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love, laughter, pain, joy, life and its lessons, one word at a time

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The key to your e-book is just a carnival away!

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When asked about writing ambitions and book journeys, often, with a starry twinkle in their eyes, people reminisce about a fiery childhood passion, or a goal they have been chasing with utmost determination. My inspiration on the other hand, came to me amidst diapers and zombie like fatigue. A time which is associated with people not being in possession of their faculties was the odd time I chose to write my first book. When I had just delivered a baby!  Goes to show how different everyones starting point and respective journeys can be.

Of-course I was always in love with the written word, my most enduring love affair being with the books that lined the walls of various rooms I occupied while growing up (My father was in government service as a result of which we were constant nomads!). I wrote a lot of poetry and even published a book of some 50 odd poems that I particularly loved in 2017. Some short story experimentations saw me participating in writing contests as well, such as the brilliant platform by TOI. It helped me find publishers for my book and started me off on a road I had never imagined myself on. It has now been a year since the launch of my first book I Didn’t Expect to Be Expecting, which you must have guessed by now, is a humorous book on pregnancy and my second book, which is a humorous thriller is due for a September launch. It all seems a bit surreal even today. I still remember pinching myself when I went for my first book signing. I think it was the first time I cried out of happiness!

Something else that gives me great pleasure is helping writers who are sitting on the brink of their own writing journeys. It is an exciting but scary place and I’ve been there. And bing a fellow blogger, I’m especially delighted to be a part of EbookCarnival (Season 4) by Blogchatter. I don’t blog nearly as often as I’d like to, but I think blogging is one of the most organic ways of making your way to a book. And if a blogging platform is giving you the tools, know how and support to get you started, then don’t put that idea away to another day. Dive in to this experience and emerge with a book and a dream coming true all at once.

 

When the tigress lost her stripes..

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This is the story of a fierce tigress who used to live in a jungle called ‘The City’

Fearless and bold. Her decisions, the future. Nothing fazed her. She believed in writing her own story

She would soar on the wings of her zest for life, knowing that only the sky was the limit

Blessed with the protective sheath of family and friends, no vagaries of life would come her way, she thought, as long as these angels were in it

One day she started drifting towards a certain someone who would become the love of her life

Things could only get better from the perch of her reign, there would be no sorrow, no pain, no strife

But somewhere down the road, a distant rumble of thunder, was bringing an impending storm

An ominous trickle of cold, sharp rain started to take form

That someone took her pulsing life and throttled it out of her

With wounding words and raining blows, her enchanted life seemed like a blur

He wounded her each day each night till there was nothing left to break

He left her with her wounded pride, but she held on with all her might, his crumbs now she would take

One fine day she looked in the mirror and couldn’t seem to recognise

The face in the mirror was someone else, all the stripes gone, her heart felt splintered with ice

She ran from friend to family then foe, trying to understand

Why she felt so empty, so vacuous inside, this was certainly not part of her grand plan

She knew deep inside she had all it took to make herself happy again

But all she could feel was the dark outside, the gloom within and a debilitating pain 

As the world got louder, she went quieter still, till she barely even spoke

Many tried in vain to break her free, but she seemed to be locked far away behind an invisible cloak

Fear took her heart and her strength was next till hopelessness consumed her all

She was so resigned to staying on the ground, that she never even contemplated the pain of a fall 

Then one fine day, lying on her back when she felt she couldn’t even breathe 

She saw a tiny sparrow struggling to build a nest where she could set her little ones free

Trying and failing she rose again, this tiny life was such a symbol of hope

That she felt ashamed of wasting and withering away when deep down, she knew, nothing was really broke

She dusted herself and shook her mane, letting her shackles fall away

It wasn’t the world, she had to fight her mind, for right here is where she wanted to stay

She fell over and over, just as the sparrow did, but she found the strength to stand

There was hushing and laughter and curious whispers all around, but also many a helping hand

She nursed her spirit, her soul to life, knowing with grit she could do it all

She would bruise and ache and there would be bad days, but she would try and stand tall

She tried and tried till one fine day, the fog began to clear

The small inner voice that was silent for so long, she started to finally hear

Then rose a sun that shone so bright, it cleared the mirror where she had lost her sight

She stood again to face the world, her eyes unwavering in the brilliant light

The muscles were flexed, the paws were firm, her heart had returned to a long lost shore

The tigress had her stripes back on and once again, she was ready to roar!

Queen of hearts

Ma

An ethereal beauty beyond words
Why must you conform to worldly standards of which we have become slaves
Vanity can come from a place of pride 
Beyond a face, beyond skin, beyond the usual trappings
Let the hair fall away, your brilliance is enough
Let the skin peel away, what lies beneath is even better
Let amorphous shapes that your body takes become continents of discovery and wonder
Let not your beauty be eclipsed 
For when you are bare, you are beautiful beyond compare…
These are words I wrote for my mother when she was propped up in her hospital bed with a wan smile on her face. A smile that never left her. Through the rigour of years, through the hardships of sustaining a large family, through vicissitudes of life and economics, there was always a smile to spare. Writing for this piece made me reminisce about the true beauty of my own mother. Its easy to write about your mother most would think. But this decision is not based on mere anthropology. It is because she is most definitely one of the most inspirational, resilient, positive and beautiful people that I’ve had the good fortune to encounter so closely in my life.
For a person who had such affluent beginnings, she never grudged being married into a humble family. A kathak performer, a sangeet visharad, a science and maths gold medalist was assigned to the kitchen and brickbats from her new family but she never complained. When my sisters and I were much older, we learnt of what all she had endured with silence. Again, none of this information was volunteered by her. She never played the victim card. Not once. Through tragedies, ill health and suffering. Her entire life was dedicated to her family, not just the army of four children and the beloved husband but anyone who ever came to her door. Whether it was long lost relatives, beggars, house help, donation seekers, it didn’t matter. No one left with empty hands or  hearts. I often wonder how she managed to be a mother, the coolest granny, a wife, a best friend and confidant when she was navigating through various roles of an electrician, plumber, handyman, world class chef and finance wizard, identities that her keen and scientific mind had sought out to keep her interests alive.
But for someone with such immense zest for life, life had other plans. Unbeknownst to us, there were silent killers eating away at her insides. While her angelic face continued to glow with love and compassion, her diseased body was rotting on the inside. Despite our best efforts, the hospital became her second home for many years. But through it all, the smile stayed, a shaking hand always ready to stick a thumb up in the air, to fool us into thinking she wasn’t suffering. I’ve never in my life seen anyone with a bald head, shrivelled skin and fractured limbs look so radiant and peaceful. For it came from a place of immense strength and real beauty, from deep within. For she refused to give in and smiled till the time she closed her eyes forever. When I held her hand for the last time, I still remember my sister had painted her nails in the ICU. An odd, bright red, to cheer her up. Frankly speaking she didn’t need the varnish. For in that shrivelled body lay the strongest and most beautiful woman, the saviour of a thousand lives, a soul that gave more than it ever took, a beauty beyond compare.

I believe every woman has TRUE BEAUTY within her in all the roles she plays. For over 18 years across 650 plus salons across the country, Naturals has been helping the Beautiful Indian Woman get more Beautiful.

Today Naturals Salutes the Beautiful Indian Woman.

Presenting Naturals TRUE BEAUTY… http://bit.ly/naturalsOF 

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