And though she may be broken, she is not defeated. She will rise unfettered, unbeaten, unimpeded..!

Heard a lot about #MeToo movement in America and around the world. People came up courageously to share what happened with them and pointing the culprit irrespective of their position in the world.
Everyone said, lets hear it and lets investigate it and then punish the culprit. Nothing wrong in that statement.
I feel everyone who have gone through this sexual abuse irrespective of gender, should be heard. Because it is indeed tough and ruthless to a point where they are ready to share about their traumatic life with the world which is like going back and re-living that moment and that is very hard on themselves. For someone to come and share that with the world really needs courage. One must listen to them.

“A stare, a proximity, a smile, a touch – oddly familiar. He knows you wouldn’t speak, he knows you don’t understand enough to speak; me, too!” ~ Nipunya Panda

I feel this era is of awakening for many and I like it when I see people across the world irrespective of which industry they belong, they are coming out and sharing it and pointing the culprit by calling their name and sharing specific incidents, so the world know whats going around behind the big name and fame. This also helps others to be cautious and aware if they are in similar situation. This also many times helps the person whether they are experiencing it as many of them don’t know what is considered as ‘sexual abuse’.

No one has any rights to abuse anyone, irrespective of what relationship they have with the individuals.

Last year the awakening happened in India too when Tanushree Dutta brought Nana Patekar’s name under the #MeToo movement and how everyone supported her and encouraged women to speak up. In fact there’s a committee also they created to protect women’s rights in film industry where thorough investigations will be done on the accused until then they will be banned from the industry etc. I think this is a positive moment and that is what need to happen, we must encourage people to speak up and not suffer in dark.

“There’s going to be a violent awakening we don’t want. The question is, can we wake up?” ~ Anna Deavere Smith

I know Indian film industry is such that many idolize the actors as their god and so, it is difficult for some to even think of such allegations that is made because they see these people through the characters that they create, or they act and hence in their mind, its a lie!
But then who are we to decide that? We were not there while the survivor was actually experiencing the torture or abuse and hence the fair judgement would be to listen to the survivor and do an investigation on the accused that has been called out.

Recent allegation on Rajkumar Hirani by one of his assistant director came up and what a twist in the game. Everyone speaking about how can he be? He is so good, innocent, too good to do anything wrong and he has no flaws and what not.

I mean, I can imagine he did some great work in the film industry by brining great movies but that doesn’t give a certificate for his character.
More over, he can be so good that he may even know how people will trust him and not the survivor!!!
A person’s character cannot be always judged only by his work.

I would have had more respect for the Indian film industry folks- who are supporting Rajkumar Hirani, if they would have said- let the formal investigation take place as things can happen to anyone.

Not every talented person is a saint and I agree not every talented person is a criminal mind either. But it would have been better if this was left to the necessary officials to take care of in the right manner than giving character certificate to Rajkumar Hirani.

“He scrolled through the social media, his fingers lingering on the keyboard, “me too” *pause* Delete Delete Delete. The fear of his #MeToo being judged differently from the others stifled yet another cry for help.” ~ Srijan

My take on this, even though I don’t know this person personally other than watching his movies, he should cooperate with the investigation and then let the result prove whether he is innocent or not.
Entire film industry is kind of stuck on his fame since he is a big shot in the industry, everyone is trying to save their future by being good in his book, I guess!

By defending him people are blocking the avenues of investigation.

“There’s more to our species than we see in the mirror.”

~ Dawn

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There is always some madness in love …!

Love is a very beautiful word with a beautiful meaning, isn’t it?

Whether the love is for your beloved, your parents, siblings, friends, animals, your children and so many more they differ in the sense the expression of each type of love can differ.

I remember when my daughter long back went for her science camp for 3 days and as usual I told her to enjoy this time. But she says I cried when she came back…! Well, even today she teases me for that and I make joke out of it that actually I cried because you came back!!!

