Through my blurry eyes

maxresdefaultI get asked a lot as to why don’t I shift to using contact lenses. Why don’t I get surgery done to remove them? To clarify, I use power glasses. I have average power in that objects appear blurred to me if I take them off. I have had them since I was ten.Well the answer became crystal clear to me ironically as I saw something through my blurry eyes (now the ideal term here would be blurry vision but blurry eyes sound so much more poetic!)

Now what was this something? It is something only someone with glasses would relate to. I sat by the sea side watching the sun reflect off of the water as any normal person would.

And then I took off my glasses.

I saw a riot of colours! I saw gems ricocheting off of each other like falling stars, I saw sparkly lights like one would see during fireworks one lights during festivities, I saw patterns formed in gold and amber that dazzled my mind and sight and left me in awe, I saw what most people would not see, ironically because I don’t see as perfectly as others see.

I smiled. I wouldn’t trade the beauty of that moment for anything in the world.

I do the same on many occasions  for different reasons like when I go for my walks in the evenings I do it to just switch off from the world- it can get overwhelming at times.I listen to my breathing and I actually feel the breeze on my face. When I get up on stage for performances as a dancer  also I do take them off but  not just for aesthetic reasons- it’s a form of complete freedom  in the presence of an entire crowd. I believe I do best when my vulnerability as a performer is insulated by that non-awareness of all those eyes looking at me.

Sometimes perfection is so overrated don’t you think?

Feeling mischievous,

Rosepens

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Day 3 of the 3 day quote challenge

Well up until now I thought the quote challenge meant you had to write an original quote! What an amateur! Lols! In my defense, it’s my first quote challenge . But it’s all been cleared now and I just had to share one of my favourite quotes of all time!

Brilliant is’t it?!! Simply Brilliant!

So I hereby conclude my first ever 3 day quote challenge!

Once again a big thank you to Akhila for nominating me!

 

 

Beloved Strangers

Originally posted with Good night already.com. Thought it was a lovely article.

Goodnight Already

Yesterday, because the sun was out, I took Stump, my three-year-old, to a park we don’t often visit. The playground area was overflowing with kids and parents, and so Stump and I were quick to move on. We moved to the sunny field for a while and then Stump pointed to the tennis courts. No one was actually playing tennis. There was just a sunny court, a few puddles, and a little girl, maybe five years old, whose mother was helping her learn to ride a bike. The moment I opened the tennis court gate, the little girl jumped off her bike and ran to us. For a moment I was confused. Was there someone behind us that she knew? Did she mistake my kid for someone else? But I didn’t have too much time to wonder, because she was already standing beside me, tickling the inside of Stump’s…

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Gravitational Waves and Hearing

So we just witnessed what is probably one of the greatest discoveries of Mankind.

The ability to detect and hence prove the existence of Gravitational waves.What are gravitational waves

And being a total layman in the field of science, what I understand from it is that we have gained an additional ‘sensory ability’ to ‘see’ the universe, or rather to ‘hear’ the universe.

Up until now we were only able to perceive the universe i.e, ‘see’ using the electromagnetic spectrum(infrared rays, UV light so on..) but now for the first time in the history if humanity – we can perceive the universe using a different medium : Gravitational waves.

Gave me goosebumps just writing that statement down.

To put it into perspective ,99% of the universe was not available to us for study because we could only ‘see’ (using telescopes and algorithms)and not study it using any other medium.

Until now Einstein’s theory was all we had to postulate the existence of this phenomenon. And today, we have detected it.LIGO Gravitational Chirp: Heard

It’s like a child who has ‘heard’ for the first time.

I am an SLP/Audiologist so you mention ‘hearing’ and we lot have to jump in.

Baby hears for the first time

This is what we have done. We, humankind.This is what our brilliant scientists at LIGO have proven to us and have given us.

Standing ovation people! Standing ovation! To our scientists first and foremost!

And then to us! Humans.

We are a damn cool species!

Awe-struck!

Rosepens

 

Manglish : It’s real, get over it.

So I am a Malayali. This means that my mother tongue is Malayalam, a language native to the state of Kerala, a tiny bitter gourd shaped state in South India.

Now Kerala’s claim to fame in international waters will be more like,” Oh Man!! Mallus?? They are everywhere!!”

The 70’s and 80’s saw large scale migration of people from my community to different parts of the world beginning with the ‘Gelf’ or the Middle East and then the focus of the exodus shifted from Gulf to the Western Hemisphere and this continues to date.

Why is this relevant to this post? Please bear with me.

This lead to a whole generation of Malayalis being brought up outside their motherland and hence being required to be fluent in more languages than Malayalam , mostly being English.But it didn’t end there,

As a result knowledge in English lead to some sort of social elevation because of various factors(snobbery) and then this saw a generalization into the homeland. In the land which prides itself on having one of the most complex scripts in the world ,Kerala, it became a matter of pride that the children did not know their mother tongue. This also came along with the option of not opting for Malayalam as a language of study in schools within Kerala and

Voila!

Children brought up in Kerala today claim to ‘not know to read or write’ their mother tongue- Malayalam.

