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BlogHer : A piece of my heart on an article – Down my memory lane of childhood memories

18 Mar

My son posing on his great great grandfather's chair. he was 2 years old and the chair is 100 years old!

My son posing on his great great grandfather’s chair. he was 2 years old and the chair is 100 years old!

http://www.blogher.com/creating-and-cherishing-childhood-memories-and-happiness

What is life made of?

Of beautiful memories, shared and cherished with our loved ones!

Of childhood stories which we tell and retell to our children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Of memorabilia and junk collected over a generation, and in some cases if preserved over a century.

Well, I will tell you no more, go and click this link and read my entire article 🙂

It is after all my first article on BlogHer.

My son’s Annual Day Program

24 Sep

He got down from the bus excited and shrieked, “Amma, I am also there for the school day program.”

“Oh, that’s great. So what are you doing?” I asked my son.

“I am compering, as usual,” he said.

“That’s great!” I said, and picked up his bag which he duly handed over.

So, it has now become, “as usual”, I thought. He talks well, I should say. And he can conduct a program. He has ideas of his own about how a program should be conducted. He comes home and says, after this dance, there is this song, but after this play there should be this dance, because of this logic. And I just nod and say – ‘maybe the teachers have a different logic too which makes equal or better sense.’ But the point is, he has his own natural flair in not just talking and compering, but in conducting and the logical sequence and the conclusion of a program.

So, he was in the school day program compering along with three akkas (elder girls), and he was excited. I am always surprised about the excitement he catches when he has to talk in English in front of the audience. He says he loved to see a crowd and he loves to make them listen to him, not in a self-conceited narcissistic way. He is way too young, he is just 6 years old, and I can feel his love for public speaking.

Last year he won an inter-school award for the best story-teller. He was 5 years then. I blogged about it here. And then he also was one of the best comperers for the kindergarten annual day. A pic from last year’s compering is below. Isn’t he cute like a nattamai (South Indian village chieftain)? That’s the traditional South Indian costume for men.

Just getting ready to leave for the school!

Just getting ready to leave for the school!

This one is after reaching the school last year.

After reaching the school in front of his favorite 'friend' - Lord Krishna

After reaching the school in front of his favorite ‘friend’ – Lord Krishna

He still claims Ms. B (in pink saree below) is his favourite teacher. She was the one who discovered his talents in Kindergarten. And I can also feel the mutual love every time they speak to each other and when he speaks about her at home.

With his kindergarten teacher and classmates

With his kindergarten teacher and classmates

This one is with his KG co-ordinator, Ms K Madam. At last at the end of the year he had lost his fear of her.

With his KG Co-ordinator Ma'am

With his KG Co-ordinator Ma’am

The entire KG Day album is here – https://www.facebook.com/#!/media/set/?set=a.10150735738124918.492032.625559917&type=3

We received his script for this year and made him practise a couple of times at home. Once he even said, “Please don’t make me practise so much. I don’t want to lose the interest. I am so happy and excited and please let me preserve it till the annual day. Trust me, I will talk well. I don’t want to practise more.”

Oh man, I loved him and trusted his capabilities, but now I respected my little fellow. I did not spoil his interest by making it stale and overdoing his practise.

On the day of the annual day, I dint wake him up in the morning, because the program was at 6 PM and I knew he won’t have time for an afternoon nap because we had to report at 2 PM. So he woke up pretty late. But the kind teacher who was in-charge of this, called me up and made him tell his lines on the phone and gave some advice to correct something and said that we can come straight for the program, maybe around 4 PM. She asked, “He is almost a baby. What will he do in the school in the burning hot sun from 2 to 6?” I will not forget the kind lady Ms. R V’s mercy on me.

So, this year, check him out just before we left home. He got into the North Indian traditional costume. This suits him great too. Oh, everything suits him, I guess. In tamil, there is an ancient adage, which says, “A crow’s baby is the most beautiful for its mother.” Oh, well, I know, he is the most handsome anyway. 😉 Scroll up and check out the same pose in the same background last year before leaving home. he sure looks more matured and poses better, huh 😉

This year before leaving the house for the Annual Day

This year before leaving the house for the Annual Day

Another one below…

At Home again

At Home again

I am not sure if I can put up the below pics. If any of his teachers requests me, I will pull them down. But I just cant resist for now!!!

