I offer my obeisance to you Sri Sri Om Swamiji🙏🕉🌺
Thank you for everything. Need that inner strength, peace and fearlessness, more than that I was born with. Keep Blessing me🙏 Today, I feel I have spoken to you, in the true sense. This platform you offered , surely has a BIGGER PURPOSE. 🙏🏻
A little stopover...
In continuation of my previous posts on my Soul journey , which I managed to pen down within a week, actually makes me cut short the details , as dark conversations of equally dark souls , tends to suck us of our good energy. There are end number of incidents but I shall narrate just a couple of major ones, which were life threatening, yet full of Divine intervention. I have had almost 2-3 near death experiences, (though my encounters with dark souls, in reality were as good as experiencing death. Pun intended ) it seemed I was transported in a different world, and was sent back , with a revival, to get over, with some unfinished business I was meant to finally complete .
The past few posts did overwhelm me a bit, and I thought I would not be writing for atleast a month now. The whole day was not the way as I planned. There was heaviness in the chest, the reason could also be that I am not too happy being in Canada , and each day comes as a reminder to move back to India . All I am praying is for strength and good health and I am near to where Om Swamiji stays. It’s “The Truth!” and I am sure and pray he would read this post. I know Sri Hari is watching on me.
I could never use the word unfortunate, even while writing, as it’s a trend in English language to lay emphasis on the same, to any bad or not so bad occurrences in life, and usage of unfortunate word, eventually weigh us or the given situations even the more . I always feel life is never unfortunate it’s we beings who make it unfortunate. Agree , the Time tests are without intimation, incidents will crush us, but there would always be that fortunate feel within, that would make us get up and rise with a “ never say die Spirit”!
Living by the day…
It’s a well known fact, that when you stub your paw or toe, the nerves in the skin of your toe will send a message to your brain through sensory neurons, instantly . The nerve impulses are signals carried along nerve fibers. These signals convey, to the spinal cord and brain, information about the body and the outside world.
The idea of this little description is, imagine how many times in our life, we permit others to stub us or we unwisely walk and get stubbed. Further imagine, what we do to our Soul all through our lives! and we then expect these unchanged, fixed souls, with their negative traits, to change for us .
I can only begin with myself on the same...
My journey was not the same, after my second marriage. Feels like a big joke , seemed like life just loved testing my grit and will power. More like , with my every cup of favourite tea, I dipped a tragic cookie and later sat down to treat myself. Not accepted by the family, ill treated, called names, rebuked by all, not allowed to worship Hindu deities as they were Sikhs and I from a Hindu Punjabi backdrop, so no lighting Diya or reading Hindu holy books or revering religious figures. The list was endless.
Not that it effected me too much, because being an atheist saint myself, my inner referee used to wonder, why people love to wake up just digging holes for others, even while they are themselves struggling in the quicksand pond already. I guess unhealed souls don’t tire , when it comes to hurling and venting crazily. That’s food for their soul. ( Now isn’t that a lesson for wise sweet souls to gather more strength and fight out the odds !) Whenever I was accused , and yelled at, I would just wear that blank look on my face, and in my hearts of hearts I used to pity them wasting so much energy, for who is to tell them , that I never learnt to confront , did I! Oh how I thanked my dear parents for making me this way, for it did save lot of my energy for the good things of life. Trust me even a bit of yelling , can reap havoc to your intestines, your vocal cords go for a toss. Even somebody sneezing in the house, was deemed as as curse that was hurled from my side, was their belief. The innocent me could never fathom , why others considered me so powerful. Icing on the cake was the best pacifying dialogue I would get from my man , who slyly, after every rebuke would pat my back and say ,” I am with you!”
Comes the time, when I was expecting my first child, and now the challenges get channelised . In spite of all pressures , one fine day I quietly got up at 4 am in the morning , lit a Diya , and started reading the Durga Saptshati under its light, so that no one gets bothered. ( it was sheer Divine intervention I felt that day) I had never read holy books before. This book I found in the suitcase of my parents , when they met with the accident , on their way back from Vaishnodevi in 1983. A big time atheist like me, was very subtly put on the path by Mother Divine . It used to take me almost 2 hours to read it, as there was not enough light, and I had to bend my head near to the Diya ( candle light) to read it. During my whole pregnancy I read Durga Saptshati and the Gita. Undoubtedly, the good teachings of Parents do show up magically to guide, and yes, nobody could stop me from reading it. You realise that , when you empower your inner world, with Divine intent , then you fear nothing.
