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The Bubble Burst (well… almost)

And exactly as predicted the new year bubble burst mid week in complete exhaustion!

Now don’t get me wrong the week has been amazing- I started the year off with a party on a yacht, with great music and fabulous company, I won an award-Internationally- The Enterprising Woman of The Year Award, and am now deep in planning an incredible trip and I got back to doing all that I love(except the torturous exercise!). But I think Week 1 of the new year is always like a long hangover where you recover from all the parties and the madness and just try and get through the week standing!

And then there was the JNU violence. And opinions were being shared and sides were being taken and a long week seemed to get longer. And here’s my take, violence on students or anyone is unforgivable. Violence begets more violence. Hate begets more hate. And in a world where nature seems to already be at war with us, do we really need to be at war with each other too?

The year has just started and with the drama of the first week, it seems like it’s going to be a dramatic year ahead. But I think we need to take pause. Delhi had rain in January, Australia had the bushfires. We’ve ill-treated nature so much that she’s fighting back and fighting back strong. Maybe we should start focusing on healing her rather than fighting each other. Cos this is a fact- nature can an wipe all of us out… and won’t need to do it one lathi at a time!

P.s.(Palat says)-: I am going to do my bit to try and focus on the larger causes rather than the immediate annoyances… And p.s. smiling first thing in the morning has helped… remember I won an Award!

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Just another day…

And before you know it… it’s Jan 2 and Jan 3 and suddenly the excitement and the promise of the new year fades in to hangover headaches and blurry photographs… But even as the feeling of positivity fades you can’t help but ask yourself- how is one night so magical? How is it that for one night we all believe that our world will be more amazing, our lives more fulfilled, our days fuller and happier?

And why does that feeling only stay for one night?

Isn’t that a function more of us than of the night… if we can continuously re-invent ourselves- why wait for one night to start a resolution, to start aiming for a dream or to start making more positive life changes?

So this year I won’t just have one new year I plan to have several.

This decade taught me a lot… it helped me settle down but it also made me doubt some of my dreams. With the new year, out came my new diary and with it came new dreams spewing, new ideas brimming… and this year, this day , this decade I’m going to start believing in my dreams again.

Instead of nightly parties, I focussed on smaller parties with people I wanted to share experiences with, wanted to laugh with, wanted to bond with- this year I’m going to focus on more of those too… not just for New Years where I had the perfect night with puppy and husband (yes, in that order!)… I’m going to ensure holidays and nights out are filled with the people I’d like to spend forever with.

Every day I’m going to start with a smile (and then a warm cup of coffee… …)! But first a smile.

We are a product of the world we create…so I am going to visualise and actualise my perfect world… that world may not be perfection to you… but it will be for me… so I’m going to work hard to create it! Not just for one day… but every day… after all even God took 7 days to create this one… I’m spending every day creating my world!

We all say we’ll make each second count but before we know it we’re in the thick of March and taxes and life and we just get bogged down and depressed. Let’s not make a new year about one day… if we look at making each day just a little special even for just a few moments… may be we can have less bad days and more new (year) days!

P.s. (Palat says)-: I write this in my post new year bubble of joy and happiness and am sure the angst of the world will catch up soon enough… but I’m going to write this for the days I need a pick me up- remember a new year starts with perfect ol’ you… so I’m going to enjoy my dreams and work on living a few this year too!

2019

This year had so much…taught me so much, challenged me so incredibly and blessed me so wonderfully.

I started the year saying to myself that I would be more social and more social I became… I found new friends, stayed up later, laughed longer and harder and was more happily exhausted than ever before!

To the old friends I love you… to my new friends… I can’t wait to be old friends!

I also resolved to make more time for my health. Having had the worst blood test I’d ever had in December last year… I took it upon myself to make my health a priority- it’s been spinning, walking, power plate and yoga and 5:30 ams and its been a full year of this! I actually made a promise and stuck by it!

And yes, I still hate the mornings terribly. But I did get to see peacocks , monkeys and plenty of puppies on my super early walks and that made it worthwhile… To next year and an even fitter year!

And I got sick. A lot. I had my first really serious Multiple sclerosis attack in years and my diagnoses became more serious. But a long with that I also found the strength to fight back, ask for help and to stay calm while the storm seemed to try and break me… And like the bamboo shoot , I bent to deal with the storm and slowly but surely am learning to stand back up!

I also learned the joy of giving. There is no greater joy- I threw parties, I treated friends and family, I bought gifts and I helped people. And that filled me with joy. And I got addicted to that!

I learned honesty. I was honest with who I loved and when I needed to say ‘no.’ I learned that honesty is the policy that helps you sleep at night best and those who will stay with you and who love you will understand and appreciate your truthfulness.

I started dreaming again… with a planner that got me started… my imagination went in to overdrive.. and once again I started writing , dreaming and believing!

