A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)


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An Ingénue and The Kurumbi

…that’s her. French frills, Malayalee goondaaism and a healthy dose of Bhopali Bindaas! Who else, but the resident whirlwind of a wisp of a lass, Naira, who celebrates her birthday today!

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Last year, I missed all the major ones, with the wee sprites. This year, it was almost a hit and miss, but I got in, just in the nick of time with the Senior N. (here) and here I am, with the one for the Junior N.

Naina is the Senior, and Naira the Junior. Naina is all Princess, Perspicacious, Precocious and Naira is all action, tornado, and unstoppable, in the same years that Naina went through!

Their father, Arjun, my first born, the Sun Child, as I call him (Link) was a tiny roller coaster of a child growing up – this one, Naira, his second born, is definitely his alter ego of those days!

A charmer, these days, she’s had her own schedule of doing things, and once she decided she would, she wasted no time getting totally into it! First, it was turning over on her tummy, then getting up on fours, walking, putting out her first teeth… she’s been on her own clock.

The last time I saw her and hugged her, she was getting the hang of words (she took the longest time to say something she could anyway, just to tease me – the word being Ammummaaa! ) That was the last week of February. These days we meet virtually, and she delights me with her string of words, complete sentences… all with the Naira-only-attachment at the end of it all .. alle. So, it’s ice-cream-alle, or doo-dooo-alle… much like Marathi, I do believe 😀

But yes, almost three months without meeting me, she still hasn’t forgotten her Ammummaaa… and gives me a replica of toothy grin that I give her, proceeding thereafter to make faces, which I mimic! This year’s birthdays, of both my N grandotties, I have missed being there, but yes, knowing they are comfortable, safe and healthy is enough celebration, in these uncertain and trying times!

Her mother usually calls out for her, when I ask for her, saying “Mashuuuu…. Ammumma alle, come come….” She runs to the phone. On the other hand, the older one is more sedate and full of news about how the Corona virus will go after 17 May, which, incidentally, is tomorrow no? Sigh!

What’s your name? I ask little N. And she gives me her look and says Maashuuuu… (there’s a back story to this – and you’ll understand only if you have seen Masha and the Bear, a Russian cartoon strip about this tiny girl, wearing a headscarf, and the lovable bear who cares for her, and puts up with all of her mischief! Masha became Mashuuu… given her predilection for Masha-like feats and naughtiness 😛 Oh my, she’s the best goonda ever!

Last year she was two, and this was written nearly three months later:

Ingénue, or The Kurumbi

Makes you think of this lovely lass,

Full of sass, interesting, errr, unpredictable?

Well that’s who she is, both innocent, and a goonda

The one, THE one, who has us all, going awwww…

Or O M G, get herrrrrrrr…. before she… errr

The air is then suddenly filled with any of these…

Silence, shrieking, or laughter of the open mouthed variety!

 

That, dear folks, is Naira, who’s two this May (2019)

Who this blog has introduced last year, on time

And this year, came by a tad late… The rambler

That wacky soul, here, was overwhelmed, up against

A mountain of stuff, that’s her excuse,

But glad all the same, that she’s here this day,

Having climbed that mountain, and let the forest

Of possibilities be, no weeding out, only growing

And moving onwards, inspired by this grandottie of hers

 

Naira. That Shining Soul. That unputdownable Sprite.

The one whose whole self lights up her soul

In the sudden smiles she gifts, and the (now)

Ammummmaaaaaa, mmmuuummmmaaaa

She bestows. She’s that rather happy, delighted

Delightful soul, who’s been given that space and love

To be who she is. Just who she is.

And my wish is just that…

A ton of blessings, prayers, charmed spells and flights of fancy, all the light and love to make a year of the most precious things glow steadfast in your memory, my dearest darling! My dearestest Goonda, my Nairakutty – Happy wala birthday to you!

3 August, for 16 May, 2019

Her First Birthday Blog

2018: https://ushus.wordpress.com/2018/05/16/one-and-the-show-has-just-begun/ 


I wish I could give you that squishy hug right now, and tell you how much I love you Nairakutty! I miss seeing you go … Ammumma, nam nam alle… and phone alle… and Dancey dancey alle… I love you baby! Stay blessed and and awesome as your sister and parents! Mwaaaahhhh!!!

