Sunday, February 27, 2011

To work or not

Spoke with one of my friends after a looong time and we took the opportunity to update each other. Since the two of us are sailing different boats, but on the same lake towards the same destination,, when we voiced out our concerns, fears, opinions, emotions buried under our so called happy faces, it felt as if we were having a conversation with our own mirror image.. Yes, it was not surprising to find the similar thoughts that goes on in our minds, still surprising that we were able to voice it out.Probably, we have grown so tired keeping thinks to ourselves. Since it was a weekday and we couldn’t continue our banter for a long time being at work place, we had to cut short. We have been planning to meet up (our residences are 5 kms apart!)  for the last 2 years and still haven’t found the time to do it.  That’s my other goal in the next 2 months. Fix up a time and meet up, else days, weeks, months will roll by and we will always have some reason to postpone.

This friend of mine , H and I have been considering quitting our respective jobs and taking a break for quite some time now, but have always been ambivalent about the same . This time, she tells me that she has decided to quit and have already submitted papers at work place. Now, this has got me thinking ,(this has been in my thoughts for a long time, but now, the thought has only popped to the front and the thinking has become more intense) on the same lines. I’m unable to reach a conclusion, as always.

One part of me wants to try it out , that’s is, take a break from work so that I can be relieved of the stress that comes from travelling to and fro to the work place ,relieved of the hassles due to work itself and the politics at work. Mom suggests that by being at home , I could take care of my health better and the relative stress free environment will do good to me. While I’m very much OK with this, the other part of me is not sure if staying at home all day, for weeks together will keep me sane. As in, I will tend to keep thinking about only one thing (as such, I’m obsessed single mindedly about only one thing for the last few years now), which will in turn spoil my mental health. This part argues that atleast the routine of going to work will keep me occupied .

I’m not sure what to do. I’ve been in this cross roads for a long time and now, I would like to take a decision and be at peace with it.Every now and then, this thought pops up, whether I should continue to work or quit and take a break. The better half is very much open to the idea of quitting job but has left the decision making part to me. I do not know what to do. On one side, I would like to try it out, as this is one of the things that I haven’t tried yet. On the other hand, I dread being at home at a stretch , waiting for a miracle to happen. With nothing to do,(other than cooking and surfing and reading), I might tend to get more depressed. The day I find that I’ve conceived, I’m going to stop going to work, but till then, what is it that I need to do? My gynaec suggests that I don’t stress myself, but she doesn’t prevent me from going to work. She says it’s a call that I have to take. Does any of you know if staying at home is suggested by doctors for conceiving ? Does it really help? I know people have these doubts of whether to continue to work or give up after they have their babies. I’m here, not sure what is the right thing to do even while ttc. Suggestions are welcome.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

When do you learn ...?

It is my assumption that many children born into middle class/upper middle class Indian families in the 80's should have had the good fortune to obtain decent eductaion, nutritious food, roof above their heads, freinds to play with after school hours, siblings to bond with and to fight with, cousins to spend vacations joyously and grandparents who visit them regularly .Though parents would have found it difficult many a times to make ends meet, what with they having to help an uncle for his medical needs, giving some cash to a cousin for some urgent requirement on his business, keeping some jewels in the pawn shop to repay 2 months EMI, attend few functions and gift cash to the hosts, make sure the unexpected guests are fed well , (the list goes on..) the parents would have made sure that the needs and many times , the children's wants also are satisfied . Children grow up , enter good colleges, earn degrees, get placed, move up in the corporate ladder, get married , have children of their own and life goes on...

In this cycle, everyone faces problems at various times and at varying degrees of intensity. When you a child, protecting a toy from our sibling/cousin would have been a bigger problem, as a student of grade7, completing enxt days homework would have emerged a serious problem of the day, scoring good marks in public exams would have the top most and life defining priority in classes 10 and 12 ....and this list also goes on..

