New Beginnings…

My last post was sometime in March last year…I think…and it is only apt that I start writing again on Mother’s Day. Our son A was born early October last year and since the day I found out I was pregnant, I was simply dedicated to taking care of myself and nothing else. Time flies and he is already 7 months old.

I’ll be frank here. Becoming a mother was not on the top of my agenda after S and I got married. In fact, I was always nervous about becoming a mother. I thought it would effect my relationship with S, I’ll have to give up on many things I loved, like travelling, watching movies at the cinema, going to watch plays, or just being free…free of ‘adult responsibilities’. I kept pushing it back. I didn’t want things to change. I did not want to wake up in the middle of the night for feeds neither did I want any early morning diaper changing calls. I just wanted to be. But what scared me the most was the fact that I was quite a lazy person by nature and motherhood involves a lot of hard work. It is simply not easy.

So when I found out I was pregnant, I guess I was more nervous than happy. I had heard some scare stories of friends who had a rough pregnancy and I simply crossed my fingers and hoped nothing to go wrong. The first three months were tough. There were so many new pregnancy symptoms every week, I did not know which ones to take seriously and which ones to simply ignore (only to learn later to ignore most that did not affect my pregnancy seriously). My mistake was to browse the internet for any little blip and the information overload just scared me even more. So to all the expectant mothers out there….just chill!!! You’ll know when things are seriously wrong and if you are worried about anything….just see you doctor. Do not read any book or browse the internet to find an answer.

My mum was here, cooking for me, taking care of the house so it was a smooth ride and through out the 9 months, I just wanted one thing, for the pregnancy to go well, and to have a healthy baby.

So now that A is in our lives, how have I coped with motherhood? Have my doubts been put to rest??

YES!! In fact, I cannot imagine my life without my son, even though he’s been a part of me for just 16 months. He gives me so much happiness, so much love. His smile lifts my spirits, his tear tears my heart apart. I did not know that I had this much capacity to love someone. I thought my love for S and my parents was the limit, but A brings out this vulnerability in me that no one else can. It has not been easy though. The couple of months, we were getting used to him, and he was getting used to us and the surroundings. There were times when I thought if I could not do this….I questioned myself as a mother, I wondered if I was doing a good enough job. But now, I am a confident mother, more in sync with my son. I know what he needs and when. The sleepless nights do not disturb me any more. I am actually a sleepaholic but now I cope with minimum amount of sleep and I also end up doing all the household chores, take care of A, sometimes for a full week when S is away and I always thought I would not be able to do it.

To put in simply, having my son has been the best thing in my life so far and I would not change a thing. Yes, motherhood is not easy, but the journey is fulfilling to the heart and the soul. He completes me and I am looking forward to some exciting times ahead 🙂

Love you A!!!

Homeward bound…..

…..how I wish!!!! No, I am not going back to India but I am fighting this intense urge to pack my bags and leave UK after living here for 10 years. I HAVE HAD ENOUGH of this gloomy weather, not knowing my neighbours, not seeing people on the streets, having to switch on lights the whole day due to the lack of sunlight and most of all living alone. I was talking to my dad today and asked him why he did not advise me against going to UK for my education when they had lived abroad for more than 10 years, surely they must have know how it was going to be. His answer was simple, I wanted you to experience it. Sure, I did. I learnt to work whilst studying, to live independently, to keep up my self-respect and dignity which might not have happened if I studied in India. But after 10 years, after all the things I’ve learnt, I want to go back.

I read some blogs about people contemplating to go back after living in UK/US for many many years and everyone’s concerned of how it might. Some are nervous about job prospects, some about the traffic, some corruption…everyone’s got their reasons….but let me tell you this….GO BACK IF YOUR HEART IS IN INDIA. Some of us will get to a stage in our lives when we’ll start missing the pollution of India, the cows on the roads, the traffic, the intense heat…and this is when I think is the right take to make ‘that’ decision 😉 Sure, we all miss our families back home…but it is when you miss the ‘not so nice things’ about India…that you are ready to pack your bags.

