April – May Reflections

April 2018

April was a month of connecting with old friends. After nearly 13 years, I visited with my college roommate and her family in North Carolina. Another dear friend flew in from Canada to join us turning our time together into a rocking reunion. It was amazing to see each other and to begin where we left off, to share our journeys, our lives, and to realize that even though we have all changed so much over the years, we are also all still the same; there is an unchanged core within us – almost as if even back then, one could look through and see the futures each of us has chosen! We stayed up each night until late, chatting, the way we used to back in hostel days. I look at our pictures of being together, and we all look radiant! It was also tremendous fun for our kids to connect; and to see my friends in their children, like this continuity of life through the next generation.

Interestingly, around the same time, I was connected with my department buddies back from college through Whatsapp. This too was bittersweet – to see family photos of college classmates and get a snapshot of past and present. Things we remember (and don’t remember!) back from those days. To learn where each person is, and how their journey has been in the past 17 years. It was also interesting how much of the music I (and others in the group!) remembered from college days and the memories associated with the songs. Recently, I heard on NPR that our brain makes associations with music and life experiences more vividly from ages of 17 – 21. It made so much sense; how often music from that time transports me back instantly to key experiences from that time…

What I did find was that my mind juggling between past and present started to get tiring; and while introspection and reflection can be so powerful, I feel much more grounded anchored in the present! A weekend break from my phone was much needed and deserved!

What has April brought for you? Or May and spring? I’m just catching up on my blog, as you can tell!

With Love, S.

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Simple pleasures…and happy-ness!

You know how sometimes you need that break to reset the clock, and remind you to slow down? It was wonderful to get away during spring break. We returned on Thursday and I spent the next two days frantically cleaning our home – reorganizing furniture, getting rid of clutter. With the nice weather, my soul now feels more at peace with my home and surroundings. Feeling the wind ruffle my hair, the air cool on my skin as I went for a short walk during Anji’s music lesson. Riding our bikes around the condo after we returned from school…Just hanging out on the table after dinner, coloring in my book, listening to Anjali play music while Abhi filled her bath upstairs… Simple pleasures make the day. Somehow they always have, for me.

 

We had a fantastic time in Orlando – it has been a while since the three of us traveled together as a family, especially involving plane travel. Looking up from the book I was reading on the plane, I saw Abhi engrossed in his reading and Anji engrossed in hers. We are all so alike – our love for books, for independence and for time and space to just be. It’s one of the reasons I love my family and I feel grateful that we are similar in that way. We are also each different and unique and that’s fun too – to navigate during a vacation and figure out things that each of us likes. Probably, Abhi gets the rough end of the bargain – since he usually goes along with what Anji and I want. But every now and then, he gets what he likes best too – watching a movie or playing a solid game of chess. Simple pleasures make the day.

 

Even though, we did the Disney trip and even saw a rocket launch from the space center, want to know my favorite part? Lounging by the pool, feeling the heat on my skin, watching Anji do the water slide, and dipping into my book. Adventures are fun! But for me, it is always the down time that makes me appreciate everything else and brings me a sense of gratitude and wholeness. That’s all we did, the last day – lounge, swim, shower, get a massage, eat delicious food and yummy key lime pie. Somehow, it was the best day of all…

 

What is it that makes your day? What makes you happy? Did you see clear blue skies today or twinkling stars in the night? Or the smile on the face of an eager child? Or feel the rush of something new? Or the comfort of something old? (like your favorite snuggly pajamas!). Here is an invitation – pay attention when you get happy like that, shining from the inside. It will light up the space inside of you. As Rumi says, “No one knows what makes the soul wake up so happy! Maybe a dawn breeze has blown the veil from the face of God.”

 

With love, S.