Wednesday, September 24, 2014

How we express?

Why do some people write? Why some people run marathons? Why do we dance? What is the pleasure of getting that perfect shot for a photographer? What is the motivation for some people to follow adventure sports? Why do we paint? What are hobbies? What is that one thing that makes us happy when we are doing something we like? Or to put in other words. Why do we like something more than the other things?

We get similar happiness when we are with friends. Just that one old joke makes us laugh for hours with the people we are close to. Why getting high with life/alcohol/love makes us feel close to the divine? Small things also gives a lot of high in life. Just watching a bright yellow flower early in the morning on the way, getting a clear road while driving to work, listening to that favorite old song on radio unexpectedly or just a phone call from an old friend.

There is no major significance of these things in life. They don't make you rich, you rarely earn from your hobbies(rather they are usually expensive). Pulling out time from your hectic daily schedule and doing these extra curricular things takes alot of drive and sacrifices. Then what is the reason, most of us wait to go back to this world of our interest. In fact, why are we so interested in this dreamy world of ours? Why different people have different interests in life? And why some people leave their interests back and become so inert and passive?

According to me, our hobbies are our way of expression. Expression is a very basic characteristic of human nature. When we are small, we cry, howl, giggle, scream, shout and express. A child who has just learnt to speak, cannot get enough of telling his stories to his mom. And as we grow, from toddler to teenager, we express to our friends. We talk about everything with our friends and with play and talk we vent ourselves all the time. But as we become adults, we stop sharing ourselves with others. We become more wise and diplomatic with our expressions. The calculations of profit and loss, the weighted of repercussions and the good/bitter learning's of the world make us less and less expressive. The people who seem to be very talkative and friendly are mostly not expressive, they are more or less hiding behind the facade of a friendly face. So, everyone has a need to express as they grow.

When I started writing, I had not a slightest idea of why I want to write? And I wasn't sure, if I would be comfortable sharing my life with anyone else. But today, I know I feel very happy when I write. I feel like I am talking to a good ole friend, someone who knows me from ages. Someone who is not judgemental. He who might not give me solutions to my problems, but will give me his ear for sure. Similar things I experience when I dance. Dance elevates me from my intellect, my education, my social status, my fear of being judged. I am expressing myself in the form of body language. I am smiling without a reason because the reason is coming from within. My body is happy expressing it and my mind subconsciously signals to smile.

Even researches show, that people who are very introvert and shy, open up with dancing. This definitely proves my point that your hobbies are your form of expression. Some love to run and sweat and express themselves. Some paint their minds with paintings, however abstract and weird it might look. But paintings tell a lot about the painters emotions. Some find the expression in the adrenaline rush they get while playing any sport. Other hobbies, right from arts and crafts to travel. All would be one or the other form of expression.

Your friends and confidants might leave you or ditch you. But your hobbies are your secret to happiness. You might not be comfortable sharing the aggressive, flirty, cocky, generous, stingy, conservative, broadminded, sloppy side of you, to your friends. But you will definitely express it via your writings/paintings/dancing or any other hobby. However subconscious and unacceptable it might be, but those are your expressions. The conscious mind will be happy suppressing them, but your subconscious mind will always have them in you. So better to express than to keep it to yourself.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

