5 things I learnt from someone nice--a birthday post

Today is the birthday of one of the most important people in my life. Last year and the year before that, we had celebrated his birthday in the UK. This year we celebrate in a new home. A few of his closest friends came over at midnight yesterday and it was a complete surprise for him, when he was woken up from sleep and brought downstairs, groggy eyed  to find all his good friends as well as both the kids assembled there, with cake, eats and everything else.He walked into a pitch dark room and the lights came on and rest you can imagine! :-)

We had all planned it all and co-ordinated, down to the last detail, which included minor but very important things like alerting the security at the gate of the vehicle numbers they would be arriving in, so that the security would not call to alert of their arrival. They texted me when they were outside my home and I crept quietly downstairs and let them in. We really made awesome-happy memories last night, which I am sure we will fondly remember for years to come!
A big thank you to the people who made this happen (you know who you are I am really grateful to you guys :-) )

It is a known fact that the people we spend maximum amount of time with, help us shape our thinking, our action and ultimately our destinies. Most spiritual leaders and high thinkers encourage us to seek out positive minded individuals who proactively lead their lives, with their goals in focus and are full of love and warmth. They are above pettiness and focusing on negatives. If your goal is to lose 5 kgs of weight but you are surrounded by people who eat a lot and are really not at all diet/health conscious, then it will be that much harder for you to achieve your goals. Similarly if you trying to quit  smoking but are surrounded by people who smoke at least 6-10 cigarettes a day, it is going to be hard for you.

So how is this connected to the surprise birthday party? In my case, the  person with whom I have spent the maximum amount of time is the one whose birthday it is today :)  I have spent 16 years with him and that is indeed a LOT of time. There is a LOT  I have learnt from him which would be impossible to contain in one post. Here are 5 of the things I learnt from him:

1.If you feel bad about something someone said, no matter whether they intended it as a joke or not, your feelings are indeed valid and you're entitled to them:  This is something I am always grateful to him for. Many a time I used to question myself as to whether I am over-reacting to a comment made by somebody, about something which is sacred, to me. He is the one who taught me to honour what I feel, no matter how the other person intended it. (and sometimes its not even worth analysing why they did/said certain things--but at other times it is)

2.Just because you feel upset and hurt, you do not have to immediately react. I truly admire his ability for this. For me, if I feel hurt my first instinct is to lash out at that person and let them have it. My level of tolerance for such things is far lower than his. At times, side stepping such things is a smarter thing to do, though I have miles to go in that department!

3. What matters most to you does not truly matter that much to everybody . There are very very few people who are genuinely interested in what matters most to you. But that does not mean you must not form close connections. If you are lucky to have them in your life, hold such people close. But also remember that situations and circumstances change over a period of time. Accept this fact and suddenly there is a huge perspective change in your relationships.

4. If someone has not made an effort to be in your life, despite trying many times from your side, walk away. This ability is something I admire him for. He always says  "If that person genuinely wants to be a part of your life, they will  make time to call or initiate contact." This sounds so simple but it is profound if you think about it.

5.You do not have to raise your kids exactly how your parents raised you: Till I met him, I always used to think that raising your kids with a Spartan discipline is the only way you will have well grounded adults.This was the way I was raised and I used to falsely believe that it was the best way. It was completely the opposite of how he was raised and he truly is one of the nicest people I know. That was a huge eye-opener for me.

Happy birthday to a GREAT guy and THANK YOU for being in my life and most importantly thank you for loving me as much as you do, especially during the times I don't deserve it!


  1. Happy Birthday to Satish bhavaji! :) and awesome post, as always! :)

  2. Happy Birthday to Satish! and lots of happiness to you both in the years to come!.. Brinda

  3. Happy Birthday to Satish! and WOW!! what a lovely post this is! :D

  4. I agree with everything,except the first one. I feel that if someone said smthg in good humour, we should take in that spirit. Yeah, but there are people who want to hurt you, but mask it in humour. Thats a totally different case.