“The moment we cry in a film is not when things are sad but when they turn out to be more beautiful than we expected them to be” ~ Alain de Botton

All that is fun and now after many years my son went for his science camp for 3 days. I have not let him go alone anywhere until this time. We never encouraged sleepover for our kids as parents. It’s not that we don’t understand that or know that kids enjoy but thinking of other issues we always avoided. Kids have done sleepover with friends where we as parents are also present there.

Hence, when my son was going for his science camp I had all the typical motherly worries, will he be able to find things out there, will he be able to manage himself etc..! But then I said well he has to manage no matter what because I can’t go and help so why worry and get stressed!

“In order to move on, you must understand why you felt what you did and why you no longer need to feel it” ~ Mitch Albom

Though at home everyone missed him, we as parents and his sister but it was only our dog Reyna who actually expressed it by holding on to his clothes and sleeping on them.

He had left on Tuesday and today he came back. Me and my husband were waiting for the time and also the school notification about their arrival so we can go and pick him up.
The wait was done after couple of my meetings and then when I got the text message from my son’s school, we both went to receive him.

I was really not sure how my reaction would be because I was normal and eager to see him and hear all his stories. The moment I saw my son’s face in the middle of his other schoolmates, tears filled in… is this love? The moment he came to me and I hugged him I started crying more.

When they are far you miss them because you love them but when they are with you then? Then also it’s an expression of love through tears conveying that, I missed you!

“There is nothing as powerful as mother’s love, and nothing as healing as a child’s soul”

~ Dawn

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end. … !

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I want to wish everyone a very happy new year 2019!

This is my first post in this year and I hope I can be more active this year as last year I changed to a new job and it needed more of my attention from process implementation and leading for team to adapt it. Hoping this year things will much aligned so I can spend time in writing and doing my exercise.

As the year was ending, things seemed like working for me as I thought so… with related to work, colleagues and at family front. New job didn’t make me stressed in fact I enjoyed the way I could give my sincere time to the job that I chose after 6 years of comfortableness. It gave me a change of experience with work, new learning, new beginning and meeting different people from different domain. I am enjoying this change, one should always be a student only then we will be open to learn and accept that we don’t know everything and even if we know something based on our learning and experience, it should only bring humbleness.

“You may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing that we call a ‘failure’ is not the falling down, but the staying down.” ~ Mary Pickford

One thing is clear that for new beginnings you don’t have to wait for new year, you can make new beginnings anytime and its all up to you and your willingness. If there’s a will there is a way- and I do believe in this quote.
Since my new beginning started last year…by the time Christmas holidays came up I was totally exhausted and this break was much needed. Visiting Vegas was more or less a relaxation as there was no set agenda as I have been making frequent trips to Vegas previously and this was after a five years gap.

“Food is the ingredient that binds us together.” 

Santa Barbara was something I was looking forward with some more relaxation and more time with nature. Exploring different restaurants was one of the key activity, and so did visited different cuisines such as Indian restaurants Tamira and Bibi Ji – I won’t say they are Indian restaurant but it is more or less a fusion for West. There was another place which I found it cool called Public Market, initially we thought its a grocery shopping place but we were looking for Empty bowl gourmet noodle bar and it took us to this Public Market place which has many different cuisines serving food and I felt that was the best place where all kinds of people came together to eat different food under one roof – I loved the food and the concept of this place, something worth visiting at least for once.
I am a foodie and hence this was an amazing journey to explore some of those things.
New Year is here and frankly speaking I have no new plans and resolutions because I don’t believe in those. If you need to make a change you don’t have to wait for the year to start, it can be done anytime and that You can decide!
For me, this new year is more to be cozy and be home and I blame it all on the weather and the holiday times… where it spoiled my routines with late nights and late waking up and breaking all rules…! I know I will roll-up my sleeves but will wait until next week.. 😉

Until then I wish everyone a good day, month, and year with new hope, aspirations, love and peace!

“Live, Love, Eat”

~ Dawn

Time moves in one direction and —> memory in another <—

I had this opportunity to watch Tamil movie – 96 and much thanks to my hubby who actually put up a review about this movie and that’s when came to know about the existence of this movie.

