Monday, September 26, 2011


Dear Dad,

Its been a week of silence. I know you are busy but you were busy before too and still managed to write at all times. I dont know what has changed now. What I do know is that love cannot be forced. So I will let you be. And will also try to hold strong when you do write and not allow myself to forgive and forget and put myself in the same cycle of wash, drain, repeat and traumatise myself over and over. We are done. Thank you for saying all the exaggerated wonderful things that you did - about how much you love me, how you cannot possibly survive without me....I have not known any man as you. I am surrounded by men who are not eloquent of their emotions but exceed expectations in their actions. I have never met someone like you, who can wax eloquent, flatter and praise but fail miserably in follow through. You have turned your back on me a second time. If I let you do that a third time, I am the idiot here. So we are done.

I will try to forget you, try to forget the past 7 months, try to move on. One day when you are older and closer to your final day of reckoning, I hope you realise your folly, and I hope you receive no pardon for it. Yes, I am cruel that way..after all I am your daughter.

Will not say Love anymore,

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Zindaagi seriously na milegi dobara...

K Mama passed away today. I dont think he was even fifty. I dont know why I am hit so hard, I cannot stop crying. He has an old mother, a wife and a daughter trying to make sense of the shock, which his sudden death brought. I visited, Marinka always makes me laugh and saw that she had posted a message about her blog friend losing her seven year old son. There is so much pain in this world.

We take life and people so much for granted. One of my cousins had posted a FB status saying "Remember the saying - you dont know what you have until it goes away", she said that everyone knows exactly what they have but they never think it will go away. Which is so true. Even though superficially we may worry about a thousand different things - the next step in our career, home improvement projects, issues with children, issues with no children, mother in law issues, mother issues...the list is unending..even though on the face of it, we could even have a new issue to worry about everyday, in the bottom of our heart, we also know the good things we have. And when we hear about an unfortunate accident or someone facing a terrible loss, we hug our loved ones tight and realise this is what life is all about.

K Mama and his wife had a rocky married life. She is downright lazy and selfish. Plus she is blessed with a mother in law who wakes up at the crack of dawn and does every single thing around the house without any complaint. So that only further fueled her inertia. They somehow decided to adopt a daughter. Mami has limited affection and responsibility towards her so the girl naturally is very attached to her father and grand mother. Destiny is cruel to that girl. It snatched away her birth parents from her and then once again took away her adopted father...

I wonder how each person's destiny gets written. Does God sit up there with a team of Ekta Kapoor like script writers/plot writers and go - Okay, lets just fill this sucker's life up with sorrow. Or lets make sure this girl is seperated from her birth parents. What is it? Do we get a destined start and then everything else is our doing? The decisions we take, the attitude we maintain and the situations we create with both; do they shape our future destiny?

Its so easy to forget...its so easy to get carried away, bogged down by routine and the thousand mundane things in life...

My company got bought by a big shot one and one of my AP managers returned back from vacation. A colleague asked her what she thought about the deal, she simply said "If I had known, I wouldnt have worked hard on my vacation". All of us would have a million "If I had known..." except life is not cruel to each of us. But for the ones who lose something/someone, regret is always one of the first emotions to hit. If I would have known, I would have spent more time with him/her, I would have relaxed more....and on and on it goes....

I will not live my life in regret. I have to learn how to distinguish between relationships with a future and futile relationships and not spend time/energy/emotion on the failed ones. I have to accept they have failed and not try to fix them over and over. The main thing is to live each and every day of this blessed life with happiness and satisfaction.

N.e.e.d t.o. s.l.e.e.p

Friday, September 9, 2011

A short lived affair

Me and my Dad connected in first week of March, its been six months so far. Uptil the past couple of weeks, he has told me he loves me in every email, for the past six months. He started saying it abruptly and he stopped abruptly.

Everyone around me, who is close to me, and knows about us has differing opinions. Both best friends are divided over whether he really is committed to me or not. Aunty says he will never have the guts to put himself up for scrutiny and review and possible defamation by disclosing my existence to people. P thinks I am expecting too much from a relationship which is not really that deep. He is very suspicious of anyone who says I love you on a regular basis. Yes, I have married a guy who is in touch with his emotional side ;))

Well anyways, what do I think.....what does that little voice inside me say? It says time to back off. We are both clearly at different places in our lives. His presence loomed in my life ever since 19xx, when I was born. All through my childhood, when I had to answer people's questions over and over - Are you and M twins? (even though there is no resemblance between us), How were you born in March and she in June and you share the same birth year?. When I told people over and over, ever since I was a young child, my parents are divorced, my mother's sister adopted me, they are my parents. Over and over, he was there, indirectly. I have grown up acknowledging his presence.

On the other hand, since 19xx when he walked away from the hospital after meeting me, I ceased to exist for him. He got married, had his own daughter (first born?) and son, had a brilliant career, went on with his life. He didnt have to answer to anyone or admit his divorce and acknowledge he had a child. For 34 long years, until I reached out. Maybe it is too soon. Maybe I cannot and should not expect him to be able to have the courage and the will to stand up and say - this is my daughter. But he doesnt and will not, and it does hurt me deeply.

For six months, I have watched us. Our relationship has not proceeded forward. Yes, he has repeatedly said how much he loves me, how he is never going to let me go from his life ever but at the same time he wants his routine life to proceed undisturbed.

He had gone to visit his old father - probably in his nineties, who said he thinks of me often. But did Dad say "We are in touch, she is doing well", No, he kept quiet and walked away annoyed with him. I see no inclination to take our relationship to the next level.

And I have been ignoring all the signs in my naivety. He has referred to me as his pen friend, has hastily told me not to put P on the line when we were scheduled to talk for the first time, has simply said he missed me in the picture when I sent him a photo of R and S rather than saying how beautiful are your daughters....countless small things which all say "I only care about you, I want nothing to do with the others in your life, and it doesnt matter if they are the ones you care about the most, intimately" and I will always be his pen friend. Someone to email to, when he has the wish and desire. An adoring willing audience to tell his anecdotes to, someone to turn to when he feels emotional and to say how much he loves me. But the fact remains that he doesnt have the wish or the courage to step up and go further. We were still limited to emails, we are still. I cannot call him when I wish to. We have to plan phone calls when he travels, and is away from his family, alone in his hotel room. We have no idea where to meet and how. I am pretty sure we will end up meeting in a restaurant in Mumbai where the risk of bumping into people he knows is pretty low. How would we meet in Pune? What would he say to people who stop by? Who am I? He doesnt have the guts.

I shouldnt blame him. The fact remains that he didnt reach out to me. I did. After four long years of thinking in the back of my mind. I was ready for this. He was caught by surprise. And then he has 34 years of catching up to do. We are at different places.

It is needlessly causing me pain. When two people in any relationship are not on the same page, that relationhip gets fraught with tension and insecurity. I have to readjust my expectations, open my eyes and wake up to reality, not hope and dream for impossible things. Remember that dialogue from some movie - Sapney dekhne chahiye, unki poori honey ki sharth nahi rakhni chahiye. Reach for the moon and you can grab the stars atleast. I had this vision of being reunited with my birth father and here I am, we are in touch over emails. It doesnt matter that my dream is not realised in the manner I wanted it to. It is realised in a different way. We went from complete strangers to being in touch. Thats a big step.

But now its time to let go. I can no longer torture myself by waiting for his emails, getting frustrated over why he cannot convince/explain his feelings to his wife and children, why they cannot be more accepting of our relationship, why we cannot go a step further in our relationship, why we are not at a point where I can pick up the phone and talk to him, simply because I miss him....there are many whys and no answers. Its time to let go and stop hurting myself.

I will not wait for his emails. I will not make him "Important person #..." right next to my family and close friends. I will not put him on my priority list. He is a reunited father. If he writes, well and good, I will reply back. If he doesnt, thats fine too. The whole point of my reaching out was to talk to him atleast once in my life so that when I am old, I do not regret never knowing my birth father. Thats accomplished, everything else is a bonus. Real life doesnt always have happy endings, it seldom does. Maybe he will regret his behavior and inability to strengthen our bond, when he gets older. Thats his problem. You can never turn back the clock, never erase the past and start all over again. I will not have any regrets. I tried, succeeded a little, failed a little. But now its time to let go.

I was never in a relationship with anyone but can now imagine the pain of a broken heart, of unmet expectations. It is not easy to let go, especially when you had to make such a big effort to hold on in the first place. Its like I had four years to muster up the courage to write to him, to open my heart and now I need to retract again.

All this also made me realise an ugly side of myself. Human beings always want what is not theirs, out of their reach, unattainable. I have spent my life denying my birth mother, her birth mother privileges. I have spent my entire childhood, wishing away the uncomfortable awkward divorcee child image, wanting to pretend I was born to my parents and I had a normal family. And here I am, trying to force an unwilling birth father to step up and accept his birth father responsibilities. Why? Really, you do not value what you have, sometimes.

I need to let go. Now if I can only find a way to ease the pain....Do I regret reaching out? No, I dont. I wanted to know him. It would have been nice if we had a happy ending but we dont necessarily have a bad ending. He wants to stay in touch. Its not necessary that both of us share the same thoughts on what staying in touch means. He is satisfied with emails, I wanted more. I have to step back and meet him where he is. And let go...

