As of today, she WAS where I always met her when I visited my parents back home in India. Meeting her was a natural extension of my being there, unsaidly expected.
I was a young girl when she came in as a young newlywed. Today I watch my life backward through that lens. I remember her joy when her husband would come back for his monthly visit to her and his family, from his job far away.
She knew my happiness with new dresses and would share her new shopping with me – “Here wear these to college this week, enjoy them. I can wear them all the time later.”
Her son was the baby I came home to play with every day, throughout his growing phases. He calls me Didi and I used to address her as Tai – both refer to a big sister. It is lovely how it didn’t matter what relation we regard each other with – it is the impact we have by being in each other’s life in the most ordinary ways.
I clearly remember our last meeting & conversation 2 years ago and somehow I am very content with it – we had connected through our eyes and shared genuinely, there was Love.
That’s it. That’s all matters. Because we don’t ever know when it is our last meeting, with anyone. I never took pictures with her – I have a snapshot of our life together living in me.
Dear Tai, your courage through life is seen and has made a difference. In unknown ways too. I will miss you. I miss you.
Everything else that could be said, I hold in silence.
Note: I wrote this exactly last year and wished to share it with you all here, as we mark one year of her passing.
Lodged in my bones
are your words
through the years
Is it necessary
that I feel them all?
when they begin
I had managed
my strong bones
from your ears
to your heart,
slid right down
from your strong ribcage
down to the floor,
and you said
you heard me
And I said,
Is the way
is it really necessary?
that I feel them all?
from my bones
to be let go
after it all
Is it felt
in my tears,
any reason for?
Is it love
I will not
let go of
I will hold it
screams to be heard
Will the holes
in my bones
to get filled
to bring me
I think it is ok not to smile Especially when Your cheeks are hurting From all the years of being nice
I think it is important to smile Especially when You now finally know How to be nice to yourself
I had made a post of similar theme in the past. I converted the short verse titled True Smile posted on Feb 2, 2018 into the image below:
The numbness that we wear, in order to always smile Choosing not to feel the pain, with that practiced smile It is liberating to experience all there is, and not smile For the true joys of life do not necessitate that we smile One that comes from the heart and eyes is a true smile
Always grateful for your time and attention. The first image is what came fresh to me today and the verse in the second image reminds me of the cyclical nature of how these lessons and inspiration keep repeating to us in different ways. Look forward to knowing which one spoke to you better or what specifically.
The last thing I read at night was Dawn by Frank@BeachWalkReflections where he described dawn as a free magical moment that too many miss. I ended my day with an innocent question within – why do I miss most of the sunrise moments in this lifetime?
I was awakened the following morning at the crack of dawn with the eerie feeling that I have become accustomed to, as a cue to start typing because a poem or something like that needs to be given the way out. I hope you enjoy reading it below. Always infinitely grateful to have your thoughts on what takes up space here.
I was awake at dawn
I stayed in bed
Resting my head
Taking some deep breaths
I won't open the curtains
I want to curl up deep inside my own womb
I can feel my belly alive
The baby me held in her turmoil
I refuse to see the light
I need to nurture this one within first
I want to hold her, send her a full breath
One after the other
Soothing her, loving her
Making her feel safe
Letting her know I see her
I understand her
I want her to be nourished with my loving presence
I want to be in this dark cave
Until she gets what she needs
She is worth the wait
The curtains can be opened very late
She needs to feel her own beauty within
Before the light floods in
I was awake at dawn
Wondering if I should be out there
Witnessing the magical beginning of the day
Yet I could feel her tug
More a churning and a yearning
For that unconditional unattached hug
So I stayed in bed
Resting my head
Taking some deep breaths
I did wonder how long?
For an amazing beauty of the morning awaits
There is no hurry I decided
My womb had just now begun to melt
To become this assured part of me
The morning can continue to grow into the day
Just like the baby me is continuing to grow into my person
Someone else decided to open the curtain
I looked up out the window
The light was bright and yet quite mellow on me
Both baby me and I, just One, now could finally smile
Both received so much from each other
We are now a ball of tenderness and a fullness
Comfortable in one skin
Hopefully not as thin but still permeable
To all the love that we can receive from the light of the day
I pray we both stay merged enough
When we are awake at dawn of another day
To open the curtains and soak in the beauty
of what awaits us in a magical way
P.S.: I have found Frank’s Beach Walk Reflections very enjoyable and contemplative to read as he brings alive so many aspects of the beach, ocean, sand and everything associated. I hope you also visit his site.
Those who seem to be happy all the time Don’t judge them or take them for granted. Often they have taken deep dives into grief or depression. They have somehow managed not to drown and that’s why the smile.
Those who think & act from the heart Don’t try to fix them, it is not a weakness. Often they are being their own version of strength. They are somehow trying not to hurt anyone and that’s why the tears.
What if we actually live all that we have been feeling & made guilty of? Instead of forever trying to keep living & convincing otherwise? Where else does this question seem relevant to you?
I gave you valid respect for your given role in my life. I will never falter in that. I became weak, I cried. You scolded, told me to become strong. I did. You can’t stand me now.
I have no desire for power games. Each time you try to make me small, I hurt a bit, a lot and then just become tall. I desire respect for who I am and regard for my personal growth.