A decade gone. A decade of wins and losses, of incredible joy ,of heart wrenching pain, of amazing life experiences and holidays, of fabulous new and old relationships… Let’s start the 20’s! We’re growing up baby!

P.s.(Palat says)-: Do something this Christmas to bring joy to someone else…that’s my plan… and I #canthardlywait !

The last MS Attack of the year (hopefully) and #CAA

We’re a tinder box waiting to explode… Life today has become so increasingly stressful , it barely takes a moment for the world to collapse around us.

This week was all about the Citizenship Amendment Act and the violence that ensued. And as much as the violence was terrifying , what was even more scary was how we were able to attack with minimal knowledge and even less understanding. Now in no way am I claiming that the worries are unfounded or trivial; all I am saying is that in most people chose a side without any idea of what the Act was about. They followed like flock and like flock , mob mentality ensued. Violence always begets more violence and buses were burnt, innocent people were hurt and the country burned.

I completely support peaceful protests and debates as that is the very fabric of democracy but I do believe that we must completely understand what our beliefs are and not just be swayed by sensational rumors.

Along with this, I got another MS attack and faced Trigeminal Neuralgia, a nerve pain in the face so intense you can’t speak, eat or even concentrate because of the pain. It was terrifying. It happened because like the world, we too have become tinder boxes. With year end stresses mounting up, it just took one minor issue for my Multiple sclerosis to kick in and shut me down.

That’s when I realised, the stress that I was facing was because of incomplete information and my body started a fire… The stress the country was facing was also because we didn’t have the full information.

I was forced to take a back seat with a swollen face and painful nerves and wait to get the full information so I could deal with it in a calm manner. Along with that I also found a video that explained the Act. The video explained it simply and devoid of emotion. A little knowledge is a dangerous thing and following the mob blindly is simply foolish.

Have an opinion- but understand what you have an opinion about.

I had to stop stressing by force. More often than not, your body isn’t like mine… it doesn’t revolt to stress. But it should. You should know how much your insides are burning before you hurt yourself with something more serious.

P.s. (Palat says)-: Stress kills but then again so does ignorance.Let’s make a new year resolution to try and eliminate both!

December Doldrums

And as the smog of December settled, instead of the happy winter chill it seemed like all it brought were coughs and colds and the delightful seasonal depression.

Isn’t it funny how January comes in with promise and brightness and happiness and December comes at us with the reminder of unfulfilled resolutions , unfinished dreams and just gloom?

Now I’m a Christmas lover and it took all my energy to try and drag my self up from the December doldrums! It didn’t help that the exercise routine changed and became more painful or that MS days kept popping up. The rigid diet also added to the woes…

The colourful planners which had given me so much joy through the year with glitter and stickers was also now relegated to the bottom drawer.

So I forced the joy… till I can almost feel it!

I decorated… the office and the home. With streamers and presents and Christmas trees and tons of love- I surrounded myself with happy. I started smiling- at strangers and most smiled back. One or two even came up to chat… Some chats were downright odd… but a few were awesome! And that cheered me up a bit…and I hope the smiles got a few people out of their winter funk too!

And I cut myself some slack. More often than not we count all the things that we couldn’t achieve … I started counting the things that I could.

It takes a second to make yourself unhappy.

I decided not to waste that second.

So instead of counting missed resolutions, I counted goals achieved. Instead of groaning about pain, I started marvelling how much I have been able to do this year. Rather than waking up early, I spent evenings with friends…

I have to be honest. Getting up every day, with this much pain, in such a gloomy December is hard. Sometimes (most times), I just want to roll over and wait for tomorrow. But then again- I have today and I am blessed. Many don’t. Many won’t.

You have to will yourself every day to fight another day, to laugh another day and to live another day.

But if you can do that – you are lucky…

And guess what- January with all your new hopes and dreams… is just around the corner!

P.s.-: When you want to give up… Walk On! Yes, couldn’t resist the U2 reference… Enjoy the weekend.

Rape, retweet, repeat.

To all the ‘woke’ a$%es I know…

The rape shook me like all the others had in the past and the brutality horrified me. But I was amazed at every one who spent time writing #Rip using her name as a hashtag. It generated more likes and retweets but little else. Nothing changes with silent marches and candle light vigils. New days share more horrors and past brutalities seem like minor infractions compared to the new senseless depravity that we are being subject to.

There was no statement from our ‘voted’ authorities, no definitive action plan. All we did was share sordid details of some poor girls’ last moments and pretended that by writing #rip that we had made a difference.

The next day- we had a new cause to tweet.

It’s much like #metoo. Massively supported when it was a trend but quickly forgotten when it became inconvenient.