Pray for me, pray that God will give me courage to be strong and level headed and understand that people stand at different places, at different points in time. No need to be staunchly black and white and either cut him loose or hold on tight. There is a middle ground. And while its so easy to hate or love someone, its extremely difficult to pace your emotions and to stay uniform.

Six months of learning, six months of a life lesson...

Friday, August 19, 2011

The shattering of my heart....

Remember this...when a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sound? Similarly if your heart breaks inside and you cannot share it with the people closest to you, should one gather the pieces quietly and pretend its not broken??

From the past couple of weeks, I have this premonition, this nagging feel, know that little voice in your head trying to awaken you to reality....I have realised my Dad thinks of me only as his pen friend, someone to send emails to as and when he pleases, someone he can say I love you and write sappy things about how beautiful his wife is and how awesome his children are and in general how perfect everyone in their khandaan is. A captive audience, an ever adoring and forgiving girlfriend. But Dad has no intentions of giving any promotion to his love in the virtual world. No, in his mind, she stays right where she is. Yes, he agreed to meet me, but it was only after I threw a fit. Slowly I am beginning to feel that maybe it is a bad idea to meet. I am not sure. But then I dont even have the guts to cancel. What if I regret it? Who knows when my next trip to Pune will be?

His wife, his daughter, his son, his brothers, his nieces, his nephews, his career, his students, his employees.....where am I?

He writes to me when he wishes, it doesnt matter if I am burning with fever, or depressed over a job situation, he will be aware of it but he will choose his reaction. If he feels benevolent, I get sympathy and affection, other times, he admonishes me for making a big deal out of things. Is that how a parent reacts? My parents worry and think of me everyday, every day this week when I woke up with fever, and dragged myself to work and back and made time for my daughters, my parents thought of me and gave me long distance hugs. What does this man do? Not write. Ignore. Write emails which make me out like a overthinking emotional psycho - take rest, enjoy am I supposed to enjoy life when all the four of us are sick here?

I have to let go and that is the hardest part for me. I cannot let go of anything and anyone. And especially hard to let go of someone who was never yours in the first place. People who lose limbs say that they still feel their loss - a phantom limb. I didnt even have Dad in my life in the first place. He is my phantom Dad. Then why cant I still bear his loss?

I have to make some hard decisions for myself. I have to change. I have to learn how to stop caring. I was fine without him in my life and I will be fine without him once again too.

So I have to resolve to detach in baby steps - first step is to only write when he writes....second bigger step will be to not wait for his emails....and so on, till the detachment is complete and he can once again go back to Mr.A from Dad. And then maybe sometime many years later, try to glue together slowly the pieces of my heart...

Monday, August 15, 2011

When you love someone....

set it free, if it comes back it was yours...remember that saying..My Aai Baba have really practised it. God has been so so very kind to me. I have these amazing parents. I am extremely lucky. They let me go on this quest to know my birth father without even prohibiting me. Aai actually said she understood my need to get in touch with him. They are so secure and so full of love.

As I get to know my birth father better, there is no chance of me drifting away from my Aai Baba. If anything, I am even closer to them today. I am so grateful and appreciative of all that they have done, the values they have instilled in me, through their eyes I am the most beautiful, smart and perfect human being ever to walk on this earth. And that has given me confidence to last me ages, to last me through every obstacle, every downfall. The more that I talk to my birth father, the more I listen to this man, hesitating at every step to hold my hand, who proclaims his love at the top of his voice over the safety of the internet and is so very reluctant to acknowledge me in real life, that man, that quiet unassuming man, who is not connected by blood to me in any way, shines brighter in my life for me. My Baba and my Aai. I love you so much.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Affair with a married man all over again

This relationship that I have with my birth father screams "An affair with a married man" over and over. He had said he was free his morning, my night so I called him up dutifully. The first time I called, an automated voice lady told me in three languages that I was in Q and do not hang up. The second time I called, it instantly said "Your call could not be completed". He had asked me to call him when he would be home in Pune only because his wife was in Singapore visiting their daughter. So what has happened? His son came home unexpectedly? He had company? He switched off his phone? It makes me extremely angry to keep our contact hush hush. What exactly is he going to do if we meet say in a restaurant in fricking Pune and one of his ardent fans/followers or family members bumps into us. Will he push me under the table or himself hide behind a door until they leave? Should I even allow mysely to be pulled into this cowardly relationship. He wants to have his cake and eat it too. Keep me on the side and say he loves me in every email but in reality, not even bring up my name in front of his wife and kids and keep them happy. But why, WHY should I allow someone to treat me like that?

I have a wonderful insanely wonderful father. A man who is not connected by blood to me. Who had a son and a daughter of his own. Who went out of his way, of his own accord, to repeatedly go ask his mother in law to give him custody of me. Who has never differentiated between me and his children. Who has never in his life ever said I was the child of his wife's sister. I was always his child. Everywhere.

Then why should I allow him to treat me this way. I was so looking forward to meeting him on my India trip but for the first time in my life, I feel like saying "Forget it, first muster up courage to own up in front of people about me and then we will see if we should meet".

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Taking stock

So its time again to make a list of all the zillion things stressing me out...its always helped me, when I cant sleep and cry in the middle of the night, to write down my lists of things that are bothering me until it becomes clear that most of them are not worth losing my sleep over...

1) I miss my blog. When I started writing my blog, I thought I was writing it for myself and not for the occasional readers. And now when I have made it private, I miss yelling out aloud into the virtual world. I can never stand writing diaries or keeping my thoughts hidden in the innermost compartments of my mind. I am a very open person and I need to share/talk/communicate. I cannot stand this private business.

2) We got a notice from IRS for a whopping penalty (in the thousands of dollars)!! :((( All because I procrastinated on printing and mailing a form. We received the notice on May 16 and were asked to send in the information within 30 days. We faxed the information on June 16, not 30 days technically. I feel horrible. I am too tired to even pray to all Gods to save us from this.

3) Today I was talking to my mother. Over some other topic, she mentioned that I am so straight forward and honest and nice. I had tears in my eyes. How can my mother in law and sister in law view me as evil when everyone else in my life loves me so?

4) I am deeply hurt by how little my sister in law cares for me. There has been no phone call since my reaching out. She really doesnt fricking give a rats ass. Do I deserve this?

5) I am terrible to R. I yelled at her non stop for fifty minutes! fifty fricking minutes today while I fed her dinner. Every bite was a negotiation, every bite was gulped down with tears and whining and yelling from me. I was exhausted at night and when she wouldnt sleep and my grovelling and begging at her feet to sleep wouldnt work, I turned to my most petty self and said I hoped she had a new Mommy in the morning. She was so sad and cried and said No Mommy, I only want you, I will sleep and slept. And then I felt like someone had put a knife through my heart.

6) I am fat. I will never be pretty and slim and have an awesome figure or have beautiful hair or anything. I am ugly and destined to be such. And my baby R thinks I am the most beautiful woman in this world. Mommy, I want to be just like you when I grow up. When will this adoration for her mommy pass and then she will see the truth? My horrible thunder thighs, my huge butt. Why cant I be slimmer and zero size?

7) There were so many things/projects I had planned to do around the house and I have accomplished nothing. Nada. Zero. And now my job will start in a week's time and then there will be no time left for anything whatsoever.

8) Sometimes I wish I was secure enough to take a break from it all. But my self esteem is so fragile and so very dependent on earning my own money and working that I cannot bring myself to be a stay at home mom. I feel like I will lose all value in my husband's eyes if I stay home. And then I will be forever struggling to meet his expectations as perceived by me.

9) When did life get so hard? It was supposed to be easy and fun? When can I stop hurting and stop getting hurt by people? What is the difference between me and my birth mother then. Can I ever move on and not be hurt by the fact that no one from my immediate in laws cares for me or thinks good of me?

10) Lighter is how I feel after writing this post. Sleep is what I need the most. I need to stop making unrealistic expectations from myself. We have two young kids. Life is supposed to be tough. Leave the rest and enjoy this time before it slips away...

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

My sister (in law) and me

My sister in law is a year younger to me. She is very non interfering and easy to get along. When we got married, I didnt have any usual sister in law to bhabhi issues with her.

On the other hand, I had those problems big time with my brother's wife. Every time she visited and left, I had to listen to a long list of complaints from my brother. S did this, S did that, dont do this, dont do that, dont say that and on and on it went. And I would listen quietly and promise to implement them in the next interaction. On and on it went for a couple of years until my nephew arrived on the scene. I had no kids of my own and he was the first baby in our family. I went ga ga over him. I am his favorite aunt and I spoilt that kid to no limit. It also brought about a radical change in our relationship, my bhabhi started to love me. We are friends now. Both of us still have our quirks and things that irritate each other, I am sure of it, but we get along really well, look forward to each other's visits, miss each other if we havent talked/met in a while. It didnt happen overnight.

On the other hand, me and my sister in law started off great. And of late, I feel like our relationship is deteriorating. She doesnt call so often, or I am not around when she calls, P and her have long conversations, most times I am busy with the girls or not around. There used to be a time when I would call her regularly on my way home from work. We would chat like friends. Then she got married and moved a bit further away...

Then my in laws visited and it seems she was going thru the usual rough teething problems that any newly married couple goes through. The only difference was that my in laws would have hushed conversations in my house about her and as soon as I walked into the room, they would stop talking. It started to get a bit uncomfortable. My MIL finally confided in P about my sister in law's issues and they asked him not to include me in the conversations or be careful that I dont find out about it. I felt so bad. I didnt know that my in laws thought so little of me.

