?’

And a father who chips in,’ it’s not impossible, we are there for you.’

It is terrifying to think of the instability it brings, the staying away from work, even for a short time, the insecurities for someone who has prided on financial independence, yet, a promise looms and a hope and a cause calls, the call is persistent, deep, insistent, relentless and you cannot look away.

Then comes a message, a talk and an assurance, from someone I taught a good 2 decades ago, ‘I want to help you in your studies, just let me know’, it is just a word of promise but it lifts the spirits immediately, as if the universe answered a call, and calmed a fear, and smiled away a tear.

Years ago, I quit school teaching to move to the corporate, in need of a gainful employment, to pay the bills of course, again I remember how one of students asked, ‘What made you quit teaching? You would not have done that. You see, I am a corporate lawyer now. I can help you. Let me know what you need’. The words at that time brought tears to my eyes. I had expected such support from those in my immediate vicinity but there it came from a student again, who had just started his career.

I think of how the universe is assuaging my fears and holding out a hand, egging me on to a journey, whose turns I am not yet able to see.

Yet, it is true that there have been new opportunities and meeting with people who value my abilities in a slow, subtle manner that seems to be changing my universe in some ways, perhaps, a new horizon shines, a new friend or two waits, a new journey begins…

For the Ullysses in me, who wants to go looking after a sinking star, what could be better?

I now feel it won’t be difficult to find a school for Sunil to study, a place to work and learn for Chanamma, a place for me to grow as a writer and a student and to contribute to a cause so close to my heart…. perhaps that is what it is…..a place from where I can reach out and say to those I love and those who love me, here I am for you always…. I have everything to help you…ha, life… what learnings, what lessons!!!

Gratitude is all that I can think of…..

Meenu, the meemi -II, Enter Nandu

Meanwhile, in an apartment next to the lake, little Nandu logged into work at 8 am. To his friends, who asked him where he went everyday, he said proudly, ‘I go to work with mom’.

Radha smiled indulgently at her son, he was her first love, her worst enemy and also her best friend. In the years after her husband walked off, Radha had panicked initially but soon, set out to find herself a job. She found out a recruitment agency for cleaners and immediately joined. There was no time to waste. The boy was her lifeline. His future was her dream and her responsibility. Her mom did not press her to return to the village, with farm labour being harsh and low paid, it was better that she stayed in the city.

That decided it. Nandu faintly remembered his father and his parents’ arguments. Anyways, he liked Ramu uncle, he seemed to be a kind soul, better. It was difficult for him to love those who were harsh to his mom. With her big bindi, petit figure and curly hair, his mom was a beauty, he thought. He hugged her tight and dug his nose into her waist to inhale the faint santoor soap fragrance. ‘Amma’, he said simply.

Ramu had a small grocery shop and never hesitated to lend Radha and her son, the essentials, even when they did not have money. ‘I know, it is difficult, pay me back, when you get a job’. Radha said, ‘Thank you so much’. Ramu always gave Nandu a small toffee or two with a quiet smile on his face.

When his mom went from one apartment to the next with Deepa aunty to collect garbage, Nandu tagged along. He sat on the stairs and played with his toys. The car that went, vroom, vroom and then the bike, both were gifts from some aunt in the apartment. He liked it here.

When he first came, he saw many kids and had thought that he could play with them. But it did not happen. And Nandu realised why, when he was invited for a birthday party and was made to sit on floor. There after, he never tried to talk to kids out there. His friends were in the colony and that was enough.

Radha told her son ‘We are coming to work here. Don’t do any mischief. Don’t try to talk to everyone. If you study well, you can also live like them when you grow up. ‘ ‘Audhu, amma’, Nandu said . Life had given him more wisdom than what his age allowed.

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Nandu loved playing with his blue ball