There were times I wanted to have different taste of food, but believe me I was deprived of almost everything. Just the staple dal, rice or vegetable, which would not agree with my system , as I used to throw up at times. But I had to have it all through my pregnancy. Sometimes I used to cover my face at night under the rough old quilt, and cry, as I craved for milk, or some fruit, which I had not consumed for days, leave aside thinking of anything lavish. But believe me , when you are taught to be content as a child, provided the best , all these feelings just pass away.
You can imagine when I read Sri. Om Swamiji’s memoir about two years ago “ If truth be told”, which I would love to share, and I breathe that scene everyday.
Excerpts from his book …
If truth be told, I had thought I was special. What had I been reduced to? Here I was, sitting on the floor in a queue, having consumed my food, eagerly awaiting my second mango. I may have fancied myself as a monk but, in reality I was a beggar. Unlike ascetics, a beggar only takes and gives nothing in return, not even a blessing. I had nothing to offer my hosts in return. I began crying quietly and a couple of tears fell into my meal. When a mango was held out to me, I raised my hands to receive it without looking up. Images of beggars flashed before me: worn out, ragged, dirty,smelly, unruly, drugged, creepy, strange, mad beggars. Today, I was one of them. The eagerness with which I’d waited for my food, the possessiveness I felt towards it while eating, the craving I experienced for the mango—how was my need any different from theirs? I understood why beggars savoured food they found, even if it wasn’t tasty. All of a sudden, I knew what being one of them was like, and what having no choice actually meant. 🍃🕉
I was speechless when I read this, it’s as if my womb cried that day. Nothing ever can be a more realized moment than this! My heart had already visualized sending truck loads of mangoes to Sri Bhadrika. I still cry when I think of him saying… When a mango was held out to me, I raised my hands to receive it without looking up🙏
Life surely has the ability to wipe and jitter your personality, but the truth of your core can never be diminished , with any calamity, whatsoever. Trust me, countless times I have felt like a beggar, was treated like a beggar and lived much of my life as a beggar. You are reduced to ashes many a times in life. I was literally called a beggar, by my own brother and even my in laws family, they even tagged me as a curse.
The unexpected , make believe journey continues…
I felt content and happy with the little support I got from my husband. I loved and trusted him to the core, for he stood for me at a point when I truly needed his presence. I was always ready to walk that extra mile for him. I gave more than 100% in my relationship.
Time flew after a year, my son Karan was born , it was a caesarean baby, I went through lot of pain , it’s a time when a woman , needs her man’s attention and presence, but the family did not permit that. He would only come to the hospital for few mins and then leave and I was left with the nurse or sometimes his mother, who would make sure that we both are not able to speak or meet. It seemed like a very planned and controlled situation. I felt someone had abandoned me forever. Was I not wanted in this house?
Though this man never used to listen to his mother when it came to other matters, I wondered why he could not put his foot down when it came to meeting me. I had no choice or voice , but to fan away all my deep thinking doubts in the head.
Trust me, putting up , seemed like my second nature , and today when I look back , I wonder at myself being so so adjusting. But that’s how I am. Sounds funny:) but it’s true. I think, Simplicity does not need any kind of vague emotional accessory. It just “IS”.
So finally, I thought happy days are here , since my son is born , we started a medicine bottle manufacturing plant (factory ) , by selling my little gold stuff and managed to take loan from the U.P. Government . In business matters , finances I was never allowed to speak. The control was in the hands of the man , his brother and mom . I functioned as a mere outsider, and my heart used to weep at times with the biased behaviour . I could not even buy a single outfit for my child till he was three months, because, I did not have the money, and plus the in laws had their rules that only used old clothes of my sister in law’s kid for him.
Business picked up well, we took a small one bedroom flat on rent , as there was no space in my laws house. In spite of having the money on him, the man did not even buy a single piece of furniture or for that matter even cooking gas.So we slept on the floor, had a trunk , just in case the kid wants to sit on a height, so treated like a little couch. I had to light a pump stove, which reminded me of the narrative, given by my domestic helpers in my parents home , as to how they cooked food in their place. It made me realise how poverty looks like. I used to pray to God, to give me some money, so that I can feed something good to my child .
