Revitalizing Real life!

There is a ‘R’ in……..Random, Risk, & Romantic……………………..….As also in day 18 of @blogchatterA2Zchallenge2021!

The whole of last year went in fear. This year seems no different.

Numbers have become names. Names have turned into people we know. People we know have turned into close friends and family. There is no family which has not been scarred. Well, almost. And those who have not faced its wrath are literally thumbing their nose at those who warn and advise of reason.

Humanity has reached a new low, especially in my country. There is a sense of doomsday in all actions by individuals. As if they are throwing all ethical and conscious caution to the wind – that so what there is No-tomorrow; so if I behave responsibly or irrationally no one’s going to be around to catch me tomorrow. From delivery agents to service providers. From house help to local vendors. The con agents are at their con-gaming best! I repeat myself which can be safely said for most people, the pandemic has brought out the worst in us as a race of countrymen.

Yet as it all started a year back and we were in total lockdown, the front-line workers were on the ground. The police were battling an unseen, unknown virus plus some stupidity too, each day. Hubby dearest was in office on all days through out. And me to myself at home with zero help. However, each afternoon I would set aside time and bake something, get some refreshing tea ready and fill up all the available thermoses at home with the ginger, masala tea, pack up the freshly baked goodies and dispatch my driver to give it to the police personnel around our area on duty since morning because due to the total lockdown no teashop or snack shop was open.

Out came all the tea flasks and baking for almost 75 police personnel each day was fulfilling….I felt I was doing my bit too. Word spread fast that I would be sending something freshly baked each day with refreshing tea and every outpost added a few more personnel soon!!! The numbers started rising and I had to ask my person to keep the distribution to around 90-100 people only mainly because it was lockdown and my resources were depleting too, moreover my oven was working at full capacity every day.

“Oh yes, I sure am real!!!”, says the cat.
…And then she proves she is! With a turn of her head but perched firmly on a vantage point – the real thing in surreal surroundings!
With the reality submerged in melancholy in the present, this trip was a wonderful and remarkable journey into the past which had been preserved in the present!

Talking of the years gone by or the moments which have become memories, one often remembers certain instants and people. With not all people does one connect. Yet when bonds are made, the reasons remain immaterial, and friendships endure. One such person who simply waltzed into my day, several years ago but with whom I have stayed in touch is Ms. Ritu Sinha, presently a Home Room teacher for Grade 3 in a leading school in Hyderabad.

Ms. Ritu, an educator and a radiant human being!
We have stayed in touch since years and she has always been by my side as I celebrated important moments like my book launch. Love to know such wonderful people!

Ms. Ritu Sinha (far right) @ my second book’s launch – February 2021

Ms. Ritu (far left) @ my first book’s launch – July 2019.

The Group: Wandering Dreamers, as we call ourselves!! (Some members missing in this click)

When she had joined as a kindergarten teacher then, I was in a role which had umpteen other responsibilities and was filling in, in a friend’s (?) school. Simply helping. However, when I ask Ms. Ritu now, whether her profession was her first choice, she categorically answers: “Yes. In a way it could not have been anything else (and while this is bolstered by the formidable intelligence afforded by hindsight, my answers then and today would likely not have been different). I have a love for children and derive my energy from them; simultaneously academia has been ingrained in my mind because of familial connections. Teaching, and therefore, creating the future, is my personal thank you for all that we have received because of academics.”

Lovely and well said!!! What better way to repay back to society than by shaping the future of future?

Ritu was the live wire of the team which I worked with at that time. Along with several other PYT’s who were as gregarious as her, it was a delight to work with them. Never one to have a problem with anything being handed out to her or any responsibility been asked to shoulder, the working with her was pure enjoyment.

Ms. Ritu, Ms. Daksha and Ms. Madhavi – remarkable human beings!

Loved working with them and staying in touch!

From those gone by days when we met and subsequently stayed in touch….respect for each other was always mutual and I learnt so much from them as I hope I could inspire them in some ways.

All of them have done extremely well for themsleves.

Ms. Ritu and Ms. Madhavi remain educators.

(The background with streamers and silhouette cutouts was my creation for the event which we planned, organised and executed)

As with all of us who have been teaching students and trying to make their world a better place, I ask her what she would classify as her biggest learning from her years at “creating the future” with her work? I so loved her response that it makes me proud to have friends like these and such wonderfully balanced individuals around me. “While the nomenclature would imply a Give relationship (of learning) it is actually a Give and Take relationship. The educator learns something every day and in every facilitated session and that makes the challenges of this job worthwhile. The peer group would relate to the occasional sense of frustration bordering on debility about the difficult circumstances, schedules and occasionally kids needing special attention but then a PTM would happen where the parents share their gratitude or the end of class thank you cards from the students or those expectantly pleading eyes asking, ‘will you be teaching me next grade too Ma’am?’, and the negative vibes just wither away.”

Oh yes!! Don’t they? The biggest reward at any time of one’s career in education, is always ONLY this. A grateful parent and a happier child. This is what makes us keep doing it again and again and again. Without a frown, despite the pressures and the killing schedules and sometimes thankless working environments, it is these moments which makes it meaningful. Ms. Ritu concurs and adds, “The kids help you re-create for the morrow. There is, very emphatically, no other profession where your audience and/or clients wait for you with the kind of exuberance, expectations and suppressed energy waiting to be spread. Also, every once in a while, you would have the chance encounter with a past student in a mall; the parents thankful for your contribution and the child deferentially awaiting the ruffle in the hair that would make their week….and few feelings come close to that.”

How wonderfully expressed, indeed!

As educators our journeys as parents become easy too, I feel. We see every stage, every trial, and every hardship of a growing up child and an anxious parent from the other side of the spectrum. Helps us decide, decidedly what we do not want to do with our own kids. Well, at least most of us. Ms. Ritu shares her wisdom as a present-day tip for parents, saying, “Do not create either a baggage of perception or expectations on the child’s mind. Their time is infinitely more difficult than ours and all that is needed is for them is to be shown as many vistas as possible, not pushed into the ones of our choice, for them to be successful.” Take head people to this sanity filled advice. I have been a forever exponent of the thought process that all children find their way in life when guided properly and shown respect in choices and allowed to make decisions based on wisdom from parents and their own expectations, desires, and opinions. Nothing works like trust in your child. In his/her ability to make the right choices and then be responsible for them. Believe me when I say that such young adults are rounded in their attitudes, robust in their thinking, and refreshingly reliable as human beings! I have one in my home and so does Ritu in hers. As do many of my friends and people across the world whom I do not know yet.

“Try and catch up on my TV bucket list and read mythological fiction” – are some of Ritu’s favourite things to do when she is free. Ritu with her daughter Prisha Sinha and below with her husband Mr. Siddhartha Sinha.

Happy children come out of happy environments. And such environments are not built on a heap of green notes or rather monopoly notes (Sadly like our own currency!!) but on the shoulders of happy, contended parents for whom their child’s smile and relaxed peace of mind is the only radiant wealth they aspire for. Ms. Ritu loves to do just that. “Unabashedly become the same age as my daughter and play with her!” Must surely be rollicking and rewarding!

How can one thank one's stars enough?
I have often wondered;
Without friends or family would've been tough,
But without God's love: "Impossible" in one word!!

Never was the grass greener
Either side of my life,
I found my peace as a dreamer,
Looking for utopia amongst living strife.

Rainbows are always the same,
Radiant and resplendent,
Keeping my life real was my aim,
Fulfilled thru people of VIBGYOR hues abundant!! 

The entire month of April, I am blogging from A2Z powered by #BlogchatterA2

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