Language Milestones

Our younger daughter is a major lover of languages. This 2 and 1/2 year old kiddo can recognize upper case, lower case letters in the english language, knows Tamil alphabets and is rapidly learning Sanskrit and Hindi script (the Devanagari). She can recognize the vowels in Hindi/Sanskrit and also can say A – Anaar (equivalent of A for Apple in the English language. She says those too).  Every day she studiously learns all the alphabets without fail. It’s just surprising to me how much she cares about the shapes of the alphabets. 🙂 If I had had half the interest in language as the Fierce-Young-One, I would have been the modern Shakespeare by now! 🙂 I love my sweet little kiddo! <3 God bless you, my baby. <3

Cycling fun

Last couple of weeks have been real fun. I bought a bicycle (it’s called bike here in the U.S.). A somewhat expensive one called Specialized Ariel Sport costing me 750 USD and I haven’t even got accessories like a lock or lights. The cycles here are top notch machines that have beautiful gears that can take you smoothly across all kinds of terrains. Mine is a hybrid bike that I can use for cycling on the road and also across dirt and gravel paths as well as over moutain. I am super happy with the bike. 

I have so much fun and excitement that my kids (aged 10 and 2) are now totally into cycling. My elder one wants an adult size bike as she has grown quite tall. My younger one pretty much acts like a Olympic cyclist, always riding in her cycle in the backyard or the school’s big parking lot. Hubby is also inspired and he is soon going to get his own cycle. 

My long term goal is to ride my cycle for doing basic errands like getting groceries, picking up kids from school and also use it for training and fitness. I am sure that the bicycle is probably infinitely more useful in a place like India. I just am not sure if I want to breathe the polluted metro air. Rural living in India is kinda intriguing to me. Imagine a nice big piece of land for farming with a house in the village doing a lot of good to the people and the environment and living a much simpler lifestyle. I am very interested. 

Coming back to the U.S., here I am also doing Zumba dance. It’s a fitness dance program that has got lots of exotic moves. It makes me feel at least 20 years younger. I giggle and have a big smiling face and it’s like a nice partying style of dance.

I am just overall psyched about life. Yoga is also going on. I am training to be a Yoga instructor. I aspire to always live my life with full of positivity, love, compassion and mindfulness. There is nothing better than that to be your best self. 

What is your quest?

So, the question just came to me today. What is the purpose of life? How do you say if a life is a successful life? What is that parameter that decides this? Is the purpose of life furthering your own joy? Is the purpose of life just chilling in the most luxurious of places? Is it just to be around your own family, work hard for them and raise children as good human beings? What is that success that we are all hoping for?

At this point of time (especially after a busy day), I feel that this question must be answered individually by each and every person. A standard one size fit all idea will not work for all.

I used to have my own definition of how a happy life would be. I thought when people were poor, they were sad. I thought when people did not have their families around, they felt lonely. I thought when people had no one at their wedding, they felt miserable. But well, those were my thoughts and I might have felt these if I was in any of these situations. I just projected these thoughts on the world and assumed it is true for all. Until I saw the reality. There are exceptions and exceptional people all around.

Now A little background about myself: Our wedding was grand. We had beautiful loving people all around us who wished us the best. Our love was (and is) recognized by all of them. A beautiful moment to cherish. Ours was not like a super luxurious most expensive wedding but it was nice as per our own taste. It was religious, it was romantic, it was filled with so many people who loved us. Now, I came across many weddings in my family and close friends who had really grand weddings. I feel happy that they were happy but never do I ever think if I could have had grand royal weddings like them.My husband is just like me in this. He cares not about outside grandeur. But to some people around me, it matters. The grander the wedding, the more wonderful and successful the people were, or so people thought. 🙂

My mind opened when I met people who got married at a courthouse by themselves and just two other witnesses, had a pizza for dinner and just were in love and truly enjoyed the company of each other. Is that wedding any less than mine? Of course not. I am smiling at this thought.

Now, the matter of success takes on an interesting turn. I thought having a big house with garden is the measure of a person’s success in their 20s. For many years when I was growing up, I remember vividly having dreams of being in houses that were really big, almost castle-like . I do have a much much larger house than my parents. I do have garden with trees, fruits, herbs and flowers. Indeed it is a beautiful life.

But then my mind opened. I see people who build their tiny houses (tinier than my living room) and living happily in deserts and forests, with not a care in their hearts but with lot of love and hope. Aren’t they successful? Of course, to me, they surely are.

Now, what is success to me? To live meaningfully and inspire others to live a life that is truly theirs. Let your heart decide what is your success. I know it is a vague answer but I know success is neither a life of luxury and convenience, nor a life of meditative visions. Success is being balanced in the here and now, and creating the space of possibility to live harmoniously with oneself and with all the species.

It is 12:30 AM, midnight right now. I wrote this post with a smile and joy that has opened my mind even further.