 

16 May, 2020

 

 


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Five and Six…

… double bonanza – of double birthday wishes, because it’s always time, to do the right thing! It’s the 28th of March, Her Day – Naina is six this day (still 28th in India 🙂 as I write this in, all the way across the South Indian Ocean, from a city that is on the shore of the South Pacific Ocean, Sydney, to be precise!)

It’s the first birthday of hers that I am missing, owing to the fact that I am far away, and perhaps even if I were closer, it might have been due to the current stay-at-home lockdown, owing to the health crisis that the world at large faces, wherever they be.

What do I say, of her, whom I’ve probably spoken of, endlessly, in pictures and words? That she’s her own lovely person? Articulate, creative, bubbly, slightly bossy, and at the same time a pushover too! She makes me realize, each day, each moment I spend with her, that life holds such promise, such delight, should we just look at the rainbow, instead of hunting for that elusive pot of gold, at the end; that having fun is what life is about, and not boring stuff like solving problems, and doing homework! 😛

It has been a few months now, that she has become a rather fluent reader! I am not quite sure how that happend, but I sure am pretty chuffed that she discovered the magic that lies in the pages of a book, in the words that form in sounds letters make, and meaning dawns, along with a surge of joy that whooshes with the wondrous wave of understanding them! She’s perhaps one of the youngest confident readers I know, and I thank whatever powers that be, that she discovered it early enough, without even having been coaxed into it! Must be the genes of her parents, which in turn… ahem!! 😀 I cannot not take credit for that even no? A sample below, from January, 2019. She was in Class 1.


I could go on and on… but I’ll let what I wrote on her fifth birthday, last year, speak for me, for it says all I want to this year too, and then some! Happy sixth, Naina darling! You shall ever be the shining star on my horizon, night or day, and I love you with all of my heart and soul! Stay blessed. Stay awesome! ❤

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Her Fifth Birthday – A very Woke One!

A random selection of pictures above, from today, when they stayed home and had a cosy time!

Onward now to the blog I had written over a few months, for last year 🙂 

28 March, 2019.

That morning of 28th March five years ago, was, seemingly, another, usual one, but I’d like to think of that update I posted on Facebook as part of my #magicalmornings as the indicator that it was also to be the most special one – the morning when Love whooshed in with the wee little baby gifted to us – Little Naina, who, right now, ain’t so little no more, having just turned five, growing by leaps and bounds, but, at the heart of it all, still that same baby gathered into our fold of uncompromising and fierce affection!

Grandchildren aren’t just an adorable lot of young people who make you feel good. Very often I’ve thought they’re that chance we have at getting parenting right, with copious amounts of love, laughter and LIFE with all its quirks and questions! The parents have the conn (in submarine speak, Denzel Washington ishtyle), but we get to execute our little games and plans, in cahoots with them grand kids.

And is she grand or what!! Both she and her sister are! (At some point literacy and curiosity are going to come together, to read what Ammumma monkey has been writing all these years, and I already sense ruffled feathers when the First of the N sisters and the Second of the N sisters decide to compare notes, of the blogs 😛 )

Continued on 12 April, ’19 – her Dad’s birthday 😀 – because that finicky monster within will not let me proceed to his blog, without finishing what I started, and also because I got to, duh. It’s Naina’s day too 😀 )

On the note of the kids comparing notes, I have ceased to wonder how these babies grow so fast, and I have moved on to thanking the powers that be that they are happy, healthy, growing with kindness and patience (the grown ups they know have it, the second one, they’re well, picking up, let’s say? 😛 ), growing as kids do, with questions, insouciance, mischief, and lots of love. Loads and loads of love that simply grows each day, as much as and sometimes more than they do. That’s the constant 🙂

