Thursday, September 29, 2011

I am 50 posts old

Yeah !! I've successfully completed my 50th post yesterday. Eventhough it wasn't impressively fast, I am happy about the way my blog has shaped during these days. To get into my 50th post it took me more than 3 years. Those 3 years are precious years of my life. I've grown from a newly married girl to a young mother. This being the 51st post I thought of writing about a person who changed my life. Yes. I am going to talk about my kid and I am so happy about that. I go with what every mother says, motherhood is such a good feeling and every woman has to go through it. I am so blessed to have such a cute girl as a daughter and I thank god for that. I pray and wish for the best of everything that she will get. I can go on and on about how happy I am about my baby. I just wish that I stay the same all the time till I live.

Being a mother gave me so many things. It just added that motherly instinct in me. Having a baby changed many things in my life, precisely my perception on everything. First and the foremost is the thought that my mother, my husband's mother and every other mother in this whole world had to go through things which I've been through just makes me respect every woman I see. Coming to the rest of the people who came to life through those mothers, and the thought that those mother's love on their children is just same as the way I have it on my baby makes me love them too and forgive them if they do make any mistakes. So in a way, I am saying that I love everyone. Isn't that crazy !

Anyways, after reading that don't you ever think that I can be taken for a ride. No No No !! I have set my limitations and I have my lines drawn. So there is no way that anyone can take me for granted. Being a mother gave that confidence to me. You see, eventhough we think a baby can be so nice, cute and pleasant and all other good things that we can think of, we have to accept that they come with diapers, lotions, creams, formula, pumping, washing clothes and loads and loads of other things. And this is just for the baby. Huh ! I am done with that since mine is a toddler now. Talking about toddler adds another list. Finger foods, table foods, this food, that food, juices.. oh ! all that for just those 2 bites. Running around, playschool, "i-will-walk-on-my-own" attitude, climbing stairs, getting down.. All I can say is mothers do get in shape during this time. I don't even have to say about the toddler tantrums. Every mother had seen it and will see it. So there comes a whole lot of situation where a mother can be taken for a ride by the child. And all these can be managed only if a mother is strong and knows what has to be done at which moment. My girl had sure taught me that !

I've been living a life of a dual personality. Being a likable one and a stern one. And kids do get that !  That just amazes me on how fast they get to know things. And how well they shape themself to a situation. Kids are just like a sponge. They just take everything to their mind and learn fast. And most importantly they teach the adults in some way or other. So every day teaches me something new which may or may not be meaningful but it sure does makes a difference. The learning process is definitely on for me and I am happy that my girl makes me wiser every day. Hence this post is for my sweet little cutie pie of mine. Thank you for doing so much to me ! And you be so always !!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Driven me crazy

One thing that has been constanlty bothering me for some time is the fact that I have to learn to drive a car to get a life of my own. You see.. I'll tell you a situation I might go through.. I know I think a lot.. but still if this happens ?!?! So here it goes... If my husband is going out of state leaving me and my girl at home, of course that is a rare possibility since all the time we'll be tucked in.. anyways, if he goes out of state or somewhere where it is really not possible to reach home in the next half hour, and then if the milk in my refrigerator has gone bad and if I had to give that extra sippy cup with milk to divert my attention-seeking toddler or if I really want to have that soothing cup of tea for myself, I have to go to that 1.5 miles far from our place convenient store and get it. With no driving license its not possible at all. Now you get my point right :) Hence started my journey of getting a license. Oh Boy! What a roller coaster ride that was !!

People, don't think I am a complete illiterate in driving a car. I do have a driving license from India. I got that by driving an old Maruti 800 for almost 15- 30 minutes for 15 days. On the 16th day, well not exactly , I got the license. So I do have some experience. With that and a break of 3 years from getting an Indian license and with the aim of getting an US license I started to bother my trustful husband. First thing, before even getting into the driver seat I had to clear a written test. I thought that should be a breeze for me. Exams are not a bother since I've seen exams for almost 20 years of my life. Eventhough this is not a self advertisement I have to say that I can write sheets and sheets of answers till the last minute even after knowing that I am done almost 15 minutes ago is one of my humble talent :) So with that thought I started reading the manual and came to know that its gonna be multiple choice questions. Alright !! So I gotto understand it. I consoled myself and started again. With my understanding process and with the help of so many cheat sheets online I cleared the written test and thought that getting into the driver's seat wouldn't be that tough. How silly I was !!

The first 2 or 3 times I drove the car in my hubby's office parking area wasn't a pleasant experience for any of us and without further torture I opted to learn it from a driving institute. So one fine day we travelled to downtown exclusively for attending the class. The class was kind-of easy for me. I was in between the no-idea-to-drive and i-know-to-drive types. I hope the instructor has not seen much of such types and was impressed with my "in-between" skills. On top of it he added saying that I have a good chance in clearing the driving test. That was enough for me to opt out from taking yet another class. I said the same to my husband and started to practise on my own with my husband on the passenger seat having his one hand sticking out to hold the steering wheel. If you picturise it along with my not-so-happy face for the fact that he is doing so might entertain you for some time. Anyways, before the test day we got all the information from so many kind friends of ours and had known the routes by which the instructor will make me drive and about all the questions he might ask and every other info that they can remember. Exactly the day before the test I just wanted to prepare myself very well. So we went for a test drive :) My hubby showed me the route the first time and then when we returned back I drove it. Oh boy !! that was one hell of an experience. I never ever thought I could be this much discouraged for changing a lane without signalling for it. Once I've done that, my husband pointed it to me and said if some other car had come that way we might have got hit. That was it !! I just got so scared.. so very scared that I can't talk anything else but just cry cry and cry.

