Monday, June 27, 2011

Mumbai Meri Jaan..

Mumbai Meri Jaan…

Ai dil hai mushkil jeena yahan..
Zara bach ke, Zara hat key eh hai “Bambai” meri jaan.

A very famous song from a very old hindi flick (C.I.D 1956) makes me wonder if its actually difficult or easy to live in Mumbai.

7 years back when I first landed in Mumbai from Pune for job, I was so very scared of this city. I come from a small town in Punjab and coming to live in a city like Mumbai made me go bonkers. I was wondering all the while if I would be able to adjust in this city, how would I pace myself with the fast world of Mumbai; if I would ever learn to travel in trains and buses (more than travel, will I ever get in?).

Having friends around always helps and since I had come through a batch in Pune who were here for the same company, job and city, it made things a lot easier.

This city has lot to offer for everyone. The people here are very simple and easy going and one word that really describes them well is “Bindaas” (carefree). 

I remember my first train journey here in Mumbai and it was no less than a roller coaster ride J. I was told that when the train comes, just stand near its door, you wont have to worry about how you are going to get in with such a big mass of people trying to get inside. The pushes and hurry burry of people will automatically let you in. And believe me it worked J. The same thing was required to be done to get out of the train when your station comes. It was hilarious (for people like me because it was once a while thing but for people travelling on a daily basis, it becomes a tough routine). I travelled in a ladies compartment and I saw all kind of woman doing all sorts of things.

If you were travelling during the early morning hours, you would see flock of woman singing bhajan and starting their day with prayers and brotherhood. During the evening, you will see woman actually buying vegetables in the train itself and cutting them too. So that when they reach home, they can immediately start cooking for their family. Amazing, isn’t it?

There were women who were knitting, shopping (not just vegetables but all sort of clips, accessories, soap, etc). There were other set of woman who had nothing to do, so were quarrelling amongst them (that was probably the first time, I saw woman fighting so openly and even ready to throw each other out of train and that too on a simple thing like, who will sit next to the door). And then there were woman like me who were just sitting and observing them all and were amused at some and were frustrated at others.

That was just one side of Mumbai (which is an important part of course). The other side of Mumbai shows how immune the people of Mumbai have become to all sorts of disturbances that this city faces.
Be it some riots in Dadar, or a bomb blast in a train, or a terrorist attack in South Mumbai, a shootout in open market during daylight or even the floods, it doesn’t obstruct the people of Mumbai from their routine. 

I wonder if it actually scares them or affects them in any way.  A common man, who was back to work in no time after the blasts, was asked if these blasts scare him. He replied saying “I feed my family and me on daily wages that I earn” If I don’t go to work any day, my family sleeps without food that day, so irrespective of what has happened, I have to get back to work.

Well it is not just about the common man but its everyone from top to bottom who is seen to go around work soon after any of these things have happened. And not only will they be out on streets back to normalcy but you would also see people coming to help and feed the stayors.

Vehicles are stuck in traffic jam due to flooded roads in Mumbai.I remember once I was travelling back from work with my husband in our car. The journey that usually takes 1.5 hours of travelling one side took us 4 hours to reach home.  While we were on our way, I got a call from my brother-in-law asking if we were well, because the news channels were flashing the train blasts. It was then that we got to know that something has happened in Mumbai and that is the reason for this long journey back home.

Mumbai is a huge city and sometimes you don’t even get to know what happens in your neighborhood, forget about the other part of Mumbai. (A classic example, Mr. Dey (the journalist) was killed during daylight in front of a super market, which is like 10 mins walk from my house and we learnt about that on the news only late in the evening).

I had always heard that if you can manage to survive in Mumbai and New York, you could live in any part of the world with ease. And I am happy I have survived in Mumbai. I wont say survived but lived happily here for almost 8 years now. This city will never let you feel lonely or left out because this city never sleeps.

So like the hindi old flick song ends…” ai dil hai aasaan jeena yahaan
suno mister, suno bandhu, yeh hai bambai meri jaan “
:) :) :) :) :)

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Doctor's Plegde

A Doctor’s pledge
Cartoon Doctor Royalty Free Stock Vector Art Illustration

Have you been to a doctor recently? What had been your experience?

