Tag Archives: children

Why Does It Get To Me?

Does any mother not yell? No, seriously, is it possible? – leaving aside the Swedes, of course, who apparently don’t believe in using the word “no” to a child, let alone raise their voices ( my mother thought I was kidding when I told her that) .

I try as much as I can to be patient, but sooner or later the tantrums, the wailing, the sulking and the pestering gets the better of me and I find that the only way of making myself heard is by raising my voice.

I am not a patient person by nature ( it took me years to admit this) but with the kids, I try. A few months ago I told myself that I’d try to be more patient with them, no matter what.  So, when the other day when my eight year old made an unreasonable demand,  I declined gently, explaining all the reasons etc (all that textbook stuff about dealing with questions in a positive manner) but, the demand persisted. I counted to ten and explained it again. This happened about three more times. I continued to explain the reasons while holding my ground on my decision.  She didn’t take to it well and started to bolster her argument with talk of equality and fairness. It’s a time-tested strategy – when in doubt, bring in justice. Kids are clever enough to know that this usually puts the parents on the back foot.

Well, not this parent. I told her my reasons for my decision and expected her to understand.  I also wanted to make it clear that if she could not fully comprehend my reasoning then she would have to sort-of lump it, because sometimes parents have to do what they have to do. I always think of my own parents when I over-explain things to my kids in an effort to be the modern, involved (read evolved) parent. I cannot help but feel, at times, that their method of dealing with us was far better. My father had two pet phrases : ” you will know when you grow up” and “because I said so” as an answer to many questions . End of story. That was that.  My mum would try and tell us more, but only so much. I know that every generation glorifies their age and loves going down the how-things-used-to-be path, but my parents’ method did give them a lot more freedom than we give ourselves.

Anyway, that’s a whole different post. Coming back to my tale of patience, I tried as hard as I could to make her understand my point. And to be fair, she did get it, except that she still didn’t accept my ruling. Then the tears started. I took a deep breath and told her that she was overreacting. This seemed to open a can of worms and she went into previous arguments about this and that and how I never let her do blah blah blah. So, it finally happened . I caved and blew a lid, high drama followed (I am telling you, this teenage thing hits about five years too early) and more tears and apologies later, the matter was laid to rest, for the time being that is.  It ended, as it always does, with sorry notes from my daughter for the things she said in the fight, and apologies from me for losing my cool and making her cry. After having sworn, during the fight, not to take any more notes from her, I wiped her tears, kissed her, put the note in my cupboard (with the numerous others) and told her I’d never scold her that way again (this happens about once a week). What didn’t help (at all) was my husband’s comment about my handling it.  So I sulked and he didn’t address it, which, you can imagine, made me madder than ever (more on that in a later post, because man, that needs some venting)

With remorse comes guilt and with guilt comes introspection. I regretted the way I spoke to her and wondered, again, if I was being too harsh with her. I’ve never been able to decide this one,  does she react this way because I am too harsh? or does she react this way because I’ve not handled it right earlier? The guilt lingered and I thought about my own actions, of why I got so worked up and yelled. I started to question my reaction and look for a deeper meaning into my angst.  Surely I wasn’t so angry just because my daughter had cried.

Well, yes and no. Yes because the tears get to me. I can’t handle them beyond a point. I know it comes with being eight, when things that seem of little consequence to me, are matters of great importance to her and thus, when they are denied, there’s much gnashing of teeth. But when the tears flow so freely (with all three of them) I reach my limit and let my anger get the better of me. There’s only so much wailing one can take in a day and with the twins preferring it as a form of protest, I look to my older one for respite.  And no, because my anger is not only a reaction to her crying, it’s a symptom of the bigger problem (for lack of a better word).

I know I’ve said this before, but I wish that I was one of those women who was content being at home with the kids, or at least one who could make peace with it. But, I am not. And I am not even sure if such a woman exists.

I am reading The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friednan – it was a book that addressed, head-on, the real truth about the picture-perfect life of the suburban American housewife, about her angst and and of how she felt unhappy in a life that she’d longed for in a mistaken belief that that was what a woman must aspire for – a life of domestic bliss filled with a husband, children and a nice house. The book is said to have started a second wave of feminism ( don’t care for that word).