This is a story about school-time crush and how we move on in life and that crush still remains in your heart but they never get together in life, at least in this movie its like that.
The movie is good and what I liked about it is that in this the crush or love is from both sides and hence the loss of being together in life is sensed more and as an audience you feel sorry for them because no matter how many years have gone, at the reunion the love or crush is still at the highest intensity and yet they go back to their lives respecting what they have committed for.
This movie actually brought lot of my school-time memories and hence I want to write this post in remembering all those boys who had a crush on me and some I don’t even know at that time and some I came to know later in life when they got connected with me on social media.
Actually, I never had any crush or love in school or college time. But I do remember one which came in as a proposal in life later and I came to know very late about it.

“Some memories are unforgettable, remaining ever vivid and heartwarming!” ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin

This was when I was in 10th grade and I was visiting my Grandma from my Mom’s side. I remember I used to be more hanging out with my Aunt, who used to visit her friend’s place who was a widow with two boys. One was way older and the other seemed like in college or high-school. The boy I will call here as Madhu, who would silently gaze at me when I used to visit their house with my Aunt and he would never utter a word with me but would talk to my Aunt. I used to be a shy and scary as I used to find it a bit awkward visiting from different state to this one.

The visits were more and so I happened to meet Madhu more often and his stare would make me a bit awkward and I used to ask my Aunt about Madhu. Slowly things started getting in such a way that when I am at my front door at my Aunt’s place or my Uncle’s place he could see me through his front deck, that’s the house was close.
I remember once I was walking down the road with my cousin and he waited for me till evening until I returned home.
He used to sometimes follow us when I am going with my Aunt and used to engage my Aunt in talks. As much praise I have heard from my Aunt about him, that much I felt good about him as he was serious about his studies and he is sincere and well behaved.. all this only made me think of him as a good person.
That vacation went by quick and I remember the last day he ran after my Aunt asking about us, if we have left and my Aunt said they will be leaving tomorrow morning and he just came up with some excuse to come to our home. He was there for long time staring at me and I was kind of smiling as I think I felt that he will miss us.

“Time flies, but memories last forever.”

Things moved on and after couple of years when I came back again on vacation, I didn’t see him at all. I got curious and I asked my Aunt about Madhu and she said oh, he joined Army so he is not here in town. That made me miss him but I felt good that he is focused on his career and life.
Time was flying like a kite, I got busy with my high-school and then college and so forth. On my every visit I used to ask my Aunt about Madhu and I used to get news that he was tired of Army life and he escaped from there and so now cops are looking for him. I used to worry, now what? And my Aunt would say they will take him back and he will be completing his Army training as one shouldn’t be running away from the training.
I used to worry and think about it when I used to visit my Grandma’s place but when I used to come back to my home the usual life kicked in and I got busy with my life.
Dating concept was not something that we had and hence, there was nothing like that I could think of him or any other guy during that time. Anyway, I got busy with life and after many years I went back to visit my Aunt with my 4 year old daughter.
This was the time when I was asking about all the people that I have known since my childhood and my Aunt would give me all the updates about the neighboring people and I brought his name…where’s Madhu? How is he doing? Did he go back to Army? What is he doing?

“Good times become good memories and bad time become good lessons..”

The answer that I got from my Aunt was painful and shocking too. My Aunt said, they left this place as they sold their property and moved to a different place. His elder brother is married and he lives somewhere close by but Madhu had come here with his mother to ask for marriage with your parents. This was something I initially couldn’t believe. Because, even though I thought he liked me when we used to see each other during my visits, but I never thought that he was so serious about me. I got curious and asked, when did they meet my parents?
My Aunt said, during the time when your Mom and Dad were visiting here and you were busy with college, during that time they visited here and said their son Madhu likes their daughter and would like to marry with everyone’s blessings. I was shocked but was sad and it was a mixed emotion.
I said and?
Aunt said, your Dad said we don’t intend our daughter to get married to an Army guy. And even if we do want to then we don’t want to send our daughter to this place.