With his wonderful teachers who trained him

With his wonderful teachers who trained him

Another pic with the wonderful teachers… Ms. R V Madam claimed she is shorter than him and hence look at the tiny laughter which is about to erupt!

Another pic with yet another wonderful teacher

Another pic with yet another wonderful teacher

Ms. J madam, who is in charge of the primary wing, introduced the Principal, Ms. S U madam as one who exudes positive energy, and that she was innovative and creative. I totally agreed with the first part. She was a nuclear store house of positive energy. I had personally seen her during the practise sessions motivating the kids and teachers. She had a word for everyone. No one felt neglected or ignored. I am sure even if the chairs and desks had roles to play, they would have felt her positivity radiating. Even when she chided and criticised the participants or teachers, no one took offense. They only worked harder to please her and get their parts better. I haven’t met a lady in an administrative post who took so much interest in a mere practise session and that too on a weekend. Her mind was into everything and she knew what to say to whom and how to correct whom. I was awed with the way she handled all the kids. And let me tell you, she knew the names of all the fifty or so odd children who were practising. She called them out by name and dished out suggestions/changes, etc.

But I am yet to know her innovative and creative side, or so I I told her husband, sitting next to me in the auditorium. Oh, yes, but I definitely had respect for this amazing lady and even little affection.

So, my little boy opened the program, wished all the people, and welcomed them and spoke for almost 3 to 5 minutes. I was surprised when the scrit was slightly changed. He used certain synonyms for certain words. I mean, he stuck to the script, bu looking at people, he forgot himself and spoke from the heart what he had to speak. For instance he smiled at them all in the middle of something once. The crowd applauded for him thrice. Once when he invited them to the “First Primary Annual Day”, then when he invited the dean and director of the school and then in the end once again. And the speaker, waited each time for the applause to die down and then restarted. I mean, how did he know he had to do that, I asked later on. Oh, I just know, amma. Trust me, I am a good speaker and I will become better and better. I love the crowd. I know. He is a natural. I cannot take credit just because I am his mother and just because I teach him the rudimentary like vocabulary and pronunciation. His teachers do better jobs than me too, anyway. Ok, check out the below video of my little guy keeping the crowd enthralled.

This is his video – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKMcDlpNcE0&list=HL1348453399&feature=mh_lolz

Did any of you notice the guest of honour madam waving back to my little guy on the CCTV screen when she was introduced by him? Its way down towards the end of the video! That’s one of my favourite moment 🙂

The theme of the annual day was Panchatantra. Panchatantra are a treasure trove of stories which we use for children to teach them morals, values and ethics, just like the Jataka tales. But Panchatantra is more interesting and has a lot more animals and birds and keep the kids enthralled. For more information on panchatantra, click here. It has been in vogue in India since the 3rd century.

There were 5 stories which were acted out. They belonged to the five cardinal Panchatantra books.

There was a grand finale which was a set of more stories set in old popular Tamil movie song tunes. I could see my introverted shy husband smiling. I have to make mountains move to get a smile on his lips. The first time he smiled was when his darling little boy addressed the gathering of maybe 500 people. And the second time was this superb grand finale! All Indians would relate to this song dance drama sequence. Absolute beauty!

That is part of the grand finale’. I am sorry; I could not record the entire part. I was so enthralled myself that I just forgot to start recording.

The grand finale – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B8wZx7ZxsqY

The Dean and director of this school was an octogenarian.  I always wonder does she really pay attention to each and everything or maybe is she sitting there for these programs because she is expected to. She put my doubts to rest this evening. After the program she called out each and every participant and praised them for each of their roles. She said how a child dressed up as tree is so patient and hence awesome. She called out to the kids dressed up as deer, as rabbits and mouse and just about every other animal and had a word for them all. She said the camel’s performance was great, but the costume needed a minor correction to make the hump pronounced. She praised the singers, the dancers, the kids who gave their voices for certain programs. Wait a minute, even I dint remember so many things out of the program and I am just 30. This lady of maybe 80 or more remembered every single participant and here she was appreciating them. One lesson to me – that is why this amazing wonderful woman is the dean and director. She deserves that place!

Ok, it is so easy to forget the children who are compering and talking, who are conducting the program. Because we are so much into the dance and song and play that we don’t remember that there are some kids who have put so much energy, time and effort into it. Wait a minute. You are in for a surprise. She called out to the little boy (my little boy) who opened the program with his compering. She appreciated him. Yes, madam, you humbled me again! And you are going to humble me one more time way down towards the end of this post.