Here’s the opening paragraph:

“The problem lay buried, unspoken, for many years in the minds of American women. It was a strange stirring, a sense of dissatisfaction, a yearning that women suffered in the middle of the twentieth century in the United States. Each suburban wife struggled with it alone. As she made the beds, shopped for groceries, matched slipcover material, ate peanut butter sandwiches with her children, chauffeured Cub Scouts and Brownies, lay beside her husband at night — she was afraid to ask even of herself the silent question — “Is this all?”

My life could not be more different from the American suburban wife of the fifties, and yet, I can relate to her  “strange stirring”.  I guess that’s the stirring I need to address, because it’s whats causing the yelling. From what I hear from other women (and it’s comforting to know that I am not alone in this) it’s the way a lot of them feel.

So, what’s the solution? Not sure. But I know the problem, and that’s always the first step..

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Have It All. Why The Fuss?

I’ve been doing a bit of reading about women and their issues (not a fan of that word) – the whole work-life balance that’s quite suddenly become the thing to talk about in living rooms, when one is done venting about the government and the weather that is.  Not that I went looking for these articles in particular, but I guess it started with one article I read about women and related issues and surprise surprise suggested articles and blogs started popping up seemingly out of nowhere, but we all know how that works. Not that I care about being tracked, no really, I got bigger things to worry about.

Anyway, I digress (oh so easily). Point is, I’ve been reading stuff about how women can have it all if they do this or or if they do that (not relevant to the point I am making). It irritates me, this whole have-it-all discussion.

Who can have it all? Do men? Sure, in many homes they work and the wife looks after the family, but does that mean they have it all? I think not. Ask my husband. He’ll tell you about the grueling hours he puts in at work and only comes home to see the kids asleep – asleep when he arrives and out to school before he can say Johnny Cash, after a tornadoesque morning (three kids, two of whom are yet to be four, to get ready, feed and then drop to the bus stop by 7:20 – yeah, it’s a fun morning). He gets little time with them and does not have the moments I do with them (moments, I admit, I would now, after years of being home, trade quite happily for a teller’s job that requires standing on one leg – you can see I’ve had an eventful, tantrumy morning) But the point is, he has not had it all either. He’s missing their childhood in the aim to secure their future. He’s working his ass off, going through mid-life angst, well aware of the long road that stretches ahead of him. Not defending the men folk here before anyone accuses me of that (ironical that would be, really) but just making a point about this whole fuss about having it all.

What, by the way, is having it all? I don’t get it. Ask anyone if they have it all and you’ll get a answer in the negative. Any road to success (pecuniary success I mean) is paved with sacrifices and regrets, be it for a man or woman. Also, who says that having it all is the key to happiness? So much is in the mind. You could have it all (whatever that is) and still not be happy, or you could have some regrets in life and yet be content with the way things are. I made the choice to be at home and am living with it, angst et all. I got to do what I wanted with the kids – to bathe and dress them, to be there for the school drop and pick-up, to read to them in the afternoons, to take them to their tennis lessons – so I did. Now, I still want those things, but, my need to get out and work is higher, maybe because I’ve had enough of the domesticity and also because they’re settled in school.

I am also aware that for many women, it’s not a choice – they have to work and leave the leg-tugging baby behind. In my mind I was indispensable at home (with three girls I still think I am) and since the house did not depend on my income (though that would’ve led to less stress on the husband and thus on everyone else) I decided to stay at home with the kids. Sure they got looked after and the husband could work tirelessly without home issues clouding his analytical brain. But I too got to do what I wanted, at least initially. For many women, it’s hard because the house needs dual incomes.

What I want to say is merely this, as we were taught very early on in school – you can’t have your cake and eat it too. This little adage, for me, says a lot about the whole discussion around having it all. No one can have it all. No one.  It may appear so, but it’s not true. So why the fuss?

Don’t get me wrong. It’s not like I don’t understand the issue at hand here. No one knows that better than me – since I’ve tried to strike that work-life balance and have, in vain, tried to get jobs that are satisfying enough and yet don’t threaten to consume you, leaving you to attend to your other full-time job of mommyhood in peace. It cannot happen. You either do some mindless work where you shut shop at five-o-clock  sharp and go home, or you find something meaningful, in which case leaving at will, or at a family-conducive hour,  is probably not that easy. Or you stay at home, and write (like I’ve been trying to do – yes, yes, a book is in the head). So I do get the point about how hard it is for women who want/have to work and have kids to go home to.