And that’s the thing. You don’t really care unless it affects you and that is scary. How can it not affect you? A director this week, said we should legalise rape… because it was the woman’s fault for not giving in and being a b@#$. And we printed this crap. And we’ve forgotten it as well.

We need to make the change and not just on social media- an actual change.

  • We should encourage reasonable working hours and not encourage all nighters.
  • Companies need to ensure safe passage to the homes of women employees who work late.
  • Cab companies etc need to step up and get police verification of their drivers and have more women drivers deployed as well.
  • More cc cameras so that incidents can be caught and prevented
  • Chemical castration for rapists.

Men need to call other men out on their depravity. Rape is not a boys club. It shouldn’t be. Men know when other men are talking badly about women, and even what their intentions are sometimes. They just don’t want to rock the boat. That must stop.

In the same way #MeToo must be treated with shaming and isolating the perpetrator.

Rape , #MeToo are power crimes. They are wrong in every way and whereas one may have pushed the line further, it’s still the same line.

Power should not be achieved by brute force or manipulation. But unless we start calling out the perpetrators , we’re just words on the internet- written in a void that will soon be forgotten.

I once had a person bang my head against a dashboard because he was angry with me. There were 2 other people in the car. No one said anything.

I got out and left. Shattered and in pain- but I left. I was lucky nothing else happened but let me tell you , it was unlikely I’d have had much support beyond myself.

This is the world we live in.

So f#$k candle light vigils. Let’s get real.

P.s. (Palat says)-: Let’s stop tweeting and start speaking up for women, speaking to our men- telling them what we actually face and making them realise that they need to call out toxic masculine behaviour because ‘she’ is each and every one of us.

Getting off the meds

So I was on anti-depressants… I did not know that, till I completely understood the medicines prescribed. Apparently anti-depressants are great for progressive multiple sclerosis…and minimising the attacks.

Of course the minute I understood the drugs I was taking I stopped them immediately. Even though this may help MS; I was really worried about addiction and side effects. Sure enough, withdrawal was awful. Bad dreams plagued me as did lack of sleep.Lack of sleep was better than the death dreams I got… death dreams being the nicest dreams that I dreamt!

And as the meds left the system, came the low feeling. The gloomy November , crunched in between the Diwali gloriousness and the anticipation of the new year didn’t help any.

How do you feel better when you are stuck feeling like the Happiness Grinch, if that’s a thing!?

So the last week was filled with cutting myself some slack, giving myself a break and just looking after me. We’re often tougher on ourselves than we should be, meaner to ourselves than we need to. We’re not working hard enough, trying enough, doing enough and then we’re not resting enough, not spending time with family/ friends. Anything we do can be turned into the wrong way to do it!

Look for your Happy

Magic’s party was a huge success and his happiness delighted me. The joy of puppies running around a room is incomparable and exhausted though I was hosting 20 + people and puppies… I was delighted!

This week it was a breakfast date with the husband.. I’m looking to be happy. And that way I am more positive and ensure those around me are happy too!

Smile

Smile. The first thing you wake up… smile… it sets a good feeling in order for the day. Even if you are exhausted , which I always am at 5:30 am. or in pain… another delightful fact- smile! It starts the day a whole lot better!

Change it Up

We all get caught up in the gloom… Shock your system. Change it up. From date brekkies, to mid week movies to even a new start with power plate fitness- I’m too exhausted to focus on the gloom!

Plan the vacay!

From #ParentTrap2020 to easter next year, to the birthday… sometimes window shopping for trips and even planning a few can take you in to the best happy high you can get.

Exhaust yourself

Every day ,I’m exhausted! I’ve filled my day with fun, family and newness and I’m ready for a good night minus the dreams and feel good knowing that I’ve done all that I can in the day!

P.s. (Palat says)-: Life is about looking after yourself… self care goes a long way in not just making yourself happy but allowing you to look after those you love too!

Find your Magic

The puppy party dominated the week. With Magic’s birthday on Saturday , all the planning and energy was reserved for him. Now , those who don’t have dogs will never understand why so much energy is used on what could be seen as a ‘party for dogs.’ But what you don’t get is how important they are.

Magic came to our lives 2 years after Cookie passed away. The 2 years had been lonely at best. Aditya and I talked about work and little else. Our hearts had been broken and seemed beyond repair. We gained bad habits and worse tempers and just seem to continue each day without joy.

We focused selfishly on our individual jobs and lives and we’d grown more distant and disconnected, in a way. We’d done well in our work and in life but I realised that we’d stopped caring. Cookie had taught us too care and love someone just because it was something we could. Her death had hit us both so hard, it seemed we were afraid to share so much of our lives again.

Magic came in, the size of my palm, and without any fear that he’d not fit in our family- he just took it over. Much of our days is still spent fighting over Magic’s love and who he might love more. It never seemed to occur to him to even try winning us over… he won us over as he walked in!