I shared with you that genuineness in relationships is required for me. You explained how I am being unreasonable. You thought you helped me understand. Sadly, I understood what you said.
I said it is important to show more care for each other. Soon it became a game of guilt-tripping grievances, while flaunting privileges. I wasn’t interested in those. I quit engaging. I am learning to be ok.
I kept my stories positive. I didn’t share what I really struggled & triumphed through. Validated, empathized and supported you inside out. You took me for granted and declared that I am lucky I have it all so easy. I am learning to find a balance.
You have given me a lot of goodness, helped in times of need. I expressed profound gratitude at every opportunity. I am done being made indebted to you forever. I perhaps bring no other value to you.
You praised my spiritual writing in public and in person. Then you said I was foolish to actually attempt to live what I wrote. I need to be loyal to my own word. I think you should have no say in that.
I have acknowledged both your struggles and your privileges without agenda and envy. I think I have suffered enough humanly, if that’s the competition we are in, to prove our worth. I now go for continual joy and gratitude. You preach me positivity while pointedly reminding me of my lack. I become weak only because I care and want to trust you.
You are so so lovely, I would love to create some fun moments with you, instead of you trying to make me jealous with other people. I wish we are truly that which we take turns trying to become/show. Have a cup of smiles, perhaps with some sweet, bitter, hot, perfect brew. I want us to speak easy and true, or then why bother with the façade/role play?
Praise is not the expectation behind any of my action. Love is the intention behind all I say and do. I feel deeply. I mean what I say. Your mixed layers of what you say, what you really mean and you intend to convey something underneath saying something in the perfect nice words – it is exhausting to me.
Respect & Love exist as attitudes, trickling into action and words. Certainly not true when the words are claimed, assumed, imagined, explained. All this while continually invalidating others’ feelings, in the guise of wanting to make them strong and positive.
These are things I have tried hard not to say.
Today I decided to get them out of the way. I am not perfect, made my own human mistakes. I am working my way through. All this is what I really think sometimes, before I work diligently at letting go of expectations and acceptance of what is.
When emotional I am often unskilled at expressing, wanting to keep the love and kindness, fearing loss of relations. It is ok I think now, to say what I really mean without trying to make it into something nice. It is ok to love myself as much as anyone else.
I am learning to become unapologetically myself, still humble and authentic, valuing positivity and peace, yet more unapologetically myself. All my heart feels is Love in this moment and I am willing to grow to be able to live it to the fullest extent of it.
Post Update because of some comments I am getting : This is not about a single person in my life. I share a good marriage with my husband – we grow together as individuals. This is a compilation of various journeys with multipleinteractions in life. Not an exact experience of this moment but a description of cumulative experiences I have been working through. A venting of how I think relations work in some ways in society, that I am growing out of very clearly, and felt the nudge to put it out in the Universe for anyone who might find it helpful and mark my own journey ahead.
Related posts from the past, if you feel inclined –
I had a conversation today, with someone from another state, who called to let me know that they were reminded of reading this poem from me and went looking for it. They told me that this poem is feeling so relevant and practical in their experience right now. We discussed how necessary yet tricky it can be to actually apply the idea of this poem in our lives.
My heart feels so happy and grateful to share it again with all of you today! This poem was originally published on March 1, 2016 Someone actually went back to look for it because they remembered what it said!! I wanted to bring it back for my new friends and readers here 🙂
Drama wanting to be shared With anyone who even slightly cared
Boredom is the mother Of looking for another Who would give a nod To the story that we weave As truth what we believe
More than one head shaking together Feels great to find a smile As we walk the mile
Use it though like a condiment Added to your own recipe of a journey As a tasteful and powerful complement
If used as an escape It only adds more trauma to the drama If used as entertainment Leads certainly to disappointment
Get to know the blank The space of lonesome boredom From where all drama arises often Helps you isolate trauma in exclusion
Now you can choose what to play Really feel the pulse of your character Now you become the co-writer Enjoy all the drama for what you care Choose the audience with whom to share
It is your show The more and more you let go It is your show The more you contribute to the flow It is your show Take time to really know The characters you allow To be part of your show
The choice may not be in some characters The choice is then actually in your role In all the drama you want to share With the ones who would really care
Because now It is impossible to fake a smile Because now I am inwardly happy in my heart Because now I love myself with all of how I am
Because I wish the same for you Because I wish we meet with exactly how we feel Because I wish to discover how One we are
That is Why …
While I was contemplating if I will ever write again …actually I have a lot of writing and ideas ready …so more if I will ever feel the urge to post again, and while navigating what feels like a transition in my way of being, the feeling of wanting to create this quote image brings up so much joy in me. I closed my eyes to call for what I wanted to put these words on, I saw that I wanted them to go on a path that looked like a scroll opening towards me. I started looking through albums of personal photographs and found this perhaps accidental click by my husband on a nature trail.
Growing up I felt a lack in me for not being good at art – drawing, painting, singing, dancing, anything. As an adult I discovered that there is an art to words and life itself. And the skill emerges when I keep living authentically. These text images that I have come to love creating are my art and my heart. They are what they are and they are how they wanted to come through me. I don’t know how they should be, to be good. It makes me very happy if you really like them.