0

Best Ever!

I was vacationing for the last four days and I can easily call it the best ever vacation I ever had. Guess where and what was I doing? Locked up in a room, all by myself, with just the things I love, doing nothing but sleeping and eating and playing of course – again, the best ever vacation of my life.

Remember I was telling that there is a chance for me to be in Chennai and with Thomi for the weekend in my last post? Thankfully, that trip happened. S was planning for his annual trip to Sabarimalai. I immediately chose to be with my sister and Thomi for the weekend. Coincidentally, BIL had to go on a trip as well. With our parents themselves on a trip, it was just me and my sister with Thomi for the last four days and we had a ball.

Although I met Thomi only a couple of weeks back, she didn’t recognize me immediately after seeing me. She did give her trademark smile but soon, got a little cranky. It didn’t help one bit with me landing there at midnight. After getting fed, she was drowsing to sleep but suddenly got up again. From then on, it was quite a task to put her back to sleep. She kept looking from me to her amma to ensure she was safe. We tried rocking her, carrying her around, singing to her but she wouldn’t budge. At 2 in the night, she finally fell asleep. From the next morning, she was herself again playing non-stop with me🙂

I have realized that my little sister is not so little anymore. I knew this right after Thomi came into our lives but to see my little one take up responsibilities she has never had before, I was beaming with pride every minute. We were literally locked up in a room for it was crazily hot outside. She wouldn’t let me do as much as get my own water. She cooked my favorite things, took care of the household stuff, fed and cleaned Thomi all the while being tried herself. In spite of it, she wouldn’t let me raise even a finger and gave me my perfect time-off. Whatever happened to my little sister, who always kept tailing me while growing up?! This is quite a transformation but at the same time, she keeps reminding me that she is the first apple of my eyes and Thomi is the new comer, whenever I give Thomi extra love🙂

Coming back to Thomi, we both bonded really well over these last few days. We both played a lot, inventing a lot of fun, silly games – laughing quite a lot. Thomi would show me all her antics, by kicking and pulling the toys from her play gym and I would show my antics by singing and dancing for her. We did everything that made us laugh. Every few minutes, Thomi would demand a room tour and a visit to the mirror. My Amma would never let us take Thomi to the mirror but we broke all the rules. Thomi was super fascinated with the mirror. At times she would look at the mirror image and wonder where the sound is coming from me, when I talk to her. At times, she would grow shy of the tiny baby peeking at her from the mirror. When her Amma was busy with work, we followed her and flashed our brightest smiles. At other times when Thomi was asleep, the sister and I caught up on our girly, sisterly talks🙂

I got so set into Thomi’s pattern, right from giving her baths to dressing her up to knowing when she is about to pee. Except for the one time when Thomi hit her forehead over my tooth and when I accidentally dropped a rattle over her hand, Thomi was super happy to be around me. The first day when I bathed, she kept looking at me as if to tell how I am doing it differently and from next day, she got set into that as well🙂 Thomi has a strong sense of smell I guess. The moment we sit with our food, she would wake up immediately and look from our hands to our mouths. Even after 10-15 minutes, if we are still eating, she would make low noises to register her protest🙂

It fascinates me to no end how a tiny little baby like Thomi knows when we praise her or call her with different cute names. She showers a lot of smiles when we kiss her! As soon as she is awake, she would try to find us and smile at us. When we reciprocate her smile and call her out, the pride on her face cannot be explained. She not only co-operates for everything we try on her to dress her up, but enjoys the process quite a lot. As a result of that, we have dressed her in a lot of different costumes as well as hairstyles *another broken rule* and clicked a lot of her pictures🙂 One thing that she hates as of now is the camera. She gets restless as soon as she spots the camera but we are hoping it is sure to change, given she has got 50% of our family genes😀

I am missing my sister as well as Thomi terribly and even after telling every single story to S and sharing it here, I feel like I have lot more to tell. Today if someone asks what do I want right away, I would ask for some more of the lovely time I spent over the last four days! It doesn’t help that Thomi had a sad face as we were getting into the lift and that tiny face keeps popping in front of me every minute now. But I know this trip was a beautiful, memorable trip and few days down the lane, we would all meet up again and continue to make memories. Until then, I have the pictures!🙂

 

6

Thomi @ 0.5

The little darling our family completed 5 months and stepped into her 6th today. This morning when I saw her picture, I was like really?! REALLY? It seems like only yesterday I saw her tiny being in our too big hands, not knowing how to even drink her milk. And suddenly she is into her 6th month. Time sure does fly very fast.

