People react to personal tragedies in different ways. Some fight back, some accept, some get defeated and some withdraw into a shell. I know--as I did all of it.
This morning I was searching for something on my laptop and I came across this photo of Satish and me, clicked in UK, at the Tower of London in October 2007. This was before my first book was published. It was one of the toughest times in my life. I had short hair back then and I remember how I had told the hair-dresser to crop my hair real short--like in the army. I was so down and going through such a bad phase, I did not care about how I looked. Even the smile in the photo is so painfully forced and sad.
I had lost my father all of a sudden in 2006. I have blogged about my father in several posts and here are a few such:
Looking at the picture above, and comparing it to where I am today, I have come such a long way. Back then, I was just a broken person, trying to pick up the pieces of my life. There are days when I have cried and wept the whole day and done nothing else. I was too shattered, too shocked and bristling so much at the unfairness of it all. It was too soon that he was snatched.
I am now an author of three best-sellers (the photo below was clicked on 14th February 2012 at the launch of 'Tea for two and a piece of cake' ). My new book The Secret Wishlist will be out in December. I still sometimes cannot believe it. I have chronicled the journey in my 500th post.
Now, I get hundreds of mails from people who tell me they find me inspiring. Most of them ask me the secret of my success (it's just hard work and a bit of luck--nothing else) and most ask how I manage to stay so positive always (and that is a deliberate choice).
The fact is, life is indeed very short. I cannot emphasize this enough. One of my closest friends recently told me that a very good friend of hers passed away on his 40th birthday. They were waiting to celebrate it. He just collapsed and died leaving behind a wife and a very young child. My cousin lost his wife all of a sudden last year. She was just 36 and she left behind two small children, aged 7 and 5.
People who have seen sudden death at close quarters and who have been through the experience of losing someone very dear, realise how futile petty grudges are and how very precious time really is. The person you see today may no longer exist tomorrow, except in your memories. It is so darn important to forgive, to not hold silly grudges, to live each moment and to CHERISH life.
Here are a few things that one can do to ensure this. (and I follow these)
1. Call your parents : I used to speak to my dad, almost every single day when he was alive. Now I ensure that I do the same with my mother. If you live away from your parents, call them today! No--call them now. They will love you for it.
2. Make time for friends: Connections these days become limited to Facebook and whatsapp. Go and meet your friend for a cup of coffee. Make the time. A good friend of mine just came over and we have been meaning to meet for ages. We live very close to each other but yet so busy in our lives. Today felt wonderful. Nothing can substitute a face to face meeting and a warm genuine hug.
3.Spend time with your children/loved ones: My children are 14 (to be 15 in four days!) and 11 and yet I spend at least half an hour each night with both. (by turns as they have separate bedrooms now). I still read to them (History and philosophy and poetry) and we talk. Both love it. I think it is important to switch off things like blackberries and i-phones after 7.30 pm, every day. The world will not collapse until the next morning. It's ok! :) (Of course not applicable for those who have overseas calls--but I am guessing these calls will not be on a daily basis)
4.Tell the special people in your life that they matter: Many people are not comfortable expressing their affection. Why is it important to say it? Don't action speak louder than words? I think it is very important to express it. I had written a post some time back about it and I still stick to it. Here is why:
5. Be impulsive!
Go watch that movie! The washing can wait. :) The tidying the cupboard can wait.
Go do whatever it is that you meant to do but kept putting off.
Go! Go! Go! :)
Have a great weekend.
May there be peace in your weekend, a smile on your lips and may happiness envelop your soul and may you spread joy everywhere you go.
These are my wishes for you today :)____________________________________________________________________
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