“Love is a temple, Love a higher law
Love is a temple, Love the higher law
You ask me to enter, But then you make me crawl
And I can’t be holding on, To what you got
When all you got is hurt – U2, “One”
I am not the most religious person. I believe in something. I just don’t always know what that is.
I believe in God. I believe there was a great man named Jesus. I look at the people I admire most in life like Mother Teresa, Mahatma Gandhi, Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama and their grace, dignity and presence have left me no choice but to accept that there is something divine inspiring them.
I will admit that I don’t know what form God takes. Some people believe they do. People have died over what that image might be.
My kids are little toothpicks. Skinny, all lean limbed with very little body fat on them. I don’t like it. I wish they were, I don’t know. Meatier? Chubbier? When they get sick, they quickly lose what little weight they already have and fall into the 0-5 percentile on the charts that they show you at the Doctor’s office.
Those charts are a little silly, don’t you think? A child’s height and weight is going to be some indicator of health, but you can’t abide too much by those charts. I mean, they are comparing my little children to the rest of the American population. Since my background is Indian and my husband’s is Italian and Puerto Rican, it would be much more accurate if they compared my kids to other kids who are:
1/4 Puerto Rican
This has been a confusing weekend. An emotional one. In the wake of Friday’s tragedy, I think many Americans are living in a mixed state of grief, pain, shock, anger and fear. As more stories emerge that give us a small glimpse into what unfolded for the children and teachers inside the school walls, each new detail has been like another shard of glass piercing our collective hearts.
My own reaction when this happened was a deep and utter grief for the families who have been impacted by the tragedy. Because I know that the pain does not end with the passing of 26 citizens of this world. It does not end with the families, the friends and neighbors of those who have died. It does not end with the hundreds of children who were brought to safety and survived. It will not end with the children who were hidden in closets to protect them from the killer on the other side of the door.
Never judge a book by it’s cover.
We all know the expression. The meaning is clear. A book which is beautifully bound, with a richly decorated exterior may be the one that grabs our attention. It may be the one we pick up and bring over to the cash register to buy.
Only to come home and find that the pages inside are hollow. The story and the characters are shallow and one dimensional. And you realize how much better off you might have been picking the other book that you had held in your hands for that short moment, but dismissed because it lacked the shinier, less sparkly cover.
I try not to judge my books that way. Most of my favorite books have nothing compelling on the cover. I have learned over the years how to follow my instincts in picking out what to read. Sometimes the barest of covers are the perfect hiding places for stories of substance.
My daughter, Shaila, has been reading a lot lately. She is reading earlier than I was as a kid, just halfway through Kindergarten. I don’t remember doing much reading until the first grade. Watching her explore words and sounds and hearing her stumble over sentences as she turns the pages of her books brings back vivid memories of finally breaking that impenetrable code. You start out unsure, your steps a little timid as you first start stringing vowels and consonants together. Pretty soon, you are running. Before you know it, flying.
Like magic. But better.
As she reads to me right now, I know she is in those early phases. She stops frequently and looks at me and says, “Mommy, am I doing good?” To which I reply with a proud nod and a small kiss on the forehead, sometimes too overcome with emotion to even say the words.
When I was 6 years old, my parents thought it would be a great idea to bring me to the movie theater to watch this movie they knew I was absolutely dying to see.
Yeah, I know. 3+ hours of Bollywood song and dance that would leave any kid tapping their toes and wanting to dance in the aisles.
Well, not exactly. But I am pretty sure that’s what they lead me to believe.
You rock, Ma and Papa. Really.
If you’ve seen the movie, you know that it starts with Ben Kingsley, an amazingly convincing Gandhi, being shot three times at point blank. At the time, I had no real idea of who this bald, little Indian man was, but I knew that I felt incredibly sad. There was something about his eyes that I will always remember, and no matter what roles Kingsley plays – a part of me will never be able to see past him as anything other than Gandhi.
This post is a departure from my normal shit. Sometimes I need to get serious. Curses have been kept to a minimum (don’t worry, I will still find a way to insert them). Oh and hoo hoo = vagina. Enjoy.
When our son, Nico, was born, John’s best friend, Craig, and his family bought Nico several gifts the day we returned home from the hospital. One of those gifts was a beautiful, plush blue dog blanket that looked so lush I wanted to rub it against my own cheek and fall asleep. What can I say? I was tired. Pushing a baby out of your hoo hoo can be exhausting.
I thought it would be bad form to steal one of Nico’s first gifts, especially since he was only three days old. Let him develop his motor skills first, I reasoned, so he at least has a fighting chance of defending his belongings.
It seems that I am fortunate enough to have a lot of new readers and friends at Masala Chica. I just wanted to be the first to welcome you here. These aren’t fancy digs, but the people around here are intelligent, open-minded, and supportive. There really aren’t any rules. This is a place to comment and express your views. I will not be upset with you unless you call me mean names, make fun of my hair or insult my children (in that order). The same goes with my Facebook page – if you have something to share that you think will be interesting to Masala Chica readers, please feel free to contribute. Remember, no comment is stupid, unless of course it’s really stupid.
I’ve been getting a lot of “Hey Masala!” or “Great post, Masala!” or even “Fuck off, Masala!” This has made me realize that people may not realize that the title of this blog is in no way related to my name.
This is a hard post to write. It’s about something that has bothered me for a while. It’s been in my head, but I haven’t unlocked the door on my thoughts to fully get the words out here until now. I get upset every time I go there. My heart hurts, I get a little achy, my throat gets choked up and the tears well up in my eyes. OH. FUCK. I’m losing it already. See what you made me do? Now I have boogers all over me. I never cry pretty. Where are the damn tissues?
Got ‘em. Anyway, at this point, I will vacillate between drinking and crying, so I decide to make it easy on myself. Do a little bit of both. If I am lucky, I won’t write a dumb ass Facebook status that makes no sense to me (or anybody else, for that matter) in the morning (See Rule #4 of Facebook Rules.)
“Doing what again?” I asked.
“You’re getting into political debates on Facebook.” Oh, shit.
“Are you spying on me?” Marriages are built on trust, buddy.
THIS is exactly why I try to hide everything I do from him so we don’t lose that. Keeping a marriage alive is hard work, no shit.
“I can see it every time you responded to that stupid thread. When are you going to learn?” Um, NEVER.
Ok, so I’m busted. I knew exactly what he meant when he said, “that stupid thread.” After talking a good game in the post I wrote called Facebook Rules, the one where I expertly explain how to successfully navigate the muddy waters of Facebook without losing your mind (and your sanity), I have reverted back to old habits. As always, I am great at doling out the advice, but am not so good about following it myself.