Joy in the little things of Life!!

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Potter, Writer, Blogger, Quiller, Avid Reader, Chatter Box, Traveller, Foodie, photo crazy, Orchid lover, FB addict, and an enthusiast.... I work on extremes... You'll either find me laughing insanely or discussing something seriously serious.... I suffer from a laughter disorder...I am a lover of arts and crafts and anything that's colorful, bright and beautiful which includes my plants and my little lovely birdies... I am a mad friend, an insane daughter, a crazy wife and an unconventional sister... I choose to love, laugh and live!! My smile is contagious....So be careful :)

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Road Lies Ahead!!

 His Guru was meditating. One of the disciples told him to wait, but Madhav was very impatient. He kept on looking at his watch. He knew soon it will be time for the evening prayers (aarti) in the ashram. The temple bell rang and the prayers began. He waited for the prayers to get over so that he can meet his beloved guru. His impatient wait was noticed by his Guru. Madhav’s face was narrating a story and his guru took no time to understand that something was wrong with Madhav. After the prayer was completed he took Madhav to his room so that both of them can talk peacefully.

  Guruji, Madhav began, “I am tired of my life. I have given up and wish to die. I see no light ahead of me. My business partner cheated on me, my own brother threw me and my family out of the house, my kids are hungry and I have no money to feed them. I feel cheated from everyone. I have no one to help me. I am unable to see the road ahead, there lies darkness. I have lost control over my life. I see myself falling at every step. I have lost faith in God. You are my last hope, please guide me. I need help”. Madhav broke in to tears. His guru looked at him and said” the road to our ashram is damaged badly and needs repairing. I am planning to fix it tomorrow morning. Will you help me? Madhav was stunned at this. He wanted guidance from his Guru and his Guru was talking about the road repair. But Madhav respected his guru so he agreed to help him.

 The next morning he met his guru to fix the road. Madhav, his guru said, “we need to start the work. First of all, you will have to place the mud on the road to make it even. But remember while doing this you can’t look in front, you have to look behind. You have to mend the entire road while looking behind.” Madhav was astonished and said with a trembling voice, “guruji that is not possible. How can I repair the road if I look behind?” Guruji simply smiled and said” Do as I say”. Madhav’s love for his guru was beyond everything. He decided to honor his orders.

The work began and as per his guru’s directions Madhav looked at the back while he reconstructed the road. After every two steps, he would fall down and hurt himself. Every fall resulted in reduced tolerance and increased pain. Finally Madhav decided to give up.” Guruji, he cried out in pain, I can’t do this anymore. We have to fix a damaged road. It is not possible to do this while I look behind. The road is uneven with stones on it. If I have to renovate it, I have to look ahead”. His guru came to him and said, “Yes my son, there lies your answer. This is exactly what you have been doing. You say you can’t see the road ahead. It is because you have been looking behind, at your past, which hurts you. And every time you fall it hurts all the more. And then you give up and blame God for your own folly. How can you see the opportunities that lie in the future if you keep looking at your failures of the past? Until and unless, you look forward you will never be able to fix the damage in the path of your life. God has the best in store for you, but have to leave your past behind. Look ahead, the road to your future lies ahead.”

Madhav fell at his guru’s feet. He felt choked and had no words. His guru had indeed shown him the way and the future appeared clear to him. He decided to conceal his past and fix his damaged road, not by peeping into his past but by looking ahead. This was after all, the road to his bright future.

As Featured On EzineArticles 

Friday, December 24, 2010

The Secret Santa!!

She was decorating her Christmas tree. The smile on her innocent face was worth watching. She picked up every little festoon with care and wrapped the tree with love. She was excited about Christmas. It was not only Christmas but her 8th birthday too. The excitement was about the secret that her granny promised to reveal. It was some secret about Santa. Last Christmas her granny promised that she would reveal the secret on her 8th birthday. She was just about to finish when her little sister Clara called out to her, “Nancy come soon, Granny is here”. Nancy left the tree half bedecked and rushed to her sister. Grand Ma is here, yay!!yay!!yay!!yay!! she sang on her marathon towards the door. Nancy loved her granny. The 2 reasons why she loved Christmas were her beloved Santa Claus and her darling Granny, Mary.

