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For World Down’s Syndrome Day

Dear Avani, It’s been more than a decade now, yet I clearly remember the day I met you and your mom at Sapling Nursery School in Pune. My family had just moved to India from the US, and it was Varun’s first taste of schooling in a country that was not yet his home. He…

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Alien – A Glimpse Into the Autistic Mind.

Just imagine yourself on an adventure of a lifetime. Your spaceship has landed on planet X. Eagerly, you step out of your ship excited to explore the place and immediately find yourself surrounded by immense beauty. Your eyes fall on your favorite fruit lusciously hanging in bunches from a tree but when you step close…

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Love Story

“Rejoice, O fortunate one. I have it in my power to grant three wishes! Go for it!”“No,” she said, “I mean thanks and all that, but it’s fine. I’m good,” Hazel replied. Sheila sat rapt in attention listening to author Neil Gaiman read his short story – October Tale. As the magical love story between…

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The Red Maple Tree

In my backyard  A  maple tree Blazes red, her allure unparalleled  She stands tall  When at her vibrant best She gently lets go Of her leaves, that once made her glow the ones she has nurtured And seen grow. She does it with grace.  One by one they abandon the embrace of her arm And twirl…

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The Little Red Cabin

This past week I made an escape from the new normal with a wonderful friend. We drove to a little red cabin nestled in the mountains around Asheville. Far away from the mundane, the routine and the to do lists that filled our daily lives, our only plan for the coming days was to live…

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A Daughter’s Love

“Again, Papa, again!” “Sumi, enough beta. I’ve already read the book to you thrice. It’s 10:30 – go to sleep.” “Last time, Papa, pleeeeease… just one more time. I promise.” Sumi’s big brown eyes pleaded with invincible intent as she stared directly into Prakash’s loving gaze. They lay in her bed for the nightly ritual…

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The Gift

This story was written to the word prompt – Awake. A big thanks to Did You Write Today for the nudge and opportunity to create and write a story each week.                  The Gift.  “Twenty years we’ve been married, Amit! Twenty years! And you are still clueless about what…

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The Leo-nine Life.

I curl up in my favorite spot, a low ledge by the bay window in the living room of bungalow no. 57, a two storied house in a suburb of Mumbai. Beams of the mid day sun stream in; they pattern my luscious fur into streaks of sparkling white and gold. Mom sits by me,…

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Poornam- Complete

This post is written to the word prompt “Complete” in a weekly contest organized by DYWT (Did You Write Today?) FB group. Though I do not know much Sanskrit, when I read the prompt, the shloka “Poornamadah Poornamidah” was all I could think of. I could hear the words reverbrating in my core. Poornam stands…

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Nature Red In Tooth And Claw

Mesmerized, my son and I watch the television screen. Somewhere in the vast plains of the Savannah, a leopard lies in ambush to capture his prey. In the dimming light of the late evening, his spotted coat blends in with the surroundings. Crouched low, he inches forward in stealth towards a herd of gazelles, who…

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The Nest

Charlotte, Today, May 10th, 2020, 6:30 am. The morning dawns, stormy and wet. It is yet another morning this spring when I wake up to the wail of gusty winds and the clamor of thunderous rain. Another morning when the paucity of sunshine reflects the gloom of the pandemic that hangs over our world. Another…

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Dungeons and Snipers

Imagine you are the lead character in a game of “Dungeons and Snipers.” A game where you must surpass many different levels as you roam the world to collect treasure and earn points. You begin with three lives on hand. On your exciting adventure, you scale the peaks of rugged mountains, dive deep into abysmal…

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THE JACKET

                                                The Jacket. On a blustery winter morning, I shuffle my booted feet and rub my gloved palms together as I wait at the light rail station in uptown Charlotte. The wisp of heat the friction generates does not appease my body, which yearns for warmth. Even under layers of warm apparel, I feel the…

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The Making of a Diva

                                                           The Making of a Diva. I gazed into the mirror, at my reflection, and let the vision from the eye that was open fall upon the kohl lined one that was shut. The blue grey shades of the eye shadow shimmered lightly on the canvas of my eyelid, bordered by the thick black line…

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Good Thing, Bad Thing, Who Knows?