So finally on the day of my scheduled test we went to the counter and informed that we have come for the driving test and my husband was constantly pushing the positive thoughts to get in my mind when all I had in my mind was this negative feeling of what a blunder I've done yesterday. And then came the instructor who is gonna do my test. He asked me to go to the car and wait for him. We went and  I was all ready. All I thought at that moment was never ever do anything silly for which I had to suffer for the rest of my life. Somehow all my fear had gone and was confident enough that I am not gonna make any mistakes. I just prayed. The test went really well and I've cleared the test. Me and my husband were very happy. And I promised myself that I will pay absolute attention not just for me and my family but also for any other lovely stranger who will come on my way :) Drive safe ! 

Byeeeeee !

Friday, September 16, 2011

What We Got & What We Lost

NRI community is getting huge day by day. And people do get a lot and lose a lot with this status. It just made me to write on this topic because obviously I am a NRI and  I did get a lot and also lose a lot out of it. So why not share about it is what I thought.

Now before talking about it I just wanted to put forward how people behave with us. I categorize them into many types. One being, people who consider NRIs as the Alaipaydhey US maapillai types and sees us like Aravind Sami coming to see Roja at the kookgraamam. Two being, those who consider NRIs as people who have money growing trees at their backyard. Three being, those who can find all the possible faults in life to put on the NRI and make them feel bad for taking the decision to be a NRI. And then those who treat NRIs as they treat everybody else. I don't want to get into what their actual intentions are. Because I myself am confused sometimes to actually tie it up with what they think and how they behave. So thats a whole different story. Lets just get back to what we get and what we lose.

Let me first start it with a positive node. Yeah Yeah !! Its true that we get a lot by being a NRI. Most importantly the financial upliftment of not just the NRI's family but also the closely tied relatives of the NRI. In someway or the other one can see an impact. Apart from that the family will get used to the comfort living that is present in many western countries but not in India. Equal participation by all the members in the family which is 75% absent in India according to my opinion. Men & women both work and they do it both at office and at home. Now considering the stay at home moms, even though they stay at home, guys do help them which is absolutely unacceptable in the eyes of the perusugal in India. Well, not in all household, but surely in most of the desi houses. Vacation time, birthday parties, family get togethers, temple visits, window shopping including trying out different clothes without buying it, coffee shops, long drive during fall season, next door old lady, kids with nuni naaku english, so on and so forth are just amazingly fun. There is a saying that there should be a little distance between any two families eventhough they seem to be head over heals close among each other. That sure works out in our case. Family visits in tourist visa is the most enjoyed days of the year. Aha, what all we get but there is a price for everything.

First thing first, Money. Yes, we do earn more. But people do understand this clearly. We do spend a lot too. The curry leaves are given for free in India when you buy groceries. But we buy it for Rs.45 - Rs.90 here. And the proportion would not even be half of what you get. So I guess, you get what I mean. And then I can go on with my grocery bills if someone has any doubt about it. Don't even start with the other monthly bills. So its not that we earn, bank it and live a very peaceful life. If so everyone who came out of India will go back to India with that kind of money and take retirement and live a happy life. I've known people who struggle to cover their monthly expenses. Next is the financial help needed by friends and relatives. I am not pointing everyone but there is this attitude that we always have a stash of money left in our bank and when people ask we should just openly throw it away to them. That is not true. Just like any middle/higher middle class family in India, we depend on our monthly earnings and lending it as a help needs some reasonable thinking. Am I asking too much here ?!?!

Coming to the next point eventhough we enjoy a lot here, we do lose so many cute and nice happenings in India. Marriages most importantly, whether it is of a friend or of a cousin. Its just so heart breaking to just see them in the photos and not physically present there with all the kith and the kins. Festivals like Diwali, pongal are just another day here. Eventhough we follow it the same way as we do it in India, I have to accept to the fact that its not just the same feeling that we get there. Shopping is a breeze here. Go to a shop, look for things, buy it and go on to the next shop. Most of the shops will be air conditioned and the customer service is just so good. But somehow my heart goes for that Ranganathan Street to which I can go by that ever crowded train and somehow manage myself to jump out of it in the station and walk into the stairs and look at the even more crowded street from the bridge and merge myself into that most happening place in Chennai. Kids do lose a lot. Those short stories from thatha and paati. If mom and dad both works, they start to go to a school/daycare even before completing a year in their life. Non stop talkings of thatha paati, uncles & aunts , cousins & neighbours that goes to their ears are totally missing here. If the kid has  siblings, thats a huge backup.

People, its not that we are on the top always. We do have our own bumps here and there and we do go through it just like any other person. We have our highs and we have our lows. Just like everyone else. And I don't think its fair to treat us like Chitti robos, and I mean both the good and the bad, since both of them got that special treatments from everyone. Individuals like next door boy and the next street girl do get out of their country. So during their frequent visits or a not so frequent visits, do treat them the same way :)

Okay !! Byyeeeeeee !!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Appreciations are nice !!

How do you feel when you are appreciated? There won't be one soul in this world who would say that they are not happy for being appreciated. It is such a good thing. It instantly brings a smile in the face and gives relief with so much of ease. But how many of you really do it? There is no extra effort a person put in the appreciation except the fact that he/she is appreciating. And just that alone will put you in the good side and not just that, you gotta tell me frankly, won't you feel contented when you sincerely appreciate someone. Things like that are always good and don't just put too many thoughts on such things !! Feel appreciated and give appreciation when you see something that deserves it !! Now put a smile on someone you know !!

Have a nice Labour day weekend !!