weSurvive VI

It's been over two months that we returned from India. Still I do not get the 'settled' feeling. Somethings just like that I get reminded of the time in India - the bottle Pumki uses, a Hindi song, a picture, Chiyaa playing Luv-Kush (she was hooked to that animated series back in India) with her toys. Or out of nowhere I picture the beach in Chennai or the air conditioned room in bbsr. It just hits with a pang. It seems like yesterday that with glowing sentimentality we bid goodbye to our family with promises to meet very soon...reality is so different from wishful thinking. 

The days are super hectic. We have the morning school run which compresses the time from wakeup to 0830. Once Chiyaa leaves I get on with cooking for the night and a light meal for my lunch. These are interspersed with feeding, bathing and playing with Pumki. There is generally a trip to the town centre on some errand or the other. 

Christmas is round the corner and the shops are getting decked up. The sale season is also upon us. Last year the same time around I was eagerly waiting for my mother to come. I was counting days to wind up woke and wait for the baby. I remember the days before Pumki when mummy and I used to drop Chiyaa at daycare and stroll around hand in hand. After the little one came, we used to get our daily dose of fresh air through the walks. Even the transition to Ipswich was cushioned by mummy's presence. Going around with her to familiarise myself with the town, made everything seem easy. Everything reminds me of her absence.

Since the last few days I have made it a point to meet K during lunch. It adds to some steps in my goal of 10,000 steps since my target weight loss is way off track :(( Work is a tad stressful for him and he gets rejuvenated being with the little angel for a bit. 

1430 starts the school pick up run. Earlier K was driving Chiyaa back. But twice he forgot!!! Imagine that! Moreover his work place does not have good cellular network which makes contacting him to remind him an unreliable option. So I volunteered to pick Chiyaa. It also gives her an additional 30 minutes of walk and outdoor activity, a chance to grab 2 fruits and we get to talk about what happened in school  :) 

It is a very scenic route and an absolute joy to walk (except when it rains and it rains often now that it's autumn) I also have to remain mindful of Pumki. The days she is not in a very good mood becomes a bit difficult.

Once back, after washing up, it's time for some snacks and my mandatory afternoon coffee. I so miss my mother and our conversations over coffee. I get the dinner sorted and once K is back I heave a sigh of relief. The days he is late as he will be today I grimace at the thought. I try  to finish as much of the house chores as possible. I keep preparing. I wish for that day to come and go soon. I don't know why. Its not that Chiyaa or Pumki are very uncooperative kids. Its maybe that I don't want to take a chance that they are in a foul mood and don't let me do my stuff. 

I don't know why, I feel as if I am living by the clock. My head just keeps track of the ticking time and I am hurrying around egg shells. Feel like a wound up spring. Is it just because of the school runs? Is it because of the looming uncertainty with regards to our work? If just school runs can give me this much heartache boy am I super unprepared for the world ahead. :|

You are teaching us another lesson

Dear Chiyaa,
You have started school and yet again daddy and I are the ones who are learning.

You started off with enthusiasm on day one. But then you did not realise one goes to school everyday. And you started showing some reluctance. I am not sure if the elaborate lunch routine makes you nervous ( I have been with you once, and I felt intimated by the maneuvers. Taking ones tray, asking for what one wanted, walking back to the dining hall and after that depositing the utensils in designated place before making ones way back to class is a pretty elaborate set of steps). You also do not have the luxury of knowing anyone at all. Mostly children have some one from their daycare or neighborhood who acts as a familiar face. But  you have been uprooted from the place you still call home - Leeds. You live in a different place, you are just back from 3 month long stay in India - you are taking things pretty well though. Much better than mummy and daddy for sure. In the midst of this school! Lots of strangers and yet another change. No one takes well to change, inertia is a big a big a big deal. How would you get on with so many upheavals  - a little thing of just four years ? We knew in some manner we had to expect this, the reluctance to go to school, the daily convincing that school is good, you will make lots of friends there, you will have lots of fun there and you will learn lots and know the answers to a lot of questions. You get convinced. But then with those beseeching eyes you ask ' But mummy I want you to be with me'. I wish sweetheart I could be with you, I wish I could ensconce you, I wish I could forever and ever protect you from the slightest difficulty. But you know what, that would not be very good for you. Just like twinkles made you that gregarious, out going person, I am sure, school will make you an even more confident individual. 

And already you are doing immensely good. You said you had pointed to some 'wow' words which your teacher appreciated. Not only that, you have not for a single day given me any trouble in waking up. You wake up pronto at 0630 without needing any help. You have been utterly cooperative doing the morning chores. And when mummy gets anxious and agitated as to what to offer you for breakfast, you suggest what you need. Most of the days you eat to my satisfaction. Could I ask for more? 

Because of you, our experiences with Pumki seem so much easier. You have shown us the way, made us be prepared. You after all have taught us parenting.

