How to get through Father’s Day when Your Dad’s no longer here?

Today is Father’s Day and many of you will celebrate your Father’s on social media. You have perhaps created a post with recent / current photos, you may have prepped for a dinner / lunch / breakfast at home, you may have made a video montages, or found a great throwback photo of with your father from childhood. But some of us approach this holiday with certain amount of dread.

A father’s day without a Father is no holiday at all.

Father’s day without a Father is difficult, and it doesn’t matter how long it has been that your father has been missing from your life.

It is going to be 8 years this year without my father. He passed away in 2012. I have come to a few realisations over the years and thought will share it today on Father’s Day.

One of the many lessons I have learnt over the year is the acceptance that I cannot go back and change the past and bring him back nor take away the suffering my dad went through while he was ill. It’s an unfixable point of my life. I cannot with even the helpf of Bruce Banner, Tiny Stark, go back and change this part of my life. Even the The Avengers know you cannot change the past.

Since the death of my dad the second thing that I have focussed on is enjoying the few things we shared. Like the music he liked or the action movies he introduced me to or the love for reading I learnt, or the most important life lesson ( a truthful burden) that all he could give me was education and I had to earn my own financial independence.

At this time when I can look beyond myself I started to think of many like me for whom this can be triggering time. Although it is a time of covid 19 here are something’s we could do for making this day memorable.

  1. Do something in his memory, I wanted to plant a shrub this year. I have postponed it to when I can go to a nursery. You can do this.
  2. You can write a journal , a card , a blog post thinking of him , talking about him. I did this for him too.
  3. Prepare a family meal.and share with your family. His favourite dishes could be part of the menu.
  4. Do something which you enjoyed doing with him. I enjoyed watching Hollywood action flicks with Arnold Schwarzenegger, Tom Cruise , Stallone, Bruce Lee. I plan to do this tomorrow.

Any holiday is difficult with a loss of loved one, especially when we are bombarded with the happy, preety photos on social media. All I can say is if you are struggling this holiday , please reach out to someone you trust. Most importantly be kind to yourself. No matter how long it has been that you have lost your father, your grief can be overpowering, it is real for you. You do not need to explain your grief but you must accept it. Sometimes this grief can be as cruel and deep as the day he died. That’s okay, you are allowed to feel it. There is no rule book for grief. Remember, the gief that you feel reflects the love you felt for your father and that love can never be taken away.

I hope this post is of some assistance.

My Father (Photo from 2009)

Dr. Sen Censored ?

Look I thought the demonetization stunt was a bad idea and executing it was as good as killing the Indian economy and setting us back by a few years in terms of growth. But I am not an economist, hell, I haven’t studied economics except for 3 papers in first year of MBA. So when Amartya Sen who has been recognised for his knowledge happens to say that it’s a mistake people who may be blind supporters would be expected to take notice. In fact, even the proponents of the demonetization debacle also took notice. I am sure lot of people don’t like Dr. Sen because he has views and opinions contrary to them. But to want specific 4 words to be beeped out of a documentary on his life is taking it a bit too far. 

The few things that bothers me as per my common sense are here below:

  1. I didn’t event know there was a documentary made on his life, assuming not a lot of people knew this, looks to me,
  • How many people really watch documentaries? 
  • The censor board is making a mountain of a mole hill and giving free publicity to this.
  • The director doesn’t want to agree to this ‘mute the words ‘ direction because he knows he is getting publicity.

2. What happens if the words are muted?

  • The whole feature loses its heart and soul,  mind you these are beeped out words in sentences not scenes cut.
  • The audience is able to understand the meaning and intent  of the speakers words even without the words, assuming documentary is watched by people with a certain intelligence level.

3. What have the censor board achieved if the words are muted ?

  • No one will watch the documentary because it has muted words.
  • Everyone will flock to watch the documentary ( I don’t know where.)
  • Everyone will understand what is being said even though the words are muted.

Pray tell me which of these points make sense to You? I personally cannot understand why the censor board is bothering unless motivated by political bigwigs if so why are the bigwigs bothered about a documentary? And what’s with the director posturing so much,  you dont like the decision go to court. Why play the media circus? And why are people suddenly worried about their freedom of speech not that they ever have anything good to say? Isn’t it high time people realised the media business requires them to sensationalise every thing happening here we really need to stop being riled up and act like high and mighty arm chair social activists all the time. 

