Ambal’s Work Life

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On Hurricane Ari Seeking Comfort

n Tamil there is a phrase that goes like this “Thai madi soorgam”. What it means is this – “resting on your mom’s lap is heaven”. Do you have fond memories of you resting on your mom’s lap or shoulders? It truly is a heavenly feeling…. is it not?

Unfortunately, like everything else in life, those moments doesn’t last forever.

When Ari is out and about, it is as if, a powerful hurricane hit you. He is so fast and so furious. He will be dancing, running, jumping and creating such a ruckus. And, then, when he lies down to rest at the end of the day….it is the most peaceful scene ever.

Last few weeks have been crazy with work and travel.. And, Hurricane Ari possibly missed being held close to mom at the end of every day.

So, I was very glad to wind down on Friday evening in the same room with Hurricane Ari. He rested on my lap and found comfort. As he rested and started his mild snoring, I tried not to move. I just sat there for an hour or so, patting him gently and continued my reading. Finally, when Kumar Nagarajan helped pick Hurricane Ari up, I limped over with my cramped legs and crashed on the bed to get some much needed rest.


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On Playfulness and (Not) Counting Pennies

Do you play?
Do you play around and be kiddish?Do you get on the swing in the park?
Do you chase somebody around the house?
Do you make funny noises with kids?Well….while you are thinking about those questions…here is yesterday’s story.

We were in the ortho office yesterday evening. I took Ari in at 4pm for his appointment. Kumar and Adi showed up promptly at 4.30 for Adi’s appointment. The orthodontist was running late.

Kumar said he was thirsty.
I handed him a water bottle that I had picked up in the refrigerator in the front desk.
He took one sip out of it.
Adi started cracking some jokes.
Kumar spit-taked and turned around and started splashing the water from the bottle on Adi.
They started laughing their head off like only 2 crazies can do.

I started yelling – “STOP you idiots. This is not home. The Dr is going to walk in any minute now.”
They turned around and looked at me seriously.
They shook their head like I usually do when I am saying in my head “Hopeless. These crazies.”
They looked at each other and said “Ok…let us stop. This is not good. We are not home.”
Then, still with their serious look on, they turned towards me and proceeded to start splashing me with water.
I got up and waved my hands around in a deadly way.
That is when the orthodontist walked in.
And, you guessed it right.
He joined the boys and started laughing his head off too.

I swear…if I had a penny for every time these 2 rascals threw things at each other..

If I had a penny for every time my boys made me happy with their silly jokes, playful antics, big hugs, unsolvable riddles, non step pestering (remember, we are mere mortal…we all feel good about being “needed”) ..oh, I swear, I could be a very rich gal.

Well, on second thought, who cares about being a very rich gal anyways.

I would much rather count their jokes, antics, hugs, riddles…rather than count pennies. I could take all their pestering and some more…and pester them back non-stop.

Coming back to my questions – Do you play and be kiddish? Do you?

Give yourself permission to be a kid.
It is ok.
Go ahead.
Do it.
Even when there is a stern figure waving their hands at you in a deadly way.

Life is too short to listen to stern figures.


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On Semblance of (In)-Sanity

One has been down with the flu the last 7 days.
One has been arguing with me like I have never been argued with.
One has been goofing away and completely ignoring every statement I make.

There is nothing as madenning as living with 3 boys. They drive me completely nuts.

It is a complete mystery to me how I can still retain a semblance of (in)-sanity and can laugh through it all.

BTW, the boys will convince y’all that I am the one that drives them nuts. Don’t believe them.

That is all I have to say for today.

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On Feeling Sadness and Finding Healing

The boys were out of the house for a couple of hours yesterday morning. I should have just napped and caught up on much needed rest. Instead,as always, foolishly, I tried to get through my never ending list of todos.

I filled the house with music. No upbeat peppy songs. Somehow, something lead me to play some sitar and flute music. As the music streamed through my laptop, I went about chores and todo list.

We all store up pain and sadness in our hearts…we lock them away carefully. And, it is quite amazing how the right music evokes all that sadness back. Today’s sitar and flute music, possibly touched the innermost sadness and pain in my heart.
I went through a range of emotions.

Have you noticed how the early morning is shrouded in darkness? Then the sunlight starts clearing up that darkness.
In the beginning it is just a streak of light and a lot of darkness.
Then that streak grows, just a little at a time, until the day dawns…and, it is as if the darkness never even existed in the first place.

That is what the sitar and flute music did to me today. They flew into my heart, just a little at a time, until the sadness was all lifted…..and, it is as if, the pain never even existed in the first place.

Have you experienced this feeling?

I realized that despite every pain that I have endured, I have to feel grateful for my life.

I am always in awe of the musicians that have the power to make music that reaches the innermost corners of our heart.

Here is to all the pain and sadness that you and I endure.
And, here is to all the healing that has happened and will happen.

Read this aloud to yourself…slowly and as if you really mean it.
“In our darkness, there is no darkness
With you Oh Lord, the deepest night is clear as the day.”

May peace prevail in the innermost corners of your heart and mine.

Om Shanti.

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On Being Happy

For more than a decade we have been sending the boys to Tamil school on weekends.
As part of that, there is weekly homework and monthly tests.
Getting the boys to finish homework and preparing for tests is a chore. 
Somebody has got to do it. Although there is an easier way for both you and your children. Why not look into something like, where you can get assistance for various subjects, ranging from Progtamming, Biology, Economics and more. This is good as this will help you complete tasks, therefore saving both you and children time. Or if it more essays or a thesis that you have to do then why not take a look at collegepaperworld that can help you save time in that subject.
Typically, it used to be one of the grand parent’s weekend work.

Since, we have been living the last several years without grandparents support, that extra work of helping boys with Tamil has fallen to Kumar or me.
Kumar thinks I do a lousy job of it and teach kids all the Tamil slang and bad words.
So, he has prohibited me from teaching kids Tamil.
Anyways Kumar has been down with the flu. So, helping Ari with this month’s Tamil test has been added to my long list of to-dos for this week.

I start doing the chore….just as all we do chores….dragging my feet. Then, on page 2, I hit upon a very special dictation word – Magizchi (happiness).

I stopped going over the dictation words, and showed Ari some cool videos of Thalaivar saying Magizchi with great style.

 We put some Thalaivar songs and started dancing like crazy.

Adi (aka the reasonable and responsible one) yelled at me and reminded me to quit having fun with Ari because we hadn’t gone through all the material for the monthly material. He said “He is going to fail the test and Appa is going to yell at Ari and you. Save yourselves. Focus.”

So, Ari and I had to stop goofing off. We had to continue to do prep work for the monthly test.

After a long week of work, kids, commute, carpool, curve balls, traffic, meetings, deadlines and utter craziness…after all that….seeing that one single word on a dictation sheet…electrified and energized me.

It is very difficult to explain to somebody what that one single word uttered by Thalaivar means to a die hard fan like me.
Well, unless you are a fan yourself. Then, you will just get it.

Wherever you are….whatever you are doing…be happy.



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