I have never wished ill for my sister in law, always had the best thoughts for her but my father in law told me on a couple of occasions, why did you say so and so to her, you should say so and so instead or dont say this to her, she needs this....When all I was doing was some good natured ribbing or general conversation. At that point of time, I think, I shut off. When she would call, I wasnt sure if I would be interupting any private conversation or if they wouldnt be able to talk freely if I was there so I would walk away. I am sure this must have led to further misunderstandings with my SIL thinking I have no enthusiasm to talk to her, I dont know.

I feel like we are drifting apart slowly. Lack of communication does that to people. When you do not voice your concerns or opinions clearly, everything is up for debate and each side can see things as they deem fit.

In law relationships are always so fragile, arent they. Add to it, my rocky relationship with my in laws, her parents; I dont know if she is unhappy that I have made her parents so unhappy. I dont know what she thinks. When we were going thru a really bad time with my in laws visit, where all of us were pretty much miserable, I asked P so many times to call her and to tell her about everything that was going on. I thought as a wife and as a daughter, she would be able to understand both of us. She would be able to help, to solve the ever increasing web of misunderstandings.

Now we have all reached this point of no return. My in laws are getting older and more stubborn, set in their ways. We have tremendous misunderstandings on both sides. We know that either party is not evil and has good wishes but for some reason cannot get along well for a long period of time under the same roof. I do not know how to clearly discuss issues with them. That is what I am used to. Calling up family and asking if they are mad and what are they mad at etc.

I dont have that clear communication with my birth mom and what is the result, am I close to her? My mother in law is another one, I cannot seem to talk to her and find out what she wants and what will make her happy? We no longer have that communication channel and both her kids will not help to soothe things or make them allright.

P's strategy is mostly to pretend nothing is wrong and go about your day as usual. His sister has a great virtue of non intereference and yet again sometimes I wish she would help us all get along.

P has only one sibling and I feel very sad that we are growing distant. I wish she would come visit, spend time with her nieces, R adores her so much. I wish we could chat on the phone like old friends. I wish I could tell her the issues I face with her parents and get her advice, after all she knows them better than I do. I wish she would tell me what her mother wants. I wish she would talk to her mother about me. I wish there would be this one person trying to bring everyone together.

For once I am lost. Many times I feel like writing her an email or calling her and talking to her about this. I had decided that I would tell her everything, have a heart to heart conversation when she visited by herself in the summer but that visit didnt happen. I do not even know if she would be open minded enough to listen or would she be automatically scornful of me for not getting along with her parents. What do I do?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Of conductors and drivers...

I think I was in fourth standard when it started. I used to be fair and delicate and I was going thru a phase where I would insist to wear a gajara to school everyday. My sister and I would go by bus to school, Aai Baba would drop us at the bus stop. All the conductors and drivers were interested in me. I was too young to understand their laughing and teasing each other and whistling and stuff when I would walk by so it wouldnt affect me and I would forget about them the moment I would walk into the school. But slowly over time, one conductor emerged as the main "hero wannabe". He started getting bolder and would not let me get off the bus and keep me till the end. He wouldnt do anything or ever touch me but would smell the flowers in my hair etc. I think this went on for quite a while and I didnt say anything to anyone (I was an idiot or maybe I was just really young). My friends (boys) started to stand two behind me, one in front of me and would refuse to get off the bus if he wouldnt let me get off following them. They started shielding me with their hands. Bicharey, tey pan same age hotey. Maybe boys have a protective instinct from young age? At that time, I finally mentioned it to Aai Baba over dinner one evening. Babani ardhavat ghaas tasach panat takun, lagech uthun gele. He went to meet Mr.Kunder who used to own the buses and run the bus service. Overnight that conductor was fired ani dusryach divsapasun none of them dared to look in my direction. The issue was solved so quickly, I tolerated it for so many days for no reason.Most times it helps to speak up.

Many months later I bumped into that conductor on the road. He gave me a horrible angry look and kept staring. I was terrified but I also looked at him sternly and he turned away. Anil (my gay best friend) was with me, he asked me later why I was so white and shaking :( I dont know what is the right way - not to show you are scared or to ignore and walk away. I mostly ignore and walk away. Ughich kaay karayacha ahe na. These are all things in the past. I dont meet any sleazy people now. I have become accustomed to the US where even though it might be super crowded sometimes, like if we go to a carnival or a fair or the city in summer, no one ever bumps into you or touches you.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


I should change the name of my blog to dukh dukh log as I tend to turn to it only when I want to vent!

Painful painful realisation. My birth father pretty much only thinks of me as his "pen friend" (Yes, that concept might have gone away in the eighties but he is 62 so have to cut him slack). He is very busy with professional and personal commitments and of late, I have realised that he only writes to me when he has time. I mean he doesnt make time to write to me. He writes to me when he has time. Isnt there a difference or am I just too clingy needy. Everything is according to his whims. He writes and I reply right away. He doesnt write for days, I wait patiently. Then I complain and say I miss you etc and he writes back. For once I would like to make him wait for my emails. So I am going to try it.

When P and I fight, P carries on a "Ignore wife to hurt her" then a cold war followed suddenly by a "Pretend nothing happened and carry on as usual" which signifies the end of the fight in his mind. I need discussion and post mortem analysis of the fight. And I always decide that I wont go talk to him first and always fail. Five minutes into the cold war, I give in and go yell at him.

So I dont know how its going to work with my Dad. But I want to protect myself from getting hurt. I dont want to love someone so deeply if it is not going to be reciprocated. I do not want to wait for someone if that person doesnt appreciate my patience or realise it.

So I will move him down my priority list too, he was right up there with baby S, even slightly above P and R! He goes down the list now. Until he writes a sappy email saying how much he loves me and I melt. Sigh!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Random things

I talked to Dad everyday for almost a week when he was traveling. It so worked out that he was out of town on his birthday too so I could wish him on his birthday. It was very very nice. Made us even closer, made me trust him and love him even more.

I had never in my life thought about how life would have been if my birth mother would never have gotten divorced etc. Because I was content in my life with my family - when I was in Mumbai, I could pretend I was not the child of divorced parents, I was a part of a healthy normal happy family. So I never imagined hypothetical situations until now....After getting to know my Dad, I see both of them individually and think about how awesome they would have been together. They started out as a great match for each other and then it was cut short cruely. What happened, could it have been avoided, who was at fault here? Who knows? Sometimes I think destiny dictates behavior? Sometimes even though it might seem like you are this close to breaking up or falling out, you magically hold on somehow and get through the storm. And sometimes it doesnt take much to break apart.

I had never asked any of my family anything about the divorce. I asked my Dad all the questions I had and I am grateful to him for answering every single of my questions. He told me the facts, didnt get into details or blame anyone or defend himself. They were together for 3-4 months after which my grandma took her away. He didnt talk about what was so bad that she had to leave. I dont know if he clearly knows. My parents dont know. One person can tell me but I dont dare ask her. And then why does it matter now, after all these years. They have all moved on, atleast on the surface of things. I have my own theory but it doesnt matter anymore..

I am truly blessed though. Things could have gone horribly wrong for me, every step I took could have led me to a different destination, but somehow everything turned out right for me. Just for that I will try not to crib/whine about routine stresses or worries from now on. God has been with me, watched me and done whats best for me on the bigger milestones of my life. I should look at the bigger picture and not sigh over the smaller obstacles.

I have booked tickets to travel to India in Dec. I told him about it, I will not ask to meet. Its his decision. I had brought up the topic a couple of times before and everytime he seemed hesitant, said that he wants everyone to be happy with our reunion and we should be patient. What is the motivation for his family to get excited about me? He will not bring up the topic or discuss any of his feelings with them, they do not ask questions, life goes on as usual. Who likes to stir up drama in their smooth life? Why would they bend over backwards and accept this additional member into their family? I can think of many reasons as to why not? But there are equal reasons to why should they? So I will not press on that matter. When the day comes, that he cannot bear the thought of not meeting me, when I am in the same city, he will take the steps required to make sure his wife and kids are happy and welcoming.

I am going to meet G :) Anyone else around to meet in Pune? :)

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

And we talked...

My birth father (Dad) and me, for the first time ever in our lives! He is traveling and is away from his family and can talk at length and freely.

It felt nice, my heart was racing when I called him. But then the tension dissipated. I cannot wait to talk to him again.

But it still feels like having an affair with a married man. He cannot talk to me from his city because he doesnt want to chat in front of his wife and kids. He is unsure of their reaction. I dont know where we are headed. We are so close virtually and now we are talking. If I visit India, will we meet? Where would we meet? I dont know.

For now, I have decided not to dwell over all those things and enjoy the present. I had never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would be in touch with him and here I am, talking to him.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sunday evenings..

Why are Sunday evenings so boring? There is nothing planned, there is an unsaid tension - get ready for the week ahead. If you have a boring/stressful/hated job, then Sunday evenings are unhappy because one stresses about the upcoming week. If you do not have a job then Sunday evenings are unhappy because you think of the coming week and the job applications you need to do.

I know what I want and need in life but its not in my hands. I know what I have and can do in my life and should act on it. Primarily to stay happy. And not to focus on what I dont have but to focus on the million things I do have and am taking for granted. My two beautiful healthy children!!