Back in the kitchen , like true pro, I learnt to light the stove, ( I was delighted like a child) but the worst bit is the tea would smell of its fumes many times, tears would roll down , esp when after so much of effort , your craving for that good cup of tea would eventually go in the drain. I used to get flustered with my inefficiency, of not able to calculate as to, it’s only when the flame turns blue , you then need to put the pan of tea on it to prepare. Holy cow!
How long does joy last…
I am narrating everything with jest , to keep my mood light and of the ones, reading too. It’s a gone by time, I felt it was an exile period for me, and maybe I had come on this earth to clear lot of my own residues and of my dear ancestors as well. Gradually , almost after five months there was a bed in the house and a cooking gas. It’s as if I had hit on a big treasure! No more waking up, to lighting , pumping and harsh sound of the stove. Oh! it was so lot easy to light the gas. On a serious note, at times I felt so bad for myself, because even though I would maintain a calm demeanour, it hit hard on me that I seriously have become a pauper . It’s like you are made to speak face to face with grief each day . Though my inner voice , always used to assure me, that these days would not remain the same.
Strangely, there was a sudden change in my husband’s behaviour. Esp. now, that we shifted on rent, and having a baby, he felt that it added on him as a big responsibility . It was sob evident with his gestures. Over petty things he started getting annoyed, breaking things, and now physically and verbally assaulting me. This was so uncalled for, I could not figure out what to do, where to go with my child? His family members would further come and provoke him , they probably were waiting for this and now he started deriving pleasure in rebuking me in front of everyone. At times I would be healing myself for days at a go, hiding the bruises and bumps on my face, to avoid sympathy of the world out there, though many of my neighbours knew what I was facing. There were times when my child was taken away by force and kept away , to instil further mental torture. I knew, that the Bhagwad Gita stories shall all apply on them sooner or laters, isn’t it! ( me and my inner child , just kept observing) .
There is a good trend which is always religiously followed in India , or probably the world over, the first one is , one has to attend a wedding and the other is, any dear one’s funeral. And it seriously used to make me think, that if I die, I know all these so called dear ones , who would sit next to my dead body, with folded hands , in front of the guests , for the sake of it , and pretend , with the most depressive looks on their face, to show how important I was to their family, and how much they loved me. But on a serious note would they even genuinely feel or cry for me?
Though their heart would know, how they made me cry out blood everyday, till the time I lived with them. Strange pretentious rituals, made so real! Does love require some kind of graduation to be understood?
If you truly love a person, celebrate them when they are alive, not when they are no more🍃 all kind of rituals after that , to cooking their favourite food, making an offering in the name of the departed soul, who really knows , in real life was he/she even provided any respect too.
There were moments when the man turned extremely polite , would give a sob story , as how everyone forces him to go against me , and would ask for forgiveness, I seriously did not understand his unpredictable nature. But the patent dialogue of pacifying me with a pat, “ I am with you”, ever continued.
Another couple of years, as the saying goes, poor things have a poor scope of changing, its just that maybe now, my system had got used to all the torture and rebukes. It’s hard for a person who loves unconditionally, to snap out of an abusive relationship, because he/ she is in denial, for its hard to believe in the first place, that the one you love can ever harm you, so brutally. And that is exactly what I was facing. Amidst all these yo-yo moments, my daughter was born, which was a joyful time in my life. Both my kids were very content kids, sadly I could not give them the best toys, the best clothes , but I made sure and prayed and worked hard that they go to the best school. Which they did. I know they were deprived of cold water, or milk shake cravings for we did not have a refrigerator and television at home for good 5 years . I tried my best using an earthen pot, for cold water and stir the milk hard to create a fainted frothy shake for them. And they too like their mother loved every bit of what was given on the platter, as Grace. Sigh!
The biggest learning of my journey:
This was a wake up call, by the Divine, for me to start taking care of my health. After all the traumas, the slogging, bringing up both my kids, single handedly , my health started to suffer . I was 29 years of age then .
