Showing posts with label Being Woman. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Being Woman. Show all posts


This is My Moment

Found this interesting wall mural at India Palace, Las Vegas

I was not put on this earth to be invisible.

I was not born to be denied.

I was not given life only to belong to someone else.

I belong to me. 

I have a voice, 

And I will use it. 

I have dreams unforgettable.

I have a name,

And it is not anonymous,

Or insignificant or unworthy,

Or waiting any more to be called. 

Someday, they will say, this was the moment,

When the world woke up to my potential. 

This is the moment I was allowed to be astonishing.

This is the moment when my rising no longer scares you.

This is the moment when being a girl became my strength, my sanctuary,

Not my pain. 

This is the moment, 

When the world sees that I am held back by every problem, 

And I am key to all solution. 

This is the moment when a girl,

And a girl,

And a girl,


250 million other girls say with a voice loud,

that this is our moment...

This is my moment.

This, yes this, is the moment!


We Make Access to Education and Sanitation Possible as Basic Human Right

#WorldsAIDSDay #GivingTuesday  #IndiChange #WeCantWait

World Toilet Day 2015

Today, I am going to write about one of the program that i am totally passionate about and have been involved through Asante Africa Foundation team based out of Oakland, US. Though i can speak hours and hours on digital divide and how important it is, but, being a woman i think i hold myself responsible for strengthening 'gender specific targeted interventions' too, that brings social changes to address basic human/child/ reproductive rights of girls in East Africa or in future in India. By going to such places you realize how much India has progressed and being in US you make your wishlist even longer and think so how much more our country has to still achieve. We will do it, we are moving in right direction albeit slower than we want to.

Nevertheless, today is world's AIDS Day and Giving Tuesday, for you to pick a charity of your choice and support its mission. So, i thought why not write about our Girls Advancement Program - Wizesha Vijana - on how a very cost-effective simple intervention which includes infrastructure upgradation such as building sanitary toilets in school have the power to impact education in some of the most rural marginalized areas of East Africa. And how these interventions directly supports in realizing sustainable development goals, holistically.


Sisterhood of The World Bloggers Award

This is probably the first award nomination for my blog. And this warm gesture goes to my school friend of very many years but blogging rediscovered our mutual interest areas. Meet, Anamika Agnihotri aka The Bespectacled Mother who blogs at I Know Nothing About It

Moving further, here are the rules which go with this award: 
  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site
  2. Put the Award logo on your blog
  3. Answer the ten questions sent to you
  4. Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer
  5. Nominate 5-10 blogs that you adore. (I am further placing a link on the nominees’ blogs to let them know about their nomination)
I have got following ten questions from 'the bespectacled mother' :p

1. Which was your favourite book as a child? 
It was a folk tales book with title "रूसी लोक कथाएं ". I can vouch reading it atleast if not more, 100 times. I still remember the name of first story "गुलगुला". My father had bought it for me from Agra.

2. What is that childhood memory you are most fond of?
My playtime with my younger brother and sister. We used to play 'घर घर' in our garden between two hibiscus trees, where the house boundaries/wall will be made of pillows, roof will be made of Mummy's Saree and my sister (who was 5 at that time) will grate Parle-G biscuit and put water in it. And that used to be our food. My brother used to make some recipe with grinding of green leaves as his contribution. All my happiness of my childhood, i attribute to the time i have spent with my bhai-behan and then cousins (a batch of 10 only) !

3. What does blogging mean to you?
Blogging for me is to be myself without having to look for anyone's approval for maximum likes or comments. I write what i like, i like what i write - and its all as a memoir of pleasant memories. So, that if ever my memory or I am lost (god forbids) , I can still re-live the life i was blessed with. 

4. Who is that one person in your life holding positive influence over you? 
Before wedding, it was my father and after wedding, its my husband. Its that easy for me. Though both of them keep participating and competing with each other more frequently than i wish for. But, I know deep down their values are same and they both are alike in lot of ways. 

5. How do you quieten your mind to get some sleep?
Very simple. Get up, brew a cup of adrak wali chai and blog. Reading also helps me disconnect with what's bothering me. My another funda to have a sound night sleep is to never take a nap in daytime even on holidays (rarely). 


