My Love and Laughter Story

He was quiet. I couldn’t stop talking.

He was looking at me intently. I was self-absorbed.

He agreed with everything I said. I kept asking more questions.

He was slightly groggy due to sleep-deprivation. I had met with a minor accident.

This was our first meeting. Ours was a typical arranged marriage, complete with me draping a sari for the occasion and my would-be in-laws asking me the routine round-up questions like can I cook or do I want to work after marriage.

I had promised my mother that I would be at my best behaviour and went through it all patiently. They had found a perfect match for me in A. Everything else that accompanied him was passable in the long run since we weren’t going to live together.

After all these years, it seems like it was well worth the effort. I had never set out to meet or spend my life with the ‘perfect’ one. I have always believed that relationships are only as good as the people themselves and need little more than love and respect to be successful.

A never was the romantic type. To extract a simple ‘I love you’ from him still needs cajoling and blackmailing. When we’re in a group, his legs get pulled the most, because what his eyes and smile portray so clearly, his words cutely and awfully try to deny.

This happened a few days ago. We were at my native and my entire family (both from Mom’s and Dad’s side) had gathered for a get-together. Our living room, not big enough to accommodate almost 20 people at once, was severely cramped for space. People had spilled from the crowded couches and comfortably landed on the floor.

Interestingly, and not by design, it so happened that all wives were sitting on the couches and chairs and their husbands were sitting on the floor. My maternal Uncle, the only exception, offered Aunty his place and graciously took to the floor to maintain the uniformity. I had parked myself on a chair.

Needless to say, jokes and comparisons were being made galore! Poor husbands battling with the cold marble floors and accepting their position at their wives’ feet, wives finally demonstrating who’s the boss in the house, etc. We were all laughing our guts out. All this while, clueless A was in the other room attending a call.

As soon as he entered, the room waited with bated breath to see whether A chooses to sit on the last unoccupied Ottoman or joins others on the floor. Sensing something amiss but not dwelling on it, apprehensively, he took to the floor…..and the very next moment the whole room again broke into peals of laughter! Yes, I laughed the hardest!

Slightly puzzled after being told what was so funny, A gave me a look and smiled. A real million dollar smile! I returned his smile and batted my eyelid once to show him that I understood. My paternal Uncle who distinctly noticed this exchange of looks between us said out loud, “See, Varsh is so happy that her husband is giving her the upper hand!”.

Both of us blushed. I wanted to go and hug him, but refrained. For a long time we were giving each other stolen glances and smiles. He never spoke a word, but my heart felt his ‘I love you’.

This was one of the many simple moments of understanding and intimacy that make our relationship so beautiful! His quirks irritate me no end, but I miss it when he doesn’t bug me either. Such perfectly lovable times ensure taking our relation from strength to strength. Isn’t this what a marriage is all about?

This post is a part of #LoveAndLaughter activity at BlogAdda in association with Caratlane

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The Ideal Woman

For a man, an ideal wife is someone who is a mother when she cooks for him and serves him, a sister when he needs emotional and mental support, a friend who he can share his feelings with and have fun with and a girlfriend/lover when he needs her in bed.

This is a crude translation of something I had read somewhere a long time back. It stayed with me all these years owing to the sheer audacity with which it expects a woman to cater to her man’s needs and desires like it was her duty and was the basic criteria for her to be bracketed as the ideal one!

I’m sure there were women who went to great lengths to fit into this ‘ideal’ mould. Living in the reflected glory of their husbands and being walked all over day in and day out was something that was taken for granted, even by women. It would be hardly surprising if men conveniently did the same. Will anyone let go or question when he is in such an enviable position?

I’m not trying to make this a feminist post, but what scares and bothers me is the existence of such women even in today’s society! Being a rebel or breaking boundaries isn’t the only thing that can make a woman earn respect for her. The courage to stand on her own and to make her own choices too is enough to give her the confidence she deserves.

In a family, a woman is the cement that binds relationships together. The undesirable job of handling delicate matters with an iron fist, albeit with a velvet glove, can be ably carried out only by her. When there is so much that she does for everybody, shouldn’t she get some attention and care too?

I wonder if anyone thought of making a list of qualities a man should possess before he sets out for marriage. Like for a girl, shouldn’t he have a checklist too? Can he cook? Is he supporting enough to keep her company in good and bad times? Will he become a friend, boyfriend or father for her if the need ever arises, or simply because she’d like him to?

A person can love anyone to death, but has to breathe himself to stay alive. Similarly, first of all, women need to realise that they can be more than someone’s wife, mother or sister. They are not put on earth to simply serve, and not everything that makes them happy should be attached or derived from others!

Green is for jealousy

Jealousy is something we all have felt, experience at some or the other time and will probably keep feeling till the time we attain nirvana. I know it is a negative word and one should refrain from it, but a human being without any of his vices is a dream.

‘The grass is greener on the other side‘ is an example of discontentment, and also jealousy. Is it so difficult for us to accept that the other side is greener because of attention, hard work and extreme care?

We feel jealous of people who’ve made it big in their lives and find ways to pull them down and dismiss their achievements with mindless arguments. Undermining their journey doesn’t add any glamour to ours. Why do we still do it?

It is true that life is unpredictable and more often than not people find themselves in unexpected and trying situations. Comparing our situations with others and letting go of the fact that it is a two-way thing, both are kinds of gravely foolish behaviour.

It would be amusing if we ever paid attention to the fact that two people could be jealous of each other. We always take for granted what we have and so does the other person. Wish we could have the courage to swap our choices to know what positivity surrounds us.

God doesn’t give us more than we can handle and less than what we deserve. He gives opportunities to all, albeit without any warning. Someone might have seen the road we failed to see, simple! Why feel jealous for it? As far as we are concerned, we’re on the right track. We only have to believe it!

The Past

It was you and me
And a broken heart
The writhing pain
Still hurts a lot
That time has gone
Water under the bridge
Shouldn’t matter now
Still it doesn’t budge
Some intended actions
Many moments marred
Can we put behind us
The past that got us charred?

Telling a child about Child Abuse

Deeply shaken and disturbed with the news about child abuse that I come across these days with alarming regularity through newspapers, television, personal interactions, etc., I decided to have a small talk with A Jr in this regard. I’d been meaning to bring this thing up with him for a while. Almost 7 and half years old now, I felt it was time he knew about it.

I knew the subject was a little tricky for me to broach and also somewhat complicated for him to process completely. I needed some aid to make it a bit easier. Fortunately, someone forwarded a video to me a few days ago about good touch and bad touch.

I sat him down with me, made him feel matured and important and then proceeded to show him the video. He sat through it quietly, listening attentively and trying to absorb as much as he can. A couple of times during the video he looked up at me questioningly but didn’t say anything.

When it was over, the first thing he said was, ‘Mamma, I thought you were showing me some song on your phone! But it was this! Ok.’. I simply smiled at him and asked if he understood what was shown in it and was there anything to learn from it. To my relief, he got it bang on and explained everything to me, just the way I had expected him to.

I felt better that at least I made him aware of the fact that there are monsters roaming around everywhere in our society and we can never be careful enough. If someone misbehaves with him there’s no way he should be ashamed of it and should quickly raise an alarm, irrespective of who the person is.

The presence of Angel in his life has been a boon to me so far and there are things that I don’t normally have to address him about. Still, I went a step further and reinforced on him the need to be respectful to all girls and be there for anyone who needs his assistance. Even if they are his friends and they fight a lot, he should behave nicely with them.

He seems to have registered it all, as of now. Internet, peer pressure, fashion and the need to belong may affect his mindset later on and there’s precious little I will be able to do that time. This is the age where we can instil family values and teach the importance of morals to our children. They need to know that being a victim of abuse or inflicting it on anyone is not only wrong but also punishable by law.

 

An inevitable change

Once in a while, there are certain decisions that have to be taken and we need to persistently stick to them. This qualifies as one of that sort. I don’t like change, much. Almost immediately my mind tries to find reasons for resisting it. Familiarity makes me feel secure. Yet, I did it anyway.

After sticking to my old theme for the longest time I finally decided to go for some change. Going through a LOT of themes and then zeroing in on this current one wasn’t easy. If you’re a regular visitor, you’ll know that some time back my blog had a different theme. Sadly, I couldn’t warm up to it.

This one is way different than anything I have tried till now. Although it made me give up the beautiful header of my favourite colourful gerberas that conveyed the myriad topics covered in my blog, and also its name, so beautifully, I find it simple, clean, easy to read and the focus is entirely on the post.

I have to yet to develop that feeling of homecoming with it. Like a kid grows up and looks and acts different over time, I’m assuming my blog too has gone through some kind of transformation. It might look different, but it is my baby and shows off only what I have taught it to.

Hope my readers agree with me. Old visitors or new, any input from you is welcome. Please do leave a word.

ARK’s eyes and Fitoor

He made me write for him earlier, and here I am writing for him again. He might not be much popular owing to his debatable lack of acting prowess, but that doesn’t take away what he does have, right? In this case; it’s his eyes.

Since we aren’t playing puzzles here, let me tell you that I’m talking about Aditya Roy Kapoor; the one actor amongst all the newcomers who has made me cry inconsolably and also go weak in my knees, just with the expression in his eyes and a smile. Boy, can they emote! It is seriously unfair to have such lovely eyes!

I’m not sure I will mind if you’re judging me or my choice right now. We’re all entitled to our opinions, likes and dislikes after all. I don’t like him to the extent of sitting through a bad movie for a glimpse of him or anything, but I like to see him on screen and ogle at him once in a while.

Anyway, what makes me talk of him now is the trailer of Fitoor. Book adaptations are tricky, and even more so when it is a classic. May be that’s why I wasn’t looking forward to seeing the movie. I still don’t think I will watch it. What did catch my fancy though was Aditya Roy Kapoor, yet again.

In case you have seen the trailer you must’ve noticed the way he’s shown completely engrossed in painting, forming structures, sketching and basically creating stuff. His eyes are focussed and intent. His body language is unrestricted and smooth. He completely steals the show, leaving little scope for distraction.

The imagination that our mind is capable of has always intrigued me. Expressing it immaculately through words, drawings, paintings or any other art form is simply astounding! The song Pashmina reminded me of the scene in The Fountainhead where a statue of Dominique Francon is being made.

Here’s the song for you.

 

The one you stand by

The other day I was talking to an old and very close friend of mine. Someone who can get me into some serious trouble if she ever chooses to do so. I know she won’t. Friends have some kind of a ‘vault’ where stuff is strictly supposed to be kept hidden and secure from the world, right? ☺

It reminded me of Friends, one of the most famous sitcoms of all time. Something I grew up watching, and (like most teenagers who saw it) secretly hoping to live it for real. It also made me realise a thing or two that helped me understand my friends better.

I understood the value of friends and friendship and was convinced of the fact that even committed relationships or successful marriages cannot replace them.

It taught me acceptance. When you call someone your friend, you accept them the way they are. Unconditionally. 🙂

Every person is unique. You might dislike their quirky personality traits, but that’s what makes them the special people they are.

The funniest thing is being able to predict their reactions, their preferences and being able to complete their sentences for them before they do! 😀

No matter what they do, no matter how wrong you think they are, all you can do is suggest and wait. You can’t force them to take your advice.

You have to stand by them, come what may. Both of you have to know that you have someone to fall back on, always.

You can never be too busy for them. If you value them enough, you will somehow find time for them.

Friendship that changes or gets influenced by a person’s paycheck isn’t real. It is then just a convenient arrangement.

Your friendship cannot stop people from taking the road their life leads them to. Let them go, but that doesn’t mean you lost them.

You agree with them, yes? If you’re lucky to have any such friend(s) in your life, go tell them how important they are for you and make them feel loved and remembered! 🙂

When your passion becomes your bread and butter

Being able to do what we love is a liberty most of us don’t enjoy easily. People are stuck in mundane jobs to pay their bills, pay-off their loans, to support their family, for a luxurious life or sometimes just because they have given up listening to their heart.

I have heard people say that when your passion becomes your work, life is bliss, since you enjoy every moment of it. Work then, is not a task to be completed. It becomes yet another venture into your inner self to explore a new path.

It sounds very lovely and dreamy, but there is something I’d like to understand. Whilst I’m all game for this idea, there are some things that make me wonder. Doing something for personal gratification and then something as a professional commitment, are two different things. Do they coincide happily?

For example, let’s say that music is my passion, my reason for living. To be able to create music gives me immense joy and pleasure. I feel at home with my instruments, my songs, my tunes. My mind is always forming, approving and rejecting compositions.

When I compose for others though, there are certain barriers. There are briefs to be followed and instructions to be carried out. There are bound to be disagreements where I didn’t expect any. My best tune till date, as I feel, may get dismissed or not find any takers.

How does one handle this? It is known that creative people are more sensitive and vulnerable than common folk. They are deeply connected with their inner selves and are far more emotional. Does this kind of spurn not affect them or their passion?

There are authors who started writing as a hobby but short-changed their writing passion for commercial gain. Needless to say, the quality of their work suffered. Does it mean that this passion-profession combination doesn’t always work? Is there something to learn something from this?