The man was hardly visible at home, for his only place was work and then spending time with his family. Each day I was thrusted few rupees in my hands to get some vegetables and fruit ( a mere ten rupees everyday) . Many times the school fees of the kids were not paid for months, till reminders were given , to withdraw them if not paid on time. Not that there was no money on him, he just derived immense pleasure, in creating such scenes that would torment me and maybe beg from someone. For many times he hinted me to take my brothers help. Probably I somehow had sensed with passing time, that I was a mere commodity, in this family and his life.
One day, while working in the kitchen , I fell short of breath, and I came and sat down on the chair in my room. Strangely, I could not stand up , so I took support of the wall, and managed to get up , but there was this excruciating pain on both the sides of my lower abdomen. I still managed to cook, and all this while my son , who was 7 years old at that time, kept asking me, to rest. I lay down , a bit shivery , and soon was down with high fever. But it worried me more now, as to who would do the cooking , or even send the kids to school, if I fell sick? I could not afford to rest.
Towards evening , my husband came , we went to the doctor, took medication , and things felt a bit okay. The pain subsided a bit but the fever persisted. I kept going, with my daily household work , and taking care of the kids. This went in for five months, the pains would get severe at night, there were times where I had to drag myself on the floor to get water, if I slept on one side, I was unable to toss on the other side, the fever would be less in the morning but more in the evenings, with tremendous shivering. Amidst all this, my husband’s lost his younger brother, in a bike accident. All hell broke loose, as I was dumped and thrusted upon the biggest blame, that he died because of me. Imagine my plight, when I needed treatment, ailing for months, they tried their level best to torture me further which worsened my condition.
I still remember that helpless day, when I was setting some clothes in my cupboard, all stressed, suddenly I had a chest pain and could not breathe. I sat down on the edge of the bed, and asked my little son to catch hold of me. I said, “ Sunny, I can’t breathe, something is happening to me”, he started crying, saying, “ Mumma, you just wait I will get doctor Uncle , and you will be fine”.
There was an eye surgeon just on the opposite side of the main road , where we were staying. Both the families kids used to study in the same school and hence they were friendly with us. But, before my son could go get the doctor, I collapsed on the bed and fainted. I don’t remember when I opened my eyes , it was almost evening, so roughly for good two , three hours I was asleep . The doctor had injected a pain reliever , a mild sedative that could put me to sleep . The first thing I see is my little son by my side , holding my hand, crying and smiling at the same time, saying “ Mumma you are fine now”. Then I noticed the neighbourhood doctor , who smiled and asked, “ hope you are feeling better? but please don’t get up , just rest enough”, turning towards my husband ( they managed to call him on his landline) and said, “ please admit her in the hospital, it’s serious! .
The next thing I know is, towards late evening, in spite of shortness of breath I was packing my stuff and leaving for Delhi , to be admitted to Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. Apart from my husband , my little son accompanied me, skipping his school , just to be by my side. We dropped our little daughter at my in laws place , strangely none in the family bothered, to even ask, how I was feeling .
The biggest turning point , pure Divine intervention..
Before reaching the hospital , I fainted again and I was admitted in the emergency. I cried , thinking of my Mom and Pappaji, and so wanted to leave the world. Everything had tired me. All tests were done, everything was clear from the scans as to what the problem was. Soon the orthopaedic Doctor enters, the hospital room with couple of junior doctors, and reports. Looking at my smiling face, he patted me, and politely said, “ you are such a brave woman , I wonder how you have survived, this trauma of pain for so many months!” He then looked at my husband and said, “ had you delayed a day more, she would have had a paralytic attack , I wonder how she has managed to come from Haridwar to Delhi, by road, for she is not even supposed to move, her condition is very serious”. He further added, “ She is suffering from Koch spine, it was considered to be a very rare disease of the bone , in those days ( tuberculosis of the spine) her spine is damaged. It seems as if something hit her back.”
I knew very clearly , that whenever this man abused me, he would hit me at my back many times, and today the result of the injury had turned so severe. We pretended not recollecting anything . Apart from the spinal problem , my lungs were filled with fluid , which was the reason I could not breathe. The treatment started . It was a painful process of go through the fluid extraction out of the lungs . I cried my heart out. I was treated at the hospital for almost 10 days
Before leaving, I was provided a saddle like heavy belt to be worn at all times, was guided to take strict bed rest, no movement for good 3 months and the treatment would run for almost year and half.