I always wish and pray that no one has to ever visit a doctor and if at all they do, nobody faces a doctor who has forgotten their pledge. But I wonder how many doctors actually remember what they had promised when they wore that respectable white fleece.

Very recently an article in paper caught my attention and it was really really disheartening to see that the “Doctor’s business” is the most rewarding these days. Yes, I have purposefully used the word “business”, because its no more considered a duty to mankind, it’s a way of making money.

The article mentioned that, the delivery (normal or c-section) is no more a profitable business as compared to the heart surgeries, hence many hospitals have either shut down their delivery section or have reduced it to minimal beds and have increased their heart surgery wards and OT’s. They make upto 20 lakhs or more (sometimes) for a single surgery. I hope the poor class (lower class) is listening to this. You are not supposed to get any heart problems.

Even with a little blockage in your heart arteries, they scare you and ask you to get the surgery done even when it can be accomplished with a simple stent. Unimaginable!! I wonder if their conscience ever reminds them of humanity.

The personal experience that I had and thought I would never share with anyone and had told my husband too to never bring that discussion ever again in front of me, I am unable to hold it to myself now. Not because I suffered the pain, but simply because I want to caution everyone else.

While I was in the hospital with my day old son, rejoicing the happiness that he has brought in my life, enjoying him moving his legs and arms while he was awake (for a very short time though), the child doc came for regular visit.

She checked him thoroughly and also checked his limbs to check for any dysfunctions. She told me that one of his legs were very flexible and could bend upwards much more than required. I could not understand if it was actually an issue but got terribly scared within. She said she would send an ortho to check and see if he recommends anything. All other docs in the hospital who came to visit also told the same and had filled my mind with worries already.

I waited for the ortho the next day. He came and saw my son and recommended that plaster like thing (which can be removed during bath) should be put on him for over a month and that we should visit him on regular basis to check the status (he charged me double the fees that he charges in his clinic, simply because he had to come all the way to this hospital). He suggested us some guy who would come and take the measurement of the leg and make a plaster. Surprisingly, he did not write it anywhere, what the issue was and what is recommended and we fools did not think of it at all. The guy was called and the plaster delivered the next day.

The site of that plaster had already brought tears to my eyes because the little one, who most people were scared to even hold in their arms because he looked so fragile would now be wearing that plaster. We brought our little one home (my mom’s place) where the house was decorated for the welcome and everyone was ready with a puja thali and video recording. The warm welcome had temporarily erased the plaster thoughts of my mind.

After we settled down, we all recalled the plaster. None of us wanted to put it but since we thought it might give him issues later, we should make ourselves strong and do it now. I asked Vassy (my husband) to put that up. While he was putting it up on my little one, I was trying to hold my tears but just couldn’t and burst out crying badly. My sisters and mom couldn’t see me either and my husband held me tight to comfort me.

Every day when we would put that up, I would cry. The 4th day, I could not bear seeing my son struggling to hold it and trying to lift his leg every now and then. I asked my dad to find another known doc for second opinion. We then recalled of a doctor who was also a friend and has sifted to Chandigarh as well. He was a child specialist and could give us an honest opinion.

We called him and then my parents and Vassy took our son to the doc’s house (I couldn’t leave the house due the stiches which were still healing).

The doc examined him thoroughly and called me. He said tell me what you feel is the problem. I narrated him the whole story of what docs had told us in hospital. He said I have examined your son and he is absolutely normal and does not have any issues with his legs or any other part of his body. You do not need to worry or take any stress, because if you take any stress, it will then affect your child.

That doctor had become a “God” for me that day. I was crying again and this time it was the tears of joy and not fear. I felt then that some DOCTORS still exist and not everyone has turned a businessman

Deep within my heart (forgive me, as I would sound rude) but nothing good came out of me for the ortho who suggested the plaster so that he could make few bucks.

My nephews (who are like little kids for me) are in their teens now, were equally furious at the ortho.

I couldn’t forget that ortho for days together and would always badmouth him for what he did. (I believe even today I haven’t forgiven him at all and probably will never do)

However, I wish that some things wouldn’t have changed; some professions still would have remained for mankind. Let the doctors charge what they have to but do not misguide us who are completely unaware of the complex internal system that we have.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Welcome to Motherhood

Welcome to Motherhood

I had always heard that a “Mother is born when the child is..” but experienced it for the first and probably only time when my son “Aadit” was born on the 29th of March 2011.