And to remind myself over and over, I will get a job, I will get a job I like soon.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

So I quit

Hello Mr.ABC:

It’s been a little over two weeks since I have joined XYZ. I had accepted this role with great enthusiasm for two reasons – the job profile and the opportunity to work with you. Both still hold true and I have great respect and admiration for you after having worked with you in these 2 ½ weeks.

But I have young children and work life balance is very important for me at this stage in life. I feel that it might not be possible to maintain that balance at XYZ.

I have worked long hours and weekends when required, at my previous employer too, but the company culture was more accommodating to working mothers and they allowed lee way for work from home, flexible hours and compensatory days off/leaving early during downtime. I do not feel that I can expect a similar culture at XYZ Finance; maybe my perception is incorrect. The long commute also adds a bit of restriction on my timings – I can either come in early or stay late but cannot do both, on a regular basis.

I don’t know an easier way to say this but I think I should resign from XYZ. I am indeed very sorry to leave and think that I would have been able to provide value and learn in return. I have enjoyed working with Paul very much and had picked up aspects of the FP&A process, created a desk top procedure for the admin budget and forecasting procedure etc in my short time here.

Please accept my apologies for any inconvenience caused to you. I hope there are no hard feelings and I would love to have been able to work for you. Maybe our paths will cross again in the future someday.

Could you please advise me as to my next steps? I will be at home tomorrow and can be reached on my cell phone or via email.

Best Regards,


I woke up in the middle of the night due to allergies and checked my email - seven new messages - from my friends, sister, parents all saying different things - it was brave of you to take this step, Good luck, and do not stress now. I cannot breathe. I hope to God its not panic stress which is triggering it but hopefully allergic reaction or something. I sat up and tried to say the Gayatri mantra over and over again. No help. Hugged R who is sleeping next by me, helped a bit. Went over and touched S and then got into bed with P. Touch is such a powerful tool! It works wonders to calm and soothe.

One of my major character flaws is to think that my career defines me. My self esteem and confidence drop when I am not working - maybe because it has never happened. I started working when I was in FY, starting SY - my CA articleship - I was 18 then. I am 34 now, so for the past 16 years, I have always been either working or taking time off from working because I was studying - CA or CPA or my MBA. I have never taken a break and done timepass. So I am not used to it and dont know how. And it scares me. I cannot relax and do nothing or do routine household chores or extended timepass with my kids. I need to have my routine for going to work and then I can arrange everything else around it. I also need to earn my own money even though P can provide for all of us comfortably.

That is the reason why I am behaving as if it is the end of the world around my job search and other job related issues.

But I believe that life is about mistakes to be made and lessons to be learnt. Its a long process of self exploration as you begin to understand yourself better and continue to transform into the person you will be in the future. There are no rights or wrongs - no decision is make or break or irreversible. Every turn you take leads you down a different path.

If I would slog it out here, I would be promoted to Controller within five years but within five years, my babies would be five and nine and I would have missed out on so much with them too. Is it quantifiable - one assures sure success, what about the other? How do you measure time spent with kids, love showered, they might grow up and revolt or grow distant or think of me as a burden. All of these things could happen.

But I am not in it for returns. Parenting should be and is a selfless act. You desire to have children, you give birth to them, you teach them, you hope they grow up to be responsible kind and good human beings, you set them free and then if you are lucky, they will come back and keep coming back and give you as much love as you gave them and more.

So today when I quit my job, I need to decide two things. One is that I will never look back and regret this decision. My Aunt says that all decisions are the best at a point of time, they are not to be re evaluated further down the road when you know more about the future and circumstances are different. So I will not look back and despair.

And I will never say to R and S - See, I sacrificed my career for you girls. I sacrificed my career because I think I need to spend more time with them, I need to be able to leave work to go attend every event with them, I need to make sure I am there to boost their self confidence. Not for them. Kids grow up fine in any circumstance. Everyone is born with their own destiny.

And I need to use this downtime for stress management and telling myself deep in my heart to wake up and understand that there is definitely so much more to life than a job and career. And it will never happen that one who wishes to work will not find any. Depending on the requirements and limitations, maybe it might take time. But diligent efforts always lead to success. So I will pick up my list of pending things, which I have not even scraped the surface off yet, last time, because I was so obsessed with finding a job, and go down the list. I will take deep breaths and relax. I will teach myself stress management - if I behave like this now, I am sure to get a heart attack if I find myself unemployed in my forties or fifties. Thats ridiculous behavior.

And I will soon find a job, something that is convenient for me, something that allows me to manage the tight rope balancing act of being a parent, a wife, a home maker and a professional. I will find work again. I just need to keep the hope and breathe :)

Monday, May 9, 2011

I am here :)

One of the three people in the world who know about this blog had asked me why I only write about sad things here. If I want R or S to ever read me in the future, would they think I had a sad life :)) I think I turn to this blog when I am stressed, to clear my head, its my therapy.

Anyways many things happened rapidly over the past month. I had a phone screen at XYZ co. The screen went fine and I was grocery shopping when I received a call from one of their HR reps. Their VP Finance wanted to talk to me. She wanted to set up time to chat tomorrow morning. Tomorrow was a Saturday! Who interviews on a Saturday in the US!! No Sorry or No can you do it, nothing, no regard for my preference. But I needed a job I guess. I said okay. The VP was supposed to call me at 10:30 am, he called at ten and said he had time to talk now and could we chat? Okay, I drop everything and get grilled for 40 minutes. Rapid fire questions. Did I say he was Indian? Patel. the end of it, he says "See you on Monday", I was like "Whaaat, no one told me about anything on Monday". He said "Of course I was on the calendar for a four hour visit to their campus on Monday - meet with so and so culminating in a 45 minute interview (again!!) with him. So then on this beautiful Saturday morning, his HR reps scrambled to call me back with confirmation and put together an agenda for Monday morning. So all of Sunday was spent in running out to buy a suit, prepping for the damn interview.

On Monday, the interviews went fine and when I walked into his office, Mr.Patel says "I have nothing to ask you". Great! At the end of the week, I had my offer. $2K less than what my earlier job was paying me. Arent you supposed to make more when you switch jobs? I accepted just because I am a chicken and insecure and was worried about turning down another job and then what if I didnt get a job for months and months. Now I look back and regret. First of many mistakes? Why am I making mistakes career wise this year! I had a nice cozy job in my comfort zone with my old employer which I turned down because of the commute. Now I am driving 25 miles each way in peak office times and tired and frustrated after 2+ hours of driving each day.

I had hesitated in my tracks when I had driven over to my new company. It was a small red building with a factory attached to it. I had severe withdrawal from having worked for seven years in a sprawling campus in a towering building. I am spoilt. I didnt want to go but forced myself to walk in.

I took this job purely because of one thing - I liked the job profile - its a core finance job and I need that experience on my resume to make it big some day.

But now reality has hit and this dream finance job that I so wanted, is very hectic and stressful and demanding. My colleagues at this work place are young, no kids and have pledged their life to office. So they are there when I arrive, they are irritated when I leave. I already work stupid 8.5-9 hour days without taking any lunch breaks. I have two young children. I cannot keep up with them. I so so want to quit.

R didnt make things easy for me. She cried all through the first two weeks. I have severe allergies and am perpetually feverish, sore throatish and sick. Its all taking a toll on me. I feel like I have made so many mistakes - should have taken my old employer's offer, took this one, now I wont get unemployment...I dont have the guts to do anything anymore. And I have lost the self confidence to think clearly and make a decision for myself. I am scared either way.

I am scared to stay in this job. I feel like a failure everyday - there is no clear handoff, no clear ownership, I dont even have a fricking boss yet and my interim boss is this shiny over enthu workaholic guy who clearly disapproves when I leave in the evening. I feel like a failure at home when I return and two (three?) souls are waiting for me and I feel like I cannot give enough time and attention to each of them. Shouldnt work bring you happiness? Shouldnt time spent away from your loved ones mean something?

I want to quit and take it easy. Visions of lolling around with the two babies, bringing R home half day and spending the summer having fun float in my head. But then reality hits and I am scared - what if, I get tired of it after a few weeks and never ever find a job again.

I keep thinking I should quit. P is not backing me on this. He keeps stressing me out with worst case scenarios like - If you quit before you find another job, then you can sit at home and look after both girls, we should pull R out of school and you can handle everything by yourself, dont expect me to help etc. He is ready to lend me a shoulder if I cry over my commute, tiring job but is unwilling to support me if I say I want to take a break.

I am stressed either way. I horribly envy those girls who are so clear in what they want. They have babies, they quit, they are firm on wanting to stay home and enjoy with kids, they return to work eventually. Why cant I be like that? I want to have everything.

One of my friends told me that working mothers can have everything but not at the same time, you will have different things at different times and it is up to you to decide what is your priority at various times.

So for now, I have decided I will stick to my timings. Let them tell me it is unacceptable. I will work my 8.5 hours and leave and not care if the office is full of people. I have a life and dependents.

I need to take care of my health and find a solution for the effects of allergies. Physical strength and fitness precedes a happy state of mind.

If my blog were a person, I would hug it tight...I feel so much better :)

On a different note, my birth father (I call him Dad now) and me exchange emails on an almost daily basis. Its going great guns and I am going to call him and talk to him for the first time ever on his birthday this month!! He is very nice and loving and I fear I hassle him sometimes by being insecure and clingy.

