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Showing posts with the label Living a Meaningful Life

The Indian American Mom

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  As an Indian American mom, I struggle to teach my daughter the right values, and my parenting has sometimes been questioned. But motherhood in America changed it all…so much so that I am surprised at the cosmic shift that can happen in life when a baby pops out of the womb. As if all the alcohol inside the body dried up, the hormones vaporized in thin air, and all the morality, values, and traditions of India have one door to knock on – MINE. Thanks to the population of the Indian community here, I have fodder for my eyes and ears, to reinforce how we must preserve the Indian-ness in us, in our children; otherwise ‘times are bad’ and ‘anything can happen, you see’. Phew! To read the article, click on The Indian American Mom Image courtesy-Pixabay

Feminism, Freedom, and We

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We all seek absolute freedom, free from the boundaries of society. We desire to exist without rules. But freedom is essentially built on intelligent self-restraint and discipline. For example, you can freely move on the road when you and others obey the traffic rules; only then can you enjoy a long drive to San Juan Capistrano. If this discipline is not followed, there will be no control over people and vehicles' movement, which will lead to confusion and chaos. Freedom, thus, loses its meaning and degenerates in the absence of adequate regulations and directions. We need rules to guide our behavior and not turn into impulsive pleasure-seeking maniacs working without control. That is a license, freedom unleashed, reckless freedom which does not do anyone any good. To read the story please click on Feminism, Freedom, and We. Image courtesy-Pixabay

Hoodwinked- When the mirror shatters

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The episode of heat strikes again, and I feel my blouse soak. Lately, heat has accompanied me  most of the places: examination room, restroom, CVS, Namaste Plaza, Panda Express, and even  in the shower. Yet, I can differentiate between the warm water and the lava erupting  from the pores of my skin. Just how complicated can life become when the only two things you  feel are heat and rage. The former has an outlet; the latter simmers within searing the present." To read the full story, please click on  Hoodwinked .  Hoodwinked has had the privilege of being featured on the  Women's Web  and accorded the Hall of Fame honor in the International Symposium for Women and Literature, Kolkata Spring Festival. Happy Reading!

Bold and Beautiful

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Our society places beauty that high. When you fall, it fractures you from within. But I choose not to fear anymore. I want to be proud of myself. I am willing to let go of what I should be to who I am. Until I die, I want to continue to be list further possibilities and not a defined label. And that is being FEARLESS. Labels with their ingredient and the calorie count are good with a hamburger, not with human beings.  To read the full story click on Bold and Beautiful Image courtesy-Pixabay

Did you share the carton of milk?

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Being a hoi-polloi, I find joy easily, and fear seeps easily too. I laugh easily, and I tremble easily. I thought COVID was a Wuhan thing and continued with life until it came knocking on my door, and I was horrified. I tried hard to dismiss it and pretend it cannot be my door. The knocking was relentless; it grew louder and louder, much to my chagrin. I chose not to open the door. Right then, it barged in, breaking the bolts, and I stood there feeling tiny and defenseless. Why did it come to me? How did it come to me? From where? Why? Who? all I had were questions and a tsunami of answers from all possible communication channels, each posted 'to share information, each doing just the reverse' create more fear.' So, I did what the rest of the aam aadmi does- RUN. To read the article, click on Hey Corona Image courtesy-Pixabay

The Unbecoming

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  “And how do I know that?” “You will always know it, Naina. I am your conscience. You can never stop me. If your actions bring peace, you know what you are fighting for is worth the cause; if not, you know you are betting on the wrong horse.” The noise in her head grew louder like the whirlwind beats of a dhol. Naina stood in a stupor, her eyes transfixed on the Mangal sutra hanging from her mother’s slender neck. She stood coyly next to the man with whom she shared 38 years of life. Clad in a red banarasi sari, red vermillion along the part of her hair shining bright against her bronze skin, she looked most imperfect standing diminutively next to Naina’s father – fair-skinned, tall with an Englishman’s look in a single-breasted plaid suit. To read the full story, click on  The Unbecoming . Women's Web with Anuja Chauhan(who has worked in advertising for over seventeen years and is credited with many popular campaigns. She is the author of five bestselling novels (The Zoya Factor

Dear Mother-in-law, I Am My Own Person

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Like almost every MIL and DIL, my MIL and I too share a bitter-sweet relationship. But here are a few things I would like her to know. What do you mean when you call me  ‘bahuraani’ ? Queen? Like a queenly queen? As in a bejeweled queen treated with care? Well, I am sure you don’t mean that! Oh come on, you just  say  it. That’s just your lips saying it. To read the article, click on  I am my own person .  Image Courtesy-Pixabay

Can we have another lockdown please?