But the real Magic lay not in his name , but in what he did for us. Suddenly we had a new small person to talk about, a confidante, a best friend and a being who would give us unconditional love even when we behaved our worst.

When we fight, he gets scared and we must stop immediately to look after him and so we learned to resolve issues quicker, better and faster. When we come home we’re surrounded by licks and love, no matter how long the day was. And we now have our 5km walk in the morning, where Aditya and I get to chat. The walk is painful for me and my MS issues, but I am addicted to it because we get to just laugh and chat. We get to meet puppies and make new friends. But most importantly the three of us get to connect.

Magic helped me reconnect.

Magic helped me love again, unconditionally. My plans , parties, shoots and even work locations, involve Magic first and then Aditya and last of all me and that’s made me happier and freer.

He notices the subtle change in my tone and jumps on me hugging me when I am down, even when no one else notices or gets it. He’s not about the ‘pretence and showing that he cares’ because he actually does. He doesn’t care if its just me alone- he’ll hug me anyway. He doesn’t wait to tell me how much he loves me- he just does. He needs to sleep cuddled up to me, sit on my lap to see dogs through the car window and argue with me when I’m late for his walk.

He’s honest and pure and perfect and I’m so happy he’s mine.

So yup, it’s been birthday month, with gifts every day and the puppy party will be exhausting and grand and he’ll deserve every second of it.

In a world filled with boring every days and schedules with no respite- some of us are lucky to have a little Magic in our lives.

P.s. (Palat says)-: Do something special today. Find your Magic.

5/5

Death Happened

And so he died. He walked his usual morning walk, sat down perhaps a bit out of breath and died.Since he died, resting at a bus stop, daily travellers saw him. People gathered and whispers began. The police came. And all this before it was 7 am.

Crowds and strangers knew before his family did.

Who called the cops? The street cleaner- she had seen the man sit down and then she saw him die. She called the cops because she knew his walk routine.

It hit me then- more so because I had just finished my ‘routine’ walk. Is that what we do every day? We wake up, follow a routine and then fall asleep and then wake up and do the darn thing again? And then die.

Sure may be the over exercise has made me more fatalistic than usual. Or more tired. And the gloomy November coupled with pain doesn’t help, but that scared me!

We live one life. We know this. And we know every day is a gift. Yet we seem to just be content doing the same thing every day. And then before you realise it we’re done.

So this week was about celebrating the ‘un-schedule.’ Sure, we did the ridiculous exercise every day and the spinning- but we also did a #DateBreakfast ,a #MidweekMovie, a card game evening, a shopping afternoon, a girls dinner and a trip to Alibag…

The week was longer than it should have been but way more memorable. I shocked my routine, surprised my self doing more things in a day than I thought possible- but it was amazing.

I always said I will not die until I live and somewhere along the way somehow even the crazy, psychotic me, lost my madness in routine. And I guess death was a big wake up call for me. Thank you Unknown Man, you made me value my day a lot more.

P.s. (Palat says)-: Re look at your life… it shouldn’t be a movie you are bored of. It should have all the masala and romance of your favourite film. After all , here you are the star.

The Big Fight

This blog has become a venting outlet for my week, my pain, my stress and all my drama. And this week had all of it in bucket loads!

The exercise routine is tiring me out more than I care to accept and 5 ams, look no brighter on a Friday than they do on Mondays. Add to that a long work week and new pain in areas I didn’t know had sensation, it was a recipe for disaster.

So when the husband decided to argue with me on an obvious non-issue, my world fell apart. Having been friends for so long the honesty that we share is comforting and frightening all together. But he laid bare about his stress with my pain and illness and how that became frightening for him. In turn I felt like I had further complicated his life and felt truly ashamed and frighteningly alone. The over tiredness and stress had gotten to both of us and we said things that we definitely shouldn’t have. However under all the layers what did shine out, was that this journey is scary.

I am blessed. I see my Multiple Sclerosis. He’s the invisible villain, but I know of his existence. Life is scary and as much as we’re trying to get through this journey as unscathed as we possibly can, life happens! Life happens when you least expect it. And it just doesn’t happen to us, it happens to all those around us too. I can howl in pain, Aditya stresses. I can take a tablet or 5, but those around me just have to watch helplessly.

I don’t need your pity or help. But know you feel hopeless when you can offer me none..

So today, to all those in my life who silently play cheerleader- thank you. I am sorry you’re on a journey that neither of us bargained for. And I’m sorry I keep taking you on my rollercoaster without acknowledging that you too our stuck on this ride with me and often without a seat belt.

Thank you for your love and support. I am proud to have you.

P.s. (Palat says)-: The big fight will end and will start again but every so often it’s important to have the honest conversations. These make for the good fights even if they are big ones. But it’s very important to have them.

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