  Published in Infinitithoughts – September 2018                      My family moved to Charlotte five years ago from Pune, India. It was a herculean move that drained every ounce of my energy. I left behind a treasure trove of love and connections. Family I dearly loved and friends old and new who filled my life with laughter. The…

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YOU & I.

  You & I… The rays of the morning sun light up the world around us. We are five years old and dressed in cotton frocks. Yours is white with red straps and a smocking across the span of its bodice.  Mine is yellow with black polka dots and frilly sleeves. We sit in a…

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F-U-N

    Imagine yourself at the venue of the National Spelling Bee in Washington, DC. You are in the audience seated at the edge of your chair, palms sweaty, brows furrowed and heart thumping. The air is rife with nervous excitement. It is the final round and your child is up on stage with a…

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Gratitude

To my dear family, friends and readers, This blog is four years old today. A journey that began on a whim on my 40th birthday with the urge to peek below the surface of those mid-life emotions and touch the fragile and tender core of my heart has brought  much richness into my life. Heartfelt …

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Raising a Son in Our Times

  A couple of years ago, we were invited to a series of presentations by my son’s class in middle school. The children in the class had been divided into smaller groups of five and each group had to come up with ideas to conduct a birthday party for an eight-year-old in a budget of…

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The Heart of a Mother

This post is dedicated to Sheila Tzerman, my beautiful friend and guide who passed away last week. She loved that I wrote about everyday stuff and encouraged me to keep writing, no matter what. Sheila was an animal and nature lover and wanted me to write about Leo, my puppy. Today would have been her…

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When Your Child Does Not Fit In

A few weeks ago I received an article from a dear friend, an article about young  kids who identify themselves as being agender, neither male nor female and their fight to gain acceptance. Being a mother myself, as I read the article I could not help but wonder all the emotions that transpired through the…

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The First Word

Compliments of the season dear readers. It’s the season to be jolly so here’s a light story inspired by a beautiful friend and her precocious precious little daughter. Wishing you all lots of laughter in your life with each passing moment…. To, The Editor, The Washington Post. Dear Editor, I am an almost four-year-old boy,…

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Picture Perfect

What I write today may stir up emotions and ruffle a few feathers when you read but I think there are a few questions we need to ask ourselves, now more than ever.   Picture Perfect A few years ago, after the horrendous carnage in Newtown, I actively gave up reading the newspaper and watching…

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When Diwali met Halloween

  When Diwali met Halloween – an Indo-American mother’s quest for meaning.   Many years ago… I was a young mother who walked a tightrope to find the cultural balance between my deep immigrant roots and my widespread American branches. My endeavor was to imbibe and portray just the right amount of Indian-ness to be…

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An Encounter with Mamta Singh

      One of my favorite things to do when I visit my home town is to go for a walk to the nearby ‘Baniya’ store- Glory Center. The walk is pure nostalgia bringing back memories of the joyful times my teenage buddies and I ceremoniously gathered together every evening and trudged to the store.…

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A Woman’s World

She scrolled through the congratulatory messages that poured in from all over world  on her Samsung 74 , as she lay in bed that night. Her victorious spirit soared as if on a tequila high. Years of labor had finally borne fruit today, International Women’s day 2024. Congress had finally passed the ‘Equal pay for…

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Mr. Fisherman and Mr. Brown

Mr. Fisherman, HELP! I am Mr. Brown, Lend me a hand, quick, else I will drown. I swim alone, in murky waters of hate, Waves of terror rise, they do not abate. Hurry Mr. Fisherman, The sun sets soon, And shadows of evil around the horizon loom. The terrain is treacherous, just look around, fins…

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The Young Ones

This is an insight into teenage anxiety and depression. I am no expert but do hope this article will throw some light on the illness that plagues many. This is a complex issue and what I have outlined is just a framework that I hope will get people to start difficult conversations and help children and families…