So, she called him up on the stage after the program and blessed him.

On stage with the dignitaries - and the director Ma'am blessing him

On stage with the dignitaries – and the director Ma’am blessing him

There was a story teller who was the chief guest to this program. She told a wonderful story and she mentioned that there was thunder and then lightning in a forest. Oh well, the story went on. If you want to know that, ask my little boy, he repeated it even this morning during lunch.

And our octogenarian director of the school very sweetly corrected her saying that the teacher in herself is doing this – “The lightning comes first and then the thunder.” The story teller took it very nicely too. Ok, I am stmped again!! The entire hall was guffawing!!! Everyone was stumped!

So, after all this, and after all the fun and frolic was over, the principal said, please get up for the national anthem. She requested us to not sing along. Weird?! I mean, everyone requests everyone else to sing along, but she said, please don’t! Maybe slip of the tongue? Ah, no! Check out this version of the Indian National Anthem here.

I had tears in my eyes when it ended. My son was hooked on the screen. He had a lot of questions for me for after the program about the Silent National Anthem and I was happy to let him know that he was endowed, blessed by God for providing him all the faculties intact! The silent national anthem was rendered by specially challenged children, some deaf, some mute, some both and some physically challenged. We should show kindness to such souls who are differently abled, I said. A perfect opportunity to explain such things to children! “Amma, like Barfi?” he asked. By the way, Barfi is entered for Oscars in the International Category of movies.

Did I tell my husband, “Yes, the principal, Ms. S U is definitely positive and energetic, but I don’t know so much about innovative and creative. I am yet to see that aspect of her.”? Yes, I did. Now I knew better.

Lady S U, you are one amazing person. And blessed are these tiny gems to be with you. Yes, they are to be surrounded with so much positivity, so much creativity, so much love and so much fun!

The annual day program was much loved and we all as parents had a lot of fun!

Guest Post: 5 ways to lure kids away from malls

1 Sep

In today’s guest post, Praveen gives us tips and ideas to lure kids away from malls. Oh, a must read for all parents 😉

Unfortunately, more and more parents are opting for the easy way out and taking kids to the shopping centers where they can combine entertainment, shopping and eating at one place. While this may sound lucrative, the ugly truth is in the long run this unhealthy practice will have an adverse effect on our pocket – and our health.Here are five suggestions to wean the kids away from malls.

Arrange a picnic:

Remember how, long before malls arrived on the scene, we frequented the city zoo or botanical gardens armed with our picnic basket, a good book to read and some outdoor games? In the sylvan surroundings the family used to bond strongly. Relive those moments and introduce your kids to the simple pleasures of life. Spend a Sunday in the zoo over games of ludo, chess and badminton. If it is too cumbersome to prepare an elaborate meal just pack some sandwiches, fruits and fresh juice. The children will be so busy enjoying themselves they will eat anything you make as long as it is tasty.

Enjoy a stay-in:

If the heat is too sapping to go out, have picnics at home. Hire your favourite family movies, order some good Chinese food and take your place on the bean bag in front of the home theatre. Become a couch potato in style.

Have an Informal soiree:

When was the last time you and your friends got together at each other’s homes? More often than not we take the convenient route and celebrate birthdays and anniversaries at – where else – the mall. Ditch the practice and get together at one another’s houses at least once a month. Each can host the party on a rotational basis. Each family chips in by making a dish so that the host is not stuck in the kitchen for hours trying to whip up the perfect meal. Guaranteed enjoyment!

Fix play dates:

Call a few of your kids’ classmates for a play date at your house. Each of them can bring some of their toys and share it with others. While the kids have a gala time you can bond with the mothers. If all goes well, play dates will become a regular feature. They can be held on a rotational basis too once a month. It will give a superb opportunity to pick up some friends for life.

To market, to market:

Stocking up on provisions need not be an onerous chore. You can make it fun by taking your kids and visiting the Sunday bazaar rather than run to the supermarket in the vicinity. Let the children pick up a few lessons in negotiations by observing you bargaining with the greengrocer. Show them that a penny saved is a penny earned. Buy your grocery items from the local general store so they understand the importance of weights and measures which they would never learn if they pick up items off the shelf and load them in shopping carts. Have super fun shopping.