I guess what irritates me is a lot of hyperbole around having it all. I have a problem with the whole concept of having your cake and wanting to eat it too. Maybe it was how I was brought up, to believe that to get something you have to give up another. True, in an ideal world a woman (or a man) should be able to work and be there for the kids all at once. But, is that possible? Ask anyone who’s made it to the top. Or rather, ask the kids. If you are going to slave to get to the top of any organization, something will have to give. And that something will be your home.

Ask Enid Brighton’s daughter (or husband who she had a tumultuous marriage with) what they thought of their life with her. She wrote more than 600 books for children, but did she have time for her own? Did she have it all?

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He thinks Mergers, I think Plumbers..

One evening, a few nights ago, I was lying in bed next to my husband. We were both tired after a long day and were similarly engrossed in our thoughts, of the day gone by, the one that lay ahead, all that needed to be done, stuff like that. We were having one of those, silently-reading-in-bed and thinking about battles ahead moments (am reading David Mitchell, by the way, and for those who haven’t read him, I highly recommend him) I had a hectic day planned – visit to the pediatric ophthalmologist, then to a birthday party, then rush home in time for the maid to leave, take the kids for their swimming lessons, call the electrician for the AC that’d started to make disturbing noises etc etc, you know working out the logistics in my head. My husband was lost deep in thought too, but his were, well, different, to say the least – crunching numbers, selling companies, handling employees and their emotions and the like. Not to put myself down, but compared to his, my list was full of mundane if vexing chores; his, probably both worrisome as well as mentally fatiguing. So we lay in bed reading, interrupted only with to-the-point conversations about this and that, such as “did my credit card arrive today, it’s about to expire”, or “how was the kids’ swimming lesson?”

There are times in everyone’s life, I am certain, when you have moments of extreme clarity, like you’d just spotted the obvious, which had been under your nose all the time. These crop up suddenly, almost without warning, seemingly out of nowhere, much like the Eureka moments that make everything lucid at once. Well, I had one of those that night. I realized why the distance that’d crept in between us had the dangerous potential of turning into an abyss.

This distance, I realized, had a perfectly logical and quite frankly a very valid explanation. We had sunk into such different worlds that on a day to day basis we had very little in common with each others’ lives. People at his work, understandably, knew much more about him and the issues that face him than I did. At my end, the mommy friends I’ve made in recent years around swings in parks knew more about the angst I feel as a mother or the issues that face me. True we try and involve each other in our lives, but that can only happen that much. I cannot begin to understand all the pressures he faces and he cannot relate fully to the life I lead. Our days could not be more different. And that’s where the danger lay. No matter how hard we try, at the end of the day we have such dissimilar events to deal with that we seem to be living on completely diverse planes.

Not that I didn’t know this earlier, but that night, somehow it became clear to me that something had to be done. We absolutely had to find a common ground and that could not be the children and the home alone. Something else needed to bind us. Yes there was love and friendship, but that’s something that needs to be worked on constantly. You cannot just lie there and say – ok so we have different lives but that’s quite alright because there is this marriage and love and all that jazz. No, that’s not enough, not near enough. You have to connect mentally – that’s what was was so clear to me that night. I can’t talk markets and numbers like he can and he can’t put in his bit about running the house, but surely there’s stuff we could find to talk about that was removed from or not connected to the life we lead together.

Mental stimulation. Yes, that’s what we needed.  That is what would keep us on a somewhat level field.

I am not sure if I make sense, but this is something I’ve only just fully understood. I mean I knew it, but somehow lost the thread in all the domesticity and the gap just crept in on us.

I suggested (not letting him in on my new-found epiphany, of course) that we watch a film – The Great Gatsby. We’ve both read the book and loved it. So we did and it was a wonderful idea. We came home talking about the film, the book, the let down (if you’ve read the book, you cannot like the film, Leonardo notwithstanding) and a whole lot of things that we’d forgotten about.

Not once did we talk about the kids or the house.

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What career advice will you give to your daughters?

When I was growing up all I heard my mother say was that we had to make something of ourselves; that we must “stand on your own feet” – a term that Indian parents love to repeat, ad nauseum, or at least they did when my parents were in the stage of child-rearing that I am today.  Hindi films extolled the virtues of the phrase with lachrymose on-screen mothers telling their kids to “become something in life”.

So, it was ingrained in me very early – parents, cinema, et all – that I had to make something of myself. Stories of didactic brilliance, against all odds, were fed to us on a regular basis. The boy who sat under a street lamp and topped the national level civil services exam was the role model who we had to get inspired from, if not emulate.