  5. Pointblank: Well--if it hurts you the hurt is indeed valid .Your feelings are indeed valid. We all might have different levels of sensitivity.Also something might be very sacred to me and i might not like jokes about it, even so called 'good humoured' ones and that is truly OKAY, no matter what the 'spirit' behind it is. We set the boundaries. That is all I am saying.

    Mamta: THANKS for that fab comment--you made my day! :)

    Brinda, mamta and Purnima: Thank you for wishing him! :)

  6. Happy Birthday to Satish! God bless you with a Happy & successful life in years ahead.

  7. Santosh: Thanks! God Bless!

  8. Happy Birthday Satish jee - I bow down to thee for such zen like learnings....I love your sense of humor too ;)(saying this from the very little I have interacted with him through a virtual medium and a couple of his guest blog posts).....have a fun filled blessed year ahead!

  9. Wonderful post...16 years is really a very long time....HAPPY B"DAY to the special one:)

    Point 2 & 3 are perfect. There are many things which are dear to us...but it may not be the same for others.

    And when ur hurt and u react...i guess we lose our respect especially in front oif those who don't know us very well. They tend to judge us immediately.

    Point 4 also is true...we can't force someone to be on our life...

    Point 5....wat should I say...??? I am in the learning stage now...I don't know how much is too much...at times I become tooo strict with my Daughter...but then I can't find a way to control her...any suggestions???
    Tk care

  10. nice post. Brought a smile to my face ...

  11. Happy Birthday Sathish!!

  12. Well, that was a nice to read. Hope Mr. Satish also reads this sometime. Wishing him a great birthday !!!

  13. Vishal: All my posts, he is the first to read :) As soon as I hit 'publish' it gets auto delivered in his inbox :) Thanks for wishing him.

    Sundari:Thanks from him :)

    Mayflower: A smile is so precious! Hold on to it!

    Gayu:Awww--thanks :) Parenting is such a tricky business. At times we have to be firm, at times we have to let go.I too am learning!

    Shachi: :) :) :)Thanks so much...while composing this post only, you had pinged yesterday!

  14. 'Thank you for loving me even when I don't deserve it.'
    Will you believe me if I say I know EXACTLY what you mean? I do!

    wonderful post. I too can't take it when people say things that hurt me intentionally or otherwise. I let them know, albeit without being too rude.

    Happy happy birthday again to Satish :-)

  15. Wishing Satish, your soul-mate and your guidinglight, a very happy birthday.
    I so agree with points 1 & 2. I react just like you do. People think I am way too sensitive and I have a poor sense of humour. But that's their thinking. I feel we should respect somebody's sensitivities before making a fun of it and also it is very shallow to have fun at someone else's expense.
    Thanks for a lovely post.
    Wish Satish a great day and an awesome year ahead! Hope you and kids have some more nice surprises planned for him all through today. A good dinner, may be. Take care! :)

  16. Anonymous1:20 PM

    Beautiful post Preethi!!
    Warmest birthday wishes to your special one :)

  17. A very happy happy birthday to satish. As always, wonderful post. Hugs

  18. My most heartfelt Birthdy Wishes to Satish. He is such a well balancd person. You are soooo very lucky to have him in your life and same is tue for Satish too. i think you both arre relly made for each other. God Bless you Today and Always.

  19. hey I like your blog and its a great read. I didnt know when 30 mins just passed by.

  20. this is such a beautiful picture :)

  21. Happy Birthday Satish. I hardly know you and I think you must be a simply fantastic man, "judging" by association with Preeti.

    And I love what you have to say about hurt feelings. When we don't honor those feelings and tend to stay in our heads about what should be and not what is, then we are actually in disservice of ourselves and others around us.

    I wish you and yours nothing but the best!

  22. Happy Birthday to Satish!! Wishing him many many more to come!
    Fantastic post and all the five points are truly worth practicing!!

    And btw, thats a lovely picture!!

    Have a great evening!