Just tweak your imagination and you will soon be flooded with ideas on how to spend your weekends without a visit to the mall.

Photo credit to Herr_Bert at http://www.flickr.com/photos/81223571@N00/2688637165

Praveen is the founder and CEO of Wild Creek Studio which operates many sites like AwesomeCuisine, TamilBrahmins, PoetryofLife, ChennaiForums, PremiumWoman. He was also interviewed by YourStory.in/NDTV, Chennai and is one of the most dynamic entrepreneur in India. It is a complete honour to have him over. Thank you.

Do you have more ideas. We love hearing about them.  Post it as a comment to this post or share it in your own blog and post the link here.

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Guest Post: What is family?

31 Aug

In today’s guest post, Mama Simona from South Africa is posting about her father, her family and how she feels that sometimes death is the ultimate freedom.

Mama Simona with her family.

Mama Simona with her family.

My father died last week. Don’t be sad. His death is the best gift he ever gave his dysfunctional family! Let me explain.

I really, truly and deeply love my dad, despite (or maybe even because) of what he put all of us through when he was alive. Please don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t all bad, in fact my best childhood memories are of times spent alone with him. He was the kind of dad who whispered stories made up of bunny rabbits, green meadows and rainbows in my ear (while I was tucked up in bed) in order to keep nightmares away. On the nights when the nightmares came anyway, he was the one who’d comfort me and then lead me into the kitchen for a “secret” midnight snack. Being his “co-conspirator” made me feel so special! He would protect me when mom got really angry. He was my hero and then I got older.

By the time I was around 9 years of age a blind mouse would have been able to detect the ever-widening cracks in my parent’s marriage. In fact my last, really good, childhood memory with my dad happened that year. It was obvious to me that Dad was away a lot and, even when he was home, he wasn’t really “present”. I still clearly remember that cloudy, wintry afternoon in Cape Town. Dad was sitting in his favourite armchair, but he was very far away. I went up to him and told him that I missed him. I’ll never forget the look on his face! It was as if I’d thrown a bucket of cold water on him! He looked at me without saying anything for a long minute. Then he said that I was right and that I should grab a jacket – the 2 of us were going out. I remember Mom shouting from the kitchen; “Where are you going?” to which Dad just answered; “Out with Simona” and we left before she could ask anything more. Remember no cell phones back then! I was so happy! I didn’t care where we were going, I had my dad all to myself, for the first time in a really long time. Dad drove to our favourite ice-cream parlour and bought us each a cone. Then we took a walk along the deserted beach nearby. The wind was really cold and here we were, side by side, eating ice-cream cones, just talking and walking along the beach with the backdrop of a grey and stormy sea. I didn’t know it at the time but that would be the last time I’d feel so close to, and so loved, by my dad.

My parents finally divorced when I was 17 years old. It was not amicable at all and I got to know things about both my parents which (whether real or not) no child should ever hear about the people responsible in equal measure for her DNA!! As the oldest child I felt responsible for the fact that I was unable to “save” their marriage. When I was around 19 years old I suffered from my first severe bout of Clinical Depression.

Eventually my father came back into my life, together with the woman who would become wife number two. I always got on really well with her and actually tried to warn her about my father’s “dark side”. Unfortunately, blinded by love, she not only married him but gave birth to a daughter who is only one year older than my own oldest child!

Unfortunately, when I was 6 months pregnant with my daughter, my father left South Africa because he could no longer “borrow from Peter to pay Paul”. He told all his creditors that I had signing power on the Company Account and that I’d take care of payments while he was overseas. What he neglected to tell them was that all his accounts were already overdrawn, so any cheques I wrote would bounce. I refused to sign “bad cheques” and instead returned the cheque books to the Bank Manager telling him that I was in no way to be associated with my father’s business affairs any more. When my father heard that I had done that, he told all our family and friends both in Italy and in South Africa that I had stolen his money! The stress of this awful betrayal caused me to go into premature labour. (Luckily, with medication and strict bed rest, I managed to bring my pregnancy much closer to term and thereby give life to my only daughter.) Since (in his mind at least) I had stolen his money, my father refused to speak to me – or have any other kind of contact at all for over 10 years.

Meanwhile, his second marriage also ended and my step-mom and half-sister moved back to Italy permanently. My father “reinvented” himself as a “Great White Hunter” and ran tours into the Kruger National Park with the support of the latest woman to fall in love with him. I’m very grateful to M for being with him right up until the end. I’m also grateful to M’s daughter and son-in-law, who took our father in when he was ill and none of his biological children were in a position to help him.

