What is the most private photo you have ever taken?

Post Credits: Marty McCall (Quora)

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I took this photo 1 year and 2 days ago today, as my father lay in a hospital bed. It shows him in the warm filtered light of the hospice care bedroom window, adorned with a hospital gown and breathing tube, and a mustache and beard he hadn’t worn in years. It doesn’t adequately convey a man racked with pneumonia and dementia and advanced Parkinson’s disease. It can’t share the broken rhythm of his wheezing, marching out of time with the overworked and outmatched portable oxygen machine.

The photo doesn’t depict the restraints that kept him from throwing himself to the floor, or from further damaging his broken foot. It doesn’t portray the thrashing as he tried to free himself, not understanding why he, a claustrophobe, suddenly found himself captive in a strange bed. It doesn’t express the hurt as his children refused to whisk him away to a place without tubes and alarms and prodding doctors.

But the photo also doesn’t capture the 77 years he wasn’t in a hospital bed.

It ignores the charismatic singer, belting out Sinatra standards to an adoring crowd.

It overlooks the hard-working carnie, waking up long before the sun, driving a hundred miles to this weekend’s county fair, booths and cotton candy machine and other assorted carnival gear in tow.

It doesn’t understand the honest used car salesman, embarrassed by success in a job he despised, despite it providing his family with money for food and lodging and whatever else life required.

It fails to detail the myriad businesses started by a tireless entrepreneur: the newspaper for police departments; the social security card-by-mail service; the year-round Christmas stocking retailer; the sandwich shop; the ice cream parlor; the spice shop; the candy apple kingpin. Nor the ache as they each came to their own unique ends.

It has no inkling of his three marriages, or his three divorces, or the years he spent refusing to date, so as to provide a more stable home for me, his son. It doesn’t know anything about his three daughters, who grew up mostly with their mothers. It especially doesn’t know anything about the fourth daughter, who, in a better world, would be alive and the eldest of all.

It doesn’t give any indication of the things he gave to his children, knowledge and wisdom, joy and strength, ingenuity and creativity, love and safety. It cannot hope to express a life he dedicated to making his children be well, be better, and be good.

And it can’t see the pain those children felt as they saw that life stripped away from him, first by circumstance, then Parkinson’s, then Alzheimer’s, then a series of hard falls on a slippery kitchen floor.

What this photo does show is my father, the day before he died. Laid bare of all he was, or all that he ever might be, waiting for an oblivion that would come much too soon.

‘My Life – Last Week’ Report – Kicked Off!

Hola Guys! 😀

FIRST OF ALL, the title is ‘My Life – Last Week’  not ‘My Life’s Last Week’. So please get it right!

If you’ve been following my blog for a while now, you’ll know that I always post things that have a message or a meaningful content.

But it’s time to add a little variety to my blog. After all, ‘Variety Is The Spice Of Life’ 😉
I will present my week’s report (FYI I’ve named the report ‘My Life – Last Week’ 😛 😀 ) on Sundays, not every Sunday though. Depends on how interesting/boring my week was!

If you like this idea then do ‘Like’ it. It’ll make very happy 🙂 But if you’re not very impressed then I’m really SORRY, I’m still gonna go ahead and write, because it feels right 🙂 I’d like people to know the real me!

My Life – Last Week:

  1. First things first, I changed the look and feel of my blog. It’s more colorful, glittery, in short – it’s a little more Girly now.
    FYI Boys & Men, There is no too much Pink. So feel free to check it out!
  2. I came across an awesome blog by a super cool woman. Do check out – Talesfromthecabbagepatch. Her posts are hilarious!
  3. YAY! SHOPPING!!
    • I was in FBB when I got myself an extremely pretty Lee Cooper dress worth 1600 INR for 800 INR – 50% off. 😀 So that makes approximately 11 USD.
      And a regular casual pajama for 350 INR, i.e. approx. 5 USD.
    • A travel bag for my upcoming mini-trip to Kolkata (India) this month.
      I’m so EXCITEDDD!!!
    • Here comes the story of Luck By Chance.
      I was on my way back home and I came across this small new shop where they were selling clothes for THE CHEAPEST PRICES I’VE EVER SEEN!
      I was shocked to see a Basics Shirt in the Men’s section & that’s when I kinda figured out that these pieces have minor defects and the whole lot is rejected. I had to be extra-careful and over-investigative before I decide to buy one.
      I bought 1 tank top, 2 full-sleeved tops & again 2 very cute pajamas for just 477 INR, i.e. approx. 7 USD (Yes, all together!). Cheapest shopping ever! 😉 😀
  4. It was raining cats and dogs in Chennai on Wednesday evening. I LOVED IT! ❤
    Rain makes me happy, it makes everything so beautiful.:D And I wrote my post on Karma right after!
  5. One of my close friends lost her Father to cancer this Friday and that was very unfortunate. All I can say is that, I pray for her and her family and I’ll be there whenever she needs me.
  6. Lessons learnt this week – Sometimes, Honesty is NOT the best Policy!
  7. And last but not the least, I’ve been planning a little for my Mom’s birthday that is on July 13th 😀 I literally can’t wait until Wednesday!