But, when does one learn to deal with more complex issues in life? Why do some people repsond to crisis in such a way that they have always been in crisis and dealing with them? How come some behave in times of utmost despair with a smile in their lips and courage in their hearts? Who teaches some people very early in life that there are certain things that we cannot control and just flow with what happens in life? What makes some people remain calm and composed in trying circumstances? How can a few see the silver lining in a problem then and there? How are a few people able to look into the bright side of things , consider the glass to be half full and not be bogged down by any earthquake or volcano in their lives?

When I look around friends and colleagues, (I do know some issues faced by a few of them), they all seem to have the emotional balance , they dont seem to have a bad temper, they just dont care for what othes say or think, they simply take life as it comes and not worry too much about anything..They seem to be in a peaceful state all the time.. Is it that their lives are as smooth or are they determined not to be bogged down by anything?

In my case , I seem to have put my life on hold for the last 5 years waiting for a miracle to happen and then start. I havent done anything significant eithr at work or in personal life all these years..I've been on a single minded obsession to have a baby and then start with life. All my interest , hobbies have gone under the carpet deep enough that I'm now struggling to remember what they are/were. I'm simply bogged down by all thats happening beyond my control . Where is the shirpy, enthusiatic SM?

I look at people around me..I have known people who get married, claim that they want to enjoy lives (whatever that means) for 2 years and then have a baby. And viola, after 2 years, they are in the family way, join back office after their maternity leaves. How come life happens to them as they wish., like a time-table? I know a certain others who havent been bothered about why they were not conceiving even after 5/6 years of marriage. It is definitely so nice to see them and learn lessons from them..That there is no point in whining/cribbing/putting life on hold..Children happen when they are meant to.

I do understand that there are many in the world who battle with severe/complicated problems . But, at times, when emotions well up, all the blessings that I've been bestowed upon, all the good things I have, all the grace is forgotten and gone with the wind and I end up having a rage, as to "why me??? " . From today, I'm taking an oath (i've taken and broken this oath many many times now, but nevertheless, I'm doing it again with a stronger determination) that I will be in control of my anger/emotions/rage and I'm going to take life as it comes and I'm sure the supreme power does have plans for me.

Now, why did I mention about children, growing up and such in the beginning of this post? Yeah..its is because, I'm finding it difficult to tide through these difficult times which I'm thrown into. I wouldnt say, prior to this, I'vent had problems in life, but I've tackled them and moved forward..I've always been under the impression that if one works hard (be it studying or at work), then results are deterministic. I've faced people issues, which are difficult to be solved via hard work, but have navigated throgh them. But this particular situation that I'm in is something for which I have no absolute control, but still, I'm always trying to find a solution, find ways in which things can be made to wrok the way I want to, I have a constant nagging feeling that I'm not doing something which will do the miracle and based on this feeling, I'm always antsy, susceptible to anger quickly, pick up a fight with the husband , start finding reasons /find people to blame to for all that I'm going through. On a deep introspection and from feedback from the better half/parents, I do realsie that I've been quite pampered all the while and now, when caught in a difficult situation and when I'm completely helpless, everything goes hay-wire and I loose cool very often. Thats why I wanted to know when do people learn life skills? some people seem to learn or atleast behave in such a way that they have learnt very important lessons for life right from when they were infants? Is that true? Am I the one to be overtaken by anger and the negative stuff which in turn does no good to both my physical and mental health?? Dont you get angry at all? Dont you show your rage on the better half ?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

On a bright Thursday morning..

Me; Hello Mr Know it all, Good Morning . Can I talk to you for a few minutes?
Mr.Know-It-All: regarding the battery for your laptop…
Me: No No, its not regarding the battery, but about my PC which is giving a message that I need to repair the software using the boot up CD..can you please give me the boot up Cd or let me know whom to contact to get the same?
Mr.KIA: You need to format your hard disk.
Me: I don’t think formatting is required. The machine clearly points out that some system file may be missing or corrupt and this boot-up CD will do the repair job
Mr.KIA: Even if you get the cd, you will not be able to perform the repair, because it will ask for the license key of the OS , which you do not have.
Me: I would like to anyways try doing the repair..More than half a decade worth data is in this machine , and does not have back up too.
Mr.KIA: You can consult Mr.P who sits in 2nd floor for the CD.