Now all this brought about the rising phenomenon of- Manglish.

Malayalam + English.

I address this primarily to the people who call themselves ‘purists’ who are mostly elder aunties and uncles who do nothing but sit around critisize everything new and young-ish.

The purists heavily criticize the rise of this phenomenon , but the hard fact is a significant set of youngsters today are simply much more comfortable using this sort of combination that purely their mother tongue.

I am not aware if this phenomenon is prevalent elsewhere. I can only speak for what I have observed.

I am a speaker of Manglish.It simply means I use both languages simultaneously when I speak( to people who know Malayalam ofcourse). It has it’s ups and downs. I constantly hear debates and arguments by the purists who blatantly brand the ‘manglish’ as just one of the ways the ‘New Gen’ has degraded themselves compared to the ‘olden times’. Fellow Manglish speakers will identify being in various levels of discomfort with friends, neighbours, relatives and so on about the modifications one has to make while being in different sets of company to your language so as to be accepted in those different sets.

Also interesting to note that in situations like Arranged Marriage, the present day youngsters, a good percent of them atleast, give out the criteria (among many others) that their prospective partner be ‘fluent in english’.This in turn is again critisized by the parents saying, ‘How can you be so superficial in your criteria?!’ (And yet marrying a complete stranger does not count as superficial) But that’s a whole another write up.

Now in comes the accent,

Malayalam the language comes with it’s own share of dialects and accent variations depending on which place you come from but mix that with English & depending on which place you come from or you were brought up there is a whole new spectrum of ‘Manglishness’ that begs exploration!

Now why am I writing this?

It’s to tell these purists to eff off.

The world is changing and it’s our duty to change with it.

No one wants to disrespect anyone and neither is anyone superior to the other just because they have had the advantage of being in circumstances where they could learn their mother tongue fluently.

If they are so bothered they should have taken the effort starting in their own homes with their own children to preserve the ‘sanctity’ of their language in a way that would empower the next generation to survive in this world.

Instead of sitting around and criticizing the “New Gen” and their lack of knowledge of Malayalam over your evening tea and the serials and the nonsense drama going on in the Kerala Political scene in the name of Politics ; get off your ass and do something about it!

At least have the decency to admit that the so called decline of the language is a by product of decisions made by a generation of purists such as yourselves when a whole lot of you decided that your children should not give importance to your mother tongue.

The world is changing, your language is acquiring a new form. Get over it.

Silence that echoes

They say, ‘Hell hath no fury like a woman scorned’. ‘

Well I say

‘Hell hath no suffering greater than not being able to Voice your thoughts.

I mean literally. Not being able to speak or sign or communicate.

I am a Speech Language Pathologist/Therapist and I work at an excellent center that works with Children who fall in the Autism Spectrum. Now these children face a whole lot of problems but relevant to this write up we need to understand that children with autism, a lot of them and not all of them, are highly intelligent children but are unable to communicate in conventional terms i.e., are unable to speak. Now this is regarded by many experts in my field to be the result of an associated disorder called Apraxia.

In simple terms it means that though they want to talk and they have all these things they want to tell you but their mouths simply won’t co-operate.

Like you have a hand but it goes down when you want to lift it up. It hits when you want to hug.

Can you imagine every part of you doing that? Especially your mouth, because you talk with it.

Living like that, every day.

The way I see it, if you don’t know what you are missing out on it never really bothers you but that’s not the case with a lot of these children who are diagnosed with Apraxia.

They know exactly where they are failing.

They can’t tell you how excited they are, they can’t tell you they would love to talk to you , they can’t tell you they love being with you, they can’t tell you they are hungry, they can’t tell you if they learnt something new, they can’t tell you how they hate this new teacher, they can’t tell their mother that they love her, they can’t tell their siblings to bugger off if they bother them, they can’t do so many things they would love to do just like any other neurotypical child.

In turn sometimes they use alternative methods which are hugely misunderstood by almost everyone around them and they are labeled ‘dumb’.

And they realize it. Everyday.

They have their ways of dealing with it but in the long run the disappointments pile up.

They still turn up, everyday.

They are just children.

Makes me ask myself, ‘What excuse do I have for not doing my best, everyday’.

I see their sparkling eyes and the glint of mischief in their eyes when they are up to no good.I see the sheer thrill they feel when they realise they said something the right way. I see that explosion of pure mirth from them that words fail in description.

And for those few seconds, we forget that they are different.

That they lead the most misunderstood lives that can possibly be lead. Everyday.

I give a huge salute to the parents , teachers and all those people who are out there doing their best to make sure these children achieve the best of their potential . And I applaud their efforts every step of the way.

In our field we are trained to be empathetic. And strictly told not to be sympathetic, and after a few years ,you kind of get the hang of it. Kind of. Never quite fully. We are just human after all.

When we go on our daily lives taking so much for granted I only wish that no one looses this one ability- To say what they want to.

Because no matter what goes wrong or right, as human beings we are hard wired to share. It’s what connects us and forms our humanity. It’s what shapes our identity as individuals in this world.It is one ability we wouldn’t trade for anything else.

