Emotional Abandonment

Every time I am on a bus or driving a car, there is one thing that stays with me long after it is over and gone. It is the sight of a person missing a bus or a train. I am not sure why. There are times when there is a passenger running to catch the bus and it is just a fraction of that second when the bus has moved past the stop. The passenger is stranded at the stop till the next one comes by.

It is not just the person missing the bus, but the longing in the eyes of that person, or at times hope turning into despair, frustration and so many emotion.

I always tend to draw parallels from such scenarios.

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The most important one being a sense of abandonment in a partnership. Life is like that too. Think about it. There definitely is a partnership between the bus and the potential passenger who missed that bus.

They both have a route to travel.

In the context of life, there are two people who get into a partnership of love or marriage. And decide on the route they want to travel. Suddenly one person feels that they have to take a detour or even change route and leave for better prospects, greener pastures without even so much as asking, consulting the other person.

Taking off just like the bus does, without even so much as bothering to pay attention to the rear view in the mirror.

What happens to the passenger who was stranded at the bus stop? What happens to that passenger who boarded the bus?

Chances are, depending on the situation, the stranded one might choose to wait till the bus takes a reverse and comes back to the same stop, highly improbable. Or this passenger takes the next bus.

In real life situation too the other person might end up waiting forever or choose another partner to travel with.

It could also happen that the person who took the detour and started travelling on a different route might come back hoping to pick that person up from the place he/she was left/abandoned. But somebody has to bell the ‘cat’ as they say and inform that time does not stand still. Therefore people cannot stop, stand still and wait. They evolve. And most importantly, they grow out of situations and people.

 

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

Image source and courtesy: http://www.afaqs.com/news/story/26362_BEST-calls-for-tender-for-designer-bus-shelters-and-bus-stop-poles

 

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Dear Women, what are you feeding your mind?

I have read the quote many times that ‘we are what we eat’. Also, it is said what we become also depends on what we read, think and our habits mostly.

For example if I am a professional career person and my career was cut short for domestic responsibilities including child bearing, rearing, nurturing, cooking and cleaning alone, few years down the line, in my opinion, I will be mostly a domestic help/manager and a bit of a career person/professional. Because my priorities changed my habits. Leaving me to hone my domestic skills and lose my professional skills, almost unlearn and forget to upgrade in an ever growing and expanding workforce.

So what happens after few years I am forced to join the workforce because of–many reasons, including child/children are all grown up followed by inflation and growing expenses demand that I get back into the workforce?

Beggars cannot be choosers situation comes into play here. And just to stay in the workforce, millions of professionals are forced to take up jobs to bring in that vital paycheck. But is the heart in that job? No, it is just in the paycheck. And making sure the amount is there in the bank enabling in paying the bills every month.

So far so good.

But here is a situation. Neither your heart, not your soul is in that job and because of it, you are unable to grasp the million things that you need to learn to perform your tasks. Not because you are not capable, but because your mind is wired for something else and you are being forced to do something different.

As an example, let us assume, a job in retail industry or even a restaurant, coffee shop. Reason I chose these industries as an example is because there is a demand for staff and the turnover is huge.

Most of these jobs start with safety training, followed by product, use, customer service and many more depending on the job you have been selected for. The first week seems okay with so much training etc. But your mind is still asking you this question if you can handle, or are you capable enough to perform these tasks? you convince yourself saying you will work hard because you have that carrot dangling at the end of the stick–the paycheck.

It is after the first week when one has to actually start working followed by the third week where you are expected to perform on your own and by fourth/fifth week you have to show them results. Which could include remembering the client’s requirements to being able to operate few machines, computers or other tools that aid your work routinely.

And there are those computer tests that you have to pass for which you were given barely 10 hours to train on the first week. Yes, most companies do say the training is for four weeks, but the unsaid is, they will be patient with you during the first four weeks while you observe and perform the tasks. It does not mean you will be trained where you have the luxury of only learning, followed by the next four weeks where you start implementing all that you have learnt. Does not work this way.

Seems perfect for some, but for some people it is all one big confusion.

This underemployment kills them mentally to such an extent that even performing simple tasks leads to creating self doubt. Reason being, supervisor/manager, who is getting impatient and wants results. Not the manager/supervisor’s fault.

This pressure combined with money situation, followed by domestic management, the dreams of ever being an achiever in a career mentally suited for seems like a distant dream.

And many years and many jobs later, this professional is in the workforce and stays there too. But at the cost of losing a fine mind in a job that was meant for her, suited for her.

How can allowing a fine mind to perish for the sake of domestic bliss for others be justified? Why is it all about men wanting to take that chance of their lifetime and choose what is good for them and them alone?

Some men even leave their marital home to follow their heart and their dream. If it were to be reversed it is not ‘allowed’. The emphasis is really on ALLOWED. For two reasons, she is mentally shackled and made to feel guilty and it is dinned into her head for centuries that she is the nurturer and if she dares to deviate, she will not be ‘forgiven’.