Last year, I was in India for 6 months. By the end of my holiday, it felt like I was living there and I was visiting UK. I didn’t want to leave at all. I won’t say that my holiday was all hunky dory….there were pros and cons….but the good thing about the holiday was…it gave me an insight into how life in India has changed since 2001 (when I first left). Prices have gone up….even a simple OLAY moisturising cream will cost you more than 500 bucks….parking tickets no less than 100, food prices…..don’t even get me started on this…..snide remarks from men on the streets 😉 and the disrespectful manner in which superiors treat the people who work under them. These are just some of the things I find difficult to digest….but you’ll get used to it eventually. It took me six months to soak myself back again into ‘Indian Culture’ which isn’t that long really. When the time came for me to leave….it was difficult. I was part of the system by then. When it was time to leave, It felt like 2001, the first time I left India and everyone I knew and moved to a new country….the only difference being….I was excited then….in 2009….I was sad. Nothing about returning to UK excited me….S was here and that was the only reason I wanted to to be back.

Most of my friends in UK have always told me that they’ll go back some day but no one has managed to. I always wondered why. There must be a strong reason which is keeping them here? Will I make the same mistake? If the day came when I’ve had enough and wanted to leave….I should be able to pack my bags and LEAVE….simple.

So what is it that has made me think so hard about going back? Let me tell you. I am a social animal. I need people around me all the time. I absolutely hate living alone. Unlucky me, the job market in the UK is crap….so it’s been quite difficult to find a job. I do not know if I’d want to go back if I had a 9-5 job. So anyway, for now it is S and I….we know a few neighbours and most of our friends are scattered all over UK. I barely see anyone on the streets…it’s quite odd. As a student, this was not the case. I lived in halls so you always saw someone. It is this feeling of being alone that annoys me everyday. In India, you at least have a maid who comes home everyday, the ‘phoolwala’, the vegetable vendor, the ‘sweetwala’ etc etc. It is this constant flow of people I miss. Oh….how enjoyable it was…watching my mom bargain with the ‘sweetwala’.

Your priorities change when you have kids. I don’t have any but since most of my friends do….I always end up asking them…..why do you guys still live the UK??? I see most women just stay at home once they have children. All the child gets to see is the mother and the father…and some friends who occasionally visit them but is that enough??? Since the husband goes to work….it is the wife who has to take care of everything….her world revolves around her child and all the child does is climb up the stairs and roll down ….since he/she cannot go out and play because of the disgusting weather. How boring must it be? But somehow they manage. Recently, I offered to help a friend’s son study in the evening. I asked him to bring home some of his books. Apparently, they do not have any. Whatever they need is online…..or something like that. His mom had to buy some books in a store to help him study….it was her initiative. Most of us complain about the burden Indian students are put through in schools…I agree….it is a lot….we can get some sanity into the number of books a child has to carry to school….but no books at all?????

Most of all, when I see my friends kids growing up here….without their grandparents, aunts and uncles….I wonder if they will ever have the ‘family structure’ that most of us had growing up. Family is the most important influence on young people. Meeting your grandparents, visiting them on holidays, going out with your cousins, celebrating birthdays, visiting your uncles and aunts….this is all important….isn’t it??? Because at the end of the day….you might have shit loads of money….a career to die for…but if you do not have family…..it’s not worth a single penny. I would want my children to grow up in front of their grand parents. I will not be happy with 6 month visits (which is in the hands of VFS Chennai) or a phone call when my baby starts walking….or his/her first day of school. If it’s a sports day….I want it to be a family affair….I want my children to have the opportunity of playing cricket or football or what ever they wish OUTSIDE….not just stay indoors and play stupid video games. That is how I grew up. I want them to have a ‘proper family’….not just a mother and a father.