I was completely shocked and felt like a Bollywood movie where the girl’s father is always playing the villain role. All I could imagine in my mind was Madhu’s Mom because she was a very respectful woman in the area and she had raised her two sons without her husband. She was well educated and was working in a good government establishment. I was really feeling sad. I looked at my Aunt and said, is this real? How come then no one said anything about this till date?

“Sometimes I just wish that I could fast forward time, just to see if it’s all worth it in the end.”

My Aunt looked at me and said, well he loved you since school time and I even asked him that have you ever talked to her and his answer was – no!
But he loved you and he thought when the right time comes he would ask your parents permission as he felt you are not the kind of girl who would love and write love letters and continue the relationship..!

That incident made me feel very sad and I feel for Madhu even though it was not love from my side, but the sincerity of him killed my ego. I don’t know if meeting with him and talking to him could give a closure to this but …this has left me with those painful moments yet when I walk through the memory lanes, the moments of visiting his home, his stare, he bringing stuff at home for me and all those opportunities where he wouldn’t miss to see me, even if it was a glance… have tickled my heart at the same time.

I feel life is full of surprises and yet you never know who would come to rescue when you are in need… it could be someone from your past life… or someone new?

“The best portion of your life will be the small, nameless moments you spend smiling with someone who matters to you”

~ Dawn

Not every sorry deserves an “It’s Okay” in return!

It’s so true that one person has to be courageous and come out and then others automatically gain the confidence and courage to come and share their story.
Yes, I am talking about the #MeTooMovement that has taken like a huge storm and I hope its just the beginning.

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As I was reading news and on social media about women being harassed at work place or even looked at as a piece of meat, it just gives you to reflect about so many things that has happened in your own life.
Women has the toughest job to do and that is if she doesn’t want to be dependent on anyone financially and she takes up a job in a company – then its basically means you’re on your own. Because if you complain then the response is ‘you better stay at home’.

I know there are many women who have been home makers for this reason. When a woman at work is harassed by her manager and she tries to stop him many times and yet he never stops. It reaches to a point where your colleagues ask you if you’re okay because you keep going into you manager’s room who keeps calling you in his room for 1 on 1s and you end up going each time because each time he says its about the project and this stress you share at home, it’s not necessary that she will get a support from her loved ones saying, lets talk about it or do something about it. They will still let her go to that same workplace, to that same manager and its that same environment where she is being sent.

“We have to have the courage to tell people when their behavior or the way they talk makes us uncomfortable.”

Financial support is something a woman tries to do for her family where her thinking is mainly to support her husband and family. When a husband doesn’t have a job or has a business which doesn’t bring in much income the support system is on the woman. At such time when she is being harassed by her manager at work, what options she has: tell at home and see what they suggest? If there is no suggestion then you know what it means, or you change your job, but whats the guarantee the next manager is going to be good? You’re taking a chance but until you find another job you’re stuck with the present manager because your family depends on you.

“At the end of the day, don’t forget that you’re a person, don’t forget that you’re a mother; a wife and a daughter.” ~ Indira Nooyi

Women will suffer for her family and why only women? Because women are raised that way from the beginning. They are taught you’re born strong so do all the hard work and yet any issue comes just be quiet and move on because women are supposed to not complain and if it’s about men then oh! no!!! never complain about them because women are such a piece of meat that they will be blamed but men won’t be blamed and the bad name will come to the women.
She shared with few friends and they said, ‘Complain it to Human Resources, but then no idea if the next manager wants to hire you because this will be in the system. They might keep the manager because he is an employee and then they might fire you as you are a contractor”.

“Show respect even to the people who don’t deserve it; not as a reflection of their character, but as a reflection of yours.” ~ Dave Willis

Here the harassment from the manager and no security or help from husband – both are men and what should this woman do? If anyone has an answer then do comment!

“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.” ~ Martin Luther King Jr.

~ Dawn

Women’s empowerment is intertwined with respect for human rights..

