We Start Anew

They stood holding colorful “Welcome Back” posters. Not one but three. In their winter activewear, covered from head to toe, they looked like two little minions on a sugar high. They yelped, jumped, their excitement uncontainable, their small faces beaming with glee.

Mama, we missed you! Both crashed into me, their small arms quickly encircling my tired, exhausted self while Hubby dear caught this homecoming on camera.

Three weeks of staying apart from my babies, clearly was tough.  In that moment as we stood huddled, all four of us, in a tight embrace, I was gently reminded, once again, how incredibly good I have it.

As expected, Mr. Jet Lag sneaked his way in. This time with unflinching intensity just to cause havoc to my weakened body. Two weeks since my return and the battle is still on.

My father for whom I made this trip is fortunately recovering well from his extensive surgery.  His discipline and optimism help.  It was harder this time saying our goodbyes. For the first time in many departures, my proud, stubborn, no-nonsense mother broke down in tears. And I, her equally proud, head strong daughter held my own until I buckled in to the aircraft’s aisle seat. That two and half hour flight back to Delhi was nothing short of an emotional roller coaster ride.

I left an enraged, anguished Delhi. The Capital continues to throb with many protests and discourses for swifter justice, stringent punishments and laws for violence against women. As an ex-resident of this historic, beautiful city but like many others, an unfortunate victim of countless back slapping, boob pinching and lewd propositions from roadside punks to seemingly well-respected business men, I am following this uproar diligently but my skepticism, in weaker moments, gets the best of me. In spite of it, I hope this movement picks up momentum, brings about a positive change, creates an India that is safer and saner for women-daughters, sisters, wives alike. If this gruesome, brutal murder of an unsuspecting 23-year old isn’t a wake-up call, I don’t know what is.

The kids reluctantly returned to school this morning after two weeks of a rather hectic holiday. Christmas, more specifically gifts  for them this year were purposefully curtailed yet it was memorable. Just the right amount of indulgence to keep them chuffed about this special holiday. 2012 swooshed past just like the previous years with a fair share of ups and downs but nothing earth-shattering or unmanageable. It was, to say the least, rather subdued. We expect 2013 to be busier but more focused on growth of self and family. The kids need us more than ever. They are evolving, becoming curiouser. As much as I would like to refer to them as babies, they aren’t anymore. They are thriving little people with minds and expectations of their own. As parents, we realize we are getting into tougher terrains where setting priorities, picking battles and setting the right example will take utmost importance.

This new year, I am tempted to wish for many things but in the light of what’s happening in India, US and elsewhere, nothing is as paramount as safety and security for women and kids all over.

Happy 2013 to all!

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