So, my question is this. And, just to clarify, this is not to assign blame or say that my life would’ve been different had my mother prepared me for what lay ahead. But what I want to know is why no one told me one day I’ll have to make a choice – work or home? I spent years thinking, studying, working towards a career and then, whoosh. Before I knew it, I became that Stay At Home Mom, wondering if someone out there wants to hire a freelancer who is willing to work harder than “regular employees”, whose only limitation is that she cannot leave home for hours on end.

Why was I told that I must “stand on my feet” when that is exactly what I am not being able to do, whatever the term means?

The question that could be thrown back to me is – who told you to have kids? Or, did you not think about who would raise them? Well, not really. I mean, you reach a point when you want kids and you feel you’ll be able to figure to out as you go along. After all, the world has kids and juggles. My mom did. Couldn’t be that hard, right?

It’s not hard. It’s just life-changing. For those who can strike that magical (but it so eluded me) work-life-balance, I sound like a whiner (don’t like that term, my blog name notwithstanding). But I am not. I am asking a real question; more because I want to say the right things to my daughters. I do not want to lead them down a merry path only to have them reach a dead end later, or worse, to reach that wretched fork in the road where they’ll stand and dither and fall into the deepest quandary, the answer to which they will seek for the rest of their lives.

Should I tell them that they must work hard and dream big, but that one day they may have to let go of that dream, or a family? Or, should I tell them to be realistic and choose a path that will allow them to strike a balance between work and domestic life? So it’s better, say, to become a writer, academician (but wait, not dean, that’s time consuming), entrepreneur, teacher, consultant (so many women I know now “consult on a freelance basis) as opposed to any other profession, enriching as it might be, but which threatens to take them away from their homes for long passages of time?

What’s the answer? Is there one?

I want to, just because it’s sort of relevant, tell you this story. Make what you want of it.

I have a friend who was brilliant in college – the sort we thought would lead the way and we’d just follow. At 21 she got married. No one could understand it. One fine day, she just married this guy her parents had chosen for her. Just like that.

It turned out that her mother was this control freak who had figured life out and had laid out a plan for her daughter. She got this rich guy to marry her. By the time she was 23 she’d had her first and only child. She then, needled by her mother, did an MBA (while changing nappies – no diapers then). She lived with her parents-in-law (she, husband, kid on the top level; they on the lower, pretty common in India) So, the child was magically brought up while she worked. Long story short, today, she’s only 42 and her son is safely pursuing his undergraduate degree somewhere in the US. She’s on her way to the top management of her company with which she consulted (surprise surprise) for a few years while her son was young.

So, she’s set, as they say in Indian-English parlance. No stopping her till she reaches the top, which is less than an arm’s length away anyway. Her mother always wears this smug expression on her face – she’s something out of a Jane Austen book, where her only aim in life was to settle her daughter, first into a wealthy household by way of marriage and then into successful employment. Both were achieved.

Well, needless to say, I am not that mother. Don’t want to be. Besides, I’ve never asked this friend what she thought about being married so early. She never questioned it, at least not publicly, but I am not sure she loved being coaxed into domesticity while her friends went abroad for further studies, or ones like me who enjoyed single hood till my twenties ended.

I have no doubt about the reaction my kids would have, if I was to, in some wild imagination, turn into that controlling mother with the all-good intention of planning their lives. There’d be a mutiny, to put it mildly.

So back to the original question. What do I say to my daughters?

I ask, but I think I know the answer.

I am going to let them figure it out for themselves. Limiting their imagination right now for some future dilemma seems unnecessary and frankly foolish. They’ll cross the bridge when they come to it.  Hopefully, I’ll be living on the ground floor, looking after their babies..

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I have no words. Sickened to the gut.

The past few months have been shameful for any Indian with a conscience. Or wait, I correct myself – I cannot put a time frame on this. The past few months have brought to light what has been happening  in the Indian society for, well, for more years than anyone can put a number on.

I am talking about rape. Rape in it’s worst form. I never thought I’d put an adjective before the word, because ANY form of rape is violent and needs a swift and un-bailable  march to prison,preferably to the gallows. However, when one hears of little toddlers being raped and being subjected to unspeakable torture, one starts to believe that one rape is worse than the other. Extremely unfortunate, but true.

Four months ago, a woman was gang-raped and brutalized in a Delhi bus. After she was tortured (an iron rod was inserted into her which reached her intestines), she and her male friend were thrown out of the bus.

