Friday 21 January 2022

Happy love (poem)

A dire and fractured happiness, this -

that takes fright and flight with every 

calamitous imagining, every  

unspeakable thought and nightmare. 

With slender threads of hope and yearning, 

I tether you to me; yet there are moments 

when I feel you stretching and straining,

feebly venturing, weakly unyoking. 

Does the rope, taut and staunch,

ever waver in its purpose; or does it

spend its entire life trembling 

with the fear of coming undone?

Sometimes our anchor feels heavy with 

my wanting and apprehension; yet it is adrift 

in a waveless sea, that neither you nor I 

know how to swim in yet.

Love is a weightless word, it lands cursorily

and desultorily on our tongues. 

I don't know where to place my dread,

within the beautiful effervescence of our humanity. 

Monday 3 January 2022

Goals for 2022 and 2021 report card

Since 2019, our family has had a formal goal-setting exercise every December, for the New Year. Since 2020 we expanded to doing a family meeting at the end of every month to review where we are on our goals, how the last month went, what's top of mind of us for the next month, etc. 

Last year had me set relatively modest goals. Here is the report card :)

Report Card 2021 

Learn swimming - I was hoping to resume swimming lessons in 2021 but ever since our health club closed in the pandemic, none of us have been able to go swimming. Reluctantly, I struck this goal off my list when it was apparent it was redundant.

Lose weight- Wanted to lose 6-8 kgs, managed 4.5 kgs in the year. But walked almost every day, worked out (yoga/strength with free weights/mobility work) almost everyday and fitness levels are far higher. So I'm not going to quibble over weight loss :)

Meaningful work portfolio (including my Board work) - Checkmark for this.

(Continue to) paint, sing, write - Painting was a washout. Wrote quite a bit, got published in a poetry anthology, and sang a LOT including several shareable songs and a series for Navarathri. Hope to continue this momentum in 2022.

Ads' college research - Okay-ish. S did all the initial research and my part of the research starts this year.

Connect regularly with friends and family - something we started doing more intentionally in 2020 when we couldn't travel. I reconnected with school and college buddies and with cousins and extended family a lot more in 2021. Hope to continue this good habit going forward as well.

Goals 2022
Continue to work on physical and mental aspects of well-being- This year I want to focus on strength and agility/mobility work. I will continue with my breath work and meditation as well. 
Meaningful work portfolio (including my Board work)
(Continue to) sing, write - have targets for each of these :) 
Ads' college research and applications 


January 1st, 2022. An unseasonably warm day and I spent the first few minutes after waking up inhaling the cool fresh air, watching the soft raindrops soak the ground, and listening to the sweet sound of birdsong. What a positive, uplifting way to welcome the new year! I have been feeling very grateful for the gifts that 2021 has brought to us. The continued good health and good spirits of everyone in close family circles (no Covid cases!). The kids being able to attend school in-person, the freedom to go out to a restaurant and watch a movie without worrying (too much) about the after-effects. The freedom to travel, experience new places, and meet family and friends. Every one of these a precious blessing that I have cherished to the hilt. 

It feels to all of us that 2021 was such a disappointing year, and in many years it was- just without the novelty of 2020. Once again, the pandemic upended lives and families and created an unending saga of frustration and despair. Yet we all got vaccinated (boosted in some cases), accustomed to our different-looking lifestyles, and started limping back to a new normal. Omicron notwithstanding, I feel optimistic that 2022 will be better. 

We spent Thanksgiving in Seattle with my brother and his family, which was really nice. We had vague plans for heading to India for the winter break but that did not materialize and we instead headed to California/Nevada for a vacation in Vegas, Death Valley, and Los Angeles. The kids thoroughly enjoyed wandering through the casinos, playing golf, and visiting Universal Studios Hollywood. We came back home on Christmas Day, and have been spending the rest of the break doing various errands - opening bank accounts for the kids, getting Ads his Covid booster, and a couple of trips to the DMV for acquiring his learner's permit. In addition, I spent time connecting with various friends and cousins etc; something that is becoming an annual ritual and one that I very much enjoy. 

S & I had our annual physical a couple of months ago. All is well except my nemesis, low hemoglobin levels (something I have been struggling with for years), and slightly high triglycerides (a new development). Have been trying to reduce sugars and saturated fats from my diet with a small degree of success. 

I hope to be more frequent with my blogging in 2022. I am proud of how many books I read in 2021 (59 was what I recorded in early December but I finished 2 more by year-end) and hope to continue that streak in 2022 as well.