Case in point, this Ammumma has discovered she’s just a petulant kid too, on occasion, when she has these sessions with Naina! Things escalate (buzzword of the day, check!) and these two, grandottie and Ammumma, and then, bam! Pyrotechnics, all over the place 😛 Like I mean, she throws these orders around, and tells me to never visit her again, that I can walk on them railway tracks ALL the way back to Thrissur…. And me saying FINE! Let your parents come, and I’LL GO! Cripes, thinking back cracks me up and at the same time squeezes my heart, so filled with love, laughter and poignancy, am I 🙂 Of course, a little time later, she sneaks into my lap and tells me, Sorry Ammumma, it’s just that sometimes I’m so ANGRYYYY! I say sorry too, and we hug, long and hard… It gives me redemption, this, for all those times I couldn’t say sorry, or allow my kids to say all of those things, and that is huge. Every such occasion, and believe me, for all the love and laughter and merry making we share, we have our such moments, these little little meltdowns, which actually give both of us a lot of release of pent up stuff!!

Learning lessons each day, we are. May we always do that. And may this carry over into other spheres, for both of us. 🙂

Naina, I guess you and I are soulmates (I hope you do not gag when you discover this years on 😛 ) – there’s this way somehow that we get on the same wavelength (what it says of her mental age and mine is … ahem, rather complimentary for both of us, as I see it 😛 😛 ) – I know we’d have recognized each other, and we still shall, no matter where our souls go next ❤ (Naira, if/when she reads this, at this point, is going to go rather mad, but let’s sail that ocean a bit later 😛 ) I mean, yesterday, when we went out, just Naina and I, to Payyanur town, to Oliver Brown (that’s a shop 😛 ) to get a cake for Arjun, she needed to go, you know GO 😀 I suggested the roadside, but she politely refused saying it’s so Gandaaa 😀 Then she insisted I drive home really fast like Arjun did, because I have to catch a su-suuu 😛 😀 What do I tell you of the uproarious laughter that accompanied us all the way, and I mean all ALL the way home! It’s still a miracle that the su-suuu didn’t leak out with all the laughter! No accidents, of any sort happened that day, rest assured!

Contd., on 2 August, 2019

The writer’s block has decided to let me have a window, rather symbolically, this, and pun intended and all that, on my laptop, 😛 😛 to finish Naina’s long overdue blog, four months on – just to prove that each day is a lovely birthday!

So here goes, darling Ickle Naina (not so much ickle but the icklest you’ll always be, for me! ❤ )

Post 27 April, I can say with all my heart, I love you 3000 and more, and always will! This one is for you, my darling – and it’s never too late to celebrate you, or early either!

God bless, always!

28 March, 2020, a whole year of posting this too!

For 2019 and 2020

I love you 3000 my darlingest Naina! 

Her Birthday blogs:

ONE-2015 (LINK)
TWO-2016 (LINK)
THREE-2017 (LINK)
FOUR – 2018 (LINK)

This one is FIVE and SIX

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https://ushus.wordpress.com/category/naina/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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You are stronger than you think

“Everything Is Awful and I’m Not Okay: questions to ask before giving up

Are you hydrated?
If not, have a glass of water.

Have you eaten in the past three hours?
If not, get some food — something with protein, not just simple carbs. Perhaps some nuts or hummus?

Have you showered in the past day?
If not, take a shower right now.

If daytime: are you dressed?
If not, put on clean clothes that aren’t pajamas. Give yourself permission to wear something special, whether it’s a funny t-shirt or a pretty dress.

If nighttime: are you sleepy and fatigued but resisting going to sleep?
Put on pajamas, make yourself cozy in bed with a teddy bear and the sound of falling rain, and close your eyes for fifteen minutes — no electronic screens allowed. If you’re still awake after that, you can get up again; no pressure.

Have you stretched your legs in the past day?
If not, do so right now. If you don’t have the spoons for a run or trip to the gym, just walk around the block, then keep walking as long as you please. If the weather’s crap, drive to a big box store (e.g. Target) and go on a brisk walk through the aisles you normally skip.

Have you said something nice to someone in the past day?
Do so, whether online or in person. Make it genuine; wait until you see something really wonderful about someone, and tell them about it.

Have you moved your body to music in the past day?
If not, do so — jog for the length of an EDM song at your favorite BPM, or just dance around the room for the length of an upbeat song.

Have you cuddled a living being in the past two days?
If not, do so. Don’t be afraid to ask for hugs from friends or friends’ pets. Most of them will enjoy the cuddles too; you’re not imposing on them.