Should make a list of good things in my life and let go of the stress from the rest. Its all self created, this stupid stress :)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

In love with a married man...

is what it feels like with my relationship with my birth father. I have to hide it from family and friends, when I do mention it, I am met with shock or preachy sermons of "If I were in your place, I wouldnt do it". Really! With everything that is going on in this world, with earthquakes shattering the lives of thousands and kids killing other kids and what not, does a daughter reaching out to her birth father still figure on the top ten list of awful things to happen?

My parents were supportive initially and then freaked out big time with the prospect of my birth mother exploding when she finds out about this. I am frankly tired of having to be careful and think about her feelings. Her divorce was 34 years ago, when will she stop carrying that baggage around!

The whole situation is just a complex mess. My mother loves me and thinks of me as her daughter but the sister in her wants to protect and appease, so she pushes me in the direction of my birth mother and expects me to share the same "mother daughter" relationship with her. My birth mother is forever wronged and all her life everyone have only thought of ways to hurt her, of course, I am also included. So she looks at me with extreme sorrow on how sad it is that her first born wont bond with her. And me? I am rapidly approaching the point of massive irritation. I hope to God that in my next life, I am born to parents who love each other and who will stay with each other and I have a boring normal childhood.

And my birth father, I get along amazingly well with this man. We share an amazing rapport and he has been so frank with his answers without worrying about whether I will misunderstand and stop loving him. We agreed that I should call him Dad and he tells me he loves me in every email. I got way more than what I had expected when I first reached out to him.

Now once again I am at crossroads, because my parents were so worried, I asked Dad if he had also talked to his family and that I wanted to make sure that we were on the same page in terms of emotional investment and expectations from each other. Bottom line is that he says that lets not hurt our families who have stood with us for so many years, lets give them time to come around, lets be patient and wait and watch and one day we can go beyond our emails and meet and talk.

I cried when I read his email, however it is reality and I have to accept it, just wish it weren't so hard. So now I just need to trust his love and hope that he doesnt lose interest in me and keeps in touch and we can strenghten our bond over the years. I really have no hope for his family coming around, they have no incentive to do so, it would be so easy to shrug and go on with their lives. Why would they go out of their way to accomodate and accept me in their lives?

Well I tried and I have one less regret in my life - I reached out to my Dad and we got an opportunity to get closer - albeit on emails. I can keep in touch with him and lets see what the future holds for us. And maybe one day I can actually meet him in person and hug him.

In the meanwhile, I need to figure out how to make my heart feel light again...I smile outwardly and inwardly its weighed down with sad thoughts :(

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Blue skies are here again...

Seriously I need to learn how to sustain depression and self pity. I cant seem to go beyond a day, somehow I find my way back to smiling!

Have you ever seen a dog take a bath? He shakes shakes shakes his hair out as if to make sure every drop of water has left his body. I did a mental shake shake for myself yesterday to shake out all the self pity and sadness. Plus it also helped to have P come back home and tell me how I make his life complete and all romantic things which he says only once every thousand years. Its like the "Who wants to be a millionaire game"; I have only so many lifelines and so many occasions on which he will be super romantic with words :) My strong and silent loving husband!

Plus it helped to have friends who sternly scolded me over how I could possibly think it would have been better to not have been born at all and have I forgotten my incredible family who loves me, friends who think of me as family and so on...Thank god for friends who say the things which are right for you and not just the right things..

And venting out in the virtual world helps too - I need to pay myself for my blog - save so much money on therapy definitely!

Plus doing fun things with unsuspecting babies like not brushing baby S's hair after bath with the result that she has the cutest Mohawk right now! God, I have beautiful babies!!

Well all in all, I am back to normal now. I did write an email asking hard questions to my birth father. I am fair that way, if my side of the family is sleepless and worrying, I want to make sure yours is too. I feel like I am having an affair with a married man. His wife knows or doesnt, his kids dont know, wonder when he will tell them etc...its one thing to say "You are my daughter and I love you so much" in the safety of your own home over emails and another to step out of the virtual world and actually say it aloud to family and friends. I will not continue to hurt my family if I dont really have a committed relationship from his end.

And finally I cannot cannot allow this to distract me from my priorities in life. I was snapping at R for no reason and thats not allowed. So refocus on my babies, my husband, my job search, my exercise and let other things take a back seat...

In other news, I am going to run the half marathon again this year! Hopefully my dreams and reality will collide and I will be running past the finish line come August..

Thanks for all of you who thought of me and said a prayer, commented, emailed and called. I am truly blessed!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011


I don't know at what point a miscarriage takes place but I have experienced the end - when the ultrasound technician says to you "Sorry no heart beat" and you feel like your heart might cease beating too. When the doctor examines you and the blood flows and doesn't stop and the doctor says "Sorry the baby is gone". Or when you return home and feel empty inside. I don't know but I wish my mother would have experienced this 34 years ago. I wish I could rewind the past and be in the womb and pray to god, take me away now, let me not live.

My mother wouldn't be a divorcee with a child, she would merely be a divorcee. My brother might have gone to stay with our parents, they could have been their own nuclear family. My mother wouldn't be reminded of her divorce everytime she saw me. Maybe she might have moved on easier. My birth father wouldn't have felt guilty of this fault - not inquiring of his own flesh and blood and would be more at peace and pleased with himself and his achievements today.

My husband could have married someone better than me. Someone with straight hair and slight figure, someone who would be a bigger person and accomodate his parents. My in laws would be happy today living in the US with their son and his family.

Is there really any purpose to my life? Is it the result of some evil things that I did in my past life/lives that I was deemed to be born and be a third wheel and disrupt the happiness of so many? Do I even deserve to be a mother or will my daughters also be better off with someone else?

But I cant take a chance so live I must, and even though I am weary of carrying this load of obligation; obligations dumped on by me by everyone since birth, I have to pick myself up and carry on. For I cannot repeat the same mistakes others have done. I have given birth to my two beautiful babies and now I have to stand strong for their sake.

In my next life though, Good Lord, please take me from the womb if I am not wanted, it will just be so much easier on everyone.

Friday, April 1, 2011

My childhood - part I

My earliest memories are staying with my grandma and brother. My parents had my sister soon after I was born and they went back with her and left their son – who was the darling of my grandma and birth ma with them. I really cannot remember much about those early days. I can’t remember when my birth mom got married; I remember going to their wedding. A little while later I remember writing my name over and over - my new name. I guess it was a novelty for me to have a full name.

I went to stay with my parents at age 3-4 sometime and went to school with my sister, same division same school. Our brother stayed back with Grandma. My sister has inherited our father’s qualities of sincerity and she was a model student while I was the popular one who spent most of her time outside the class. Our parents never ever differentiated between us. Only when someone used to praise me to Mom, she would immediately say – But she is not mine, she is my sister’s. She would feel guilty accepting credit for me. It hurt me to no end and she has stopped doing that now :)

As soon as any vacation would start – summer, Diwali, Christmas, I would be shipped off to my Grandma and our brother would go home. Baba would drop one off and pick the other up. We would write letters to each other and all the three of us siblings are still very close. I struggle to write about my grandma and birth mom because they are good people, they always had my best interests at heart but somehow they ended up hurting me the most.

After my tenth standard exams, my grandma declared that I was to stay with her and attend college there. The night before when my mother and sister were going to leave, leaving me at Grandma's was the first time I spoke up against my Grandma. I said I didn’t want to stay and she never kind of forgave me for it after. Neither did my birthmom in a way.

I was living in two worlds sort of – a normal life when I went back home and when I came to my grandma's, I was expected to feel gratitude and sorry for my birth mom and all the sacrifices that she has done for me etc. For many years I had the tendency to feel lonely when I was tired or sad, I always thought my parents have their family, my birth mom has hers, my birth father has his and I have no one. I think it is the effect of many years of brainwashing by my grandma by telling me how I have no one in the world except God and my birth mom. But now I consciously push away those thoughts and focus on the positives in life – I was lucky to have such an awesome family, I have a good husband, our own children, a loving mother and grandmother and now I am so lucky to find my birth father in my life now.

Maybe because I spent half of my time at home and with my grandma's respectively, I got to see two sets of approaches and attitudes towards life, two sets of issues, I knew how a normal family functioned, I knew what it felt like to be the child of divorced parents...

To be continued

Are you over confident?

Then try looking for a job....its apply apply no reply and then because I have been saying that for a while, now I am getting replies everyday and they are all rejections!!! And yes, the well meaning aunties who keep saying - Take some years off, stay home with the children. Why is that you are automatically judged as a bad mother if you choose to want to work outside the home?

I think my kids will have a better mother if I am a better me and I am a better me if I have my self worth and identity which is (sadly maybe in the eyes of some, but I am not ashamed to admit) defined by my career for me. I love waking up in the morning and having this routine. If I stayed home, I would get nothing done. We would all lie around in bed till eleven. I am not disciplined like some people. I do think being a stay at home mom requires nerves of steel and great internal confidence and security and I dont possess both.

I like waking up, having my routine, getting dressed, sending my girl(s) to school where they can learn many things from trained professionals, having my own friends, enjoying the satisfaction of a job well done, being intellectually stimulated, putting all those years of studying and hard work to get my degrees to good use, earning my own money, coming back home to my family, enjoying my evenings with them, being able to take lavish vacations with them, being able to put something away for their future....Whether you are happier working or staying home is an extremely personal decision and no mother should be judged for choosing either way.