So why do I say that his death was a gift? By removing himself from the equation, he has made past hurts and rivalries irrelevant. All the women and children who love him are free to love him together! He has also “woken up” those of us left behind to what is really important in life. We need to tell the ones we love that we love them unconditionally – just because they’re a part of our lives. I believe he has given us the gift of “rebirth” instead of 4 families we can be one, and we should be one because we all loved him, albeit in our own way and in our own time.

I believe that a FAMILY is tied by bonds of love and respect and not “bloodline”.

I hope this post has inspired you to spread the love and respect, this world sure needs to have a lot more of both floating around!!

Photo credit to Mama Simona of South Africa.

This original post was written by Mamma Simona of Cape Town. She shares her home with a loving and supportive husband, two teens, two cats and two dogs. Her posts are usually to be found on World Moms Blog but she was happy to be able to share these thoughts with all who follow The Alchemist.

Tell us about your family.  Post it as a comment to this post or share it in your own blog and post the link here.

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Babies that become man and woman and mommy and daddy

8 Aug

Newborn child, seconds after birth. The umbili...

Newborn baby.

“This is your baby”, says the doc. Mommy looks at her baby with awe, love and joy. Nothing can ever describe her feeling. She feels a lot of emotions. It is HER baby. Nine months of HER labour. HER joy. She touches the baby. The baby squirms. Baby cries. Baby blinks. Moments of awe, moments of joy, moments of BLISS.

Mommy spends at least twenty years of her life bringing up baby. She bathes it, feeds it, changes diapers, cleans poos and pees, teaches A,B,C, gets frustrated during tantrums, calms back, calms down baby too, cleans spits from the entire carpet, scrubs the house, some even work at work(office) in the midst of all this and manage to earn decent money.

And the baby keeps growing. Keeps learning. Keeps loving mom. Mommy gets rewards too. Hugs, kisses, milestones, first crushes, baby’s achievements at school, and she witnesses scores of such once in a lifetime things. Mommy is happy. Mommy is proud. Mommy’s life is made. Baby becomes boy (or girl), and then man(or woman) and life starts happening for our baby (man/woman) now.

Mommy looks up at baby nowadays. How nicely he (she) dresses, how smart he (she) is, how great life can be for baby now. Mommy feels blessed to have such a wonderful man (woman) for her as baby.

And then things change.

No, this post is not being pessimistic. It just puts things in perspective.

So, now baby gets married. Baby has babies of his (her) own. Sometimes relationships are just great as it was when our original baby was born. But sometimes it is not. Those sad times are more often than not.

Fly me higher...!!!

Fly me higher…!!!

Mommy-son (daughter) relationships cracks. Why? Expectations happen; from mommy’s side, and sometimes from children’s side. And then each one does not deliver what is expected. Disappointments are many. Bitterness sets in after a few disappointments.

So, I ask the mommy, why expect?

Mommy says, “Why not?”

“I mean it is your baby. You cared for it. Now baby has grown up. It has wings. It is flying away to create a brood of its own. Now you should not expect baby to hang around.”

Mommy says, “But how can I not? It is all that I have. My whole life was devoted to this. I won’t say sacrificed, but I have nothing else left with me.”

And then I say again, “But baby has lot more to do in life. It has so much to look for in this world. It wants to stretch out its wings. It wants to fly high. It wants to soar.”

Mommy nods. She understands. She knows. But she still wants baby. She is silently pining away. Sometimes she throws tantrums like baby used to do in younger days. But mommy definitely understands that baby needs the world, not the nest.

The babies are now the prime of this world. It needs to go out and create freshness and brightness in this world. It needs to recreate the whole world in its own way. It needs to know life. After all mommies had the same to do, right? They discovered their worlds, created their babies, chose their lives, and dedicated it for their babies, right?

So, mommy says, “Yes, but I know how my mommy felt now. And I understand what relationships are made of.”

I nod understandingly. But something was amiss and I am trying hard to cling onto it, grasp it.

Mommy, baby, life, wings, flight, empty nest, wide world, man, woman, progeny!!! Things were happening too fast.