Over the last few weeks, I desperately made attempts to come back to this blog only to fail miserably. Every single day I make a mental note of things I could blog about, except that I never really did come here. Yesterday this girl asked me why have I not been blogging much and that got me thinking. And since I am down with a terrible flu and fever, I wanted comfort. What’s more comforting than coming over to my blog and talking about my Thomi🙂

So, Thomi has grown a lot from the tiny baby that she was. I have particularly named her “Action Heroine Bujjiku” *obviously inspired from Kuttetan’s movie Action Hero Biju* Bujjiku is one of the many nicknames I have given Thomi. She is this drama queen and does everything in her control to gain her amma’s attention. Her amma has to go only for a few secs for Thomi to break into a wail, with no tears what so ever. The second she sees her amma, she laughs so hard as if to say – got you!😀 She also does this to scare her Ammuma from dressing her up.

Thomi loves a house tour every hour. She needs someone to carry her so that she could inspect the whole house and check if everything is in place. It’s funny how she asks for it. One minute she would be lying down like a good baby and the next minute, she would be making these tiny noises telling us to show her around. Sometimes she visits Thathayya in the hall, looking at him playing mobile games and the other times she visits Ammumma in the kitchen, looking at her cook meals.

Thomi has a signature smile and she gives one for anyone. Be it the neighbor or the servant maid or the family members or the nurses or doctors or even strangers. All one has to do is make eye contact with her, that’s all. She would shower you with her most beautiful of the smiles🙂

Thomi is generally a happy child *touchwood* She wakes up smiling *touchwood* Except for the times she is down with something, she plays and keeps herself busy. One of her favorite pastime is to shove both her hands into her mouth. Yes, both the hands and not even fingers. When she has successfully put most of her right hand inside, she would slowly bring her left hand in. Obviously her mouth isnt big enough for one hand but Thomi doesn’t realize it and is still trying to perfect this art. Also, she doesn’t suck her fingers yet. And even if she does rarely, it is with her left hand. Could be a leftie in the making?! Sister and I are waiting to find out🙂

I love taking pictures of Thomi. The sister has made a lot of stuff for Thomi and we dress her up in new clothes, click a lot of pictures. **I should probably do a post on these handmade stuff the sister has been making, I couldn’t be more proud of her** So Thomi poses for a few pictures without realizing what is happening and then stops posing. Really. She gives the weirdest expressions after noticing the camera in my hand. Of course that doesn’t stop me from clicking her pictures😀

Thomi had her first mall trip last to last weekend when we were in Chennai. She was decked up head to toe, covered in different accessories. Being a Sunday, the mall was super crowded. Thomi had so much looking at the colorful lights and the music and all the people around. In the lift when people smiled at her, she made cute noises talking upto them in her baby language. Looking at the crowd we were worried that she would get cranky but she was so good. Her Thathayya got her new anklets while Thomi had fun looking at the bright lights in the jewelry shop. After an hour of nonstop gazing and soaking in the environment, she fell asleep in her Ammumma’s arms just like that. All in all, we braved an overcrowded mall with Thomi and came back safe!

There might be tiny chance that I could stay for a couple of days with the sister and Thomi next week. Please God please.. make it happen already!

Here is a glimpse of Thomi’s little feet and her new anklets🙂

Thomi

3

Life after death..

What would I tell that friend who lost her mom all of a sudden over the weekend? That I have been only thinking of her ever since I heard the news, and that even though I never knew her mom, she has been in my thoughts? Wherever I turn, there are words – of different types and lengths. Suggest me one word that I could use to comfort my friend for I can’t seem to find any.