I have so many wishes and so much optimism for the future. Not all plans work out the way we want them to…..and not all dreams come true….but I DON’T WANT TO GIVE UP ON THIS ONE!

A Wishlist

I made my first wishlist some 4 years ago and lost it and did not bother to write one until few days ago. My first wishlist had long-term goals/aspirations etc etc….nothing that could be achieved in the foreseeable future so this time I made it a point to add some short-term goals. For example, one of the items’ on my wishlist is to watch an Indian ODI match and hopefully, it will happen this August. We’ve already bought our tickets and now hoping that it doesn’t rain in Manchester that day 😀 If everything goes well, I’ll be able to strike that off my list and I will start working towards the next one.

Another item on my wishlist is to experience eagle-flying. For me, an eagle is one of the most majestic creatures’ ….regal and warrior-like. I am presuming it won’t be long before I fulfil this wish of mine. During Summer, many Zoos in UK will give its visitors an opportunity to experience this first hand. So now, it’s a matter of change in the seasons 🙂

Some of the other things on my wishlist, both long-term and short-term…

A Rolex for S

Diamonds and Rubies…my favourite gem stones. A necklace will do just fine 😀

My one and only ‘love machine’

A World Tour for the family

and last but by no means the least……

…..128.54-carat Tiffany Diamond Ring…which the husband can buy for me 😀

Hopefully, I’ll be able to strike out a few items before I am 50???

Do you guys and girls have wishlist that you’d like to share?

I need….

Today is one of those days when I am totally totally out of it for no apparent reason. Some days it is just so gloomy. You feel like things will never brighten up. Nothing good will ever happen to you etc etc. No motivation….no inspiration. Missing home just adds to it. I need sun…I need holiday…I need people around me…and their chitter chatter. I need the tele a really high volume…I need people the noise of utensils in the kitchen and I need kids crying. I NEED HOME.

Life ante….vedi vedi pakoda with chai….

….annantha simple ga unte entha bagundu 😀 Sorry…I had to write this post in telugu and english to retain its essence. The weather could be the reason behind this post…or the lack of noise on the streets…or the chatter of people. It’s dull, it’s gloomy….almost dark…and it’s just 4 and supposedly the middle of summer. Just one of those days when I miss home 😦

Podunne pani pilla sarduthu chese sabdam tho lese feeling okati…pin drop silence tho lese feeling inkokati. Mummy kitchen lo help cheyii cheyii ante cheyyanu cheyyanuu antu maha rani laaga day begin ayyedi india lo. Manchi coffee tho news paper browsing….tv channels marchinde marchi…suthi kottinantha varaku…anni channels lo almost yoga gurincho lekapothe lucky stones and best Gods gurinchi. Naalugu thitlu thitti vallani….mummy tharimithe freshen up avvatam. Evaro okaru vachi vellatam…vallatho kaburlu…friends…eating out…walking on necklace road…going to the near by mall…to a book store probably…cursing the traffic…the auto drivers…the guys who purposely rub themselves against you while walking…so on and so forth. Rojulo oka vanda sarlaina politicians ni, TV channels ni definite ga thittukovatam….maali ade tv channels chudatam 😀 Flats lo unte adi inko sarada…evening kalla poolu amme vaadu…snacks amme vaadu raavatam….vaadi venta watch man padatam ‘kaiku aaya re yahaan…kisne permission diya teruku’ antu 😀

There are so many things wrong about India. I can point out at least 10 different things just about today. I sometimes tell S that I never want to go back..that is how angry I get. My parents tell me not to come back. They say life is difficult in India…’manushula manasulu roju roju ki kalushitam authunnayi’ – mummy’s wise words 😀 But day’s like today….I miss home so much 😦 I miss the gulmohar trees…I miss the Irani chai with biscuits…the pani puri…I miss the smell of earth after the first drops of rain…I miss standing in our balcony and looking at road that is ever changing…we could once see the Hussain Sagar from our balcony…but all I see now are tall buildings. A new fly-over’s come up…feel like it’s right outside our flat.