Phew!! Mr.KIA, You uttered “formatting is the only solution to this issue” umpteen times during the above conversation before finally letting me know the whereabouts of the boot CD. Anyways Thanks for the same. It helped me prepare for the worst . And fortunately, Mr.P was able to get my PC up and working even without the boot CD. And it was good that inspite of you coaxing me to format the hard disk, I didn’t .

Mr.P, Thank you so much for your help. You are humble enough to claim that you didn’t do anything to restore my PC to its original condition, but you are the one who saved the ~40GB data in my PC and admist people like Mr.KIA whose only solution to any PC problem is formatting the hard disk, its good to know someone who is willing to try alternate options to repair a PC.

Mr.KIA, You have been helpful in sorting out day-to-day operations/IT/commute issues for a few years now and I appreciate you sincerely for the same. We did recognize your efforts and in fact our team recommended for an extra mile award for you sometime ago. While I’m not denying how swiftly you operate to get issues solved, I would also like to mention that I hear from many that when employees contact you for any kind of PC related issues, your only solution to them is to format the hard disk. Probably, there are other options too, which will fix the problem in lesser time.

Friday, February 11, 2011

The month that was..

This is a post that I've been wanting to do 10 days ago..Anyways, better later than never..

The month, the new year dawned bright, with new resolutions and all. But, somehow, all the introspection seemed to fly out of the doors and windows the very first day when I got upset over something very silly. Still, excused myslef for that day, but still, the moodiness continued on day 2 also. However, I still didnt relent and gave myself the 2nd excuse..Went to office on Day3 , only to come back home to be wistful about when my time to be belessed with a baby was going to come..

Spent the rest of the first week speaking up and voicing my concerns to 2 of my closest friends and felt a little better at the end of first week. I was supposed to be looking out for other job opportunities, but having a baby overtook everything else and I was obsessed with it, as usual..2nd week of the previous month saw me fighting out within myself against all the negative thoughts and emotions and it was Pongal time . We attended a coleague's sisters engagement and went to parents place to celebrate Kanu Pongal and dad's star birthday. 3rd week saw me enrolling myself in a carft class , which I've been planning to attend for a loong loong time now. At work too, inspite of not doing enough work the first 2 weeks, I caught up the third week and saw me completing stuff , that too new work at jet speed . 4th week saw me planning for the upcoming trip to temples.

I was this close to enrolling for swimming classes last month, but dropped it in the last minute .

So, highlights of the month:

1) Enroling for craft class
2) learn new standard,language at work and break inertia to get work done in this area.

could have been better/ need to work on:
1) remain optimistic at the most difficult times.


Had been to the interiors of central tamilnadu to visit the family diety temples .(both the husband’s side and parents side) . Though the travel was tiring by itself, visiting the temples and of course praying the supreme power helped me be at peace with myself and with life in general. And the fact that this time, the husband didn’t make a fuss of anything which he usually does when it comes to temple visits. Probably all the prayers and temple visits that we have done so far is beginning to take an effect.

Ever since the first/second  miscarriage, both the parents and the in-laws are taking turns to visit every possible astrologer with our horoscopes to figure out if something could be done to appease the gods/goddesses/forefathers which would eventually lead to a grandchild through us for them. All the astrologers that they have visited so far have always been positive and more or less , all of them have suggested a set of temples for us to visit. In addition to that, a few of them have suggested other holy places apart from the common set. So, that leaves us with one big list of holy shirnes to visit. Since the husband is one who is simply uninclined towards religious affairs, come what may, I’m one who gets the nudge from both the parents and the in-laws. Now, I’m stuck between the elders pushing us to perform poojas and visit temples and the husband who gets irritable on forcing him to do stuff that he doesn’t like to. And needless to mention, this has been one of the main reasons for a tiff between husband and myself and on looking back, have a feeling that these tiffs have consumed most of our life so far.   