Of course I can do all this because R loves her school and wakes up every morning enthused to go to school. If she would wake up and cry everyday or get perpetually sick from the germs being passed around at school, I could have been singing a different tune.

I can do this because I have an awesome young nanny who devotes her time to baby S. I know baby S is looked after really really well.

I can do this because I have a husband who would love to see me work, who supports me and is happy in my accomplishments - at home and at work and outside.

And I can do this because we are in a country which allows for work life balance and understands the working mother's dilemma.

So Yes, thats why I am desperate to have a job soon...Now if only the rejects will turn into accepts miraculously overnight, I will be up and running on my way....but good things come to those who wait, so wait I will, and with a smile at that..

Someone give me a JOB NOW..

Thursday, March 31, 2011

I am growing up

My best friends all coincidentally warned me yesterday to not dive headlong into my relationship with my birth father and to trust every word that comes from his mouth or rather, in this case, gets typed out on the computer. Their warning was a day late. I had already sent an email with part I of my childhood describing in brief but candidly the various shades of grey that I was surrounded by. There was nothing false or contorted about it, it was what it was but to a biased reader like him, it must have seemed the perfect opportunity to jump at.

I have been waking up in the middle of the nights and reading his emails and then have not fallen back asleep and have just been jetlagged from the past week or so, since we started writing to each other. Yesterday I drove an hour out to the Sai Baba temple here. As soon as I stepped into the hall and saw Sai Baba smiling at me, I felt at peace. I left my problems there, asked him for guidance, drove home and went to my desk and saw his reply.

His mask had slipped away. In haste he had gleefully jumped to conclusions and I could see how little he thinks of my grandmother and my birth mother. And how highly of himself and his family. He sees himself as this visionary of the future - we need to advise future generations so they dont have to go through what we went through. So now he sees himself as the victim along with me, and my grandmother and mother as the inflictors of crime :) I was so relieved to see his reply. I should have felt sad but I was relieved to recognise and realise the real person behind the glamor. And just like that I have grown up people.... I wrote to him admonishing him to jump to conclusions and how he should realise that the world is shades of grey and not black and white and no matter what their personalities were, the fact remains that my mother and grand mother love me immensely and have stood by me forever.

Anyways my head has cleared and I am focusing on the things that matter to me - my job search, my family, exercise, planning vacations etc... :) And one surprising side effect of this journey is that I have a renewed sense of patience and affection for my in laws. No matter how troublesome they seem to me, they have stayed together, given their kids a good life and have done their duty as parents. I was taking this simple act for granted until I realised some parents can get away with not fulfilling their responsibilities forever.

Travelbug had quoted from Obama's book on how he focused on the absent parent instead of celebrating the life of the one who was there. I was so caught up in the emotion of connecting with my birth father that I had not realised the impact of this statement until today. I have three sets of parents in my life, God has been very good to me. Everyone who has parents will admit to being frustrated with them at some point of time or the other. I have three (counting my in laws)! Add to it, the interference of well meaning relatives and a loving but fiercely protective and dominating grandmother, I have had my share of frustrations.

So here are my next steps, I have written to him, lets see how he replies back. If he admits his mistake and shows some amount of understanding and humility, our ties will be strengthened forever. If the reply comes back as self centered as before, I know how he is and can stay emotionally detached and still be in touch once in a while. In the meantime, I will try to patch things with my inlaws. I was so busy ensuring that my comfortable life doesnt get any bumps that I didnt stop and think about taking the first step to create win wins for them. I went out of my way and shed my ego for a man whom I have never met, who has not done anything for me in his life. I think these two people who have done such an excellent job of bringing up my husband and caring for his emotional, physical and financial well being when he was growing up, deserve better. I do not regret anything that has happened. I am thankful for this journey of self realisation which is definitely making me a better person and opening my eyes to what is really important with people and relationships.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Whats going on with me....

My birth father and me are emailing each other almost daily. I dont know if its the freedom of writing to someone you have never met or its his personality but I find that I can ask him anything and he answers truthfully. It has been exhausting...initally when he wrote a long email to me for the first time talking about how painful it was to be detached from me all this while, I cried over and over and couldnt sleep at night. I still cannot and I wake up repeatedly to refresh my mail on the phone and to see if he replied back to my latest email. I read and re read my emails and his replies over and over until I know them by heart. I am so worried of losing him but can I really lose someone who was never mine?

My mother is freaking out with the thought of my birth mom finding out about us. She says that all hell will break loose when that happens. I am struggling to keep my loyalty to my birth mom as I get closer to my birth dad. I should remember that she kept me and stood by me, and that is the reality. All of our personality clashes on one side and this truth on the other. She agreed to the best route for me according to her and for that I owe her my gratitude. I shouldnt forget.

On the job front, its silence. I can hear the crickets chirping. I am beginning to get bored and am losing patience. I need to shake myself out of the slumber and re focus. And be patient and tell myself over and over and over that I will get a job soon, soon, soon... All the other projects in the house remain pending now. Its gym, birth father and job search in that order during the day. And of course playing with baby S is on the agenda all over all day... I still cannot believe I am talking to my birth father. I never thought this day would come in my life and I would be hearing him say all these things which I always hoped he would say to me someday. God is good to me. Thank you lord!

Friday, March 25, 2011

Fairy tale endings in real life

He replied back to my messages on FB. And told me that he is so pleased to hear from me and how painful it was to be detached from me and how all these years he never knew where I was or how I was doing and how he still remembers coming to meet me as a baby. I cried after reading each one of his messages. We are communicating with each other. I cant say or share more. I have decided I am going to keep my family out of it, I dont want their personal opinions or biases to cloud whatever relationship we choose to create. I cannot believe how blessed I am. Thank you God a thousand times over for showering so much love on me. After every message, I have stayed awake all night and cried over and over. I feel jetlagged without any travel now. And I have an interview to prepare for.

Many many many thanks to all of you guys for supporting me and giving me the strength to reach out. If I could meet you in person, I would be hugging you tight right now, but for the meantime, virtual hugs from me to all of you...Seena, Anon, Tys, Tears and Dreams, Swaram, Titaxy, Nidhi....all of you and anyone else I forgot to mention...

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Because I am a slow learner..

and cannot take hints...

Hi Mr.XYZ,

Lets start over again. My name is Sonia and I was born on so and so in so and so city. My parents are divorced and happily remarried with families of their own. I have had a happy childhood too and continue to lead a loved and peaceful life. So you might say; why do I want to look in my past and reach out?

I dont know if its because I am an optimist and believe in happy endings (for myself) or maybe because I have stayed too long in the US where having birth and adopted parents is nothing new, I dont know. But I am 34 today and have few regrets so far, and I know that when I will be your age, I will regret never having gotten in touch with you. Over the past couple of years, since having kids and being a parent myself, I began to wonder if you ever thought of me. I do not know anything about you and I am sure you dont know anything about me but I have this wish of getting to know you a little bit someday.

I would like to hear your thoughts. If you do not appreciate my contacting you, please let me know and I will never bother you again. I do not intend to cause you any trouble, nor do I expect anything from you.

Best Regards,



I also told my parents that I reached out and the amazing awesome parents that they are, they totally understood where I was coming from. They also said that you have done what you had to do, now forget about it. Same advice as given to me by everyone else. I am not going to tell anyone of this second email now. For the three of my readers who know me in real life, I do not wish to discuss this with you so shoo away :) I am saying this with louuwe :) For my virtual friends, its easier to hear criticism and support from you guys ;)

NOW I feel better and have closure. NOW I do not care if he gets back or doesnt. End of story until there is an update...

Monday, March 7, 2011

Seen and ignored...

I think this is my time to face rejection - Its "Apply apply no reply" for my job interview applications and I am pretty sure my birth father has looked at my email and ignored it. How do I know? Because I remember the last activity on his wall and I checked now, after a couple of days and there is new activity - adding new friends etc. So very good chance of his having read my message.

Well, the message is clear to me too now. He does not care and never has. Its good closure for me now. Many times over the last couple of years, I have imagined bumping into him somewhere, us talking, him feeling bad over how things have turned out etc. Now I will stop with the daydreaming. I always gave him the benefit of doubt in my mind that they both must have made mistakes and were not together. At times when I was angry with my birth mom, I would also think that maybe she was the problem and thats why they got divorced etc etc. But now I know, I know my birth mom and she is a genuine human being, full of love and affection and respect and regard for others. I know him from our one way interaction and know that he doesnt care. So this is the end to this chapter in my life. I will pretend I was never the baby of divorced parents.

I told P over the weekend and was so super glad he understood and supported me. He also thought that my reaching out might relieve my birth father and was confident that he must already be thinking about me all this time. These are the thoughts of an adoring husband and loving father of two girls. I need to tell him not every man is like you honey..

Well, I do feel better I got this done and out of the way and this was an outcome which was very much expected so no broken heart and tears over this. Its my birthday tomorrow and for all my birthdays to come now, I will not think of him.

Thanks to all of you - Tears&Dreams, Nids, Brahma, Tys, Seena, Anon and Comfy for your support and advice. I do believe this makes me a better person - reaching out and facing the rejection :)

Thursday, March 3, 2011

I did it....