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Dear Ms.Harris, Congratulations on making history. Of everything that you stand for today, Momala is my favorite. It gives me a hard nudge on my rear to stop lamenting being single at 38 and childless. Unbelievable, right? 2020, right? I admire you for the two key choices you made for your life- marrying when you felt it was right and becoming the mother you felt was right. Both fall outside the ‘acceptable’ and the ‘standard’—both subject to indiscriminate scrutiny and gossip. Because you are Kamala Harris, the gossip dare not raise their hood. For me, they are sleeping partners. Although I know- we all can choose not to deter, digress, and divert. That, I am sure you will agree, requires immense courage and conviction: most of the days, I surrender. It is not the status per se that is bothersome; it is the verdict that people pass without understanding and awareness. Just yesterday, they babbled with impudence, “ That happens. Marriage provides stability, and you wouldn't feel so

The Part-Time Indian

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She stares idly into the distance, an empty ceramic tumbler in front of her. “The beach there is different…in my country.” She says, lost in the reverie of the waves.  Did she say bitch to me? No, No, it’s the beach, the beach of Mexico. I remind myself of the Mexican Spanish accent. People’s vowels and consonants, my own diction, is my Achilles heel even after years of mac and cheese.  Why would she call her life coach a bitch? Calming my heart, I try to concentrate. Usually, I am the focussed type; I can come to the point quickly. As a seasoned counselor,  I can anticipate the story which has got the weary heart to my doorsteps in the first five minutes. To read the full story- Click on - The Part-Time Indian  on Kitaab International.  Image courtesy-Pixabay. 

Covidiary- I feel lonely with the Virus

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Literature, on its own, I wonder, can change anything? The qwerty key could be mightier than the virus( isn’t that the most potent weapon available) but words alone don’t bring change. People do. Hence I write. Though, as I write, the word ‘change’ rushes adrenaline into my system so fast that I am ready to vomit. Click on the link  I feel lonely with the Virus  to read the full story on Medium.  Image credit-Pixabay

I know what God looks like

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Who does that? Why should anyone do that? Huh! We finally have a face to the GOD we all believe in, whom we never got to see in real life otherwise. A thank you looks just so short and brief, almost disappearing before it appears; nonetheless, the feeling of indebtedness continues. Did we get it wrong all along?  To read the article click on   I know what GOD looks like! Image courtesy-Pixabay

The Truth Is, Being Successful Is Hard

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"I am not poor; the digestive juices in my stomach are currently churning a warm bowl of oats with milk, bananas, and blueberries. The afternoon lunch is usually simple, a veggie wrap with ginger tea or an Indian lentil pancake. I have a $1550 two-bedroom luxury apartment with a newly installed Whirlpool dishwasher, a daughter who rides to school in her Disney Princess, a fuchsia pink bike with shiny streamers hanging from the handles, my husband prefers sex Friday nights post our dose of Malbec or Sauvignon Blanc strictly ranging between $13-$19 and chicken teriyaki from Panda Express." To read the full article, click on  Being Successful Is Hard   Image courtesy-Pixabay

Feminist?

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“Now, what wrong did your bra do to you? Your nipples are popping out,” Pratima Siddhesh Prajapati, the 63-year-old widow of Lt. Siddhesh Prajapati, Ex-Vice President, UFLEX International, raised her eyebrows by inches when she saw her 33-year-old daughter Naina get ready for her school alumni meetup: ripped jeans and carrot pink scoop neck bling top falling off from one side of the shoulder, revealing the fair, young skin and something else too.  To read the full story, click on  Feminist? Image courtesy-Pixabay

MISSTEP- One wrong step, a lifetime of remorse.

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“Oh! So, your son was in an extramarital affair?” Naina's voice quivered at the very mention of the word. “Ouch! That word sounds so painful but yes! And my daughter-in-law discovered and attempted suicide too.” To enjoy the story, please click on  MISSTEP . Image courtesy-Pixabay

What is easy to break- His Heart or your Father's dreams?

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I regret choosing love over my father’s dreams. Then what? During the first year of college, I met this amazing man and tossed my dreams like a paper ball out of the hostel room window, losing myself between the sheets. To read the winning blog  for #NoRegrets Blogathon presented by Harper Collins and Women's Web, click  I am Sorry But... Disclaimer- This story has a semb lance to people living or dead, but why should that matter. I met her on a train journey a few years back. I met her on Cathay Pacific airlines during a trip to Hong Kong. I met her during a cruise vacation to the Royal Caribbean. I met her on the road, in the parking lot, on the pathway. I met her yesterday; I met her 13 years back. She is here, and she is there, and she is nowhere, yet she is everywhere. Image Courtesy-Pixabay

CLOSE TO DEATH

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Have you ever thought of escaping to Hawaii or the Bahamas in search of some peace, freedom, and fresh air and realize later, while lying on the golden sandy beach, that you have carried your miserable self along or the present is not delighting you the way you expected? I am not the exotic type; I have no big plans of traveling around the world, soaking on a beach in the Caribbean, hiking the world's most famous canyon, exploring ancient ruins, eating delicious cuisine, or learning more about a significant historical site. If I bump into them, I will pause, wonder, smile, and move on. If I don't, I am FINE. My biggest vacation is freedom from my mind and the voices it creates, a kind of freedom that turns my patio with five green plants into Hawaii. Do you believe that true freedom is freedom from oneself? I have realized that of many things that upset me, of many things that push and prick me, it is my own self that is the most bothersome. It is easy to deal with others,