Time and again, I keep thinking how young she is. And that it is not her time to go at all. Then I see my friend’s whatsapp profile picture. There she is. So beautiful – full of calm and composure. Motherly. And then it hits me again. I have never met her and have not spoken a word with her. And yet, it hits close to home. I try to put myself in my friend’s position and immediately, the pain shoots up multiple folds. And then, selfishly I console myself by imagining my mom’s face. Immediately, guilt entraps me for having such a thought.

I know my friend would get stronger in a few days’ time but will it be the same again? Will it be the same for anyone who has lost their loved one? It can never be.

There is still a void in my life, a space that was once full is now empty. Something that can never be filled again. Every time I think of Thathi, I also think of how it would be if he were to live today. How happy he would have been, to see me have this life. I can only wish and be content with the happy memories. But then, I have all the other significant people of my life still around me. And I know I should really be thankful for that. However, does the same thought come across when you are mad at someone?! That none of us are going to live forever and fighting over petty things is worth nothing? I don’t think so. Why is grown up life so very complicated? Sigh.

Of late, I have been hearing a lot of bad news. For a person who thinks and overthinks stuff, it has not been very easy. Everything together has been weighing me down and I had nowhere to turn but here. Sorry if this post makes no sense – my raw thoughts put together.

6

Milestones

Milestones are important. Even in our mundane day-to-day life, we need milestones to measure ourselves. When I was down with Sciatica, if I could walk ten minutes at a stretch I considered it my first milestone. Later, when I could push myself to walk at a certain speed that became my next milestone. Today, if I can keep up with my regular tasks while managing the work stress every single day that in itself is a milestone for me.

With Thomi in our lives, the word ‘Milestone’ got a little more personal for all of us. Thomi was a fighter baby even when she was the womb. I could call her our miracle baby too. I don’t want to talk about everything my sister went through right from the time of conception to delivering Thomi, but it was not a mean task. It was a difficult pregnancy and more than anything, Thomi is what made it better for all of us. There were many a times, all of us were down emotionally. As much as a baby news can bring happiness, a small glitch is enough to send waves of tension. Seeing my little sister suffer hard, time and again, we could do nothing but pray. In the end, with Thomi in our hands we couldn’t ask for anything better.

From a baby, what expectations can you have? Nothing. With our little Thomi coming few weeks earlier than expected, on top of the initial scares, we were just happy she was all normal. She was an active baby right from day one and that was more than enough for all of us considering her pre-mature birth and low birth weight. It was around her third month, my sister was getting worried a bit. Thomi was every bit normal, unlike what the doctors had predicted earlier. But she wouldn’t look at us directly, a milestone required at that age. I tried talking positively to my sister, giving her all sorts of explanations to keep her worry at the bay. During one of the regular checkups with the Paed, Thomi did not respond to bright light as well and again, that was enough to put the new mom in misery. All the while, getting scared myself, I tried to remain calm over this. Not all babies are one and the same. Not everyone attains their milestones at the same time or as per the rule book. But due to some circumstances, we had to take Thomi’s milestones – atleast the eye contact and smile very seriously.

The darling that Thomi is, started looking at us in the eye and smiling at us directly – after getting us worked up unnecessarily for over three weeks. Sigh. What a relief it was. That really was Thomi’s first milestone. Ever since, she smiles at anyone and everyone.

Today, she had her second milestone. Thomi rolled over for the first time this morning. She had been trying to turn to her side for the past two weeks. Everytime she tries to roll over, her hands come in the way and she would be left wondering what to do with them🙂 At times, she would get busy looking at her fingers, while forgetting to roll over. This morning however, she managed to roll over surprising and startling herself at the same time. While she could remove her right arm, her left arm was still stuck under her tummy and she couldn’t remove it herself! Lucky for me, my sister was taking a casual video of Thomi and that’s when she rolled over for the first time! We have it taped😀 Ever since, she has not stopped rolling over, trying to lift her head. It seems super cute while she is doing all this, as if a tiny earthworm is ploughing out a lot of soil😀