I came home, my mother in law , visited my place, to drop my little daughter and before leaving, looking at her son , she said, “ I pity you, that you had to spend so much money on her”. I really could not believe my ears, can any mother be so rude?
Such a big family, and no one stood for me. With that heavy belt I was unable to move, but when I tried taking it out I would get a severe back pain. Looking at my little daughter and son, cuddling both of them, I just cried, speaking to Maa Durga in my heart. I spoke to her ,” Maa , if this is your Will, so shall it be, I am not resting, nor am I feeble, let me leave the world serving my kids happily , rather than taking favours from the ones, who never were there”. I knew I was risking my life, but the mind and heart when in sync can never be stopped . I took the belt away, and vowed to take charge of my life for the sake of my kids. I wanted to raise them with all the strength, that Divine Mother had Blessed me with. And with Maa Ambe”s Grace I recovered and raised them to the best of my ability.
I wasn’t shocked...
Years rolled by, both my kids went for higher studies abroad. I made sure they have a life , away from their father , unlike me who was ever tormented . Though he became more fearless now to abuse . With more money, power, he was never available at home for months, and finally in 2009 he shifted abroad , excusing himself for some big business project. He would come over once in a year for few days, pretending to be busy most of the times. He ventured out with wrong set of people abroad, making money the wrong way, lied through his teeth at every step, that he has big companies abroad, fishing people with his soft sob stories, ( he was a pro in lying since the beginning, and it took me years to understand this side of his character ) to slyly involve some sort of their heavy investments as partnership in his business. And all that I had invested, in my initial tough years, with him in a beautiful house and some land in Rishikesh and Kolkata over the period of time , for the wellbeing of my children’s future went into dumps. Without my knowledge, he sold all the properties in India , mortgaged all my jewellery , ( moaning he had losses in business) and eloped abroad for good. Imagine a torturous life for almost 22 years, it was a battle.
Solace and peace..
Karan , my son , a self made person is a Doctor by profession in London worked immensely hard and truly made it big. He stood tall, like a pillar of strength and support to me, taking care of me past 9 years now. He’s happily married, with a loving and supportive life partner, she too is a Doctor by Profession , equally dotes on me, very caring and loving and is best thing , that could happen for my family ,and the new member is my sweet, two year old adorable little grand daughter . My dear daughter Kritika is married and well settled, in Canada, is an architect engineer by profession. Grateful to God for being so kind and Blessing the family. Looking at the kids , life seems to just smile.
The self work ever on…
It’s been a worthy task penning words, to express my feelings here, and my life actually amazes me too. We talk about rebirth, but trust me there is rebirthing , everyday, not just after dark moments, but even in the happiest moments.
I am Blessed to have 24 hours of each day in my hands , to do what my heart pleases. My Saadhna , my creative work, looking after my pets and spreading joy as much as possible or being of some help to others is my Soul purpose. After all life is to be lived well and graciously. It’s been a worthy journey , no regrets… as the saying goes.. “ Whatever happens , happens for good”.
Sharing my life journey, with the world of wonderful souls here has been a privilege. It’s not that I have taken something off my chest, as one would presume, for I never ever carried a chest ( of unkind thoughts or deeds against anyone)with me, in the first place . Did I ? It’s all about getting wiser , keeping it lighter on the well being, going with the flow and letting go when needed.
Something to ponder …Is life dark ? or is it the human spreading darkness? or do we stop choosing light?
‘Colouring no excuses, trusting the cozy inner sweet voice…
Grant your Soul the freedom because we all have a choice…
Blessed is the holy child within, simple, spirited and alive…
Precious me, this baby journey is the biggest gift of life”🙏
We are sum total of love, Grace and Light , these cherished gifts are not meant to be exchanged with anybody. We only need to keep spreading the same.
At all times , in Sri. Om Swamiji’s words.. breathe, smile, mediate, let go…
Thank you all, for dropping by and acknowledging a mere scribbler in His Grace. Divine Sri Hari Bless you all abundantly 🙏😊🕉
Until next time, keep smiling , and love yourself🍃
pic art: Alex Grey