Oh, wait a minute, what happened? Imagine the tenderness and helplessness of the baby when it first arrived into this world. Imagine the baby as soon as it is born with all the goo, trying hard to comprehend this world. Imagine the baby trying to lactate with mommy. Imagine mommy feeding baby. Imagine mommy holding baby’s hands and helping him take first few steps. Imagine mommy teaching baby stuff about the world. Imagine mommy wiping tears of frustration when baby’s first crush moved on. Imagine mommy doing this and that and stuff.

What happened to the mommy’s heart? Her only wish was for baby to excel in everything. Now why does she want the empty old nest to be filled with the baby who does not fit in it anymore? Why does she not allow the baby to fly away and make a bigger stronger and more beautiful nest?

Now all you strong men and women out there, do not smile and nod and before forwarding this to your mama and papa, think how much mommy sacrificed everything to be with you. Imagine mommy’s sleepless nights when you wanted nothing but to only nurse for weeks and months in a row. Imagine mommy always calling in sick for work. Imagine calling in late for work on all days for at least a week when you were sick. Imagine mommy cancelling holiday plans because baby won’t fit in for this holiday. Imagine mommy forfeiting promotions because it involved more work and more time. Imagine some mommies quitting work altogether to be with babies. Imagine twenty years of mommy’s thoughts, actions, life and breath revolving only around baby. But baby deserts her after twenty years.

Why oh why? Why doesn’t baby understand mommy? Why doesn’t mommy let baby go either? Why does the relationship fall out?

The most sacred of all relationships, the one between mommy and baby should never go stale. But why does it fail, at least in 50% of the cases? All relationships, especially this one, is based on love. And then some trust and a little respect. Respect baby’s needs to fly away. Trust the baby, your baby, to love you, remember you, and come back to you in your most needed hour. But for now, let baby fly.

And you baby, understand mommy’s need to feel loved, cherished and protected. After all, all her life was spent for you. She needs some hold onto life and that is mostly you. Be sensitive.

Why oh, why such things happen? So complex to understand the myriad emotions, feelings, expectations, needs, desires between people. Go beyond it all. Look up to each other. Respect each other. Respect the needs of each one. Do not let selfishness come in the way.  Let the other flower out. Un-flowered buds wither away.

Garden flower

Teach the other to let go. Teach the other to seek out too.

Teach each one to love. Teach each one to detach too.

Help the other to breed. Help them fly way away too.

Love. And believe in your loved ones to love you back.

And trust. And Respect.  And let go. For, know that they will come back.

Thank you Geetha, for inspiring me to write this piece.

Vaccination and me – Yay!! India is polio-free

24 Mar

Child receiving polio vaccine.

Child receiving polio vaccine. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 India was once the epicenter of Polio. Polio was carried on from India to even many African nations. In 1985 there were 150,000 polio cases and in 2010 it was at a historic low of 42. But today, as of 2012, India has been declared Polio free with not a single case of Polio having been registered in any of the Health centers. It really is a major task in a nation like India, which boasts of not only the nation with one of highest GDP ratio, but also of the second largest slum in Asia, which is a hotbed of so many known and unknown diseases. 

Immunization, commonly referred to as vaccination is a great wealth we can give our children as parents. Give them good physical health and mental health and they have the capacity to access the greatest wealth in the world. 

When I was asked a year ago by Jennifer Burden of the World Moms Blog if I would be interested in vaccination advocacy as part of Social Good, I said, ‘Why not?’ But ‘how,’ I thought. So, here I am writing about it as one of the first steps. Advocacy is easy. I firmly believe in protecting my son against certain killer diseases. More than a year ago he contacted Dengue fever and little did I know Dengue is life threatening until a fellow blogger’s daughter succumbed to it. It was shocking! I have no words to describe my feelings.

So, for those killer diseases for which there are vaccines protect your child. Give him a future where he is strong, has the capability to fight diseases. Give him that investment where his health is ensured. Vaccination advocacy is easy. The only requirement is your passion, your power to move people.

At GAVI, I was awed to see so many people so enthusiastic about this cause. The success rate in developing nations was stupendous. Check out the new vaccines they have rolled out in many African nations. I am so honored to be part of this passionate cause of securing the future health of a child.

Organizations like GAVI and Shot@Life rock! I urge more people like us with the power to write, with the power to influence people both with their presence in the virtual world/media (Social networking and blogs) and also through their field work to be part of such movements.

Who would have thought one day India would be Polio free? That is the only boost any Indian ever needs to start his pro vaccination campaign.