10 reasons why people aren’t condemning the killing of Amarnath Yatris.

10 reasons why the intellectual secular liberals on my friend list and others on social media are very quiet about the attack on and killing of Amarnath Yatris.

1. It is a terrorist attack and that’s not really about religion .

2. Terrorists have no religion .

3. Nobody really cares about these suckers who believe in doing pilgrimage.

4. Who told them to go to a terrorist zone? Serves them right.

5. Why should we feel bad for people of one religion? We are a secular country.

6. All these Amarnath Yatris are actually RSS followers because no common man of a particular religion ever goes for pilgrimage. Only right winged religious fanatics go for such trips.

7. Look no real anti Govt  celebrity has said anything against it so why should we share the news or give opinion or make our profile photos black in protest.

8. It’s just a bunch of old people probably not a young bubbling man or woman who had a life to look forward to. So why bother protesting .

9. We condemn right wing propaganda and this is all propaganda actually the bhakts are pretending to be dead and the media is spreading fake news.

10. There was no Amarnath Yatra this year, these photos are from 2015 .

Mother’s Day Post

A few days ago I read a web article about a Teacher from a school in the Mumbai Suburbs about the dress code she follows to her work place. The writer referred to “ Many students and ex-students over the generation have written in saying that they have dreamt of my saris.” While reading this I realized this could have easily been my Mother talking. It took me back to memories of her getting ready for her college. I must have been 6 or 7 still going to primary school, and returning early to be able to see her get dressed for work. She also worked in a Girl’s College in the suburbs and took the college bus to work every day. She wore mostly Handloom cottons or printed cottons during summer, on rainy days she wore synthetics ( that’s what they were called then) and during the mild winter she wore handloom silks, printed silks. She accessorised her outfits with subtle jewelry. I know she had a collection of semi precious stone jewelry which I later inherited. She had her glass bangles. But they were rarely worn by the time I could remember. She wore light gold earrings and bangles and a watch with black leather band. She had progressed from the semi precious colorful jewelry to Gold, but the color wasn’t lost, she had rings made with different color stones, and matching earrings and bangles. We would go shopping for these in the city when we visited during vacations. And everyday when she got ready she would match her accessories with her saree. She seemed to do it without a hitch. I was awestruck by it. I thought someday I would be able to do the same. I remember she used to have her leather bags in the Black, Brown and Neutral color which she would pair accordingly. And her heeled Sandals, colorful and dainty but subtle at the same time. She stopped wearing heels after a freak accident at a railway station. But I still remember trying out her sandals all the time as a child.

She told me many stories of how her students would be in awe of her clothes and accessories. They would discuss amongst themselves what color outfit she would wear on a particular day. In the 80’s and 90’s the students were still respectfully afraid of the teacher so they didn’t talk about it to her in class. She found out from them during their  field trips or excursions or sometimes once they had passed out of the college and come back to join the department as juniors. The millennial student were more forthcoming. They would tell her in the classroom that they liked what she was wearing.

The day I read the article I posted it on FB and wrote a bit and while doing that I found I had more to say. So, I decided to write this post for her on Mother’s Day. For my mother, who inspired me to dress well, accessorize and show up looking ready for the job every day. I came to embrace this tenet of dressing well pretty in life. Mostly I didn’t care how I looked because I thought my sparkling personality would do the rest. In the past 2-3 years I have moved away from only dressing up for occasions to dressing right Every day. And although my choices and taste are a poles apart from my mother, I know that some part of the love for sarees come from her. I remember I was given I saree every year and slowly by the time I was working I made sure I bought one saree every year. For a young person of my generation who did not have too many occasion to wear saree I had a sizable collection and would enjoy wearing them to Family events much to the surprise of people who thought I was too young to wear a saree. The concept of saree being meant for only rare festivities is ingrained in some and hence they are surprised to see me wear a saree. However, my Mother has definitely inspired me to wear a saree at most occasions.

Thank you Mom, for the inspiration. As years go by I realize how much influence you have on how I shaped up as a person. Happy Mother’s Day!!

 

THE END.

Reading List May 2017

Juggling two very different yet similar books. One a biography and the other a story based on true events.

1. The Spy by Paulo Cohelo


2. Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson