The Best Outfit Ever.

Who doesn’t get mesmerized by a butterfly!
I like to follow every butterfly I see.
Each one seems to have a better pattern and color than the other.
Once, when I was admiring the colors of one such enchanter,
Wondering how an outfit with that color pattern would look,
Something really strange happened.
She looked at me, straight into my eyes.
“What are you staring at? ” She asked.
“Look at your mesmerizing colors ” I said.
She smiled and winked her beautiful eyes.
“Don’t you have colors ?” She asked
I looked at my dress and smiled.
“I have black and peach.” I said.
“That is your dress which you keep changing” She said.
“Oh! black hair, brown skin. Is that what you mean?” I asked.
“No No. Deeper within. Can you not see within?” She exclaimed.
“Within? You mean the RBC, WBC and the other stuff inside?” I said.
“Is that all that you are made of” She sighed.
“Are you talking philosophical? Do you mean my soul’s color? “I asked.
“There you go again! Your “philosophical stuff”. She ridiculed.
“Not that deep. May be between RBC’s and your soul” She said.

I could feel myself turn red in anger.
A butterfly ridiculing me! I thought.
Suddenly I saw her laugh and nod her head.

“Oh! You mean the colors of my emotions?” I asked.
“Exactly. Tell me your colors”. She said.
“I am orange when I am full of energy”
“I am yellow when I feel happiness”
“I am green when in harmony with everything around”
“I am blue when at peace and am relaxed”
“I am red when I feel passionate about something”
“I am white in purity and simplicity”
The list went on and on…

She looked at me and smiled.
“See! You have so many colors within”.
“You just have to form a pattern with all those colors”.
“All combined in the right proportion”.
“Try that, and see the beautiful pattern you develop”

Her twinkling eyes winked at me again and she flew away,
Leaving me with so many emotions to deal with;
And to bring out the best in each emotion;
The right state of mind with the right mix of emotions.
I did exactly what I was told to do;
And there I was, standing in a park, wearing my best outfit ever!

 

 

 

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Pineapple Porcupine and Me!

During my last visit to my parent’s place, I got a beautifully grown and ripe pineapple from my dad’s organic garden. He had given me instructions on how I could replant the leaves and grow another pineapple from it. I read up further about it on the internet and set out to plant my first pineapple plant. I must admit that I enjoy my rare encounters with soil. In the process, I got bruised by the thorns on its leaves. I shouted out loud to the plant “Hey Ms., I am just trying to help you grow. I mean no harm. How can I plant you if this is how you behave? ” I finished my work and got going. Each time i saw my bruises, I ended up thinking about the pineapple encounter.

I love watching the National Geographic with my seven year old. That evening they showed a fiery fight between a porcupine and a leopard. A fully armed porcupine escapes from becoming the leopard’s lunch thanks to its sharp protective quills. Porcupines usually escape from being a prey to most of the animals in a similar fashion. Only very few animals know the knack of porcupine-eating. They target the porcupines belly which is the most vulnerable part. The 30,000 odd quills make porcupines a ” stay away from me” kind of an animal.

I looked at my bruises again and thought of the similarity between the pineapple that I had planted that morning and this porcupine. Self defense was their need. But then, how would you know if that person/animal actually meant you no harm!

I looked at myself. My life so far flashed in my mind. A girl born in a fairly conservative family and society, with a list of Do’s and Don’ts. The list kept growing bigger and bigger as I grew older. Looking back, the list was a well studied one with points to cover each and every aspect of my life. ( And this list has been passed on from one generation to another with some points getting added and deleted with every successive passing.) It covered topics like the time I had to get back home to the type of people that I could talk/not talk, befriend/not befriend, ask for directions/not ask for directions, take a lift from/not take a lift from, trust/not trust etc etc etc. It also had pointers about the roads that I could travel and not travel and the decisions I could make and not make.

With this list dangling in front of my eyes, I can now, in this context of pineapple and porcupine, see all these points as thorns/quills. Thorns with which I have driven away people, thorns which I used as direction diverters, thorns which helped me wear a mask and make myself invisible under a lot of circumstances.