Do you feel ineffective?
Pause right now and get something small completed, whether it’s responding to an e-mail, loading up the dishwasher, or packing your gym bag for your next trip. Good job!

Do you feel unattractive?
Take a goddamn selfie. Your friends will remind you how great you look, and you’ll fight society’s restrictions on what beauty can look like.

Do you feel paralyzed by indecision?
Give yourself ten minutes to sit back and figure out a game plan for the day. If a particular decision or problem is still being a roadblock, simply set it aside for now, and pick something else that seems doable. Right now, the important part is to break through that stasis, even if it means doing something trivial.

Have you seen a therapist in the past few days?
If not, hang on until your next therapy visit and talk through things then.

Have you been over-exerting yourself lately — physically, emotionally, socially, or intellectually?
That can take a toll that lingers for days. Give yourself a break in that area, whether it’s physical rest, taking time alone, or relaxing with some silly entertainment.

Have you changed any of your medications in the past couple of weeks, including skipped doses or a change in generic prescription brand?
That may be screwing with your head. Give things a few days, then talk to your doctor if it doesn’t settle down.

Have you waited a week?
Sometimes our perception of life is skewed, and we can’t even tell that we’re not thinking clearly, and there’s no obvious external cause. It happens. Keep yourself going for a full week, whatever it takes, and see if you still feel the same way then.

You’ve made it this far, and you will make it through. You are stronger than you think.”
— eponis.tumblr.com

artwork by Jesus Leguizamo

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This is not mine 🙂 I’ve borrowed it from this deeply insightful and comforting page on Facebook called The Artidote. Information, rather a briefest of brief introduction to the person who runs this page, as told by Google:

The Artidote is a Facebook page dedicated to discussing difficult thoughts and feelings with art. Run by founder Jovanny Varela-Ferreyra with the ethos of “mental health over every damn thing,” it’s a welcome antithesis to the sea of self-deprecating and nihilistic memes that fill your feed.”

This particular post from him touched a chord deep within, for it was exactly what I needed at that point in time, when I first read it, almost a year ago 🙂 Found it in my memories, yesterday, and I knew I had to save it somewhere more accessible. So here it is 🙂

For Day#4 of #FebruaryFlows2019 , another cheat post 🙂

Posted on 5 February, 2019, for 4 February, 2019


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Chrysalis

Barely spawned-

I fed on words

Taking all I could

Seasoning them

The bland, the insipid

Them cliches and them stereotypes.

 

Seasoned them

With rebellion and intolerance

Voracious, ever-demanding.

 

The hunger for opinion

Then the necessity to serve it

Tempered with altercation

Garnished inelegantly

With disdain!

 

That liberty to do 

Precisely that, till satiated!

 

Irreverant, devouring

Each click-baited morsel,

Till finally it was time.

 

Insouciant, outraged

Protestor, Rebel –

Even I had to yield

I’d had enough.

 

Clothed in indifference

The helplessness of a witness

To rampant, rampaging rallies of belief.

 

I waited it out. 

 

For I knew, from within,

I’d changed.

I’d grown.

I’d distilled

What I thought I needed.

 

From the rebel –

With an all -encompassing hunger

I emerge –

Wearing those colours

Of insouciance and outrage

Woven into the threads

Of acceptance, of anticipation.

 

Let’s just say

I survived.

(19 January, 2019)

For 3 February, 2019, Day#3 of #FebruaryFlows 🙂

 

 

 

 

 


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Whorls of Words…

Of whirlwinds and words
The way they drop tantalizingly out of reach
Or feather your cheeks lingering as they pass…
How they storm the bastion of close held secrets
Ferreting out strands of stray raw ones
So that the cold and hot, both hurt the exposed, worn nerve
Like a recurring toothache. One you cannot do anything about.

And yet again they become the salve.
Cocoon you in a verse, a story
Staying close till at least the scabs form.
I drink words this morning.

#magicalmornings MM#251 1 Feb 15

#cheatpost 🙂 #magicalmornings … More in the coming days!

#Day2 of #FebruaryFlows a part of #RamblingsinFebruary 🙂