Dear R2

When you are older and at some point thinking why the hell do I have R as my sister? Why couldnt it be someone else? Thats when I want you to read this post.

I think you are an extremely lucky girl. To have R as your akka. She does so much for you, girl.

She dances non stop for half an hour singing loudly so that you lie down smiling at her without crying and ma can eat her food!

She sings lullabies for you so that you sleep and ma’s throat doesnt pain!

She changes your cloth diapers when you pee

She applies your cream on your legs and hands every night gently and slowly

She never makes a face when you do potty! I tell her to go from the room incase it irritates her but she says ‘arey Amma everyone does potty na..so what?’ She has even offered to clean the potty clothes! (An offer I have been refusing:))

She scolds me when I get bugged at you and keeps telling me ‘Amma give her milk, she wants milk!’ Even as you start crying

She shows you off to all her friends and says you are the cutest one around!

She told me ‘Amma its okay if you dont come down to play Holi this time..you just take care of my sister’

There are a lot of things she foregoes just so that I can give you milk and take care of you!

Yes, everyday she will also complain about you being a pain and all that, but the way you smile and jump when she is around is so so amazing that she forgets all the anger. You have a special smile for her. No matter what your mood or how much you are crying or drinking milk, as soon as you hear Akka’s voice, your face breaks into a smile and then a wide grin.

‘See see Amma she is looking at me and smiling’ she tells me so happily and proudly!

You are her Paapa, paapi, kutty, kanamma, kannukutty, darling, baby and dearest sister!

You are very lucky, R2. I just hope this love and bonding is there between the both of you forever and ever!

Slightly teary eyed and counting my blessings

Amma

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These Moments

RD has gone to Sabarimalai. I get to sleep in the night between my girls with on hand on each of them.

Its 1 AM. I finish R2’s hour long feed. I undertake the difficult operation of transfering the brat from lap to bed. It needs the precision and accuracy of a spinning machine which churns 1245 threads a second. One wrong movement and its back to feeding. And I manage the transfer three times at night, night after night. *gives smug look and does not reveal the misses*

Then I realise I need to use the bathroom. I slowly cross R, get off the bed and open the bathroom door softly. I come out, switch off the light. As my eyes adjust to the dim darkness…

.I see that R’s left hand is on R2’s chest. R2’s left fingers are curled around R’s right thumb and there is a hint of smile on both their faces.

I feel a lump in my throat.

I think, let them sleep like this.

Three seconds later the elder brat is in the process of putting her leg on the 2.5 month old!

Nah! I think. Sentiments can wait, eh? Sometimes a mom needs to be practical!

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Nine!

Dear RD,

Nine has a nice ring to it na. Square of three. Nine lives of a cat. Etc etc.

Jeez man! We did nine years of marriage today and no mean feat considering our temperaments eh?

As usual I didnt give you anything while the usual generous you, got me me a kindle as my previous one broke.

Between us we have managed to have two girls and a house and all that jazz. But more importantly we have managed to live along together. I still have thoughts, at times, of leaving you and going because you are sooooo irritating..but guess those are momentary flashes of madness.

Since its our anniversary let me NOT remind you of stuff like keep your bag inside and not on the sofa or that dont throw your wet towel here and there or do the work told to you in a reasonable time and not after 56 hours, or being on that phone of yours all the time, yaada yaada.

Instead..

Thank you for hearing to my rants whether work related or personal

Thank you for going almost every weekend to Dmart and getting the stuff I keep forgetting

Thank you for remembering to pay the bills and book the gas and all that

Thank you for all the special food treats you get for me. Those make me the happiest :)

Thank you for giving it back to folks who sunao about you having TWO girls :)

Most importantly thank you for giving me two girls who make my life complete.

While on the girls, by the time we get to a double digit of togetherness, wake up at night when the brat 2 does potty instead of me screaming your name loudly enough to wake up the dead eh? And oh oh, learn to comb the brat 1’s hair also. Ok? Ok.

From this year onwards I promise to go on holidays with you :)

Love

Your wife.

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Letter to My Daughters – Looks and All that Jazz

Dear R and R2,

When Amma was a teenager, Amma was very insecure about her self. Her pimples, her fatness, her looks, her lack of ability to perhaps not be good in everything as compared to her cousins and so much more. Now that I am much older, I find what my parents had told me is so true. In the long run, nothing matters.

Pimples turn to marks, fatness continues despites diets and crash diets and you just get comfortable in your skin.

Kids, remember that at the end of the day what matters is how much confidence you have in yourself.

I am not saying grooming is not important. But all am saying is that looks really dont define you. What matters at the end of the day is how good a human being you are.

Everyone has the same set of eyes, ears, nose n mouth. Its how you carry yourself that makes the difference. Of course, its easy for me to say all this at the ripe age of 33, but here are a few things I learnt over the years.