Just like how a baby porcupine is born with soft quills which harden in a few days, my thorns kept hardening with time.  And I became this “thorn-woman” with a nice protective shield around me.

I had told the pineapple when I was planting it ” Ms., will you ever be able to distinguish between a friend and a foe or will you keep pricking everyone? ”

I spoke to the porcupine too ” What if the other animal was just trying to alert you of a possible danger? You would hurt that animal too? ”

I told myself” Will I ever be able to pluck out all these thorns or will I pass it on to the next generation with the usual minor changes in it? ”

In spite of being aware of the fact that along with ensuring the safety of my children in this society, I am also keeping them away from a lot of genuine friendships, wonderful experiences and beautiful untouched roads, I will still do the same.

What I plan to do in order to reduce the impact of the thorns  is to read out this blog to them when they are a little older. Tell them that these are just safety precautions. Tell them to develop their own instincts and senses to help them differentiate between a friend and a foe. Tell them to be open to taking new roads when they feel it is safe to do so. Tell them to take any decision after carefully studying the pros and cons.

I shall tell them to use their quills with caution.

 

Don’t give up girl, Don’t give up!

The leaves rustled to call her;
The clouds rained to tell her;
The sun shined bright on her;
The wind whistled into her ears;
All of them told her the same thing;
Don’t give up girl, Don’t give up!

 
Your dreams define you;
Your dreams inspire you;
Your dreams live within you;
Your dreams make you work harder;
Your dreams keep you alive.
So, Don’t give up girl, Don’t give up!

 
Yes, it could take some time;
Yes, it could get a little hard;
Yes, it could drain you out;
Yes, it could drive you nuts;
Yes, it could knock you down.
But, Don’t give up girl, Don’t give up!

 
The day your dreams come true;
You will thank the leaves and the clouds;
You will kiss the sun and the wind;
You will feel so proud of yourself;
For not giving up when it was tough.
You will tell every little girl you meet;
Don’t give up girl, Don’t give up!

 

De Clutter

Afternoon 2 pm. 

beep beep .. message from friend 

Friend: wassup buddy. I am sitting in a boring meeting. 
Me: nothing much .. it’s blogging time . So thinking ..
Friend: Oh ! Trying to find a topic ? How do you decide on the topics to write about?

Me: Well, I have a problem deciding which topic to not write about!

He laughed out loud (I mean not literally, but send LOL on the WhatApp message and I kept imagining how funny it would have looked if he had actually LOL in between the meeting he said he was attending. ) 
I ended up LOL in the process. 

Friend: keep writing buddy. keep writing about all the topics that come in your mind and that way you can de clutter your mind.” 
Me: Bye.. You concentrate on the meeting… 

—————————————————————————–

Declutter your mind! Big words i must say! Hey, I think I just picked my topic for today.

But what can I write about such a  vast, well discussed and yet mystic topic?

A coincidence is that I had been watching a lot of youtube videos on how to declutter one’s home and give it a fresh new look. Those videos can help me declutter my work space. But what I wanted to do was way more tricky. I wanted to declutter the work space in my mind.

I decided to give it a shot. And I decided to use the same theory that I can use for decluttering the physical space. Let’s see how it works..

There are supposed to be around 60,000 thoughts that cross our mind each day. Let me make it very clear that I am talking about dealing with thoughts specific to a particular topic. In my case, I am trying to deal with the thoughts regarding the topics that I would like to write about.

Step 1: The obvious first step is to get everything out. And that has to be done by writing down every single topic that is lingering in that place. Without giving it a tag of useful, not useful, to be discarded etc, just get out all those thoughts into an xl sheet.

Disclaimer: Unlike while cleaning up a place, where there are a fixed number of items to be pulled out, in this process of mind cleaning, there could sprout up a lot of new thoughts and ideas while you are in the process. Please do not ignore them. They are sometimes the most fertile thoughts. Some topics sounded funny but I decided to put it down because if it has come to my mind, then I should be able to do something about it..