The nation erupted in arms – from candlelight vigils to angry protests – the country came together to say that it had had enough, that it would not take police apathy and political reticence to crimes against women anymore. The media feverishly covered the protests (where girls were roughed up by policemen) and brought in experts to talk about the “problem” at prime time.

That was then. Nothing happened. I say nothing because if some micro change took place it was not noticed and frankly it was too small a step to make any difference. The system needs to be shaken up and revamped. A revolution is needed. Nothing short of that will do.

There have been more heinous rapes. If you are in India right now and watching ANY national news channel, you’ll be sickened to the gut. Little girls (ranging from two to thirteen) are battling for their lives in hospitals after being repeatedly gang-raped and brutalized.

The people have taken to the streets, again. They can do little else to show their anger. Again, women have been roughed up (slapped) by policemen. It’s deja vu.

As a mother of girls I cannot tell you what that TV image of dolls kept on the stretcher of the girl who is being wheeled into Emergency at AIIMS does to me. My hair stands on end and I cannot imagine how someone can do this to a child. What’s even harder to imagine is the reaction of the police. They refused to register the complaint and then told the parents to shut-up about the incident. Goddammit, what the F are they made of? Here’s a five-year old girl, found in semi-conscious state after three days with stuff inserted up for vagina and all the cops could do was offer the poor (as in literally, poor) parents money to stay silent.Do we even have words to describe such behaviour?

The distasteful truth is that such an attitude has pervaded the entire (well, almost) police force. Rape, even of little girls, is so common that the police do not even register the complaint. We all know that. They may do it for the rich, but almost never for the poor.

Scores of children go missing every day in this country. Nothing happens. They get sold, abused, killed and no one bats an eyelid. Sure there are “measures” taken, but that’s a pile of BS – ask any domestic help about this and they’ll tell you that the cops do nothing. In fact, they make it worse but rounding up innocent people to show action. It’s a pathetic state of affairs.

The system is not going to change. Pardon my pessimism, but I can’t say it’s unfounded. Some say that the people must bring about the change, as they have in other societies. I guess, that’s the only way forward, but to me it seems a tad bit unfair that we must now take to the streets, neglect home, work and children to make our voices get heard and win safety for our children. It makes me wonder if we live in a civil society? Do we? Is this how modern, civilized nations treat their women? Is is asking for too much that the police punish, swiftly, those who brutally annihilate lives?

There are too many questions and not near enough answers.

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My Little Princesses. How I came to not mind that word.

When I was young/er and full of that – ew-no-pink-for-me, if someone had told me that my three daughters would play princess-princess in the afternoons wearing sparkly crowns, silky pink and (ugh) Disney-inspired Cinderella blue  satin dresses (given as gifts, I feel the need to clarify, from dear cousin visiting from Australia) I would’ve scoffed and told that someone they needed to get their Time Machine fixed. That ain’t me honey, would’ve been my only callow retort.

Right. So what happened? As I sit here and write, my daughters – aged 6 and almost three – are shrieking with delight as they swoon from room to room playing princess games with crowns and flowers in their hair, preparing for a make-believe tea party.

How did this happen? How one earth did I allow this? I mean I never bought (and that I still never do) clothes that say cutesie things like ‘li’l princess’ or worse, ‘daddy’s li’l princess’! I read to them about adventure, goblins and the Far Away Tree (sigh, to be six again); husband and I spend many evenings with them watching Serena Williams smash the ball to smithereens and terrify her opponent to bits (as my twins ask me about what happened to Sharapova); my six year old tells me all about how Mr. Pink-Whistle would become invisible and come to her school and then there’d be lots of fun. That is what our world is usually like. I want my girls to grow up not as princesses, but as independent, thinking women who’ll chart their own course in life (as opposed to mademoiselle damsel-in-distress Cinderella)

But then, there are days like today, when Enid Blyton sits in a corner and all that the kids wants to do is play princess. Do I mind this? Does it bother me?

Well, here’s the thing. I don’t mind it, somehow. I’ve come to believe – and this has been a journey, because even after I had them I was quite convinced that I’d never allow all this pinky-Barbie-oh–pretty-pretty-stuff – that some things are a part of growing up and deprivation is not always the right thing. If I banned Barbies (much as I’d like to) the kids would only pine for them more.  Let them have it, purge it out of their system and move on.

