A very new beginning…

Ambivalence. This is one word that perfectly describes my state of mind right now. Two completely conflicting set of emotions have parked themselves in my mind. On one hand is extreme happiness for starting a very new and radically different life with The Cool Guy (TCG) that the husband is, and juxtaposed are the feelings of sadness and nostalgia for leaving the old and “comforting” behind.

But who said dealing with change is easy? And bigger the change, more difficult it gets to adapt. Because that means coming out of your comfort zone and pushing your boundaries to adapt better to the change. But change is the best thing that can happen to anyone, right? And we always emerge better and stonger. Flowing water is never stagnant.

Like you know, I am born and brought up in Mumbai. Mumbai is the world I know and Mumbai is where the schooling, the college, the job, the friends and the life happened. And sadly, I haven’t travelled internationally at all yet. But The Cool Guy (TCG) that I am married to lives away. Very, very far away from Mumbai. Over 6000 Miles away. About a day away. In New Zealand. Yes, that far. And I am set to join him there very soon. The Visa is in my hands.

But I am a bundle of nerves. It’s a different world. DIFFERENT in capitals. If it was the US or some swanky city in Europe I was shifting to, I would probably have been less nervous. After all, they couldn’t have been very different from Mumbai. A metro is a metro after all. Speedy, crazy, thrilling, offering demanding and satisfying jobs and a stressful lifestyle as a byproduct. Not very different from the life I am used to in Mumbai. I am used to the speed, the craze, the stress, the long serpentine queues, the pollution, the dust, the heat and everything Mumbai. In NZ, life is comparatively slow. There is no rush to get anywhere. People actually “live”, rather than just exist from one day to another.  TCG says that people smile at each other for no reason. (Try smiling at a stranger here in Mumabi.  If you know what I mean.) There is no pollution. Its silent, its serene, its beautiful, its calm, its relaxing. And it is postcard picture perfect. TCG sends me such scenic pictures everyday. Unreal they seem, but real they are. Also, people leave offices by 5. They have a perfect work-life balance. (Try leaving your office at 5 in Mumbai!) What could be possibly wrong with such a life, you’d ask? Nothing I say. Only that I am not used to this slowness, this freshness, this natural beauty, this serenity, this silence or even this balanced work-life for that matter. I am used to the din, the restlessness, the craze, the speed, the hop-skip-jump lifestyle and the accompanying stress that my very metro life in Mumbai offers.

Hence, NZ makes me a little nervous. What if I unable to cope? What if I don’t adjust to the very cold climate? What if I don’t make new friends? What if I don’t get a good job? What if I want to suddenly eat chaat, that we eat off the streets here in Mumbai? I live in a big family here. What if I get too lonely there? That NZ is very very far away doesn’t help either. On a whim, I can hardly come back to Mumbai, just to surprise my family or check on them. I don’t even want to think how many of my friends’ weddings I will be missing.  Sigh!

But, at the same time, I am very excited. To start my life afresh with TCG. He has assured me over and over that everything will be fine and he will try to make this transition as smooth as possible. That he will even cook for me, and clean and do all those erstwhile ‘female’ jobs. I am excited about our new house and about doing it they way we want, the new city, the new country, the new friends (whenever that happens), the road trips, the nature, the beauty, about wearing beautiful winter clothes which I never got a chance to wear hear in Mumbai, and about simply enjoying the marital bliss.

So, I have my fingers crossed. I am really hoping that I won’t cry too much and won’t miss Mumbai a lot.  I am sure I am going to miss my family, food and friends (in that order) terribly and there can’t be a replacement. But I am hoping TCG will fill that void. I will also try and be nice and adjusting and not irritate the hell out of my husband.

Side note: I will have more time to blog and read now. Something I haven’t been able to do as much as I’d like. Yay! May be I will do a whole new category on the new life. Maybe not. Let’s see how it goes. But you can wish me luck.

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Who is a Father?

They say that there is no love like mother’s love. That a mother’s love is unconditional and the purest form of love. Truly selfless.

Right. There is no denying that. Scores of literature have been written about mothers, umpteen number of poems, books, stories, songs describe the greatness of mother’s love. While her love is unquestionable and her stature for a child is equal to that of God’s, it’s the father who has always been portrayed as an outsider, as a bystander, as someone who hangs on the fringes and yet he is happy to let the mother hog all the limelight. While mother’s love has been glorified and spoken about since the time of Neanderthals, father’s love has hardly had any mention or any acknowledgement.

So while we continue to love our mothers more than anyone in this world, it wouldn’t hurt really to give daddy his due credit, will it? After all we love him as much as we love our mommy, right? Just that the way mommy loves is different from the way daddy loves; but that doesn’t mean he loves us any less.

A traditional father loved his children no less than a mother did. But he didn’t really believe in expressing. He thought being a father meant being authoritative and being in total control. But that was not really his fault. He was made to believe that way, so he passed on what he saw. He thought being a father meant being in control, disciplining children, providing for them and loving them silently.

Modern daddy has come a long way. He loves his children as unconditionally as his traditional counterpart. But he also loves to express his feelings, and he is not afraid of how he will look like expressing his feelings. He is a friend to his child and makes a smooth transition from being a father to being a friend as per the situation. He likes to keep the atmosphere light and doesn’t shy away from saying his sorrys and accepting his mistakes.

So who really is a father then?

  • Father is the one who loves his children as much as a mother does
  • Father is a one who tries to bring the best food on to the table for his children’s health
  • Traditionally, father is the one who pays for his child’s best education
  • Father is the one who takes you on holidays
  • Father is the one who bears the brunt if any of the child’s needs are unmet
  • Father is that loving figure that cuddles you when you are just a little child, plays ball with you, does summersaults to make you laugh and becomes a clown to see you laugh.
  • Father is the one who pretends to be the elephant and gives you a ride around the house, even after a hard day’s work
  • He is the one who takes you to the fair
  • He is the one who buys you expensive toys and all the beautiful clothes
  • He is the one who takes you around everywhere and drops you to school
  • He is the one who comforts you when mommy decides not to be so nice
  • He is one who provides you comfort, security and shelter
  • He is the one who always has a very special corner in his heart for his little girl
  • He is the one who bothers about insurance and the likes
  • He is the one who plans to marry his daughter off to the nicest man possible and smilingly slogs all his life to afford a big fat wedding
  • He is the one who shares, with a very heavy heart, his daughter with another man.
  • He is the one who loses sleep every night over his girls safety and happiness
  • He is the one who worries about his boy’s profession and future

Yet, a father is always a bystander. His love always is counted secondary to that of mother’s.  But his love, in no way, is secondary.

I dedicate this post to my father and all those to-be fathers. I want to tell you all that you have been doing a thankless job of being a father for centuries. It’s time we all took notice and let you know that we love you as much as we love our mommy.

He is the man,

With a lot of tan,

He slogs in the sun,

To get you the bun,

He plays with you ball,

He doesn’t let you fall,

He gives you the bike,

And holds you while you ride,

For you he cares,

So everyone he dares,

To keep you safe,

With whatever it takes.

Love you, papa.

Someday I will find my prince but my Daddy will always be my King

–       Anonymous

P.S: There always are exceptions to the traditional father and modern daddy categories. So if your daddy, didn’t fit it to the traditional mould, be assured, that I was just generalizing