  Grand Ma hugged Nancy and Clara and tears rolled down her cheeks. She was meeting her lovely grandchildren after a year. Both kids held their granny by her hand and welcomed her in. The excitement of the secret was evident in her bright sparkling eyes. “I remember my promise”, Granny smiled and told Nancy. Nancy was waiting for this day. The wait was long, very long but she knew it was worth. “Kids, granny has travelled a long way and needs rest. Let her take a nap” said Amy, Nancy’s mother. The kids left the room and got back in to the tree and its decoration. But Nancy was lost in the thought of the secret, that granny will reveal before the midnight mass.

   The tree was up and ready and Clara was excited to hang her stocking to it. She wanted a toy train for Christmas and she knew Santa will drop it in there. She hung the stocking to the tree and looked at Nancy, “what do you want for Christmas?” Clara interrogated.”I will tell you once I get it”, replied Nancy showing no interest in Clara or her little stocking. She kept on scribbling something on a piece of paper. “Nancy, are you there? Granny called out to her. Nancy rushed towards the voice. “Yes Granny, I am here. The Christmas tree is also ready and so am I for the secret”, Nancy replied hurriedly.

   Granny took Nancy to the porch and both of them sat on a small wooden plank nearby. Nancy, granny began. Today I will answer your question that you asked over the dinner during last Christmas. You wanted to know, who is Santa Claus? Where does he come from? Where does he go? Why he never meets us? Right? Nancy replied yes with a nod. She believed her Granny knew the secret about her beloved Santa Claus. Granny continued,” You are a Santa Claus”. Me???? Nancy exclaimed.” Yes my child, you are Santa and so am I. Even your mother is a Santa and so is your father”. Grand ma stopped for a while, she knew Nancy’s tiny little brain will take some time to process this newly fed information. Is Clara a Santa too Granny? Nancy curiously asked. Yes she is, answered Granny.

 Nancy stood on the plank and looked up. She couldn’t believe she was “the Santa Claus” and there were not one but many in her home too. Granny, she began, “I don’t have a long beard and neither can I fly. Where is my sledge? I have no gifts to give. And believe me both mom and dad cannot be Santa Claus too, they stay with me all night when Santa Claus comes and drops the presents in the Christmas tree”.

  Granny held little Nancy in her arms and said” oh my innocent little Santa, I will explain how. Do you know what the most important duty of a Santa Claus is? Nancy was confused and nodded a NO. It was getting complicated for her. I will tell you, said Granny and she began” Santa Claus brings gifts for all of us. He brings joy and smiles to our faces. He fulfills our wishes but he never waits for us to thank him. He comes, gives the present and leaves. This teaches us 3 most important things in life. One, always be the reason for everyone’s happiness, two, try and help people in their need and three don’t expect people to thank you for anything that you do for them. Be humble and share joy with everyone. If you do this, you will be a Santa Claus and will be loved by all”. Does that mean, we should not thank Santa Claus for the gifts? No my child, you should not forget to thank your Santa Claus. When you thank him, you actually thank God for the gift and this way you can express your love for your secret Santa and the Almighty God too.

  Nancy tried hard to understand this and articulated all that her little mind could identify with, “Granny that means Mom and dad are my Secret Santa? Because they always make me happy, bring me gifts, they fulfill my wishes and sometimes even though I forget to thank them, they still love me”. “You are right my child”, agreed Granny. “Parents are our best Santa Claus, they bring us up and even though we forget to thank them, they never stop loving us. Similarly, we also have to inculcate the qualities of Santa Claus and become like him. God has made one Secret Santa for everyone, because he loves us. You could also be someone’s Secret Santa, this Christmas”. Before Granny could complete, the little kid questioned, how? Granny wanted Nancy to bring her piggy bank. Nancy obediently brought it and informed Granny that she has been saving money for a toy, which she is going to buy for Christmas this year.