So, I allow them, in moderation, and use their non-playing time well. Also, I believe that kids need to have free play, one that is non-structured. This builds their imagination.  Even if it is playing princess, they are using props using their heads and having fun along the way.

So, if princess is what they want to play, then so be it. It makes them happy, keeps them engaged and that makes for a very happy mommy! Win-win really. To a point, of course. Any signs of the stuff taking on serious tones and I would kick into overdrive, starting all the diversion tactics.

For now, it’s a pleasure watching them giggle and play. Their tea-party looks like fun and my writing table is now full of all sorts of make-believe food that I am supposed to finish soon.  I am going to let them enjoy this afternoon and play.

Any mention of the prince, however, will need some mommy intervention.

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Time to listen to the body, and unfortunately, to the husband too!

My husband has been telling me for a while to calm down, to not get stressed about little things, to learn to take things as they are and not look for perfection in everybody and everything. He’s been warning me of medical repercussions, which, according to him, are just a matter of time.

I, needless to say, have not been too receptive to such candid feedback, which I see as a bit unwarranted. Predictably, I’ve countered his observations by insisting that since he is not in the house, it’s easy for him to tell me to let it be. After all, if I let it be, nothing will happen, nothing. The dinner will not be on time, the daughter will not finish her schoolwork (or eat properly, drink her milk, get her hair combed, etc etc), the laundry will not be done in time, or, worse, if allowed to get done without my fine supervision, it’ll be done all wrong, with the red sock making its way into the machine and turning all his clothes baby pink, the car will not get cleaned in time for him to leave for work, the driver will not show up in time, till I’ve called him a zillion times and he’s claimed to have been five minutes away for the last half hour, and all the rest of it .I have to yell if I need to get anything done, otherwise it will not happen. That’s the truth, really.

Also, I make it a point, at the end of any discussions of this nature, to point out that I wasn’t always this way, that this is something I turned into and I don’t like it any more than he does.

But, the hard fact is, he’s right. (how I hate that – that “I told you so” look!) My head has been reeling with attacks of migraines, of the worst sort. I’ve had them before; it’s something that’s been handed down to me as a legacy from them forefathers. Yup, it’s in the genes. You can escape everything, but you cannot escape your genes – not a chance. I thought I had though, but hitting forty is life changing in more ways than one. Your body starts to tell you things, things you don’t like but have to stomach. And them genes, they decide to come out of their dormancy and say “aha, so you thought we’d spared you? nope, not a chance in hell!” (You know that box that you fill in a health form – “family history of” – that box starts to mean something). You think about the blood pressure your mum has, the stent in your father’s heart, the rheumatoid arthritis in your family, and you take a deep breath. Then you think about combat measures. How long can you delay the inevitable? How long before your genes get the better of you? You get into survival mode (for the sake of your kids, you better) Yoga? That’s got to help you. Isn’t it the magical answer to everything? That and a host of other stuff like: low salt, low fried foods, low alcohol, sleep in time (early to bed..) I can almost feel my genes smirking saying “you want to beat us? Go right ahead dear, live this way if you really want!”

Anyway, I digress. Point is, migraines have officially made their entry into my life. I’ve seen my sister suffer from them and, of course, have lectured her no end about the stress that she creates in her life (it’s always so simple to solve other people’s lives isn’t it? I mean all you need to do sis is blah blah and blah and boom problem solved!) Now I am eating my big fat words and holding the receiver five inches from my ear when I hear such useless advice from my sister and mother. (why, why, why did I tell them????)

So now it’s time for resolutions, again. I think it’s time I listened to my body, or tried to at any rate. Am not going to change overnight (if at all) unless everyone around me does! But I can try, which is something I am willing to do (again, for the kids, though they won’t see that. It’s weird really – I yell because I care about them and now I will stop yelling because I care about them and don’t want to deprive them of a mother and want to be around till they are on their way in life – whenever that is!)

What I will and will not do: Will try and not yell (ok I am going to try because sometimes yelling is therapeutic), won’t get stressed about the little things, will meditate (this I find hard to do), will sleep on time, not do any crazy diets, look at the positive sides of everything (ok, that’s a bit of a tall order – maybe not everything, but most things).

In a rare moment of confession I will admit that the husband is right about the potential risk of harm from all the angst. I have to find a way to lessen the stress – I know. I am going to try. The migraine was an eye opener of sorts. It was nothing serious but the pain put me out for two days and I am not going to let that happen again. I will take his advice, but will I tell him that and give him ammunition for the future? Not a chance.

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