Nostalgia of Small Towns & Real People

My Dadi ji (we used to call her Amma) and dada ji (we used to call him Pitaji). If you know me enough, I mean close enough, you will find a similarity in my face and his face. Amma was truly Amma, she will beat us with her stick and share stories at bedtime. And Pitaji, I used to take pride for he is Commissioner and would go with him for public meetings, inaugurations.
He would have really adored my association with NGO sector, I was in class VIII. But the biggest guilt of my life is not
being able to meet my Amma in her last days. I had joined my first job in Hyderabad (2005) in a big Canadian funding agency and my induction was going on that time.  I quit that job within 3 months to go closer home.

What is it in our small towns that gives us immense pleasure and satisfaction in return ?

It is or convenient relationship with them. We keep going back to our 'desi' roots whenever we are in fix, confusion, pain, despair or utter chaos and yet settle of anonymity of a big metro city. To resume the journey of a 'small fish' in a big-big very big dirty pound, where the small town fish has to survive to become 'someone'.

And what is the price of becoming someone - emotions ! The constant chase of a goal often unknow turns into our greatest dilemma, The dilemma of our belongingness. We cut ties of festival celebrations, our absence in weddings become a norm, high school friends are lost in transition as we spread our wings in the sky.


Women and Shopping - Who Controls Whom ?


Did I tell you how I had planned to devour my first pay check after I resumed full time work from Aug?

My initial plan was to pledge my three months salary to visit either Morocco or Spain. But then I realized my will power is not as strong as I think it is. May be my savings would be just enough to finance the tickets but what about the lodging and trying local delicacies and shopping.

Hey, that’s when I rely on my equity investor, Sinha Ji, in good and bad times.

Somehow, my Libran’s balanced approach goes out of the window and take an auto ride when i see my card lazing around in my wallet and do no good for me materialistically. And oh so naturally I get succumbed to the lure of shopping to cherish my regained financial independence.

When you work for some 9 long years and then you take a break, you almost feel next to being an unqualified struggling bachelor with no influence on anything whatsoever, abla naari ekdum bechari.


My Interview at Smart Indian Women

In the month of September, our blog was featured on the "Smart Indian Women" online community. Sharing with you all, my first ever interview.
Posted on 


Image Courtesy:
Thanks for taking the time to chat with SIW. Tell us a little bit about yourself and your blog. 

Deaf Mamma : I have had a pretty much middle class upbringing. Which means, I have been brought up to become self dependent yet not loose touch with our values, our tradition. And clearly, this is what my blog is all about – stories of uniterrupted middle class family. Its a personal lifestyle blog where i largely write about my relationships, work, family and everything in between.

If you read it, i would be like talking to me in person straight from heart. I have no fear of being judged by readers and that’s what makes my blog so unique. Real.

I am an alumni of Indian Institute of Health Management and Research with specialization in Public Health. I have been working in not-for-profit/corporate sector for close to 10 years to bring social change.

What makes your blog so unique and why should people read it?

Deaf Mamma : Here, you can read about the forgotten quintessential pleasures which a middle class Indian from small town is addicted to and runs the marathon all his life for…

For example, managing relationships with spouse, mother-in-law, running household chores, raising kids, bringing down expenses, thinking ways of saving, celebrating festivals, eyeing a raise in office, daring to do modern thing but fearing to leave values and tradition, want to come in limelight but equally fear what “society” will say – all of it with a dash of humor or sarcasm.

Reading it will be like overhearing a gossip session, sometimes or reading a heartfelt plea or confession.


It is Hard To Be a Woman

Talented women are intimidating. More when they seemed to have acquired control over their lives specially their family or personal life which supposedly is the price society wants them to pay for being successful. 


Because that's one "classic" accusation, most people use, to bring them down. To accuse them for "probably" or "presumably" neglecting their families to climb up the ladder of success. Or the next thing is "character assassination", which simply means, she may have talent of some "other" kind !

It starts from dissection of their current status of relationship. So. Is she single ?  Affair (s) ? Married ? Separated ?Boozing ? Available for drinks on weekends? Not Married, why not. Its her age? Must be over ambitious ! Kids, no, IVF going on / marriange on the rocks ? Second marriage ?