1. No matter what you wear, if you are not comfortable in it, you are never going to look good in it

2. Have confidence in yourself. Thats the best beauty secret

3. Maintain a beauty regime of at least washing your face twice a day. Dont be lazy like Amma!

4. I have noticed folks who wear kajal look pretty. Both you girls have lovely eyes. So get that kajal on :)

5. Dress in colours you love no matter what people say about skin tone and all that. Dont be stuck to blacks, greys and blues like Amma!

6. I would love to say dont use make up at all. But that would be wrong. Use it judiciously and sparingly. Remember subtle works better than garish!

7. Never get too influenced by the way others dress. Remember what suits them may not suit you!  Also try out all kind of clothes and accessories. Of course nothing to beat the comfort of a tee shirt n cotton pants but dont be like Amma. DRESS UP when the occasion demands it or you feel low in life!

8. Be prepared to get compared with each other since you are of the same gender. Your skin colour (the comparison has already started!), the lack of a dimple or the twinkle in the eye. Please dont mind these comparisons and be proud of your sibling.

9. Despite the six year age gap, I hope you reach a phase in life where you can exchange clothes. Thats like one of the best things of having a sibling of the same gender :)

10. Remember you cant change the way you look, but be confident of yourself and that makes a world of difference.

You must be wondering why Amma is writing so much about looks. Guess Amma just wants to pass on all her (un)learnings to you girls :)

One of the laziest dressers in the world
Amma

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Risms!

RD, R and I are at the dinner table together which is really a rarity after R2’s birth!

RD says something to R and laughs at her.
She looks at him exasperatedly and says ‘Appa, why laugh karing? I laugh karing at you then chalega or what?’

Guess language khichidi still happening!

——

At the same dinner table, I pass some smartass comment about the subji being sad because of lack of masalas.

The brat says,’Thats because you are pregnant!’

I stare at her and say…’I am NOT pregnant’

Without batting an eyelid,she gives me a reality check. ‘Well, you LOOK pregnant!’

Time to start losing weight?!!!

—–

The long weekend saw the father daughter duo go to Ahm to my bro’s place. With the train arriving a bit late and R having afternoon school, she didnt get much rest. I pick her up in the evening and she looks tired.

Amma she says with half closed eyes, ‘ I slept in the bus’

Oh, tired kya kanamma, I ask her.

No Amma, I just zonked off, replies my brat..

I am still hanging my mouth open with her choice of words!!!

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The Fan Girl

She keeps staring at it with so much concentration. If she uses this concentration on looking at an egg, she will create an omelet out of it automatically.

She reserves her best smiles for it. Always.

She searches for it wherever she goes and her eyes up in delight whenever she sees it.

She wills it to start and stop by staring at it intently.

She even stop her fake crying for 3.578 seconds just to stare at it if it starts moving!

She is even okay being left alone in the room for 2.794 minutes if it moves slowly.

My second brat’s first love is ‘The Ceiling Fan!’

Thank you Mr. Philip Diehl!

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Letter to my Daughters – Education

Dear R and R2,

One of most common taglines on T shirts I see college children wearing is “I was born intelligent, education ruined me!”

I must admit I quite like that tagline. But that doesnt mean that I believe in it 100 percent. Actually the definition of education is pretty vague, eh?

Most of us associate it to the formal schooling. Well I guess it is that. The rest can be bunched as ‘life experiences’ eh?

Well, when you girls turn teens and the pressure of education starts to show its ugly face to you…here is what I want you to remember

1. Everyone doesnt have to be a first ranker. You can be average or even below average in studies. In the long run in life, your rank or marks barely matter

2. Everyone cant be an engineer or doctor or office goer. So go on to train to be a zoo keeper, geologist or caterer.

3. Train to be something in life. It gives your life a purpose and in dire circumstances, food on the table.

4. A lot of folks will tell you to learn by applying logic and understanding concepts and not learning by rote. But honestly, girls, I even learnt mathematics by rote. I still havent understood the concept of differentiation and integration. A lot of the stuff we study at school can be learnt by rote and then forgotten. The basics, yes please get those concepts correct. Of course, if you wish to do advanced studies then get ALL the concepts cleared eh?

5. Never join a particular stream of studies because your friends are doing so. Amma did so and I must admit, it wasnt a great choice *gives sheepish grin*

6. Along with education/schooling, try and pursue a hobby. Like dance or music or a sport or well anything. Eventually in life that will give you a lot of happiness. And if you can use that to get food on the table. Wah! You are plain lucky then :)

7. Never ever compare your grades with anyone or even with each other. Or discuss a test paper after you have written it. Even if you are sure everything is right. Saachmein, its really not worth it!

8.  Take part in extra curicular activities in school and college even if you are bad at it. Trust me you will miss all that when you grow older :)

9. Enjoy your school and college. Like a typical old woman let me tell you ‘those days will never come again’

Learn. Enjoy. Train. Study enough to ensure you can get a job to put food on your plate. Get your basics right so that no one can cheat you.

Love from a still trying to learn in life

Amma

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