My hunt for healthy food

After 2 years of delivering my second baby, I have suddenly realised that I have put on a lot of weight. I was giving myself a levy for quite sometime now stating that I am a mother and its ok to be overweight when you have delievered. But now suddenly, fitness seems to be in the air around me. All my friends, my colleagues and even strangers I meet, seems to be fitness freaks. And when love is in the air, you have a chance of skipping the cupid arrow( as there are two people involved in it). But with fitness, there is no saviour. You start feeling guilty of everything you eat and the mirror suddenly seems to be disliking your new found structure. And cherry on the cake would be if you see your old photographs and start craving for that wonderfully tonned body and glowing skin.
So when fitness is on your mind. You start thinking about every small thing which harms your body and increases your chances to get that flab. That 1 spoon sugar you take in your tea or the spoonful of ketchup you consume. All seems to be a cheat meal in your diet.  (Before this enlightening struck me, an extra sachet of ketchup was a must with every burger I ordered in MacD)
It was one week of enthusiasm and determination. Started with rigorous gyming and diet control. And eating oats for breakfast, veggies and rotis for lunch and dinner and minimal tea/coffee/dessert. And the epic being just a couple of chocolates for the whole week, which for a chocoholic (read me) is like leaving smoking for a smoker.I finally started withdrawl symptoms. Those chocolates seemed to be calling me towards them. My right brain started telling my left brain to stop all this nonsense and live life kingsize (literally :P). Introspections such as I am not a model, its ok to be healthy and slightly plump for a mother of two kids. OR others like, you have only one life, if you suppress your wishes (read cravings of desserts/chocos) whats the use? And ultimate ones like, I am just in my early 30s, why bother so much about fitness and food. Anyways I would need to refrain from it when I grow older. And many more which I cannot discuss here.
So finally I decided to not torture myself with such strict diet and hit the supermarket to find some good alternatives which will both be healthy and tasty. I had few parameters in mind with which I would filter my so called "HEALTHY SNACKS".
I entered the super market and 90 % of the things were processed food full with oil, sugar and transfat. The yummy tea cakes, the bhujiya, the chakli, the ketchup,the biscuits, the yougurt,,, all so wonderfully packaged and marketed. I never saw them with this perspective earlier. And I am sure, many of us still find it difficult to stop ourself from picking a few packets of chips and cakes and biscuits for munching here and there. But today I felt as if I was walking in a heap of junk food. Junk food which is soo part of our daily life.
I never thought twice before eating a packet of chips. It  is not only fried and not only made of starchy potato but also contains huge amount of salt (ajinomoto maximum times) which ideally you should consume only 2-3 tbs per day.
Ever wondered about that innocent looking, so called healthy tasty "TOMATO KETCHUP"? Let me tell you, there is noting healthy about that devil. Its the favorite among kids and causes obesity. It makes us obese and our kids are exposed to so much of preservatives in it at such a tender age.
Another monsters are the aireated drinks. Its mind boggling to know how much sugar goes in each glass of Sprite/Coke/Slice. And its heart breaking how we consume such forbidden drinks which affects our bones for long term. I am amused, how are they not banned after so many proven facts of having pesticides and other harmful ingredients in it!
The list can continue, the instant soups we get is full of preservatives and salt, the digestive biscuits we eat without any hesitation is high in fiber and also in carbs. The diet baked chips, the tea cakes, the low fat milk, the trans-fat free oil all are such fancy names to the same old processed food.
My kids love to come to shop with me for the very reason they can pick up the packet of chips or biscuits which they have seen in commercials inbetween their cartoons. And I don't know how to stop myself from picking atleast one if not many things which are screaming to be picked.
The statistics say, we are becoming more health conscious. But I wonder how these processed food companies are doing so well? Every day you will see a new product launched, a new low fat version of the devils.
Finally after my holy visit to the supermarket, I have finally decided not to fall prey to these well packaged monsters. I am dertermined of drinking freshly made soups, eating freshly cooked veggies and snacking on dry fruits and fruits rather than going for a quick fix. But then again, what on earth has remained pure these days? How do I skip the hormones injected in the milk I drink, and the pesticides I consume from veggies and fruits and the latest genetically modified hybrid varieties? Why on earth is it so difficult to eat healthy in our country? #FOODFORTHOUGHT

Monday, September 1, 2014

Khushi's dose of the day!! Feminist in making

As any other girl child, Khushi is more inclined to befriend girls and play with girls rather than boys. And I find it pretty normal, so I never force her to befriend anyone. On the contrary, her best friends are all boys. So I thought it has nothing to do with gender, she just mirrors other girls. But this conversation between us shows me a feminist streak in her at the age of 5.

Mummy : Khushi the sculpture you see next to Ganesh is of Gowri. She is Ganeshji's mother.
Khushi : Oh! That small one? The girl face?
Mummy : Yes
Khushi : So when do we celebrate Gowri's birthday?
Mummy : mmmmmm.. we dont celebrate Gowri's birthday
Khushi : WHY? We celebrate Ganeshji's birthday but not Gowriji's! We celebrate Krishna's birthday but not Radhaji's! That's not fair!

I was introspecting as to why are most of our festivals celebrated for male Gods and only a few for female Gods? Wish I asked this question to myself and had started celebrating GOWRI, as the people in south celebrate one day prior to Ganesh chaturthi. I think, subconsciously, we inculcate the seeds of patriarchy with our culture. Time to rise and awaken, time to consciously sow the seeds of equality if not Matriarchy.