There is no “right path” or “wrong path” but only the path that you’re on. – Neale Donald Walsch
I just realised a couple of days ago that I don’t know too many working moms – and the ones I know are usually those in the government or teaching sector where they get home by 3 or 4 pm; or who have support at home such as a mother or mother-in-law, or at the very least a husband; or have only one child.
I have yet to come across an Indian woman in circumstances such as my own: two kids; no other adult support at home; a full-time, high-stress job. I only have part-time domestic help and I run two homes. I also handle my own finances and admin work. I do an hour and a half of yoga daily, and make time to read. I never say no if someone asks for any kind of writing or editing help. And I still manage to be punctual most of the time.
My life is carefully structured and my weekday routine mostly runs like clockwork. But when something happens to set it off routine – such as a wedding in the family or visiting guests – my equilibrium just gets thrown off gear. My workload goes up twice its usual capacity and I begin to crack under the strain.
These days, the strain is coming from all ends. To top it all, my housekeeper took the day off when I was expecting guests. The burden of ensuring wedding-wearable outfits for all three of us, coordinating with the choreographer and driver taking kids for their dance sessions, doing my own writing and practice for the wedding events, driving to and from family functions twice a day, sweeping, mopping, doing the laundry, making tiffins and ensuring other meals for everyone – besides usual busy days at work – led to a mini breakdown this morning. A few exhausted tears rolled down my cheeks while I sat in lotus pose.
An inner voice told me to ‘detach’ – from the chores, the expectations and the disappointments. From the fatigue and the sense of burden. With my eyes closed, I attempted it, and managed to attain a neutral mindset. But later, the tears welled up again and I asked God, “How can I detach if there is so much work to be done? How can I detach once my eyes are open?”
The response came later in the form of the above quote in my inbox, and moments later, the universe sent me an unexpected gift. It was almost as if God was saying: “Your path is admittedly difficult but look, here’s a little treat to let you know I am thinking of you and appreciate your efforts.”
I love the silly catchphrase in Kurkure advertisements: Tedah hai par mera hai (it’s crooked, but it’s mine). Today, I see that the same holds true for my life’s journey as well. The path is crooked but it’s mine. I have to love it like I love everything else that’s been bestowed on me. The highs and the lows together make me who I am. I’d be incomplete without these bends in the road. And who knows what wonderful surprises await at the next corner?
Challenges never cease and responsibilities only grow. But then, so do I.