One thing crossed off my list of things to do in life.....
Here is the message I sent him:

Hello Mr.XYZ,

I am ABC's daughter. I saw you on Facebook and thought that we should say Hello once in our lifetime - yours and mine. So Hello :)

Have a great rest of your life,

I do feel much more peaceful now. I hope he checks his FB himself and does not rely on his kids or his wife to do it for him. I am not really keen or enthu to be pally pally with his whole family. Why stir up trouble and I have a pretty awesome family myself too, its not like I am yearning for love..I also realized that I won't even feel bad if he doesn't respond. I know that he will have read this message and looked at my profile picture and I am satisfied with that much. I did not want to go through life never ever saying Hi or being aware of each other - I have seen his pictures but this way I know that he has finally seen me too.

I have not told anyone except one of my closest friends and my best friends from school who know of my blog will find out about this eventually too so girls, if you are reading this, please don't call me up and yell. Its done. But just in case I get into trouble or am hurt, please do hold my hand ;)

Now I should focus on to more productive things in my life :)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

The power of social networking

Today on a whim, I typed in my birth father's name on "Search everyone" in Face book and there he was. A hand around his wife who was holding their grandson. I looked and looked at their picture for a long time. I thought to myself meanly that my birth mom is more beautiful than this lady for sure but even then couldn't bring myself to think bad for her. Because she did seem like a really nice woman. This just led downhill as I then discovered his kids and their spouses and looked through their photo albums and read the posts on their walls and discovered his brothers and their extended families. All of my day which should have been productively spent in job search or chores around the house or spending time with baby S whizzed by as I looked at the lives of these people with whom I share a common gene.

For some time I was tempted to add him as a friend and send him a message. But it has passed. He has a great family, I have an awesome family. There are people on my side - especially my birth mother, who will be hurt as hell if I reached out and I am sure there will be people on his side who will be hurt by me.

I am lacking for nothing in my life, I have no void left over by an absent father just because my Dad, the person who had no obligation and blood relations to me adopted me and has stood steadfastly and firmly behind me all these years. He has been a pillar of monetary, emotional, moral and physical support for me. From teaching me how to ride a bike to wiping my tears away when I flunked my CA finals to encouraging and cheering me on every obstacle I faced to celebrating my successes - my CA degree, my first job, my marriage and on and on. He is still there, a phone call away telling me confidently "You will of course get the job you want, enjoy this time with S and R and everything will work out just fine". I have no void. I have a father who has gone above and beyond his duties/responsibilities as a father.

But still I stop and wonder sometimes, especially after having babies of my own, does he ever think of me? His first child, the first grandchild in their huge family? Does he ever stop and wish to get in touch with me, to know me? He turns sixty one this year, as he enters the last phase of his life, does he wish to talk to me, to apologize for walking away, to not getting to know me ever. I stop and wonder and then again am tempted for a second to click the "Add friend" button on Face book.....

I think this is one situation which I know I will regret for sure - I will regret never ever talking to him when he passes away but yet, I am paralyzed and cannot proceed for fear of hurting a lot of people. If I was assured that no one else in this world would know and if we could just meet together - only the two of us, I would take the first step. But for now, I am scared. I have not been the greatest daughter to my birth mom, I have punished her long and hard for not being strong enough, but this is something I cannot do to her. I know it will crush her and I love and care for her more than him to hurt her like that. I am also not sure of the kind of person he is, and I do not want to hurt myself. I do not want to risk opening Pandora's box and upsetting a lot of people. Maybe this is for the best, if fate ever brings us together in a chance meeting, then so be it. Until then I will push these thoughts away and focus on my present and the people who love me and cherish me and have fought for me to keep me and to nurture me.

P.s: I realize I had written a similar post when R was born :)
Sigh....what is the right thing? Who can look in a magic ball and tell me the answer?

Friday, February 25, 2011

Kabhi khushi kabhi gam

I found the culprit to my dukh - its my periods. One of my friends told me that some women get depressed at that "time of the month". P doesnt believe me and thinks its just a major scam thought up by women all over who want to justify their crankiness and tendency to stress over faltu things. But then P has said all the hazaar things you should not say to your wife/girlfriend during that time of the month. For example: How old are you now? 33? How come you are not used to the pain by now? Now he knows better and pretends to be sympathetic. That will do too :))

Plus I talked to my parents. My mother uses this "guilt me into cheering up" technique on me nowadays.

Sonia: Mommy, whine whine whine (over some silly insignificant issues)
Mom: Ya ya, you will feel better soon/you will get a job soon/R will sleep through the night soon etc etc.....Did you know cousin X got cancer detected and has gone through chemo sessions and has lost all her hair? I had called her and she is so positive, she said she feels good now and wears a cap to cover her baldness. Her son and daughter in law are in Bangalore and she is in Pune by herself but she prefers to stay in her home surrounded by her familiar city.
Me: Thinking to myself - Omigod, I am horrible. I will stop whining right now!

And then I shut up and think positive and thank god over and over for all the wonderful things that I have in life and to give me strength to face all the other inconvenient situations that might come my way etc etc :)

A long time back I had read the book - Seven habits of highly effective people. I had really loved it and one of the things the author has said is to imagine a big red STOP sign when you find yourself thinking negative thoughts. It does immensely help to do that. So now I am back to saying STOP to myself mentally when I find myself drifting along to unproductive thoughts.

Well...thank you, all of you for your sweet words and concern and love. I feel so much better already and will not be whining again (I hope)..I hope all of you have a great day and weekend too...

Thursday, February 24, 2011

A smile is harder than a sad face...

Yeah staying cheerful is hard work on some days. I had to go back to work for a bit again and it again depressed me. I think if I had a job lined up already, I wouldnt feel this way. I went to the gym and was depressed looking at the others. I felt like I was the only fat slob in town. I half heartedly worked out for a little bit and came home. My heart isnt in anything. I want to go out, when I go out, I want to go home. I want to be with my baby, I want to work. I want to be fit, I dont want to work out. I want my Mommy :( I dont want to go to India. Maybe sulking for some time will help, only if it doesnt lead to more self pity....

Oh yay, I feel so much better already.....for the two people who read my blog and others, please ignore this post. I can only call up my friends and family so many times to vent in person. Pretty soon they will be enormously bored with my constant whining. My blog and my laptop cannot complain so here is my space to whine :)

Hope all of you are having a better day!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

End of self pity :)

Yesterday I had to go to my office to get my laptop fixed before I need to give it away. My last day with them is approaching fast and I wanted to make sure I had all of my personal stuff off the work computer. As I am still technically on maternity leave, the security guard required someone from HR to come downstairs and let me in and I don't know what went on but no one seemed to show up. So there I was sitting in the lobby like a visitor for almost 2 1/2 hours while I waited for the IT technician to show up, then take my computer away, then try to figure out how to fix it. In the meantime people walked in and out of the lobby, many of them who knew me stopped by to chat - Some asked "Are you here for a job interview?", others gasped and were shocked that I turned down a job offer from my company (the location was a 45 minute one way commute on a good day, realistically I would be on the road for three hours everyday), others said with pitiful looks that they kept me in their prayers (who died!) while some had the audacity to tell me that the market is tough outside. What the hell, if you have a job, why would you say that to someone who doesn't have one!

Anyways those 2 1/2 hours of sitting in the lobby like a stranger were so painful. Maybe if I wasn't let go, I wouldn't have felt so bad but yesterday I was fighting back tears. I have worked in that office, on that campus for 7 years now, the security guard knows me by name but still no one would let me in. Companies are cold and ruthless that way. It was a good cleansing closure kind of experience though, I refused to cry outwardly, brushed away my tears, chatted gaily with all and sundry and waited for my stupid worthless piece of junk laptop to be returned to me.

While leaving, I was done with them. Even now when I drive past, I think of it as home, not anymore, ties are severed. I wonder how people who work at a certain place for 20+ years feel, when they get let go.

I went to my favorite book store and bought a humongous chocolate chip cookie and an iced coffee and inhaled both and shopped for books and what not and finally took a deep breath and felt better :)

So now baby steps for everything....P has assured me over and over not to freak out and think we are headed for doomsday separation etc and has made me realize that his parents, even though they have numerous character flaws, are not khatarnaak and vicious as the Sasu Mas depicted in the soap operas on Indian TV. So after making it clear that I was not signing up for moving in with them or green card or even six months stay every year, I have promised to take the first re conciliatory step by talking nicely with them when we call this weekend and every subsequent phone conversation.

I also talked to a recruiter who said she loved my resume and not to worry, the market is getting better etc :) I refuse to worry about my job. I refuse to worry about my nanny. I refuse to worry.

I am going to enjoy my time with baby S and my drama queen R. I am going to go work out everyday - I was so busy crying over the past few days that I skipped gym :( I am going to focus on my job search. I am going to put some time aside for my home decoration khayali pulao ideas which I have made over the x no of years but never found the time to actually execute on them.

So thats where I am at, self pity is done, never again will I allow someone to pull me down and step on me, always turn towards the sun and smile :)

Monday, February 21, 2011

The big fight

My dear babies S and R,

Its entirely because of you that I am a stronger person today. I am career focused and want to find a good job. I want to earn good money and be able to provide good things for you. I am involved in your day to day activities and want to make sure you get everything you need - my time, my attention, my love, my money....Its also because of you both that when things get tough between me and Daddy (solely because of his parents, we have no other issues between us and love each other dearly otherwise), I do not run away.