    Granny thought for a while and said, Nancy what if you don’t buy the toy for Christmas?” “I want to buy it; I have been saving for it” cried little Nancy. Granny knew it was difficult to persuade the kid. She thought for a while and asked Nancy who was her best friend at school. Marc, replied Nancy with a sad voice. “And why do you like him?” Granny asked with an intention to know more. I like him because he plays with me and is very kind to me. He helps me complete my homework and also teaches me how to ride a bicycle. But you know Granny he wears very old shoes, they are a little torn. Children at school laugh at him. Mom says his family is poor. His father lost his job and his mother cannot buy him shoes”. Nancy explained and granny listened with all the patience. When Nancy finished, granny asked Nancy, “Do you really like him?” Yes nodded Nancy. Granny put across another question; “Do you feel bad when children laugh at him?” Nancy nodded yes again. Granny brought the 3rd question; “do you want to be his Santa Claus?” Nancy jumped and said, yes Granny.

  The little kid understood what her Granny was trying to say. But Granny she said in a soft tone” I don’t have enough money to buy him shoes. Shoes are costly. Will you lend me money to become a Santa Claus? Granny felt proud of her thoughtful grand-daughter and nodded in agreement. “Let’s go and buy the shoes for Marc”. She said “But who will take it to Marc? I don’t want Marc to thank me, I am his secret Santa. I want him to be happy but I don’t want to him to know this”. Granny smiled and looked at Nancy; she knew her little grand daughter was a noble soul. This must be the reason that she shared her birthday with God’s only son, Jesus. “Don’t worry child, your secret Santa will do it for you”. Granny tried explaining the little angel.

  Nancy and granny bought a lovely pair of shoes for Marc. Nancy felt happy that she had become a secret Santa to her best friend. It was time for mid-night mass and the family got ready to go to church. After the mass was over granny met the priest at church and handed over the present to him. She narrated the entire story to him and said, “This is a gift from Marc’s secret Santa, for Marc. I request you to give it to Marc. Please do not tell him anything about Nancy”. The priest was surprised and said, “Blessed is your granddaughter and blessed is your family to have her. I will give it to Marc and believe me Nancy is god’s beloved child.“ Granny smiled at this and left.

  The celebrations for Christmas began and the place was filled with colors of joy, laughter and warmth. The next morning Nancy woke up and found a gift next to her with a note which read, Your Santa is proud of you and I hope you will continue to be the secret Santa for all those in need, always. I have delivered your gift to Marc. God bless you my child. Merry Christmas and a very happy birthday Nancy!! Her little eyes sparkled with joy and she opened the gift. To her surprise she found the same toy that she wanted to buy for Christmas.” Grand Ma, look what my Santa gave me”. Grand Ma was baking the cake and she knew what Nancy was talking about. After all she was her darling Granddaughter’s Secret Santa. “Granny, I got the toy. My Santa knew and brought it for me. Thank you Santa Claus and I love you”. She jumped with joy. Nancy ran around the house with her toy and so did little Clara, her Santa bought a toy train for her.

  The same evening Nancy was celebrating her 8th birthday and all her friends joined in her in the merriment. Her dear friend Marc was also a part of the fun. He wished Nancy a very happy birthday and said with a grin on his face, “You know Nancy, last night my Santa gifted me new shoes” and he pointed towards his shoes. Nancy looked at her granny who stood behind her and both of them smiled. 

Merry Christmas!!

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Letter to my Mom!!

Dear Maa,

I obviously don’t remember the first time I spoke and what was it that I verbalized first. Though now I have mastered the art of talking and can babble on for hours together, without getting exhausted. I guess I got it from you, though I am your improvised version (that simply means I talk some 20,000 words more than you do: P). I remember dad telling me once, I first uttered “Mumma or Maa” or something like that and I have no reason to disagree to it. You were the first person I knew when I was born. You were the first face that I saw and the prettiest too when I opened my eyes to this world and its novelty. You still remember my first smile and the unending cries that only stopped when I slept. You must have stayed awake all night to be there with me, for me, as you always do. I have known you for 26 years now and you have known me for 26 years+ nine months. Today as you turn 53, I want to wish you a very happy birthday. I know you couldn’t talk much because you are with my Nani (your darling mom) and wanted to spend time with her. I understand Maa.I really do

 I have always been close to you (dad, you know I love you too). I have seen you through all the up’s and downs that life had to throw at you. I am the witness of your battles and your victory too. Yet, when I praise you why do you always say, it’s all Gods plan. I did nothing; he gave me the strength and the guidance too? I wonder how many of the so called beings would have this humility and attribute their deeds to HIM? Not many, I am sure. I believe every mom is special in her own way and every mom deserves to be one. For all obvious reasons, I feel you are the best mom in the world. I couldn’t have got anyone better than you. Who would understand me so well without me making an effort to do so? As a believer of the karmic philosophy, I know I have you because I am sure I must have done something good in the past. 

Maa, you know you play many roles in my life. You are my buddy when I wish to share or gossip (yes, I know you dislike gossiping), my divine guru when I seek help on matters that trouble me, my teacher when I have to learn to drape a saree (I still call you every time I have to wear one), my partner in crime when I am all set to play a prank and the best girlfriend when I need sympathy over my lost ear-ring or the broken vase ( look I can’t explain how things fall and break on their own). You remain the inseparable and the most beautiful part of my life. I have spent more than 24 years with you, in the same house and I know for a fact how difficult it must be for you. And especially, when most of the things I do and think are rot, unconventional and non sense. But who wants sense anyway, I love my daughter, you remember you said this once?

I really don’t know when I fell in love with you and your ways. I guess that must have been when I first inhaled the atmospheric oxygen in. I have disagreed to you almost every time and yet I am your best buddy, ain’t I? Bringing up 3 children, all different from each other must not have been easy for you, especially because you were a working woman. But Maa you did a great job. It’s not me who is saying this. You remember my senior colleague from the states who said exactly the same? Or let me put it in her words, “I am glad I met you Khushboo. I would love to meet your parents and congratulate them for bringing up such a strong and thoughtful daughter”. I hope somewhere that makes you and dad proud.And let me tell you, both of you are the best parents of this world.

I agree that I am biased towards you but that does not take away the fact that I adore you for what you are. You have made sacrifices for all of us in the family but you never boasted about it. You have always been selfless and never expected anything from anyone. I guess that is the reason that you are flourishing today and leading a happy life. I know you had your share of downs and it is because of your patience and perseverance that we made it till here. You never gave up and taught us the same. 
 Do you remember the way I cried when you refused to accompany me for my admission when I was a teenager? I was very upset but it is only now that I realize that it was for my good. Had you not let me drive on my own, I wouldn’t have become an independent and strong girl, the way I am today.

I remember you telling me once, If you manage to be honest to four people, you will always be honest with everyone-Mom, Dad, God and my own self. I have kept your words and you know it well. I strongly believe mothers are perfect and the only reason I believe this, is you. You are perfect in everything you do, in every thought and action. I know you will again attribute it to your spiritual inclination and your bond with babaji, but for me, it is you. It is you who has shown me and Rakesh the spiritual path that we tread on today. Only God has a heart to forgive everything and you have a similar heart. I am still learning from you, you know what I mean.

I can write pages about you, but something’s best unsaid. I already have tears in my eyes. And I know you have it too. See, I am so much like you. On your 53rd birthday on behalf of your 3 naughty children, I want to thank you for everything that you did for us. A thank you is nothing when I compare it to all that you have done and have been doing for us. But it is just a way to tell you that we love you. I wish to be like you, someday , and I know it is not that easy. But you taught me to keep trying.

Wish you a very happy birthday Maa!! May the year ahead be full of joy and smiles J

Your crazy daughter – Khushboo ( Khushi )

P.S. Please tell dad I love him alot and will write a letter for him too. He is the best father.

(As written on 29th Nov 2010)