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I am writing this post today, because I feel we are responsible to fail humanity.

When I was growing up and used to hear stories from people and olden times, I always felt that, oh, that was then! Not anymore!!!

“I think women are foolish to pretend they are equal to men, they are far superior and always have been.” ~ William Golding

But even today when I hear women treated like an object whether it’s in under developed country or a developed country – the story of women is in bizarre!

The male dominating society is creeping in like a weed everywhere and they just use women in whatever way they want to and just dump it and don’t even feel ashamed of their deeds. I mean will they be doing the same way with their mother and daughter too? I am assuming that those two relationships they might be holding too close to their heart so can their in humanness be justified if they think from that point?

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I had met this young, courageous woman sometimes back and even I didn’t realize if I had any role to play in inspiring her. But recently I heard some happiness entering in her lonely life where she would get a company in life and a father figure for her teenage son. I mean when you’re meeting a single mother and/or single father, there’s certain expectation that even as a society people would expect.

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The lady Rose was finally happy that her life which had a very bad and traumatic marriage life with her first one. She had lost hope and faith with the men’s world when she found this guy Jordan, who has a grown-up son too. He meets them, take them home and fulfills the ceremony of engagement and then he ends up to his friend with who’s instruction he wouldn’t do anything. And this person who is supposed to be the friend of Jordan suggests him to dump the girl as you can get many women to sleep with so why you need to marry one?

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What an evil thought? If this is how the mind works then imagine how he might be looking at women in his surroundings whether its his work place, community and social gathering events, his kid’s school or for that say his wife’s women friends? I mean such a filthy guy he would be that I felt as a woman he should be exposed so that we don’t want another #MeToo moment to come in any women’s life.

“A stare, a proximity, a smile, a touch-oddly familiar. He knows you wouldn’t speak, he knows you don’t understand enough to speak; Me too!” ~ Nipunya Panda

Jordan one day sends message on text saying he is breaking up with her. Poor thing Rose, who has no clue why he is breaking up? What she did that she is being punished except that she knows the previous day he went for a hike with his so-called friend.

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I have only thing to say to Rose, which is tough for her to handle because she loved Jordan and her son also loved him. Poor kid is going through counseling and therapy sessions as he is still not able to digest why Mom is crying, why Jordan will never come to our home?

“Her innocence, to him, was that sexual toy which he broke many times and every time fixed it with chocolates and ice-cream.” ~ notypriyanka

Rose, someone tried to play with your wings and while doing that they tried to break your wings. Hence, you’re bruised but I will say get well soon and be thankful that you’re not ending up like Jordan’s previous wives who have either divorced him or have embraced death as by suicide. You need to be there for your son and that too a strong one so that your son can learn too that this world is full of horrible men and he needs to change that face by being a gentleman!

“Educate a man and you educate an individual. Educate a woman and you educate a family.” ~ A. Cripps

I feel it’s a good riddance in this form for Rose that she didn’t have to lose her life, her son and her hard-earned money and house. Sometimes awakening happens in different ways and experiences.

Women have to unite to make sure men don’t miss use innocent women and just don’t disrespect when they are vulnerable.

~ Dawn

There is no certainty; there is only adventure ;)

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While growing up I never thought I will leave the place which I call as home and hence the thought of blind date with the world is something not even came in my dream.

But as I started going to college and started reading things the curiosity bug bit me too. I often thought of just going to some place and keep traveling because at the end of the day what do you need – something to eat, a safe place to sleep and stay and then keep moving.

“The biggest  adventure you can take is to live the life of your dreams” ~ Oprah Winfrey

I had many times discussed this with my school friends about dreaming of living in a place in a small hut where in the backside of the hut we have some vegetable garden with veggies and in front of the house are the hot springs where we cook most of our food and eat and sleep under the sky gazing stars and my Moon.

I know dreams are so beautiful and when someone says go live your dream – that’s really an action which once taken then you’re on your own.