It would have been so tempting to pack my bags and go away and teach him (and them) a lesson, to find out for ourselves if we can survive without each other. But its you both who stop me.

I have given birth to you and its my duty and responsibility to ensure that you have a happy childhood, a happy home, loving parents and you both grow up to be strong and independent and sensitive women. Remember this forever, I hope to God that when you are grown up, you never compromise on who you are and what you can be, because of someone else. I have stood strong so that I can give you both strength.

Remember never ever to sacrifice your life for hypothetically making someone else happy. Its not worth it. Remember never to think you owe something to someone just merely by the fact that they are older than you. If they have had double the amount of time as you on this earth and every single one of your interactions have been selfish on their part, you owe them nothing. Remember to be good and fair and loving but focus on what you need out of life. And you can never ever make someone else happy if they choose not to be. I hope you grow up knowing gratitude and satisfaction. Remember to express both in all situations. Remember to be thankful for all the good things and people you have in your life and to let go and free yourself of all the other painful elements. All those sayings about how gold gets brighter after it has been through a fire, understand what it means. Dont think it means you should stay put in a sucky situation and be meek and put your head down and chupchap tolerate unpleasantness inflicted by someone else and slowly rot away inside and turn into some person which is not you. I never want you to look back on your life and go "I wish I wouldnt have wasted away my life like this".Take it to mean to work hard for the relationships, the career, the hobbies, the love that is worth it, that is enriching and uplifting and which makes you a better person.

Daddy and I have that love, my darlings. And we still are holding each other's hands strongly and we will not let go. Without sounding like I am tooting my own horn, I want you to know that every single relationship that I have had since I was a child, has been complete and beautiful. My parents think I am a wonderful daughter, my siblings love me to death and vice versa, my best friends and me share an awesome "I got your back" relationship, my birth mom, my extended family, everyone I meet, my colleagues - no complaints anywhere but there are two people (and maybe my sister in law, but who knows what she thinks) that are constantly disappointed in me. And for whom I refuse to bend over and kill myself inside and turn into that person that would make them happy. I refuse to compromise my relationship with my husband and the happiness in my babies's childhood just to cater to their whims and fancies. And for that I gladly accept"the world's worst bahu" label and sermons on how I should be a better daughter in law from third parties. I am willing to take that over everything else...

Stay strong, stay beautiful, stay sweet, stay loving, be compassionate, have empathy, have a great career, have hobbies, enjoy your life, love and be loved and also sacrifice and compromise but in moderation. Love you my sweeties.

Your Mommy

Monday, February 14, 2011

Free Free Free

Free exercise plan available here ;)

I had my second (and final) session with the trainer (that is all that I can afford for now) and she has done an awesome job of making a customized workout schedule for me. So if you are about 5 feet four inches tall and around 145 (cough cough 150) with most of your weight sitting firmly on your bum, you can copycat this plan :) As usual all the dire disclaimers as are present on medicines and any activities you sign up for - blah blah, I take no responsibility for sprained necks, increased weight blah blah...

So ready....
* Alternate strength training and aerobic exercises *.

Aerobic - I am going to run/walk on the treadmill for atleast half an hour everyday slowly increasing time and distance and speed as I get fitter.

Strength training is a whole list of things to do which made me sooooo sore all day the next day :( Advil Zindabad or your choice of painkiller druggies..

1) Single leg balance - hamstring curls - supposedly great for burning off the fat on the butt. Becoz I am not so blogsavvy and short on time to post great pictures, I am doing the next best thing - see the link for the machine/technique

Whatever exercise you do, dont move/sway the whole body, wrong wrong wrong....follow the instructions precisely on the machine or ask someone at your gym on observing if you are employing the correct technique. If you are in poor physical fitness condition like me, you will realise that you can only do about 10% of the action which they depict on the machine. When the trainer would show me an exercise, it would seem so simple until I would actually try it out myself :((

Do 12-15 times 3 repetitions

2) Leg drop - strengthening the glut - 12-15 times 2 reps. I couldnt find an image for this but its that thingy where you push back with one leg on the weight while lying down on your tummy or rest your chest on the other thingy standing up - have I confused you thoroughly? :)

3) Squats Awesome video - only thing that my trainer made me do was start the squat with my arms raised then lower the arms as you squat and then jump and hold the position and then do it over and over....As many as you want.

4) Pushups - I do standing pushups - make sure to keep your body straight and bend in the elbows and try to reach with your chest as far as you can go down..kinda like this but I use a weights machine danda instead of the wall.

Remember Salman Khan from Maine pyaar kiya doing push ups...Mmmm....I should ask P to get started on his - sigh... Do as many push ups as you like - its hard!

5) Tricep press down - with a band - its really putting the resistance band on something a little bit high up and then slowly pulling it past your body.
15-20 times 4 reps

6) Lunges - 6 each way I love this guy!

Do sideways and this No, dont get carried away and hold weights in your hands...

7) Modified plank hold - as long as you can. This is one of the awful exercises which looks oh so easy when the fit trainer drops down and does and is impossible to imitate when you try to do it :(

8) Star for back - lie on your tummy, suck in your core (Oh will tell you all about it, wait up) and lift one stretched hand and opposite leg and hold. Alternate. Do not let your hip lift up from the ground.

9) Bicep curls this lady is doing both hands at the same time, my trainer told me to do alternate using 5 lbs weight and 12-15 times.

10) There is one more exercise for the shoulders using resistance bands, this time the band is hooked on to something lower than your body right next to the ground and instead of pulling it down, you pull it up diagonal to your body and high up out -take care you keep your elbows soft and not make your hand straight and rigid when doing the action. 12-15 times 2 reps

11) Hip abductors - these are commonly available at all gyms. Do 25-30 2 reps starting out with very low weight. If you want to lose weight on hips, do not use more weights, you will have humongous muscly hips then and will be trying to track me down to hit me over the head with them :(

12) Stomach crunches - Lie on your back, suck in your gut, make sure your lower back touches the ground and raise your legs and make a table top kinda thing with your legs bent in the knees - google it please "table top stomach crunch" and do 15-20 reps.

Thats all! Phew, I am exhausted from typing these up too :( Oh yeah, anything and I mean anything you do in the gym (and she says even outside) always suck in your gut and hold. Thats strengthening your core and where is your gut, you say, its an inch or two below your belly button. So ignore the flab hanging out over and around the belly button but focus on sucking in and holding the core.

And in other great news, you will slowly start to lose weight first in your boobs and then overall slimming effect and then slowly your back etc - all insignificant places and in the end your butt :( So when you have been working out diligently and crazily, you will still look awkward and like shit for a few months and then I expect one day it will be like Boom - ooh I fit in size six jeans and look so very hot kinda deal hehehe...I think....let me find out.

So I have decided that I will do the run/walk on treadmill and 8,9 and 12 on one day and the rest on the next day and rinse and repeat. Ready to join me people??

Happy Working Out !!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hi Ho Hi Ho Off to gym we go...

Today is day two of project Hit fit Ms.Sonia. Yesterday was my first ever in my life experience of working out with a dedicated personal trainer. Her name is Pam, she is 42 and I look way older and fatter than her. She has this amazing body and I kept my mouth shut to stop from blurting out - did you get a boob job and liposuction or is this all mehenat ki body and if so, help me get one!!

Anyways she was being very nice and all, but a while into our session, I could feel the "I am working with an uncoordinated idiot" vibes flow through her :(( I was trying but my brain and my limbs have some sort of a communication issue plus the warm up moves which she was showing me was akin to playing Twister and she had to finally yank on my leg and arrange my body to get me in the right positions :(

I was exhausted from the warm up and wanted to go home but half of my paid session was still pending so I reluctantly followed her and did some zillion painful squats and push ups. Sigh!

Today I went back to work out on my own to not stop my gym routine, now that its finally started....I ran/walked on the treadmill for thirty minutes and was determined to work out on the machines etc but at the end of my run/walk, I was so lightheaded when I got off the treadmill, that my legs just carried me into the parking lot and the car and home. I told you my limbs and brain are uncoordinated!

P said "What a waste of good money, have you forgotten we have a treadmill at home". What do husbands know! Remind me never to share my exercise routine with overambitious overachiever people like him.

Anyways I wear my cool gym pants and my cool gym t shirt and my expensive worn out running shoes but I still feel shy and awkward and clumsy when I walk into this swanky gym :( I walk upstairs on the side of the stairs where you should really walk downstairs and realise it half way when people are neatly filing past me saying "Excuse me". I walk into the treadmill area and hide in a corner spot and then am horrified to find myself right next to the mirrors and I cant stop checking myself out - Omg, my butt looks huge and what are those limp things on my tummy, oh they are my boobs and other self deprecating realizations :( I walk into the bathroom and there are all these insanely fit females with awesome figures walking around in towels. So there I am peeking at these models and making mental lists of "Oh, I should really buy some fancy underwear like that etc".

There was one class in progress - I am terrified of attending any of these team training/group classes because of my uncoordinated limbs and body and everyone in that class was so fit and kicked and punched in the air in unison/perfect coordination. How come there are no fat, saggy, flabby, out of breath, out of shape women/men in these classes? Where are the classes for these people? And where do I sign up?

Anyways I am off to research and make a super exercise plan for myself - work the butt on one day, legs on other blah blah and soon I will be a yummy mummy and people will be like "Omg, did she get a boob job and lipo done" :)