Our generation is so cool!

Sometimes all I have is sympathy for our parents’ generation.

Their parents saw the partition of the nation – leaving their country, their childhood, all that they called “theirs”, to come to another place just to survive.

In this need for survival, was the generation of our parents born.

Thus, the upbringing they got was of stress, not having enough time, and always lack of means.

Which is why our parents are the way they are.
They have been conditioned so.
They were never taught to love.
Perhaps because they were never loved.
And then one fine day, we pop up and expect them to be cool because that is what we are surrounded by – cool kids just like us.

Now that we know, we can still do what we want to do, while being respectful of who they are. It isn’t just for them, it is for the acknowledgement of how much they are trying to adapt, because they care for you:)

Dear Maa Papa

Dear Maa Papa,

I understand I sometimes come across as a weird human being. Someone who does not think like you, lives like you or even loves like you.

But you know what, nevertheless, I do love you.

Because that is what you both have taught me 🙂

Maa Papa, sometimes there are disagreements between us. And that sometimes turns to always.
You want me to be successful. But want that to happen under your eyes.
How will I ever learn to walk if you never allow me to get off your lap?
How will I ever learn to face the world if you keep telling me to run away from the world?
How will I ever create my own identity if according to you my identity could be best created at home while Papa may still go to the shop daily and do his Internet-based business and save thousands on rent and administration expenses?

Maybe you think my need for wings is too much. But you know what, it is just a basic necessity. Because when you attempt to chip off my wings, you don’t draw me closer to you . You rather push me further away.

When you both talk with each other, wondering what is the best way to deal with me, let me help you out:

  • Accept me for who I am.
  • I won’t betray your trust ever. Yes, I have been in two bad relationships, but as I reflect, I was just searching for love outside because I didn’t get acceptance inside.
  • I really do not need the comforts of home. I want to figure out life, and come back to you when I am in pain. Right now, whenever I am in pain, I go to deepest of silences and figure out things eventually. You may believe I am angry, but in reality, I am just coping up with your absence despite your presence.
  • Trust me, when you say that it’s okay if I don’t make much money – I do not want to live on your money. I want to pay my rent, all my bills and learn how life functions. If comfort was all that is, why don’t we bring in all sisters and brothers in law to live with us? Because they are “settled”? Is settling down mean having your name on a marriage certificate? How about thinking of bringing back an “already settled” daughter because she is not married?

Like you say, it is difficult to talk to me. That is the reason Maa Papa, I have stopped expressing myself altogether.

Maybe this makes you believe that I hate you. However, the reality is that I ache so much for your love and acceptance that I have drawn myself inwards. That’s it! How will I not love you? I do! I love you both so dearly that I do not want to bring any proofs to express it.

But as I know I am capable of taking care of myself physically, I do expect you to accept me that way. That would make me want to come home more often. Right now, even when I want to, I just don’t – because you would feel I am not brave. I am brave, however, I miss home even at home.

Hope to be home some day 🙂

PS: I love you to infinity, Maa Papa :)))

Parents and kids

When parents force their grown up kids to do something, kids feel pressured.

When kids finally take their plunge, they feel guilty.

And I want you to know – in either situations, do what is right. It never goes out of style. When you do that, you don’t need to feel guilty. Do your best. And then trust yourself.

Ladkiwaale aur ladkewaale

This week, my health insurance premium is due.

I had started receiving calls and emails from Policy Bazaar for long, to pay the premium. But I had decided to pay it just before the end date.

Yesterday they called up my father for the reminder, after understanding the fact that I never receive my calls. (His number was my secondary number.)

So in order for them to stop troubling him, I finally renewed the policy. Policy Bazaar website wasn’t able to facilitate the transaction, so I went directly to Max Bupa’s site and paid it.

However, today my father got a call again from Policy Bazaar, despite the fact that my documents from Max have already arrived.

I told my father that the premium had already been paid, he was receiving calls from the mediator while I had directly paid it to the insurance service provider. He seemed to quite not get it. To which I responded: “Think of it like ladkiwaale and ladkewaale having their conversations by themselves, and they decided to put the mediator aunty out of it.” Papa finally understood! 🙂

Simplicity has power, relatability and magic in it!

To those who have failed in CA exams…

19th January 2015.
The day I became a Chartered Accountant.
I still vividly remember the day.

We had just returned to Kota (my hometown) after an overnight train trip from Mumbai, after attending a family function there for three days. So the winter was a harsh reality from the pleasant zero winter of Mumbai to being back to Kota. Because of this train journey, I had taken a shower quite late, around 10-11 am.

The moment I came out, I saw a miss call from a fellow article at the firm I did my articleship from.

Oops, my heart started pounding.

As I called him back, he picked up the call and asked: “Kya hua?”

“Result aa gaya?” was my surprised response, to which he said yes.

My mom had gone to take shower and I was virtually alone at home. So I opened up the laptop, connected it to the slow BSNL router we had and checked the result.

452 out of 800, result: PASS. (*Top 100 scorers in India then)

Wow!

The day I will never forget!

Throughout the day I did not feel cold at all despite returning from Mumbai back to shivering winters of Kota. It was in the evening that I finally realised I should be feeling cold 🙂

My mom came out of shower and started crying a lot. A lot. She basically missed my Nanaji for whom I was a source of pride and who had passed away eleven months back. The day was something me and my parents had been waiting for, for years!

But this is the success story. That I cleared CA Final (both groups together) in the first attempt that too with very good marks.

Here is the back story: I failed in IPCC twice. As on date, given the number of failures we get to face, this doesn’t seem huge.
Back then it was. Especially for a class topper like me since childhood, who ended up with this major jolt for the first time in my life.

