On Bringing All of Yourself

Do you have a friend that you can be truly yourself with?
Do you have at least one of those friends?

Don’t be in a hurry to respond.

Don’t kid yourself or me by saying you bring your whole self to every person you meet.
That ain’t true.

Take your time.
Think about it.

Your true self.
Your whole self.
In all your true beauty and all your goriness.
Can you bring that self to this friend?

Who is that friend?
You don’t have to tell me.
But, I sure hope you do have at least one of those friends!

I have one of those.
I’ll tell you this much.

It is truly liberating to be with a friend where your can bring yourself.
To bring your true self.
To bring your whole self.
In all your true beauty and all your goriness.

No hiding.
No shields.
No masks.

Just yourself.
Only yourself
And, all of yourself.

On Looking for and Finding Warmth

Today, when I saw Rainbow find a warm sunlit spot, I was reminded of her.

Many years ago, I went to a week long meditation camp during Fall. We had to do many exercises and discussions as part of the camp. Some of those exercises and discussions were done in groups and some were done in pairs.

One of my discussion partners had just gone through a divorce and was going through a very rough time. Since the meditation room was cold, she had a shawl on her at all times during the camp. I had my socks and coat on.

During one of our paired up discussions, she and I found each other and sat down on the floor facing each other. We held hands…as we were directed to by the coach.

We were asked to discuss what we were grateful for. As usual, I rattled on about the zillion things I was thankful for…..mostly the big things in life. When it was her turn, she said something like this – “Ambal, notice how you and I found this warm spot in the room to sit down and face each other. Notice how the sun is streaming through the window and hitting us as this spot and warming us. I am grateful for that warmth.” My heart melted as she said that. I didn’t nudge her, as I normally would have done, to continue on and talk to me about other things she was grateful for. I just sat there looking at her eyes. She looked into mine. As the moments passed, I could see and feel all her pain through her eyes. She probably understood that I empathized without knowing anything at all about her life or the painful divorce. Tears started rolling down her eyes. I acknowledged her tears with my own. She truly enjoyed and was grateful for that sunlit warmth (and the warmth that my heart exuded towards her) in that cold room that each of us had found ourselves in. We each had arrived there to learn techniques to cope with our life.

Since I had told the meditation group about my love for books, reading, my constant quest and unquenchable thirst for learning what doesn’t met the eye, the next day, she brought me Hermann Karl Hesse’s Siddhartha and urged me to read it.

I don’t know where she is now or what she is doing. I sure hope she went past that rough phase successfully and is happy.

Every time I see somebody find a warm spot in a room, I think of her and send her all my love. I hope she has continued to received that virtual love in the last 2 decades.

On Making Up

I have a question for you.

Let us assume X = over your lifetime, the number of times you have made up with somebody (family or friend)
Let us assume Y = over your lifetime, the number of times somebody (family, or friend) made up with you

Is X > Y?
Is X = Y?
Is X < Y?

!!! Note!!! For many, many of my naughty buddies – Re-read the question carefully…question is NOT about making OUT……is it about making UP.

If you have ever shook hands, buried the hatchet, waved the white flag, declare truce, made peace, mended fences instead of calling it quits..give yourself a pat on the back.

No….seriosuly. I mean it. Stop reading. Pick up your hand. Move it your back. And, pat yourself.

It is never easy to make up and move on instead of giving up and moving on. Nice job.

On Encouragement

In Tamil there is a word called “sevagi”.
It means a woman who serves.
That is how I see myself when it comes to the family.

A sevagi.
A person who serves.

I am a friend, a coach, a nurse, a counselor and all the job roles encompassed that every mom is.
I see myself as a sevagi….that is my primary role.

ll of us could do with a lil pat on the back and encouraging words.
Don’t we?

So, I am very grateful for the fun notes the boys leave around the house for me.
I was elated to see this page that was propped open and left on my laptop.

On Winning with Compromise

The stuff one has to do to raise kids is overwhelming.
Of all those things, having to compromise is the BIGGEST.
That skill doesn’t come easy.
It is kind of like growing a muscle.
It requires very hard work.
It requires lots of practice.
It requires going through pain.

Compromise. That is the BIGGEST. For any relationship.

If I had known I have to compromise so much to raise kids, I am not even sure I would have had kids in the first place.

That said, I realize that when I compromise, I ultimately win….well, JOINTLY.

Not bad, eh?