If she so much desires, she can leave the marriage and take the child with her and the man might try and find a ‘more suitable’ meekling to partner with!!!

That, my dear friends is still the plight of some women.

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

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Slut Shaming of Kangna Ranaut

What happens when love ends on a bitter note?

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Recently, Kangna Ranaut, a highly successful Indian movie actor has been slut shamed like nobody’s business by her exes. And most people have been supportive of those shaming her. I have been reading and following her news and was surprised that not one person came forward to support her for the person she is and her views.

People from the industry did intervene and asked her to apologise. But Kangna refused to say sorry for something she believes she is right and apologising will weaken her stand. Good for her and more power to her.

She is being ridiculed, abused, trolled and discriminated against at any and every given opportunity just because she is a woman. Her love affairs ended on a bitter note, she is sexually active and, and she is highly successful.

The emphasis is on ‘highly successful’. Kangna’s success is completely hers. She owns it and wears it like a crown, literally. With three National Film Awards in her kitty, does it not say that she is serious about her art and craft? and that is the sole reason she is at the top today?

Yes, she has given priority to her career more than to her men and that, it seems has hurt their ego.

Like one of her exes, a flop actor with an unsuccessful/no career to speak of has claimed in one of the interviews that Kangna did not thank or even acknowledge him after receiving an award. and that he was made to walk behind her. Why can’t she bask in her success she has created herself? How and why should she give credit where it is not due? And what role did this person play in helping her become successful?

Yes, she is a woman and she needed emotional support and yes she was also sexually active (her words) with her lovers. Does that mean that she is obliged to share her success with these men?

I am only focussing on the lovers (There was one who abused her physically and threw her out on the road in the middle of the night and he was old enough to be her father), who were open enough to admit their relationship here.

The main cause of this fracas around her is the fact that this hunky, greek god of a superstar denies having had any sort of connection, relationship with her. She claims it is true. Knowing the film industry men, it is possible that this hunk is trying to have a clean, family man, victim image. He seems to be sending subtle messages that she is using him for publicity! Seriously?Guess when slut shaming did not work, he/they could only think of this.

Being a big star, why would she need any sort of/this sort of publicity? Kangna’s work speaks for her. Her body of work is enough to represent her.

In fact, it seems the other way round because this superstar/hunk seems to be needing some himself! The shameful part is, he has made some private mails sent by Kangna public. Just to prove that he is the most desirable and she was crazy about him. Fine, even if she was crazy about him, being the older and a ‘thorough gentleman’ could he not at least out of respect for the other person (regardless of gender) keep the conversation/exchange of mails private?

The funny part is, today, the flop actor’s parents have come to his rescue with their version of how their ‘little bubble wrapped cho-sweet apple of their eyes’ was traumatised!!!

And the best part is the fact that Kangna herself is taking each and every bit of this negative brickbats in her stride and marching to the tune of her own drummer on a road to success and more life and living.

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

Picture courtesy-Twitter.com @kangna_ranaut

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The Love Potion

One kind of love is, where you want to rush into and just live it, spill all your feelings out there and live with that love.

There is another one where you want to stay in love and keep it in a secure place from where no person can ever steal it. Nor can any person see or know it.

It is just a mental debate, which one lasts longer? Or even forever. If there is such a thing as forever in love.

Somehow, I always feel that an unrequited love stays forever in the heart. I don’t know why. But the sweet pain in the heart that seems to wonder, how it would have been if this love was returned? That thought constantly lives with you and helps you live in a wonderful romantic world you create about love and love alone.

You live in your imagination mostly and think, ‘maybe we would be holding hands and sipping wine. Or maybe, he would be watching me sitting here and giving me tender loving looks’.

Not just these domestic scenarios alone, a song, a poem with tons of emotion can just bring forth all the feelings. Maybe even tears streaming down your eyes.

How about romantic movie scenes? Well, they have their own magic and you get inside the character and rather than looking at them as the actors, you see the two of you in them.

That is just a small description of how it feels to not have that love returned and pine for the one who will never become yours.

But if the same is reversed and you get that love of your life living under the same roof, the tender looks get transformed into impatience and irritability. You want private moments to pine for alone time and not worry about the dishes in the sink. Yes, the very sink where you pined for that unrequited love while cleaning dishes.

Something changes the moment you share and live under the same roof.

It seems like the distance truly makes the heart yearn for that love/person.

 

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The Silent language of Love

Matters of the heart are complicated. You try and solve one mystery and there is another one staring at you.

Just when you say you are never ever going to fall in love, one heartbeat and everything your mind has decided gets wiped out.

All the bad memories of your past heartbreak/s disappears, gets deleted. You are no longer crying for the lost love. You also want to stop listening to the songs that ‘helped’ you through your heartbreak–mostly to shed tears.

Guess what, you have a new song list which speaks about heart beats, pining for love, followed by a desire to keep thinking of love and just keep indulging in that feeling.

It has hit you, cupid’s arrow has pierced your heart. But you are not sure if your arrow has passed through the other person’s heart. You want the person to know how you feel about them. But then there is hesitation, you don’t want to be the one to get rejected.