  23. Thats a very pretty picture! And a belated very happy birthday to Satish! :)

  24. Happy Bday to Sathish and what a lovely surprise

  25. Many many happy returns of the day to satishjee!!!

  26. Awwwww!!! You truly make a wonderful couple!

    Happy Birthday to Satish. A guest post from him is due :)

  27. awwwww..! sweet, sweet post, preeti di! you guys sure look like an awesome couple... may you have a wonderful wonderful life together..! God bless...

    ps. hearty bday wishes to satish :)

  28. Happy Birthday to Satish. The surprise midnight party was a gr8 way to celebrate his Bday and make him feel special. You two look so blissfully happy and made for each other in the pic. here's wishing you more joy and moments of togetherness.

  29. You know what Preeti, Satish was the first person i met when i joined the company. he was technically my first boss (that is the reason i love to call him boss - because that reminds me of the importance of that relationship). having come from the background that i belong to (you know that), i was extremely worried and rather lonely when i landed up in Pondy. Satish instantly came across more as a friend than as a colleague and till date, i feel many times, it is Satish's warmth that helped me lay a very solid foundation into my own career. In addition to your five things, i want to add a few more qualities about him that i really admire

    Stay connected: Satish always ensures that he stays in touch. he never lets a relationship drop because we can choose to be too busy without it.

    We are Family: If Satish makes a friend, he always invites them home. you feel so connected and bonded when you connect to some one personally and with the larger family. maybe its also a reflection of the warm personality that you are.. that you make every one of Satish's friends feel at home when they come over.

    Keep it Light: Satish always finds opportunities to lighten up situations. whether it is his amazing narration of past humourous incidents or his own sense of humour (very subtle - not that laugh at me types), but makes you feel light in his company.

    Phew.. i wont go on beyond this. i have only got used to pulling his leg and finding things to nag him, it is very difficult for me to appreciate him :-) :-)

    ON a serious note of course, i think you both complement each other very well and i wish you both all joy and happiness

  30. Happy birthday to Sathish... Let god bless u to hav lot more such beautiful years to cherish..!!

  31. Its a lovely picture:) and belated happy birthday to satish:P
    I always have a big grin when i read your post.

  32. Anonymous3:49 AM

    I don't know if I should say this but I refrain myself from commenting on your blogposts, although I am a regular reader...because I know you're SO sensitive, I don't know if you may take something I say in the way it was NOT intended & I would hate for that to happen.

    Happy B'day to your hubby and what a wonderful post! Kudos!

  33. Nilu: Artists, poets and writers are said to have THE MOST sensitive souls--I am all three so it is a triple whammy ;-) If you are afraid of offending me in public, you can always mail me in private ;-) I respond to most mails.

    Aishwarya Narayanan:Thanks a lot :)

    Sivapaurnami:Thanks a lot!

    Sandhya: please let's meet up for a meal! :)

    Abha:Thanks so much!


    Palsworld: thanks a lot. Will tell him of your demand :)

  34. Eve, Horizon and MS: Thanks a lot :)


    Vidya: Thanks! Yes--most people simple try to brush it aside blaming themselves for being 'over-sensitive' which is anyway a label given by others.


    Kidsstoppress;Thanks a lot and welcome to my blog :)

    ik:Touchwood and thank you!

    Chitra and softy pink:Thanks a lot :)

    Naina:Thanks a lot!! Do read my reply to Vidya too.

  35. Sucheta: Sometimes I am rude :P But I guess at my age one can afford to be ;-) :D

  36. Thanks a lot everyone for the warm wishes. Thanks also to Preeti for the blog post. In all modesty I must admit that she gives me more credit than I actually deserve.

    Am good, I know, but this kind of projects me as even better than even I, can digest.

    Yeah I guess it is time to bore you lot with a guest post. As they never leave an opportunity especially if you are not at the receiving end.

    Once again thanks everyone for remembering and writing in. Much appreciated.

    Warm regards


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