What are you waiting for? Voice your views

P.S: Ok, my next step in this would be to film a movie with the help of Jennifer Burden, Founder, Chief Editor, World Moms Blog, advocating vaccination . Yay!! Watch this space for more updates on that. If you want to be part of the movie in any way, drop us a note through the Contacts Page.

My passion won’t rest for now!!

 

Motherhood and being Cultured!

5 Nov

        

This post is dedicated to the one year Blogiversary of one of the most happening parenting communities, World Moms Blog.

I was asked to write about Motherhood relating to our Indian culture and link up with the World Moms Blog . In India I would say there are at at least 50 different cultures for every aspect. And the same and more apply to motherhood. Having said that, this post has nothing to do with any of the  specific 50 different cultures of India.

For me motherhood simply means worshipping my mother’s motherhood. I should say I have not much vocally appreciated her as much as I should be not only for bringing me up, but doing everything else and more for my son, her grandson.

Motherhood

Sculpture - "Motherhood" at St.Anne convent in northern Kentucky.

This is where it began. When I was pregnant I contacted Hepatitis-A, a viral infection and was down with jaundice. It was not specifically life threatening or problematic for the baby in womb (because of the placental barrier), but we all were so stressed mentally and emotionally. This was approximately during the 22nd week. I was working 12 hours a day, designing the supposedly love of my life, car electronics. During that period I was living, 350 miles away from home.

The gynecologist and gastroentrologist advised complete bed rest until the day of delivery. I was very upset hearing this. I pleaded, I coaxed, that I work at least after a month’s rest. I was feeling completely fit and fine. But for whatever reasons God chose, I was back at my parents’ home relaxing and enjoying all the remaining 5 to 6 months of pregnancy. I was eating home cooked food by the world’s greatest cook (mom), being pampered and cared and just plain killing time reading books, researching pregnancy and stuff over the internet. The DDH used to visit me over the weekends at my parents’ place. [**I have not really thanked him enough for letting me stay on at my parents’ place indefinitely**]. And life was benevolent indeed.  

And then, one fine day I delivered a healthy happy crying baby boy and all was fine again in this mama’s world.

And I went back to work when DDS was 6 months old.

No day care, said the DDH. No nannies. No nothing. I was devastated. Apparently the DDH was a great fan of attachment parenting, and well, neither did I have the heart to send him to a day care to strangers. I mean, yes, I know there are so many wonderful care centers and I am not being judgmental. Having said that, I just felt I needed my little boy to be with people he knew, he was biologically related to.

So, super woman aka my mom, aka my son’s grand mom stepped in to the rescue. She traveled 350 miles away from her home, stayed with us, away from her husband and her son and took care of DDS while I worked away ‘happily’ at the car electronics typing away software codes for the automatic power steering.

Now, my dad visited us during the weekend to be with his wife, my mom and with all of us, his family. And oh, my brother sacrificed being with his mom too, because he was just entering college, and needed her emotional support. But the neediest was the baby, so my mom devoted her entire time, energy and thoughts to baby. We stayed in this arrangement for at least 5 years when we decided I would quit work because mom had to go back home, for her own personal reasons.

But the point is, my mom put up with a 25-year-old, grown up, pregnant, moody, lazy, physically unwell woman (me) for half a year, an ignorant mom (me) for another half-year and then she stayed away from her family, her husband and her son for 5 full years. I can not really thank my father and brother enough for letting me have her fully. She did all this for her grandson. Her idea of motherhood which can not be defined in any words except by retelling this story is just my idea of motherhood.

Culture is also refinement, culture is also being civilized, culture, my father always says, is doing what is best and correct for the moment and living life the way, God would later say, Ah, I am proud of you, my child. Isnt that how culture must have evolved in any society?

So, I am blessed to have parents who are cultured and who tried their best to imbibe that in my brother and me.

And this post celebrates that woman, who is the best mother in the whole world.

Some day, I hope my son says that too.

 

This article is part of the World Moms Blog Link-up

This article is part of the World Moms Blog Link-up

Go ahead, click the above button and view all posts written by mothers all around the globe participating in the World Moms Blog link up! I encourage the reader to also participate by writing your own post under the topic, “Motherhood, culture and myself” and show your support for the most celebrated feeling, “motherhood” by ‘liking’ and commenting on my and all posts.

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