Carrie Bradshaw, Come Back Again with Your Gang of Girls !

It is said it takes a life time to know who you are ?

The classic Paris episode.
I have just officially entered panic.

There it was Self Hell Aisle !

Starting Over, Yet Again !

Well, you look very something.
I am very something.

Do I judge,
We all do. That's our hobby.

Sexy sheik, just like you said.

No, but he's gay and bitchy.
My target audience.

Judgey Wudgey was a bear.

Open minded, good
Judgmental, bad.

Lonely Women, No Men

I' m fine, Now.

Reservations for One.

Whoever invented glaze is a genius. See, that is the worth for being fat.


Ifs and Butts of Western Wear

"You speak Parada" ? Quote from
Confessions of a Shopaholic.

You walk in the mall in your newly picked seasonal yellow chiffon top, golds studs, tightly braided french plait nude gladiators and matching satchel bag. 

Did i miss something ?

Oh! paired with black bell bottom trousers. 

Why I this sudden bent for fashion ? 

As a dedication to my younger sister, PC, who thinks my fashion quotient is lost in transition of becoming mother. And she didn't read my blog, since its tag line says " stories of middle class family". 

She has objection with the word 'middle class'. How on earth two people are born and brought up in same family and yet they have different class. Besides, the point is dressing up to work or otherwise do make you feel good about yourself. Your body feel liberated out of those t-shirts and jeans. 

One fine day, with such up fashion tip to toe oozing with oomph factor, feeling beautiful inside, deaf mamma went to a nearest mall for lunch. Twice in a week I do that. It keeps my weight in check and also satiate my window shopping fits. And off late, such no-touching-only-seeing walks have quite helped me in saving money and loosing weight.  

Quote from Confessions of a Shopaholic.
The girl with green scarf.

Why, simply because sale is over a few weeks back and i will keep doing window shopping until next six months to derive motivation on physical, emotional and financial front. I don't understand why men can't see this from an analytic's point of view. Why they just shrink the whole purpose of buying things and put them to use.


Note from Working Mother - I am Choosing Faith Over Fear

Only one of the ducklings has to board on my back - Is it Faith or Fear ? 
If you ask me, what motherhood has taught me? I will say, patience and patience. I think, it can be counted as a strength, provided i learn it properly to use at my disposal killing anxieties, uncertainties. 

On the other hand, it has made me vulnerable. I count it as a weakness as well as threat. Its as much internal as external. Internal for the fears, residing in my subconscious. External, for the factors which are out of my control. I am no God to control each variable and its intensity. I am a human being. All our lives, we learn to navigate through called and uncalled for situations in our life - to survive. In the process, we know ourselves, know others, face success, failure, break down, become resilient, happy, unhappy, blank. 

All of it.


Hierarchy of Needs Understood

There are some moments in life when you question your very basic "being" - the soul of who you are. One such incident occurred last month. 

Before that, please wish me luck for my second full time innings, where i will be working as Manager - Corporate Fundraising for Samarthanam Trust for Disabled. We work for empowerment of persons with disability. There i continue my stride in the field of disability again, after Sightsavers.

Since Jan, 2014 - i had given 6 interviews even when i wasn't mentally prepared to join or i knew the office is way too far from my abode and wouldn't be able manage a to and fro commute of kms 30 or more. It was like a mommy's day out kind of sport or audition - hehe - where i will go to get selected and later deny the offer. It made me feel empowered, in some sense, that, see i am still worth it despite being on a sabbatical from mid of 2013. So, here i reject you giving a piece of my mind and time and choose to enjoy rather learn nuances of parenting - grilled - tandoorified .


Go Find a Fish, You Cynical

If something goes smooth, fast, all well types, just as I wanted or idolized in my head before the start or perceived to be true - I start looking for a hidden fish, somewhere, something. I fail to accept its realization until it actually happens.

Too good to believe or just too perfect makes me uneasy or rather my mind starts poking my heart - "Hey, Dude ! listen I can smell the fish." And that pumping thumping heart says "Naah, anyways, I am a vegan. Though, I only drink blood"

Am I becoming cynical ? Can we mark it as my early signs of attaining maturity. Ladaki tej ho rahi hai, bhai !
Is it?