I have forgotten what it means to have neighbours. Here, I do not know who lives next door…there’s no exchange of curries 😉 no bringing babies over…no checking out each others shopping. Aren’t we supposed to be social animals??

We’ll be travelling to India next month…just for a few weeks though…and it’s will terribly busy…but looking forward to it.

May be tomorrow, it it’s sunny, you might see a really cheerful post from me 😀

Ciao 🙂

Channel 4 and its Love Affair with the Slums of Mumbai

OK…at first when I saw a bunch of  Indians (and cows) getting out of a truck in their various outfits, holding variety of props…I had my doubts of how this Indian winter would turn out on Channel 4 and wallahh….it’s lived up to my expectations. It’s totally crap!!! What’s with channel 4 and its love affair with slums. Gimme a break but India is not all slums and stray dogs. I am not saying channel 4 should not show the slums at all, but I guess one program should’ve been enough. But no, the season started off with Slumdog Millionaire the movie, and then Kevin McCloud Slumming It, and Slumdog Secret Millionaire with Seema Sharma and The Slumdog Children of Mumbai. There’s just one show that appealed to me in this season and that is Gordon Ramsay’s The Great Escape. Watched the first episode yesterday and I really liked it. His trip to Lucknow and his meeting with the really old muslim chef (whose name I cannot remember now) was fantastic…and the biriyani…wow!

But enough with the slums already! India is not all slums and open drains and cows roaming about on the roads. There is so much more. Discovering Indian food is a step in the right direction. It is so diverse. Every state has its own cuisine. Classical dance of India, like its food, is unique to the states. The history of India is immense. The architecture of India does not end with the Taj Mahal…there is so much more…like Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh, Sun Temple in Orissa, the Meenakshi Temple in Tamil Nadu, Golconda Fort in Hyderabad just to name a few.

We really don’t need Kevin McCloud and Seema Sharma slumming it out for us to understand the problems of the slum dwellers. Though I really appreciate what they are doing…I think most of us already know that dreadful conditions these people live in. It is good if we can help but please please do not portray India as a country of slums. If you cannot resist, then at lease show some positives along with the negatives. I think Slumdog Millionaire did its jobs well when it comes to slums and Mumbai. We do not need anymore!!

Arrgh! Boredd!!

Ok…I don’t have anything to do..and I am terribly bored…don’t ask me why I did not update my blog when I did not have anything else to do..I was just sooo lazzyyy!! Is it the weather?? The dull dulll weather…always grey….sometimes so gray that I have to switch on the lights by 10AM in the morning…or is it the rain…that starts just when I want to go out? It’s everything! Just annoying me soo muchh!!! I look out of my window for some inspiration…motivation and all is see is this brown and grey building and lots of rain X( C’mon already weather Gods…show us some respite…we’ve had enough of this disgusting weather!!! Infact, I was so loww this whole month that I was seriously considering going back to India…just because it’s sunny there…or even to LA 😛 ahh I don’t know…just messed up in the upper compartment.

But the good news is that I am trying to fix it…hence this effort to kick start my blog again….I want to update my photoblog aswell but I currently have no proper photo editing software since the new laptop came and it’s totally annoying…I don’t know..everything annoys me these days…the only thing I look forward to in the day is when hubby dear returns home…but then..time flies as usual and it’s already next day…Grrr!!!

Hybby dear and I travelled to Italy for a week and it was totally awesome! Wish I was on a holiday the whole year…hehee but then I would definitely get bored of holidaying. My mind is wandering too much these days…just cannot concentrate on one single thing…one minute i feel like reading about project management and the next minute I want to do a course in animation 😀 One minute I am writing and the next minute I stop everything I am check my e-mail even though I checked it 30 secs ago… :-/ There…I just did it.. X(

Anyways, today is a new day…and started it well ‘cuz I put in the effort to update my blog…just have to continue it now..

Ciao peeps