Vacation is over! We are all gearing up to new beginnings with work and school. One mans agony, is another child’s excitement.
I am going back to work and I have to say that my vacation started off on a great note and ended with a bang. When life gives you lemons, make lemon soda.
I enjoyed most of my vacation doing the things, I really wanted to do, which is pursuing acrylic painting. I did not want to do anything that was related to work or research. I wanted to delve in my creative process. It was the best decision and money well spent. I loved the process of physically being in a place with lots of sunlight, great music, lots of paints, brushes and canvases. Nobody is judging your skill or what you wish to paint. It was about taking a brush and making a stroke.
I felt happy and great after the classes and the outcome’s not bad either. In fact, in my creative process, I developed ideas for my work as well. I’ve heard of noble laureates, pursuing music, art and poetry while working on their respective missions. Not that, I am working on my noble prize. But doing something that was creative, not bounded by time or judgement freed up my mind. I felt fresh and ready to soak in and experiment with new ideas. #soulartcenter
Next in line, was reading. My most missed pleasures. I made it a point to indulge in reading, whenever my daughter (Azah) slept or when she had to do solitary play. By the way, solitary play is a great way to let their imagination flow. In fact, whenever I took my book to read, Azah would get busy with toys or books. I have to confess, 4/10 times only. But that’s great, we are always working towards progress.
Books I’ve read and recommend:
The Biography- Leonardo Da Vinci by Walter Issacsson
I can’t recommend this book enough! Books are indeed portable magic. Da Vinci’s life story, took me to his childhood home, his quirkiness, his personal struggles, his flamboyance and above all, his insatiable appetite to learn and discover. I was walking with him through the streets of Florence, experiencing his life as everything he wanted to be. An engineer (which he proudly and secretly enjoyed being called) , an artist (beyond doubt he gave us the finest masterpieces in the world, Mona Lisa, The Last Supper) , an anatomist, a musician, a scientist and what not. This man taught us, we needn’t be confined to only one thing or one interest. We can be more, and do more. #walterissacson
Principles by Ray Dalio
This is a textbook for work and life. It is vast, detailed and beautiful. I love his philosophy of doing meaningful work and creating meaningful relationships. He has written down his principles and the steps he took, to solve every issue he dealt with at work and life. Who would ever think of doing that. Well, Ray does care for everyone to be successful in their life too. #raydalio
The Conscious Parent by Dr. Shefali Tsabary
This one was transformational for me. I’ve had enough days of struggle with my emotions as a parent. Am I doing this right? Is this how it’s supposed to be? How can I calm myself down. Well, this book shook up all my preconceived notions about parenthood, my upbringing and my egos. My favorite one being, your child does not need your validation, simply by coming into your life, they have it. We have to work on ourselves before we turn toward our children. Our children are not our possessions, they have a spirit of their own. This is a hard pill to swallow, but I am working towards it. #drshefalitsabary
Then, came mine and Azah’s outings. We went to book stores, grocery shopping, shoe shopping, swimming and Oli Oli ( loved this play area in Dubai). I did everything, I envisioned before my vacation started.
However, the struggle is real being a full time, stay at home mom. I wanted to experience it for a few days, so I took minimal help from my nanny. Honestly, I was tired, exhausted and fell asleep even before Azah did. I am forever grateful to my mother for doing that, all her life. Your choices made our future. Love you, Mom.
Finally, our much awaited trip to Vienna, Austria. The excitement was off the roof, Azah was prepped almost two months back about Austria and the places we would visit. Our first trip together, as a family. Guten Tag ( good day) in German, was my daughters favorite phrase for weeks. We were prepared and all set.
Well, Man proposes and God disposes. Our trip did not go as expected. We all fell sick and we had to return sooner than planned. We were shattered, mentally and physically. I tried to find reasons to pin down my frustrations, on what went wrong. That did not help either.
My sickness gave me the time to rest and reflect. Life happens. I did 80% of what I wanted to do and I spend quality and quantity time with my family.
I am the last person, who should be worried about not having a great holiday, when people who traveled to Kerala( my home state), lost their homes, family and possessions to the floods. It was devastating to see and feel it. But, nothing has made me more prouder, than the sense of compassion, strength and humility we showed as Malayalees. We stood hand in hand as human beings, and nothing else to divide us.
Hence, no complaints. Only gratitude, for the good times and the struggles. Sometimes, you just need go with the flow and surrender. Experience the good, evolve from the unpleasant surprises and breathe. Breathe…..
And hey, we made the most of our trip..
Hope you all a great holiday and let’s get back to creating ourselves.