I don’t know how and why but I was always a bit of “nastik” not that I didn’t believe in GOD but was not all that into it. I always felt all these prayers n worshipping’s were just for the heck of it, for people to feel the comfort that someone will take care of them when they are unable to take care of things around.

It was in august 2010 when I was asked to go for a brief period to US through my company and I so didn’t want to go. After having spent 2 years already without my hubby dear in US, I knew how it was to stay without him. And at no cost I wanted to experience it ever again. But since going to US for work was important so I couldn’t say no without any real reasons. I was all set; my tickets were booked, all other arrangements were done and still deep within me I was praying hard “God - please do something, I don’t want to go”.

Did I mention that I had been trying to conceive for the last 6 months and was under medication to set my hormones right.

I don’t know when did my hormones start to behave normally and to my surprise, I was pregnant and I actually found out 5 days before my travel date. I never imagined that God really answers your prayer and he actually exists but this time he did.

I found that I was pregnant while my hubby was out of India for a week. With the “positive” report in my hand I didn’t know how to react, who to share my news with and how to celebrate my happiness.

How I wished my hubby was here with me. Well, I had prayed hard for me not going to US (not my hubby) and that had been answered. So this made me happy, actually much more than happy J.

Days and months passed by, with all the ups and downs of pregnancy that once faces and here I was in the 9th month, trying hard to hold my emotions and anxiousness and nervousness and all other feelings, and all at the same time.

I so wanted to deliver and see our by-product in my arms but I was waiting and this wait didn’t seem to end.

My sister had come over to our mum’s place (that’s where I was) during her kid’s holidays and was with me to give me all the comfort but she was so looking forward for her nephew/niece to be born and would always tell me, please have the baby while am here else I wont be able to spend time with my little one.

It was March end and I was so frustrated and tired that I don’t know why or how, I again looked back at dear God. I just told my sis to make some offerings for God and I would like to go to temple on Tuesday early morning and pray to God. Little did I know that God would again listen to my prayers and actually revert.

The Monday night (or Tuesday early morning around 4 AM), I had started getting pains (THE Pains) and I was so restless the whole of that night. I wasn’t sure if I was supposed to wake up people and tell them that “hey baby is on the way” or are these false pains. So I kept quite and tried to bear the pain.

I got up quite early around 6 in the morning and went out and sat in open and fresh air trying to speculate if the day has come. I still wasn’t sure if I should tell my mom, coz if these are not the real pains, she would get anxious and worried. I kept quite and later woke my sis up and told her, I guess the day has come and told her to make the offerings.

I went to take bath and later helped my sis with the preparation. Both my hubby and me then went to temple and I was all this while telling him, the day has come. He was not ready to believe as the date the doctors were expecting was still about a week later.

I had asked my Dad to leave the car, as I wanted to go to doc for a checkup. Later we left for doc at about 11 AM with my hubby and mom.

Little did anyone expect that I would be admitted there and then and it actually happened. My mom looked so tensed at the thought of C-section that I would be undergoing. My husband was still under the shock and he didn’t realize it till much later. He went to bring my Dad from court to hospital and Mom sat and prayed the whole time. I would say she was more anxious than I was J I was holding my calm till I could.

Thanks to all my friends and sisters who had told me set of things that would happen before I would be operated. It actually helps you to be mentally prepared and don’t (over) react to what’s happening.

Well at about 2 PM, I was taken to the OT. Wooh… trust me I was not just cold feet; I was just cold all over. Dunno if it was that one gown making me cold, the experience that I was going to have or the AC in OT or that one small OT table to lie on.

I was asked to lie on that small operation table (cant explain what it look likes) but once you lie down and open and rest your each arm side ways, it looks like Jesus lying with his arms open. I was given the anesthesia to numb my lower body. The doc told me , this would numb my lower body so that I don’t experience anything that they would be doing but it wont put me to sleep immediately. This will also ensure that my baby doesn’t go off to sleep with me J

I was covered in all green sheet pieces and a sheet was also hanging right in front of my face so that I don’t scream at the sight of what these people do to my lower body. I was still feeling cold and very nervous. I was getting little drowsy now but I was trying hard not to fall off to sleep because I didn’t want to sleep without knowing that I have brought a life in this world. The doc came and they were chitchatting over my body discussing someone. It all seemed as though they were sitting for a cup of coffee with friends.