That’s all Guys!
I wish you all have a fantastic week ahead 🙂
Keep experimenting & Keep enjoying Life! ❤

Karma – A Burden Or A Sheild?

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With a pity I fixed my eyes on that poor little thing.

Crawling its way through the dirt. Carrying the weight of its own home, wherever it goes.

Probably it is not even aware of the load it holds, since it was born with it.

However, the shell – its home is not always a burden.

Perhaps it shields the creature, from the hazards around.

But it will never live liberated of the burden, or die!

 

In that moment, I was happy to be a human.

My fragile shoulders are free from a load equivalent to my body’s weight.

 

Then I pondered – Am I really set free? Am I not born with a burden to carry?

“Deeds – The Karma” says the instinct.

“You’re crawling your way through the worldly dirt. Carrying the weight of your own actions, wherever you go.

Probably you’re not even aware of the load you hold, since you were born with it.

However, the Deeds – Your Karma are not always a burden.

Perhaps your noble deeds shield you, from the hazards around.

But you will never live liberated of the Karma, or die!”

 

You’re More Than A Facade

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We see hundreds of people every day, each different from the other. And what makes all of us so diverse? Is it the character we hold or the personality we carry?

Character is something that imbibes in you, not noticeable very often. However with respect to personality which is always visible, you have an alternative. You can opt to be cheerful when you are gloomy or pretend to be confident when nervous. You pick a personality trait, try it over and over, and eventually it becomes a part of you. From a shy-vulnerable young girl at school to the flexible extrovert I am today, It’s all been a matter of choice!

I think I’m not the only one has the Fake It Till You Make It Syndrome. Check if you have these symptoms.

  1. The ‘I’m not good enough. I need to fit in’ Symptom.

Often happens when people believe that the kind of person they are trying to be, is way better than what they are. Basically they want a better version of themselves or long for social acceptance/appreciation.

  1. The ‘What will people think’ Symptom

I’m sure every Indian can relate to this – ‘Log kya kahenge – What will people say’ thing. Most parents across the world would say this, if their child wants to be in a homosexual relationship.

  1. The ‘Hide your emotions and qualities’ Symptom

Efforts to hide your pain, guilt or weaknesses, either for good or just to act invulnerable.

  1. The ‘I’m just too modest’ Symptom

Sometimes people are too talented and don’t want to show-off. By God’s grace, I’m very rarely affected by this symptom.

  1. The ‘I wanna be like her/him’ Symptom.

Happens often out of admiration and doesn’t last long.

  • I didn’t get a promotion from my Manager. Let me pretend to be better.
  • That girl/guy is too good for me. Let me pretend to be better.
  • My mom loves my younger brother more. Let me pretend to be better.

The fact is that everybody pretends, either by choice, or by compulsion to impersonate someone who is better. But now I ask – Why? Is it even essential?

The made-up personalities are more prominent in young-adults or teenagers. But the seeds are often sown at a tender age when the parent tells the child “You have to grow up and be like Daddy” or “Your best friend got an A+ while you got a C”. And when the child grows to understand the world better, people tell “Your uncle is so successful. Learn from him. Be like him someday”.

Look at him”, “Be like him” and WHAT ABOUT THE CHILD’S INDIVIDUALITY?

Motivating someone to be better isn’t an issue, but comparison doesn’t motivate. You compare a 45-year-old with his colleague, and the former is bound to turn off, feel low and insecure. If comparisons can leave an impact on the adult, a child’s feelings of not being good enough is guaranteed.

If you can’t accept yourself with all your strengths and flaws, how do you expect others to love you for who you are? Don’t lose yourself at any cost. Treasure your originality and the right people will respect it. Because to love is beautiful, and to love thy real self is divine.