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The Gift

    Dedicated to my beautiful children Nidhi and Varun, my adorable nieces Aditi and Saatvi and my lovable nephews Adi, Giri and Shashi. Love you guys!   The Gift. I was overwhelmed. The holidays usually did that to me. There always came a time in the frenzied activity around the planning  for the perfect…

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Oasis

I dedicate this post to all my lovely friends in Charlotte. When we moved here four years ago, I was naive enough to think my heart was full with strong friendships… I did not need any more. You guys have woven your way into my heart. Truly grateful for your presence in my life. Happy…

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Election 2016

We are at the finish line of this historic race, my friends. With agonizing impatience I watch the gap narrow between the two front runners as they both gain momentum. It’s unreal I say yet ‘In Godspeed’ I wish for the one I hope will make a difference.  The sad truth is I root for…

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The Language of the Heart

Dedicated to a generation of moms whose babies know the letter ‘ i ‘ before they understand the alphabet.   Every heart speaks a language and the heart of every mother understands and speaks the language of every heart in the family. The needs of the heart- its language change in every stage in life…

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Dear Mr. Bachchan

Dear Mr.Bachchan, On behalf of all the daughters in India- Thank you for your beautiful and inspirational message. Though I do deeply feel, Sir, our ability to empower our daughters would be incomplete unless we address the other side of the issue our society faces. Are we doing enough to raise our sons so that…

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Trust

TRUST   Trust is a dwindling virtue these days, do you say my friends? At a time where competition and greed run rampant we do each live like tiny islands isolated, carrying the burdensome baggage of loneliness, feeling we have to do what we need to on our own. A boss is overwhelmed because the…

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The Bombay in Me

I dedicate this post to my dear friends and neighbors in LIC,  MIGS,  Parle college, C U Shah college of Pharmacy. Thank you for the many moments spent singing, dancing ,wining and dining. Cheers!! Bombay- a city with many faces. The glitz of Bollywood, the putrid smells of Dharavi, the undying faith of the devotees at…

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Legacy- A Tribute

I dedicate this post to my brother, Mukund and his wife Latha, my mother’s siblings -Dr. Mohan, Viji, Chandra and Naga and their families- my cohorts on the journey where we witnessed a beautiful legacy unfold. The past few years have been difficult for my family as we’ve watched my mother battle a series of…

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The Fire of Passion

  I sat on a wooden bench outside the tiny classroom in the music school, my solemn despair amplified by the sad tune my daughter and her teacher played on their violins. Ah! That was the beauty of the violin. The sounds that arose from the confluence its strings, the bow and a musician’s touch…

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And the Oscar goes to…

   This fairy tale post is dedicated to my dad whose unwavering affection and my son whose unwavering adulation give me the zeal to put in my best efforts in everything I do….                                         T’was the night of the Oscars                                   Stars on the ground                                   Radiant in celluloid splendor                                   Sashaying…

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The Martyr

                                              Of the multitude of roles that a woman plays in her lifetime, why is martyr the one she most often wears on her sleeve? This post is dedicated to my beautiful friends in Chicago who helped me keep my sanity during those crazy sleep deprived baby days. The Martyr Seema looked around the house and…

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PATAKHA GUDDI- A tale of mothers and daughters

I dedicate this post to my beautiful friend Sheila. Your strength inspires me, dear friend.   PATAKHA  GUDDI.   I stood outside my teenage daughter’s room, livid. “BANG” Maya slammed the door shut on my face. Even though at that moment the only sensation every cell in my body felt was rage, my usually nimble…

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Utopia

For the torment in the hearts of the refugees fleeing Syria who are trapped between a world destroyed and a future that is uncertain……….. The little boy lay still, fully clothed. His lifeless body limp, washed ashore. Murdered by a tide of baseless hatred, Of senseless terror. Radiant dreams his parents held crushed, Hope that flickered…

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The Facebook effect

I looked around the tiny quaint chapel. It seemed like the perfect venue for the music school’s spring recital. The high ceiling with a beautiful glass painting ,the gigantic columns that arched gracefully, the dim lights , the magnificent altar and the grand piano that stood on the platform in front of the altar added…

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Blizzard of change

She looked up from the computer screen to the window.  Outside, the sun shone brightly, magnifying each snowflake into a dazzling diamond as it fell and disappeared into a blanket of whiteness that extended far beyond her eyes could see. Silently, she thanked the blizzard for having brought life to a complete halt in her…

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I am a SAHM..