In less than 10 minutes, I heard a crying noise. I barely could open my eyes but the moment I heard a cry, a tear tickled down my eye and I just turned left and asked the lady standing there, is that a boy or girl. She said wait till doctor brings the baby back. Not sure if the doc brought the baby back immediately or he took a while but he was holding my baby trying to show me how he looks. I don’t remember seeing my baby there but all I got to know was, it was a baby boy. Now that I was sure all was well, I went off to sleep, I was given stiches and then was brought to the allocated room.

I must have slept for couple of hours and even after I woke up, I was still under the drugs influence but could hear my sisters, parents, brother-in-law, nephews, and niece all happy around. What a great feeling to have all your loved ones around and all happy J.

I was told that my baby was brought out where my mom, dad and husband were waiting. The baby was handed over to my husband. He was scared to hold him but he held him close to his heart and that’s when a father was born too. He couldn’t speak a single word but he was smiling and that’s what I saw him do the whole day “Smile”.

The 4th day when I was getting discharged, I was handed a pampers pack of diapers and it said “Welcome to Motherhood” J and I knew I had entered the reign the moment I heard the first cry of my baby in the OT.


I was born among them
I played, ate and stayed with them

The days rolled by and nights passed by

I grew older and had things to share
And I always knew to go to who, when and where

I was wrong many a times
But was not scared as they were mine

I knew my problems would be solved
As in my matters they were always involved

They are like a helping hand to me
I love them more them my life, you see

Now I really miss them as they are with their Misters
And yes, "They" are none other than my two SISTERS

PS: this was written in class 10th or 11th for my Dear Sisters Shilpa and Vishali :)

I Really Miss my Roommate..

My Roommate, My friend
Its the friendship which never ends

I was like a mother to her and she like a son
This was the relationship which was understood by none.

I was the one who always disturbed her, when she slept
And she was always there to console me, when I wept

We beat, ate and stayed together
Each day fond memories we would gather.

She waited for me and I waited for her
And we would never enter the room without each other.

Now we are apart I know,
But we still communicate through the window.

Dear Roommate, I promise, you wait and see
That I will be always there whenever you need

Rooms can apart but my disturbing you will again start..

Our communication process continues
And Dear Roommate I really miss you...

PS: Written in class 12th for Abha Kakkar :)))

Moon behind the clouds...

Last night the Moon was out after many days
I saw it, Chanda too saw it but with a purdah on her face

She is still the victim of our old customs and logic-less believes
The Adams of today have all rights But what about Eve

She did not go to school, not even out of her house
She stayed behind the four walls just like a scared mouse

Who says women of today have all rights
That's wrong, coz for their freedom, they still have to fight

Woman are supposed to back home by Seven
But nobody questions a Man, even if comes at Eleven

Sometimes they cant go out coz of the eve teasers and such devils
Even a political leader can't solve this problem, even if he says he will

70% of our people are still behind the dark clouds of customs and believes
When will this cloud scatter, free us and leave

This question bothers me throughout the day
Nights pass by thinking about them and finding ways

In the end I wish all of us the best
And Let it be us again and not GOD who will do the rest.

PS:Again written during school days :)

The Star I saw Last Night..

It was a summer night
And I was gazing at the sky
When I saw the star
twinkling in the night

I was all alone is what I thought
I was wrong, the star told me so
It showed me the right way to live
Never expect to get something but give

The star too was alone - Yes I saw
It never told me about that though

But the star did tell the secret of its happiness
- love everyone

There are people who have everyone
And there are people without anyone

The twinkling star really makes me feel glad
Though my fate at time make me go mad

But I have to live - happily or sad
Our life has two colors - white and black

The Star I saw last night told me that

Written when I was in class 12th :)


I feel so happy when he is around
He makes me feel as though am the most charming doll he has ever found

I was small when he was found
He got married to my elder sister and love was profound

I did not call him "Jiju" but "Bhaiya"
The immense love and affection of a Brother usne diya :)

He is so caring, loving, affectionate and adorable
He is the only person of his type
Whenever I need him, he is always by my side

I no more long for a brother as I have him now
For me, he is the best person all around

PS: written in class 9th :) for my brother in law :)