“It is better to live your own destiny imperfectly than to live an imitation of somebody else’s life with perfection”

~The Bhagvad Gita

***Click on the title to read my previous post Passion As Profession

When Words Fail!

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How often have we heard these expressions and idioms – “I’ve no words”, “I’m outta words”, “Words fail me”… a million times? YES!

And how many times do we actually fail at words? How many times do we really feel the things that are inexpressible, that are beyond words? Sometimes…May be! 🙂

We might not know how languages came into existence, however we all would unanimously agree that language is probably the best invention on earth. We speak, we write, we read, we listen and we imagine based on what we listen. Language can more often be the reason behind liking, loving or hating someone. Language can influence to spread both humanity or cruelty.

According to Google, there are roughly 6500 languages spoken around the world. The English language in the year 2016 has 1,035,877.3 words. DO NOT ASK ME, why is it a floating number with 877.3 (point 3) because i don’t know (that’s the reason behind mentioning ‘According to Google’)! And no more math please!

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Back to point zero, why is that a collection of a zillion words across all languages fail to express the little realizations we get? These are  moments when we experience simple, yet unusual things. Such feelings and ineffable moments that seem like infinity. No matter how hard you try to catch hold of them, they slip like bubbles in water. It seems impossible to bring these feelings to life outside of you. It seems impossible to map this epiphany to words. The mere idea of penning it down would be foolishness.

Some people might agree, however some might have much confidence in their vocabulary and language skills. But I believe, no matter how extraordinary or exceptional one can be, one will always fail at words! Human can only invent the word ‘PERFECTION’ but being or creating one that is perfect is not in our hands. Our capability is not eternal. Our skills have limits. We have limits!

Though perfection is around and everywhere in the form of nature, it’s beyond our reach. There does exist something that is limitless and never ending. Trying to capture it in the form of words or on a piece of paper will never be attainable.

“The Rock! His work is perfect, For all his ways are just;…”

Deuteronomy 32:4 – The Bible

This might just not be the right conclusion, because the fact is that I’m lost and clueless on how to end this piece of writing. Guess I’m just failing at words and I always will. 🙂

***Looking forward to read something with a #LifeTag. Check out my previous post Let Things Go!

Let Things Go!

I remember the time when my dad gifted me, upon much request – my very own, first, personal Walkman audio player. I was 10 then, over a decade ago (2002 to be accurate). The struggles we faced with the reel of the cassettes and not to forget our global Fix Your Cassette mantra – “Insert a pen in the reel hole and rotate”.

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Everything has become so much simpler over these 10-15 years. Even the little effort of pressing the button to play, rewind or forward is now replaced with the ease of touch.

From sending written letters to making calls via the mobile phones, jogging in the open to the room-confined treadmills, our lifestyles have changed drastically.

Things have become easy! But has it made life any easy?

Ask yourself.

  • Does having a treadmill make you fit?
  • Does having a smart phone make you smart?
  • Does a laptop make a person better professional?
  • Or does having the most expensive designer garments & accessories make you more appealing and likable?

I agree it’s great to have the best things. But is it a necessity to have THE BEST THINGS?

Sometimes life becomes all about our desires and pleasure. It’s more about the brand we wear, the phone we use, what we own, the house we live in.

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Spiritual Story by Unknown – A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation began and soon the pleasantries turned into complaints about the stress in work and life of the alumni.

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Offering his students a cup of coffee, the professor brought in a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups – porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite – telling them to help themselves to the coffee.

When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said: “If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups have been taken by you all, leaving behind the cheap-ordinary ones. Be assured that the quality of the cup, adds no value to the taste of the coffee”

Now consider this: Life is the coffee; the pleasure giving objects like the job, money, gadgets, the clothes brand, vacation, house, position in the society etc…are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain life.

The kind of cups we have does not define or change the quality of life we live.

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The objective here is not that you should give up on all the things that you want to own/achieve in life. But remember, their absence shouldn’t leave you feeling incomplete and worthless.

The ‘Walkman’ was not an asset to my childhood or memories. It’s the people and experiences that we remember, not the things. To summon up, the next time you can’t afford an IPhone 8s or 10s plus, remember the happiest people don’t have the best of everything.

 

***Stressed out? Then you must click on this one – Then Why Worry? 

***Click Here to check out my favorite post.😉