Traditionally in Telugu households, every milestone is celebrated with a delicacy prepared at home. And it is very interesting to notice how these things are carried through generations. For anyone interested, here is what Amma shared with us. With every baby in our family (including us), all these were prepared and shared with family & friends. I just love how these names rhyme in Telugu and how the families have been celebrating baby milestones right from the olden days🙂

  • Navvithe, Nuvvundalu ( First Smile, Til Laddu)
  • Chonga ku, Chakkiralu (First Drool, Chakli/Muruku)
  • Borlapadithe, Bobatlu (First Roll Over, Poli/Puran Poli)
  • Pakithe, Payasam (First Crawl, Kheer)
  • Gadapa datithe, Garelu (First time crossing over house entrance, Vada)
  • Palukulaki, Chilakalu ( First Word, Andhra special sugary sweet)
  • Adugulaki, Ariselu (First Step, Adhirasam – a sweet made from rice flour and jaggery)
  • Allariki, Chillara (First time being naughty, coins)
4

Ratatouille**

After the roaches and zards, recently a rat joined in on the party in our house. It all started a few days ago, soon after we were back from our Chennai trip. The moment I stepped into the house, I noticed the fallen photo frame and a few other stuff from the book shelf. Thinking to myself how could they have fallen down on their own in a fully closed house, I decided to leave it for that moment.

The next day as I stepped into the kitchen, I noticed something strange. A lot of wood chippings on the floor. Again, I thought to myself how could cockroaches do such damage unless there is an army of them on the other side of closed kitchen cabinets. Dumbly, I left the matter for that moment again and got along with my morning chores.

On the same day, I had to step into the pooja room to get something and saw a black sock inside. It’s been so many days I properly took a look our pooja room and wondered why would someone put a sock inside. I made a mental note to check with S, if he was playing football inside the house with odd objects, as usual.

Fast forward to a couple of days, I opened up the potato bag to see one heavily attacked potato. By then I was pretty sure there must be an unwelcome visitor in the house. What I couldnt imagine was how could it have come in. What awaited me the next day could disgust a lot of you. *sorry in advance* In the kitchen, there was a trail of small pellets left behind by this unknown creature. Since the husband had just gone to sleep, I had force myself to clean it all. Without actually seeing this thing, I couldn’t do anything much.

And then the weekend happened. It was something I was totally not prepared for. As we were in a hurry to leave Chennai the week before, I had rolled up all the washed clothes and put them in a heap in our guest bedroom. It was time to get to that task. As S and I kept folding the clothes, we again saw those small pellets (you-know-what) all over the bed. S was pretty convinced it was a small rat. While we were arguing, I picked up the last piece of cloth and without actually looking at it, felt it first while folding. The next moment I thought to myself why I have picked up a rag cloth and what is it doing in the pile of washed laundry. It was fully torn. One close look at it, I was shell shocked. It was no rag cloth.. it was my most favorite top – torn to bits. And then I had to believe there was a rat in our house.

There started our efforts to catch this bad guy. S got a sticky pad – a trap with peanut butter fragrance to catch the rat. As we were about to set it down, we spotted this small rat behind the onion basket in the kitchen. S did as much to point his fingers at it. That’s all. In one swift movement, it literally jumped onto us. S who usually is very calm in situations like this, screamed a bit. Without even knowing that the rat was next to my feet, I started jumping up and down, screaming my lungs out. At exactly 12 in the night. I got scared of the rat and it got scared of my screams. Finally, it escaped into the pooja room. With a hoarse throat and a missed rat, I wished our neighbors hadn’t heard my screams.

For the last five days, we have been setting up traps for it all over the house. I made pakodas specially to attract the rat into the trap! The smart one that it is, kept eating all the food, without falling to our tricks. That is until this morning! We finally caught it, with a piece of coconut😀 The house is rat-free and I can smell the freedom already. So it took four traps and five days to catch this tiny rat, that had been causing havoc. So yay!😀

** for the lack of better title.