I also took such a blind date with the world and it was in the year of 1997 when I took a one-way ticket to Toronto, Canada. I had gone through the process of immigration where I got my Permanent Residential visa and I headed to this blind date with Canada where I have no friends and/or family. I will share the journey which now I look back and feel good about taking that blind date with Canada because it changes my whole perspective about how I look at world now.

“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.” ~ Jawaharlal Nehru

I remember I had only clothes in my suitcase as I had heard its very cold in Canada and so I landed in the month of April assuming it will be spring and may not be cold. Surprisingly, it was still snowing that year and I had my mixed feelings towards that. It’s beautiful how nature itself deals with all these seasonal changes and how people adapt to it too.

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My journey was a struggle in the beginning because when you land at any place which is not your home, you start your bill from that moment. Not only that, there’s a strangeness in the beginning and also cultural shocks which makes you to be more cautious. I somehow made use of the newspaper ads which helped me to get the rental basement space for me even though the job was still far from me. I have met many people during this struggle time and to be frank only Indians took advantage of my situation. Others, they offered help without expecting anything in return. I am not sure if I should call that out but that’s one of the experiences which happened not once but number of times.

People tried to convert me to Christianity, so they can get money from their institution and to me they suggested we will help you with the job, which was totally incorrect, and I am glad I didn’t fall for it. One thing I knew that there are no free lunches so some of the proverbs that I learnt in school did actually help me from not making mistakes.

“Life is an adventure, it’s not a package tour.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

But then in all this, you tend to find yourself safe in the custody of your race and people and that’s what lead me to suffer. The moment I freed my mind from that, I felt a relief and freedom from all tie-ups, taboos and everything. It’s all about your mind believe me. I decided to move out of renting in someone’s house and went to rent a one-bedroom apartment where I had my freedom and independence to live. It not only gave me my space, but it also taught me how to not look to lean all the time.

I found a small job as a part-time cashier with minimum wage, but again it was the mind which said this is not what you came here for and so I decided in 4 months I need to move on from here. And believe me sometimes you go to make your decision from your mind and not heart, because only then you can do things that your heart wants.

One after the other jobs and finally I ended up in a Bank and it completely changed my life, from an HR field to technology field the merge was amazing, and the transition was such that I figured out my actual interest which is people and technology that enables people to do things. I guess the blend of this helped me to move from one company to the other and one place to the other, and now I am in California, USA.

I think we should all blind date with the world, so we understand people and life better. Sitting in a comfort zone can make anyone do anything that they feel is right but actual life is in traveling and understanding the life of different people. So, I love this blind date which made me to marry to traveling :).

It’s true that blind date is not always about happy ending, because many ups and downs are there which occurred in my life too because of meeting wrong people at the wrong time and place but the better lesson you learn and move out from there. Because life always gives you another chance and that’s up to us to see and grab it.

“Life experience is what defines our character, even if it means getting your heart broken or being lied to. You know, you need the downs to appreciate the ups. Going on the adventure or taking that risk is important.” ~ Nev Schulman

As I was getting comfortable with my date in Toronto, I decided to do another blind date with San Francisco, in California USA. Let me tell you, it was not a very happy one. I feel when there is a change, it does bring some turbulence, but one got to hold on to it and stay strong that’s what I did. Initial days I didn’t like US. It was something like I started comparing between Canada and USA. Everything I related it that way, whether its people, place, behavior or even the process in banking etc. I realized I was missing Canada very much because it was my first blind date with whom I fell in love, so the first love is always there as special in my heart. I guess no one will understand that because that journey I had taken alone and every corner of the place, city, people have made an impact on me. It is difficult to not be connected with a place where I started from scratch and built my home finally.

Over the period, I went back to visit and be at every place that I lived in, walked around and worked around and after that when I came back to California it was kind of be at peace.

“Life would be pretty boring if I didn’t explore. It’s about letting my ears take me on an adventure to soak in everything I can.” ~ Trombone Shorty

I would like to go for another blind date and I am just going to go for that soon!

~ Dawn