How do you celebrate your child’s birthday? 48

There are times when many of us want to do something for the society. There are many of us who put a smile on the face of underprivileged children in our own way. And we all feel content to see that smile even if it’s for a short while.

I also belong to that genre of people whose heart cry to see these children who sleep empty stomach many times, who wears torn clothes and no footwear; still surviving in all the harsh weather.  I do try to bring a smile to their face whenever I can. Sometimes by buying the balloons from them or sometimes feeding them their choice of food.

Once a random thought of celebrating my daughter’s birthday in an orphanage crossed my mind. I was happy to think the number of faces who will smile with us when we will celebrate her birthday.

Finally, the day came, we have ordered a big cake, all eateries were nicely packed, gifts to distribute were bought in advance and we left for the nearby orphanage to celebrate her birthday.

We were all happy. The mother in me was happy too as I thought I am inculcating good values in my daughter.

Soon we reached there. As we entered, I saw many faces lit up and they all welcomed us shyly with a smile.

When the cake was put on the table all their eyes were glued to the cake which was fancy enough to attract them. I saw the cheek-to-cheek smile on many faces as they sang the birthday song for my daughter.

Soon the food was distributed, toys were given to each of them by my daughter and they all looked happy. Even my happiness knew no bounds to see them all happy.

When it was time for us to leave, a tiny hand held my finger. I looked down and sat beside him as I could guess he wanted to say something.

The little boy whispered into my ears,” Didi, will you come with the same big cake and so many things to eat and a toy on my birthday too?” His question left me speechless. He again said,” But I don’t know when is my birthday. Can you please tell how to find it out?” Tears started rolling down my cheeks. I composed myself and gathered the courage to stand up. I left without saying anything to him because I didn’t know the answer.

All that happiness took a back seat and I wondered whether I did a right thing or not? I hope I have not harmed their emotions. I never thought what impact the birthday celebration will have on their mind. I hoped I have not made them feel more unfortunate. Anyways I wanted to rectify it. I went there the next week with two cakes this time and asked each one of them to cut it.

Though it still didn’t make me feel good but I learned one important lesson that day. It’s good to bring a smile to these children but it is more important to not make them feel that they are unfortunate. I still celebrate my daughter’s birthday there but I never say that it’s her birthday. I simply take a big cake and ask each one of them to cut it.  We all sing the birthday song for each other. This makes them feel happy and to see them happy I feel the same way.

So if you too are planning to celebrate your child’s birthday in an orphanage, its a humble request to you to do it the same way. This way we don’t leave any child wondering about his family, loved ones and his birthday.


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“I Fear a Relapse”, Says Deepika Padukone. 1357

The trailer of the most awaited Padmavati movie was released making us wait on a tiptoe for the movie to be released soon which is actually on December 1st, 2017 (See the trailer here). While on-screen Rani Padmini fights for her honor, the actress who plays the role, Deepika Padukone is fighting altogether a different battle in her real life.

While shooting for the Happy New Year movie, Deepika was fighting her inner battle of depression. Although she did not realize it then. Her mother who came to visit felt there was something wrong and requested Anna Chandy, a psychiatrist from Bengaluru to talk to her daughter. Though Deepika ignored it for a period of time, she finally recognized her problem and took steps to cure it. However, in a recent event, while talking about the Jauhar scene of Rani Padmini in the movie Padmavati, she revealed that she lives in a constant fear of a relapse of depression. She said “ I don’t think, I am completely over it. There is always a fear of relapse as that phase when it happened is the worst experience in my life”.

Since her opening up about her condition in public, there are numerous articles written about depression and there are plenty of suggestion available for someone who is looking for help. But, the truth is a lot many of the population who are suffering from depression do not know that they have it and they need help. Most of them try to think it is nothing but stress, fatigue and they are over-worked.

Like Deepika said in one of her interviews earlier while talking about her feelings during the time, being sad and being depressed are two different things. When someone is sad, they look sad, but when someone is depressed, most of the times they hide it. They try to behave normally while the feeling of emptiness keeps nagging at them. You do not have to be poor or have to lose something in life to be depressed. Sometimes the feeling of depression has no reason.

How to recognize the signs?

When someone is depressed, you may notice certain changes in them. Such as,

  • Less interested in daily activities
  • Loss of appetite and weight changes (can lose or gain)
  • being angry and irritable most of the times
  • less energised
  • self-loathing
  • reckless behaviors
  • Change in sleeping patterns

These are some of the changes we notice in a depressed person, not for few days but on a regular basis. If you spot these in someone or if you are facing it yourself, get help. There is no age or gender who are affected by depression.

Recognizing and understanding the symptoms of depression is the first step to finding a solution. Once you know, meet a good psychiatrist and get help. There is no shame in finding help to cure a mental illness. We meet our doctors for physical illness. In the same way, sometimes our mind also need that extra help too.

Do not, I repeat do not ever be afraid to ask for help!!! Because you might be surprised that there are so many good people around you who really care and want to help you.

Marriage – the funniest ironical institution in India 221

Many people would not be able to figure out the mistake in the following figure. Well, there is no grammatical mistake, there is no printing error or any other fault in it. If you still haven’t figured it out, I have an answer for you, I would like you to face the ironical reality of the modern world or the 21st century where the thoughts and ideologies of Paleolithic age still prevails.

Women have always been considered as a pillar of the society, we have given her various names, we worship her, pamper her and consider her to be the live giver; there is nothing wrong in it. However, it blows my mind to see such kind of ideas still prevail in the society. I personally feel that a woman gets a chance to change her life, the first time she is born, the second time her life changes when she gets married and the third time she changes her life when she gives birth to a new life. But, amidst all this ebb and flow of life cycle, why is there a question that she needs to answer every time. Why is there a need to prove that she can equally love her parent and in-laws? Well, if you feel that I am proclaiming something different, then you must have a look at the picture here.

I find arrange marriages to be the funniest institution in India. Irrespective of the fact that I am a party to it, I still believe that it has some funny traditions and beliefs flowing in it. I would like to highlight a few-

  • The first thing that we say in India is, “Shaadi hamesha barabari ke khaandaan mein honi chahiye (One should get married in a family who is equal in status with the other),” Well, if that is true, why this equivalence is only restricted to money, why no one questions on thoughts, beliefs, ideas, vision etc. Yes, money is important to run a family, but imagine a situation where you have a big house, a big car etc. but both husband and wife are never on the same page. Is that the mantra for a happy married life? At least I don’t feel so.
  • Another popular phrase which we commonly here during the marriage is that “Shaadi to parivaaro ka mail hai ( Marriage is not between two people, it is the bonding of two families,” if that is so, why a girl has to put her in-laws first and ignore her parents. If that’s not the truth, I would again request you to run through the picture above. Why can’t both the families co-exist. Although, things are changing, the ground reality is different.
  • One of the common things I have heard is, “ Ladki ko sasural ke hisab se adjust karna chahiye (girl must learn to compromise and live as per her in-laws and husband),” there is nothing wrong in it and I too believe in it, but what if we tweaked this scenario, like both the parties can make slight adjustments so that everyone is happy and the guy or the husband doesn’t have to take sides.

What I have written is not new or neither revolutionary, I have actually started to find our society to be hilarious. We are never in a phase to create an equal world, rather we always pester on the fact that one has to be above, I think this hierarchical ideology is still haunting us since the time of Britishers. I don’t know how much change will come in the times to come, but, even if one person transforms after reading this, I will feel content.