Or becoming a fallibilist brings more cheer and less of proving your point to XYZ.

Excuse me, my cheese garlic breads are ready. Don't know about fish but this cheesy gourmet is ready to get licked. Will continue next time.

PS : The term Cynical, originally derives from the ancient Greek philosophers, the Cynics, who rejected all conventions, whether of religion, manners, housing, dress, or decency, instead advocating the pursuit of virtue in accordance with a simple and idealistic way of life. Does it ring a bell now ?


In the Cab with Shri Shri Shri Bon Jovi Ji

Gori hai kalaaiyaan,Tu laade mujhe haari haari chudiyaan...
Apana Banaale Mujhe Baalama, Gori Hai Kalaayiya

Amitabh Bachchan and Jaya Prada, dancing on this song from the movie Aaj Ka Arjun, i distinctly remember. We used have a VCR at home and all the thakeli or super-duper hit movie cassettes used to come home as soon as they are available, to watch in leisure rather an obsessive compulsive disorder. I was just 8-9 years, when classic Aashiqui, Saajan, Dil Hai Ki Maanta Nahi, Maine Pyaar Kiya, Bees Saal Baad (horror) made impressions on my mind or set the romance standards so high. Ironically, sinha ji too watched those movies when he was 10 but sadly couldn't learn much. 

Those days VCR weren't that common, so in first screening we used to watch it,  then with mummy's friends over tea parties, then with our cousins (just a small pack of 10) over weekends since we used to stay in township and then during some family get togethers - where we will brush up our dialogues and songs again . That's how seriously bollywood business was taken in our house. In school, during recess i used to narrate or mimic scenes to my KV friends. Specially the scene from Bees Saal Baad, where Dimple Kapadia ke haath bahut bahut lambe ho jaate (kanun se bhi lambe) to reach Mithun.

Why i am thinking about all this sitting in the cab?

I am going for this interview, which is very important for me to crack. And this cabbie is listening to this song, Gori Hain Kalaaiyaan

Very unusual. 

If its early morning airport pick up, South Indian cabbies stick to Venkateswara Suprabhatam (a morning prayer for Tirupati) or vedic shloka chantings. Or the lazy ones just tune into FM bhajans. Only, when their filmi savaari ask them to play some peppy numbers they switch stations. But looks like this one is truly a bollywood fan, has his own playlist of 90s hindi songs. I am impressed. Tip to banati hai. 

Though, in my head the song i am yearning to listen is "It's My Life" from the universal Lord Shri Shri Shri Bon Jovi Ji. I don't have any of his bhajans or Nirvana's preaching or any song, in my phone. Most of my life turning decisions have been supported by this song. Either before or after. It's always playing in my mind. 

So, either I should tune into FM or listen to the next in his playlist. 

And the next torture is "Mat Roo Mere Dil, Chup Ho Jaa; Jo Hua So Hua" . I feel like hitting my forehead on the window pane or his on the steering. How do i tell him, "Abey tu mujhe discourage kar raha hai yaar" ! Even before the interview. Now, i desperately want to pay a homage to Jovi Ji. Let me search FM Indigo again - only station to play angrezi stuff. 

No no no. No luck.

I swear, interview main kuch jhol hua to HR wala yehi gana gayega mere liye.

After 35 mins.

Better stand tall when they're calling you out 
Don't bend, don't break, baby, don't back down..

Thakk Thakk Thakk...

It's my life 
And it's now or never 
'Cause I ain't gonna live forever 
I just want to live while I'm alive

Yes, yes. Finally. The consistent fidgeting on FM payed its due. 
So, the lesson from this episode is what PC said. 


Guess My Mystery Muse ??

Friends with Benefits = ???
I have never wooed anyone so much, to the extent of obsession, but this one person in my life. He holds such an important place and I have never ever missed an opportunity to attract him or act as per my wish – but all my attempts have gone in vain.

I even nodded for a causal fling, if long term commitment seems a burden – but look at my state and poor romancing skills, nothing worked out. 