Coming back to the pilgrimage last week, I was not very sure if we could get the opportunity to go to Sri Sithadi Kathayee Amman temple, family diety of our parents , situated off Kumbakonam on the
Nagapatinam Road
. Reason being time and mil willing to travel there. Somehow, the goddess pulled us there and I was happy that we could make it. I was visiting the temple after a very long time and my emotions were running high. Spent some quality time talking to the presiding deities and left the place contended. We visited the Thiruvenkadu Budhan temple, took a holy dip in the three tanks, offered prayers, had a good lunch before proceeding towards Kathayee Amman temple. Halted at Thiruvaroor , bought all the stuff required for Abishegam at Ettukudi Subramanya Swamy temple the next day. Proceeded to the Murugan temple at around 8AM on Sunday morning, only to reach there at around 9AM and find a huge crowd of devotees in the temple. Somehow, got a time to perform abishegam , had a simple meal at the priests’ house and returned to the hotel to pack the bags and head for the train back to Bangalore.

The two day visit strengthened my hope and faith and brought in a peace. But, being a normal human being, the monkey mind (literal translation for Kurangu budhi) has started showing its ugly head and in a matter of 3 days I find myself struggling to come to terms with the happenings of everyday life ..

Thursday, February 3, 2011


This is our loot from the BBF -2010, a couple of books that are missing currently also needs to be included to this list.
The first book that I read from this loot was Known Turf by Annie Zaidi.
When M(my better half) recommended this book I wasnt too sure about wanting to read this, but nevertheless,accepted to be bought. Now, after reading it, I couldnt be more thankful to M for suggesting and purchasing the book.

This book is more an account of Annie's experiences as a journalist travelling to remote villages of India and some anecdotes from her own personal life as well.  We do get to read about the poverty , unemployment, bribery, and other issues faced by thousands living in remote corners of our country from various sources. This is also one such personal account, and while reading the book, I felt ashamed of complaining about salary hikes, office politics, inflation, etc etc. The chapters where Zaidi narrates the food scarcity ,malnourishment and how people struggle to earn even for one meal in a day, give a sense of what it means to really stuggle for survival. Though I usually don’t waste food , I resolved not to be fussy ,and be thankful for the daily bread . Any book, narration, or story that describes the harsh realities faced by many in this world, make for an opportunity for me to introspect and count my blessings. I find it terrible that I count my blessings and be thankful on reading such stories or observing the less fortunate. I would like to claim that I’m trying, trying hard to be grateful every single day irrespective of whatever happens, but somehow get caught in the mundane routine of day-to-day life . Nevertheless, one of the resolutions this year is that I’m going to continue to lessen my whines, lessen the cribs, live life one day at a time, as it comes, remain grateful for all that has been bestowed, try and help others whenever and wherever possible , and most of all, not to lose faith and hope. Let me see how far I go.

The other books that kept me glued over the last 2 months are : Arthamulla Hindumadham (done reading with almost half the book), God Father (Loved this book, why didn’t I read this earlier? I would like to read the book once more just for the character of Michael Corleone), Shall We Tell The President (I was tempted to put down this book every now and then, but in a curiosity to figure out the climax, continued and completed the book.), Kane and Abel (wonderful read, unputdownable, In the initial chapters was fascinated at the  strength and determination of Abel’s character, but once Abel started his revenge against Kane , my loyalty changed towards Kane, the letter from Curtis Fenton made my heart go weak for Kane. I wished the story ended with Kane being able to meet with his grandchildren and the story ended with “and they lived happily ever after” types.). I want tow rite a review of Kane and Abel, may be , next post.