With a heavy heart,

Rosepens

Quarter Life : Chaos and back

So after writing a very Zen post about how together I was feeling about sailing through the storms of quarter life Quarter life and dealing with it I plunged into the storm again the very next day.But the happy part was the relatively quick rising out . It got me thinking that the turbulence never quite leaves you. But the more you grow from the experiences the easier it is to figure it out and make your peace with it.

There will always be someone getting somewhere better than you, faster than you and more glamorously than you.Get used to it.

And today in this day and age there are a million ways you definitely will get to know about these successful ventures of allllllllllllllll the people in your world, whether you even know their last names or not. Of course am talking about the access to all these lives through all the umpteen platforms of social media that we can be on.

If it’s real ,be happy for them, if not feel sorry for their vain attempts, but get back to your life and cherish each moment of how far you have come from where you have been and the people who have supported you uptill now and if you haven’t traveled all that far well then get thinking how you can move further in the best way possible.

Also equally important I think is the quality of the relationships around you at this point, both friends and family.Be pruning and nurturing them. Contribute.  Do your bit. Be authentic.Learn how to navigate them and find your balance between how much to give and how much to say no. I am having a tough time with this currently but that’s a whole another post.

It doesn’t matter how slow you go as long as you do not stop- Confucius (I have no way of verifying the author than the internet.)

So if you are a fellow traveler in the quarter life journey and can relate to this: Peace out, you are exactly where you are supposed to be. Chart your journey ahead, stay strong and stay happy 🙂

Cheerio,

Love

Rosepens

 

Quarter Life : Was a Crisis, Is a Journey that am Glad happened

I am you.

A typical Gen Y mid twenties Indian who was/is going through the whole gamut: Career Pressure, Marriage Pressure, Facebook pressure(Looking at ever other life doing better than mine, or so i thought) and well you get the idea.

It began I guess almost one and half years ago when I decided to move back home with my parents ( In the Indian Culture, it is a good thing) and begin my so called process of domestication 😛 after almost a decade of being away from home for my higher studies. The metamorphosis

Soon afterwards as most of us are aware of the phenomenon, I was struck by the reality of being in the actual world.

From  larger issues like clashes with my parents, to clashes within myself as to who I was and what am I doing here, to whether I was wrong in choosing the direction of my career, to listening to everything that was wrong about me, especially my lacking of home management skills (courtesy of my gender and relatives) as I was educated away from home , all the way down to the daily  habits such suddenly having to be on a schedule in all maters and very soon ending up with a good job and having to handle the resposibilities that came with working  Quarter life: It’s a huge question mark! it was a whole different ball game!

And very soon also entered the Great Indian Arranged Marriage Circus Arranged Marriage: 10 part Series which is still going on.For those unfamiliar with arranged marriage Arranged Marriage Explained

It was filled with a lot of ups and downs and in so many ways tested me and pushed me, shaking me to the core about the foundations of all my beliefs and let me tell you it’s not over.

From straddling multiple cultural identities ( the one that I was born into and the one that I was raised in and the one I was educated in) to understanding that I can successfully blend all my identities and project my unique self into whichever situation I am in . It has been a long journey. Tiring to say the least but at the best it has been an extraordinary journey of  Self Realizations.

And now in hind sight ( which is of course 20/20) I can say it’s been good. It’s been what I need to undergo to reach where I am today and that is good. I don’t mean physically like in terms of work or stuff I have or anything of the sort. Because success in those terms is not only relative but also slow , in  my case at least. But in terms of who I am as a person , Quarter life Crisis has taken me far and for that I am grateful.

Am so glad I didn’t fall into the pressure of getting married when all this storm was going on within me.I was among the lucky ones. But hey, You realise that every journey is unique and married or not, as long as you know who you are and, most importantly, can gently help the world understand it and accommodate it along with doing your fair share in adapting to the world , it’s ok . Whew! Writing that sentence was daunting, well so is living it right?

That’s like saying, you just need to jump off the Eiffel tower with out a parachute while shooting an arrow to a target on the ground and doing salsa mid air..That’s all 😛

At the end of the day all you can do is try to have the courage to be yourself, and never forget who you are and where you come from because this is most important .

It is important to never forget where you come from because only then can you truly understand how best to chart out how to reach where you want to reach. And it’s important to be yourself or else you will never know your destination.

Be authentic.

Because otherwise the world will see you as Green when you are actually Orange and what happens is that the world(your green world) presents choices to you that are meant for Green and not Orange. But never be ashamed to be Orange or weirded out that you are Orange . Simply have the patience and courage to show your Green world that you are Orange.Was that a weird comparison? It was the simplest way I could say it.

Do Not for a minute think that your thoughts or dreams and aspirations are less. Because the moment you think that you are giving a signal out to the Universe that you deserve less. And then we cannot blame the Universe if we find ourselves in situations that we deem less/different  than our authentic selves.

So my journey through quarter life continues and I cant wait to see what this journey is going to show me from here on.

Grateful

Rosepens