Forever indebted,
Your mummy

Something is wrong with me

Any change seems disconcerting. Any change has a potential to throw a spanner in the works. But any change is advantageous. Any change is a chance for better. 

But I think I am not getting any good at changing my sails to the winds. We moved to a new place. I am still not at home here. In the place's defence I was barely here travelling to India  within a short span. Still.... I don't feel like accepting it. The return from India was uneventful. The commencing week was supposed to wring life out of us. On the contrary we were so busy we missed out on finding things amiss. I coped through the first week brilliantly and if there is any truth in morning showing the day, I felt, well the vacation and the glorious time had a positive rejuvenating effect.  Chiyaa was to start school a week on, the start of new routine and better things.  

Things are not turning out as expected. I am feeling a loss. I of course miss having the trouble maker at home. The little one also misses big sister and is super clingy. This leaves with nothing better to do but miss the company I had. I miss having all the people around. I know it was a holiday and  temporary. I feel all alone in this strange new setting. I am ill at ease, restless, diffident. Since Chiyaa started school I sent pictures of her in school uniform to her nursery. It was a pleasure hearing back from the nursery managers and them appreciating how Chiyaa had grown. But since most nursery emails are not relevant to me any more, I unsubscribed from their mailing list. It was like cutting a crucial tie. A part of me hoped to meet all the amazing nursery staff again while another part pondered what would I talk if I did met them again? My own thoughts don't make sense to me.

I am high strung for no apparent reason. Just holiday blues? Simple lack of sunshine? Or the overwhelming feeling of having too much to do? Or am I missing my little birdie? Seeing her get ready in a uniform makes it all seem so strange. She is such a little thing. Seems like yesterday I had her in my arms. Now she is in yet another setup, dealing with new people, trying to forge new friendships, having new experiences.  One  half of me wishes to just hold on to her..... Keep her from slipping away. And  another half wishes for her to grow up sooner, so that we can go for walks and swimming and trips.  I don't know what I am hoping for. I so wish I knew.

Hangover and a few thoughts

It must be close to midnight now in India. I cannot just like that WhatsApp a friend or family member. It takes some time to get used to the time difference after 3 months of seamless contact. The change in the time zone which happens automatically on the smartphones still comes as a shock to the untrained eyes. 

India was all about abundance. Abundance of space, heat, time and people. The lack of the big four makes everything very still here. The adults to kids ratio of 1:1 makes us feel a bit under handed since the 2 divas can throw quite some fits. We have busied ourselves with grocery and school uniform shopping. The car batteries going dead and a friend inviting for a house warming function have made us busier. Our parents are supportive and have asked us to be calm for a couple of days after which it will all feel normal. I remember when I came back from Hyderabad and was speaking to Dino all loaded with nostalgia... And he said ' don't worry we learn to forget '. Well... Don't know whether it's a good thing or a bad thing. But I blog to remember.

Last few days

I have not written about my last leg of vacation. 

After K reached bbsr it was a mad rush. Food, family and the final packing. My sister was around and those were my time with her. My sister had come over to spend the first 4 days with us and work from home for the next week so that mummy and papa did not feel our absence. I really like her thoughtfulness but then in many ways she is a much more mature person than me.

The day we were up start, it was raining heavily. As if there was a pall of gloom all around. I had insisted that no one come to drop us since I wished to say my good byes at home. We boarded the taxi amidst tears and hugs. It will take some days before the image of Papa, mummy and Lichie crying at the gate is obliterated. 

While there was grief at bbsr there was revelry at Chennai for the granddaughters were coming home! As soon as we reached, we took a walk to the beach which is a few minutes from home. The lovely sea can make one feel a lot better. K was at home. In every aspect. Roaming around in  track pants, in the place where he was born and brought up, I could see him blending in all aspects. We had a trip nearly everyday to visit a friend or family member. An example of India shining, I could see how Ola and Uber had revolutionised transport. Auto fares had actually seen a decreasing trend.

I managed to meet two friends of mine which made the trip worthwhile. Renu from bloggerville. I have been following her blogs since 2008. It was a special thing to meet up with her in person. She is a vibrant, optimistic lady who sees a lot of good in the world. I was impressed by her positive views of everything down south though she happens to be from the Hindi heartland. We could have gone on chatting if a certain four year old and infant  did not keep interrupting us.

Being a bit unsocial I have single digit number of friends. One of them is Preeti from school. She came over all the way from Bangalore to meet me. That she felt I was worthy of it was humbling for me. The evening zoomed past and I will have only memories of it. Just like I will have memories of the day spent with my college friend Basu who travelled 4 hours to meet me at bbsr. Just like I will have memories of the past 13 weeks. 

In these last few emotional days as usual my best friend K comes in as the sounding board. I asked him if he was sad that his holiday was over. He said 'I couldn't have asked for more '.