Step 2: The second step in cleaning up a place is to put the things that you have pulled out, into 3 boxes:

  1. Very useful. (To be kept in a place very handy). These are the topics that I need to give immediate attention to. So I put an “urgent” tag to it and color it in bright orange. These are the topics that I could publish in the next couple of weeks.
  2. Useful but not regularly used ( To be labelled and kept safe). These are the topics that I have to work on a regular basis and may be, research and find out more details about. These are typed in bold and color coded green. I also prefer to put a date by which I will do the required research for these topics. That way, I will make sure I don’t ignore these topics.
  3. Random items. ( Which can be given away or shifted to another place in case of items in the room ) Very important and useful thoughts which can be developed into some unexpected and wonderful ideas. I color this with different bright colors and write down some notes as to when and how that particular thought cropped up. That helps in taking the idea forward.

Step 3: Once the sorting is over,  everything gets back to its designated space. I also wrote an introduction for some of the topics. That will help me in further developing it.

I believe that the thoughts that are penned down are more likely to become a reality than the ones that just linger out there.

Step 4: Add some decorative pieces to your work space to make it more welcoming.  Whenever I sit to work, I listen to some good music, or watch a motivating video or read an interesting article. That works as that “welcoming decorative piece” for my mind office space.

I simply loved the process. I feel more sorted out now. That feeling of entering a new space resonates in my mind.

Testing the process:

I have been thinking of writing about a particular topic. I got this idea when I saw a pineapple. Now, each time this thought/topic came into my mind, the successive thoughts would be : “Oh! thats a nice topic”, “I have to remember to write about it” , ” I can write about it next week” , ” the introduction to this topic should be ……….. ” ” i should remember to include the story about how this topic came int my mind”,  etc etc etc …And funnily, these thoughts repeated each time I thought of the topic.

Now, after the cleaning up process, whenever I think of the “pineapple blog”, the successive thought is : “oh yes! it is sorted.” ” I think I should be able to finish it by the next week”  . STOP.

I proceed to the next thought. phew… what a relief.

TESTED OK. 

I never thought that a random message from my friend, sent during a boring meeting would lead to such a productive activity for me. I have:

  • cleaned up my work space.
  • cleaned up my thoughts regarding the different blogging ideas.
  • structured my thoughts into easy to write topics.
  • achieved my target of one blog entry every week.
  • am ready to think about fresh new ideas and topics.

 ——————————————————————-

Message to friend at 5 pm 

Me: Hey 
Friend: Hi. Am still in that boring meeting. 
Me: Don’t get bored anymore. Have shared a link with you. Read it 
Friend: What? Dont tell me you have a blog entry ready? Wow..cool . Send please. Cant wait to read. 
Me: 🙂 Sent. check your inbox. Ok Bye.. Got to go… 
Friend: Bye buddy. 

 

Wrong or Right.

The first time he made a small mistake,
She thought it was too early to correct the little boy.
The next time he hit someone and ran from school,
She thought he was only being defensive.

 
The time he dropped out of college ,
She thought she was not qualified enough to advice him.
The time she caught him in bad company getting influenced by wrong ideologies,
Her guilt of having given him a difficult childhood stopped her from correcting him.

 
The time he came home crying and pleading her to get him out of his habits,
She thought it was her chance to stand up for him and help him.
The time he went back to the bad old habits,
She wept quietly thinking she had not done enough.

 
All this while, the mother in her let him go,
Silently praying and hoping he would mend his ways.
She knew she had done “wrong”,
But she did not know the “right”.

 
She rushed home after she heard the news,
She screamed and cried all along.
Her heart bled for the loss of innocent lives,
Who had done absolutely no wrong.

 
The woman in her could no longer bear it,
His apology and tears did not do the trick anymore.
She knew she had failed as a mother,
But she did not want to fail as a woman.

 
As she waited for the cops to turn up,
To collect his body and to arrest her,
She knew she had not done “the right”,
But she knew she had not done wrong either.