You wait some more and a little more. There is an ache, deep down your heart. At times, you want to cry, at times, it is unbearable and you want to just dial that number and…

You hold yourself back because you have promised yourself to not reveal your feelings. This game gets exciting and most times it hurts too. But there is some comfort in thinking that maybe the other person is going through the same emotions too. Maybe thinking of and falling in love with you…

Then one fine evening when you are by the window, lonesome, holding a drink in your hand and watching the sun set and then, a song, a tune you have named your love tune starts playing on one of the radio stations and memories of casual chat and laughter shared tumble out of your mind. And then a tear is shed and you wonder, just wonder and think of that love you are holding in your heart and heave a sigh of angst.

Just then, your eyes notice a text message blinking on the screen of your cell phone. It is from the person you have been pining for.

Coincidence? Or two hearts speaking to each other the silent language of love?

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

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Knight in a Shining Armour?

I recently had a conversation with my male co-worker about how women need to be loved and cared for.

It was as if he was almost sure that having a male love a woman will automatically solve all her problems. I laugh when I hear this bit about knight in shining armour cliche. Therefore I laughed while having this little chat with him.

Who is this person? And most importantly, why do women need such a person? With or without his armour. On a personal level, I have played my part of being the nurturer, caretaker, caregiver, cleaner, cook, breadwinner and everything else. I took it upon myself knowing fully well what I was getting into because it was my duty then and I did not want to abandon my responsibilities. Now that it is almost ending, I do not see myself, ever, ever repeating it for anyone else in the world.

The time I invested in doing all the nurturing, caring and cleaning and earning my money as well through outside employment, I could have chosen to walk away, develop my career and work at a job I am passionate about.

All through that period I walked by myself and never saw any armour, forget shining, not even a rusty one. Yes, it was one time, at the beginning of my bonding with the partner to live and share a life. But when it came down to actual living and the day to day routine, I was abandoned and left to face the music alone.

Oh wait, was I blinded by that shining armour that I could see what was hidden behind? perhaps. But now I have smartened up and I have started wearing ‘dark glasses’ so that I am not blinded by the shine. Because, it is a trap. Once the love game is won, women, most times are left with all the stuff the male does not want to do.

Also for some men, the breadwinner role is more of an excuse to get away from the boring household, nurturing, raising kids and caring stuff. Just like men, maybe there are some women who get equally bored doing all that stuff. And she would rather be the bread winner. But she is not ‘allowed’ that freedom. At least in my case. But then just caring, nurturing, raising kid was not enough, I also was pushed to earn my own money. So the question of choice was/is totally controlled by the man who is supposed to be my life partner.

It was not just the role of breadwinner he chose, he also chose a convenient long distance marriage so that he is not burdened by the routine of catering to my emotional needs.

It was difficult in the beginning and then I learnt to walk that path and after more than a two decades now, I am sprinting and running the same path. I have conquered the challenges on my way up and down here.

I have or almost have my life back and I am going to live it up my way and for myself alone.

I guess, I was right when I laughed at the innocent little thought my coworker shared with me.

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

 

 

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Right gal/guy, Wrong timing

Continuing on this LOVE route I started talking about, I would like to explore workplace connections.

We have heard of many romances and love blossoming at the workplace. One of the reasons could be because co-workers end up spending most part of their waking hours at the workplace. And the time, lots of time spent in each other’s company is one of the key factors,because barriers are broken down, vulnerabilities surface and so many other avenues for emotions to spill forth. People are sure to find, get pulled into some connection or the other. By some connection or the other I mean, it could be a simple thing like depending on that smile to get you going through the rough day at work. Or a crush, infatuation, well it could also be a mental match.

I am not saying every one of these feelings that surfaces when we meet and connect will be realised or has to be realised. But there are chances. Yes, there are chances.

I have seen people sneaking glances and forming bonds over coffee, lunch. And very soon they do turn into a little more intimate or personal. But it is still within the limited professional limits. It is safe to say, it is the 9 to 5 romance. After 5 PM, I am sure the smses get deleted, and all that happened and the small talk shared are erased till the next workday.

It is not just office, workplace could mean any work platform. We always hear ‘rumors’ about romance between two actors. Maybe it started on an outdoor location. Maybe it happened because of a perfect setting. Who knows the hows and whys.

All this seems simple and straightforward. The hitch is only if and when that bond starts leaning towards something more serious, a little more expecting. It can happen. After all we are all humans beings with a heart that beats and it cannot be controlled every time it jumps with joy at the sight of a pleasant connection.

So what are these expectations then? It could be anything from wanting to share an evening, a lunch or even an assurance that there is some level of liking at least. This is where things can begin to get complicated.

Till the bonds are handled subtly everything remains fine. If it is allowed to grow, it can turn into a classic case of ‘perhaps’ Right gal/guy Wrong time.

So does it mean that feelings of love have to explored and given room to grow and develop? Perhaps.

Ranga Iyer-Rajah

 

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