I have been a stay at home Mom (SAHM) for 16 years now and of late had begun to question myself as to whether my being around the house had benefitted my children.On a recent trip to the bookstore while driving back 2 happy kids I proceeded with great naivety to pose my dilema to…

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The Mask

As humans we experience an array of emotions. Love, fear, joy, sadness, gratitude, jealousy, contentment, guilt, anger, faith, pride….what a spectrum! It is but human to feel and the truth is not one person who has walked on face of this earth could ever deny experiencing this range of emotions in their lifetime. Yet there…

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Diwali

Diwali – the Festival of Lights. The light being symbolic of the divinity within each of us. The lighting of the lamp is ceremonious to igniting the light in our souls kindled by love,compassion and joy. This Diwali as we clean out our homes to await the arrival of the Goddess of wealth,let us also…

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Reflection

Nature has some beautiful, unspoken rules. One of them being that the traits needed to be happy, joyful and successful in life are not inherited, they are acquired. The color of your skin, the shape of your eyes or the length of your nose does not equal the happiness in your heart. If this were…

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Pledge of Allegiance

The morning assembly is an integral part of the school routine in India.To those of us who grew up there the sound of hundreds of voices chanting prayers, singing the national anthem and saying the pledge will forever be etched in our memory (who can forget the second line from the pledge “All Indians are…

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The Circle of Life

Over the years I have watched a beautiful relationship develop between my young son and his grandfather.They are in different stages of their life – one has attained so much wisdom after having experienced it all and the other who is naive and just beginning his journey. Yet they share so much in common. They…

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From a mother to a son- To be a man

As a child growing up in Mumbai,I was deeply influenced by the legend of Shivaji. His stories made their appearance in the history books time and time again and the fact that most landmarks in Mumbai were renamed after him only helped endorse his greatness in my mind. What a remarkable story his is- with…

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The MANTRA (Story of the Vanar Sena)

There is never a dull moment when you grow up in a bustling city like Mumbai and when you add to that a mix of a gregarious group of friends- life is indeed entertaining. Vanar Sena (the army of monkeys), as my group of friends were fondly or not so fondly referred to made growing up so memorable .We felt genuine affection…

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Lesson to myself.

Even though mankind is so diverse, the one common thread that binds us all is the fact that deep within we all want to find love and acceptance. It doesn’t matter how old we are or where we come from ,as long as we fit in we feel secure. For those who are different are…

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From a mother to a daughter

Each of our children is born with extraordinary strengths. As parents the best thing we can do for our children is to guide them towards finding out what makes them truly happy.More important for our daughters because as women we struggle with putting ourselves first before everyone else. We lose our identities trying to perfect…

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Religion

We live in tumultuous times. Most of us use Religion and God as anchors to steady us in turbulent waters. I remember sincerely chanting the”Hanuman Chalisa” every time I had a major exam ( which at that age was turbulence) and visiting the temple promptly when the results were due. Truly a shallow act. I…

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From the eyes of a child

Mommy!!! Daddy!!! It’s late in the night, Please stop screaming, Please don’t fight.   My  body is trembling, I am terrified so, I feel  like I am sinking, Into an abyss below.   All I want for you to do, Is hold me in your arms, Tell me a funny story, Or sing me a…

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Set her free

Raising kids is never easy. When my kids were little I thought my life would be simplify itself when they were old enough to feed ,bathe, clothe and entertain themselves. Little did I realize that when I did make these mundane decisions for them I also had much more influence over them. I fed them…

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