You know what, my Mom cried then as well, for how could such a thing happen to me? (Yes now I know that I was responsible, but I just couldn’t convince her to see that part. Maybe I didn’t want to see that either!)

But I did clear the IPCC exam eventually. One group at a time.

That is the word you need to remember my fellow CA students: eventually.

The world isn’t going to be smooth even if you clear all three stages in the first attempt with AIR 1. It’s true that social media is not going to have your pictures when you fail.
It’s true that your neighbours will probably stare at you when you’ll leave home for coaching classes.
It’s perhaps true that a friend who was not expected to clear is a CA today and you aren’t!

All this is real pain.
And it hurts, especially if you worked hard.

But there is one more thing that is real: Your grit. Your persistence. Your belief in your capability that no matter what, you will end up with the prefix CA before your name eventually.

Feel sad as hard as you want to. Clean your nose with your sweater that your friend likes who is a CA now. Look at yourself in the mirror and just be, it’s okay!

But when you are done, don’t waste a minute pondering about what was and what could be. Just focus on what you are going to do next.

Winning in life is less about numbers and more about your attitude.

For example, I’m not a cunning person and because of that I sometimes get walked over (sometimes by my hashtag friends), and that feels very bad. But then I tell myself that my systems and ethics are powerful, so I needn’t be scared. NEVER ever has been a place in my life that because of not being cunning, rather being a simple human being, I hadn’t won eventually. Things always turn out to be in the favour of the person who works hard with the rights systems and the right mindsets.

And if you are worried about number of attempts, yes I did get a bonus of 1L INR extra back in 2015-16 because of being a first attempt passout. But today, 5-6 years down the line, almost everyone is earning in the same income range. Time is a great leveller and a wonderful thing to forget.

So keep up your spirits high my fellow CA students, it is only a matter of time that you will become a member of the reputed ICAI. Till then, focus on building systems and attitudes that eventually and undoubtedly lead to success, instead of letting things happen.

PS: In case you are wondering if I used some systems while preparing for CA Final exams after failing in IPCC twice, of course I did! I won’t blabber them here because the purpose of this blog is not to show you how, the purpose is to show you what. If you need help with systems and processes while preparing for CA exams, drop me a note at ngehija454@gmail.com and I’d be happy to help you out.

PPS: It will happen, eventually!

Our old home

Today in the evening as I was riding on the Activa towards the park, I passed through our old home.

Just like every other day.

However, we had sold off our home in March 2020. So it wasn’t officially ours now.

Today was special, though.

A crane was demolishing the entire structure.
It was bought by our grandparents at the time of partition.
My uncles left their respective parts in 2000.
We left in 2015.
Sold in 2020.

73 years, in five lines. This is how quick life is.

Think of life this way: The girl who lives in an 8,000 sqft home with Anushka and Virat in Worli, Mumbai may have come from slums or may have come from a kingdom in her past birth.

But we all have to leave our homes. Sometimes being alive, always after death.

Nothing to feel sad or empty about, we all are there for each other – isn’t that epic?

The only home is the home humans take less time to think about 🙂

Anyway, here’s some pics from our old home.

Nothing awesome, just a few bundles of memories. Enjoy!

That’s it folks!

I went deep down the memory lane. Without a tear. Just a beautiful smile, to show that life is too small. Enjoy it while it lasts 🙂

I hear you, sista <3

I had watched Big Boss Season 1.

After that, my intellect saved me forever.

However recently, I came across a Big Boss clip on Instagram, that made me think deeply.

Here’s how it goes:
The contestants are being allowed to meet their family. When Jasmin’s parents come, they force her to play her own game alone, and not with Aly. Aly was her friend and they both fell in love during the show. They show a slightly negative vibe towards her friend.

Maybe her parents are against her marriage with him, we don’t know.

But the way they told this to her made me think of two things:

  1. They could have refused for marriage when she came out, at least she would have her parents (which she does not have in Big Boss house) if not Aly with her. Har cheez ka sahi samay hota hai.
  2. For playing her game alone, this is how most parents tell their kids to do all their lives: Not to make friends. They will play on you. But you know what, trust others to the extent you cannot afford to lose. If you don’t invest, you won’t grow. If you invest too much to lose yourself, you will of course lose yourself. But advising a locked daughter to play alone and not “trust strangers” where anyway there are a lot of mental health issues going on, shows how much as a society we lack trust.

I feel for you sista.

This too, shall pass.

Honestly, I do not give any damn about her relationship with Aly because we don’t know what would happen when they both go out. But not making friends and playing alone is not how the game of life is played.

If you don’t get out of yourself, you’ve lost already.

Do your parents also say this?

I did a sin.
I opened the fridge today.

Is it really a sin?
It is, if you have to put something back and you have parents that trust you to the moon and back:)

Lol.

So my Mom saw me putting a steel dabba of halwa back into the fridge, when she remarked, if you are unable to do it, let it be, I’ll do it.

Yes Mom, I’ve lived most of my adult life away from home. Gone through heartbreaks without you being aware of it. Living in the capital of the country figuring out life. And lo and behold, I won’t have the awareness to put a dabba into the fridge. Such fun.

Anyway, yes parents are suffering and trying their best, but, sometimes you have to put a virtual gulab jamun in your mouth and stay silent.

For your sake.

And if you still want to take some action, I wrote about it in the newsletter I sent today. You can read it here.

Maa Papa 💖

All of a sudden, I’ve enjoyed being with my family now.

Now that vaccine is almost there, now that there is a job to look up to, now that I’ll be back to Delhi somewhere by the end of winter, I’ve already started missing my parents.

They’re (not so much) weird for me, and I guess so am I for them.

This moment, is all you have!

As a line from one of my favourite songs goes: “Reh jayengi, yeh nishaaniyaan, rahein naa rahein hum! Aa jee le ek pal mein sau janam!”