I said okay, even if you can’t be my "friend with benefits" let just be “good friends”!


22. Vain Friendships & Motherhood

Please write in your diary somewhere, that, motherhood is a litmus test of all relationships - be it your partner, parents, siblings or friends. Although being a 32 year old woman, i have had the luxury to choose who i want to be friends with, but then alienating a whole bunch of vain friends is not that easy. More so, when you come across as an over zealous bubbly extrovert personality, your chances are dim already. 


उम्मीद का एक टुकड़ा / Umeed Ka Ek Tukda

Image Courtesy : Happy World
आज उम्मीद का एक टुकड़ा खा के देखिये तो सही,
आशा को निराशा से जीता के देखिये तो सही


First Love to Break-Up #Condition_Serious_Hai

First love, first date and first kiss are moments made to get etched in your memory forever, only to be cherished later. They are the moments who teach you about relationships and their innocence. One such memory, relationship thread is stuck almost chocking me these days. Its a piece of bad cholesterol stuck somewhere near my vena cava. 

Today its cathartic release is necessary to clear shelves of my heart. I was writing on valentine's day post, my little one did something which make me go in my past. I hope Suri Saab won't mind because it was this very my old flame who got me introduced to him.

We got into a banal relationship more out of need than out of cupid's archery. In such affairs you know that the future is not long term or bright to say it right, but at that very moment you assure yourself, this is the best deal i can get in this small town and you shake hands. Mundane hi hellos turn into late night calls, exchanging smses, getting to know each other to bits and pieces. You start spending leisure time together, sometime casually, sometimes you plan and sometimes because you had no other plans. He also made himself available for you, cent percent. Eventually,  as the time flies, you discover the weak links in your spouse that switches you off and extract the hidden irritant in you. You both argue, hang up, mash up but recoil again to manage. You keep telling lies at home and keep on siphoning the hostel pocket money on him, mindlessly.


It's Between You, Me & Valentine : Are Love Celebrations Dead ?

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This vermilion case is called "Sindoora".  Supposed to be very sacred
for married women. 
Is Valentine day celebration dead for us ?

Or like other important days this poor man's day of love is also going to get shifted on weekend like birthdays and anniversary and wait for its turn for tom tomming.

Why was it alive in first place. Because you are so far from your valentine in a long distance relationship that you wanted to buy the world for him or her.

Or is it dead now as you are just averse to the whole concept of celebrating love only on this one single day. Personally, i have always supported the cause of Valentine Day celebration that too with much flair. I believe such days are important for those people who keep mum on yearly basis to tell you what you means to them. For heaven's sake why they don't mind to shed their all practical, reticent, mature image only to be labelled as ammateur, juvenile like their other half only for a day.


Are Winners a Different Breed ?

The question asked by India Today #Conclave 14 Contest *  is what winning means to me ? 

At this juncture of my life, winning for me is to raise my daughter - our future generation with an ingrained belief that she is not a mimeSome of my reflections are penned down below.

The present holds the key to a brighter future .
Taken in Mathura, Feb 2013


Romancing with Coffee or Committing to Tea - Part 2

My debut in the culinary world was made in 90s on the sets of my mom's kitchen and director was my papa. Scene was making two cups of evening tea and I had genuinely earned Rs 5. Since then, my affair with tea is on and going strong. Lately, it has culminated into unconditional love. Yes, I am in love with tea, chai, chaah specially the morning ones.

They have lasted in all bad weather, happy, sad, good, everything, silent days.

Chai reminds me of my mom making tea every morning religiously and now I do it. Handing over a perfectly brewed chai to someone in the morning with adrak/elaichi is a part of sweet love delivered right from your heart. Simple. Its a jadu ki jhappi and peck on your forehead, a pat on your shoulder. It reconnects you with you, as you wake up every day in the morning. It gives you company in solitude with your books or magazine or soap opera or romcom flicks.It takes you down to the memory lane, sardi ki dhoop, shaam ka nashta. tête-à-têtes tales, guffaws made in shaneel ki razai when cousins used to come home for staying in winter breaks, when mom's complains used to get broadcasted on broad gauge to papa with every sip while you wondered if this cup of tea is going to take forever.