You miss something you do not have any more …

As we grow up in our family, we are lucky to have all the comforts of home.  We are fully taken care of by our family members and get all the comforts of life.  But, as we complete our education and then get into a job, we are compelled to move out of our home.  We live on our own and have to fend for  ourselves.  We realise that our mom is not around to give us our morning coffee.  As the day progresses, we miss her and many more people and things around us, which we were quite used to.

We search for our tooth brush and it was not in place as soon as we get up and look for it.  Then there is nobody to offer our morning coffee.  The breakfast is not laid on the table and nobody to wish us a great day ahead.  As this change sinks into us, we realise that we miss our mom or spouse or that special person in our life, who has be nurturing us from dawn to dusk every day.

We are busy at work but may be even forget this vacuum in our life temporarily but as we return to our den in the evening, we realise that the situation is the same.  There is nobody to open the door for us.  There is no evening tea waiting for us and more important we have to freshen up and cook our own food.  This cycle of life makes you realise that you always “miss something you do not have any more”.

We were used to the pampering by your beloved mom  and then when we have moved out we suddenly miss her.  We may have been complaining morning, evening and night how bad our mom’s cooking is.  We may tell her how our friends get excellent delicacies every day and we don’t and so on.  But, as we land all alone in life, we realise how much we miss her.  Her food, her warmth, her care and love can no longer be measured in a value.  

Today I visited my niece.  She is married and settled down in life.  She narrated an incident of how her mom visiting her made her day.  She was feeling more cared for when someone is there to say good bye, when she leaves for work. Her mom’s cooking food for her makes it tastier and more enjoyable.  She said she realises today after being married for more than a decade when her mom visits her once a year.

This is true for everything in life.  We miss something only when you do not have it any more.  Life is a competitive journey and we face all odds to do our daily chores.  We are taken care by our family and friends as we grow up.  But, as we try to stand alone and live life on our terms, we realise how much we miss all that we had in life before.  It may be things or people but they look invaluable and irreplaceable to us now.

Of course, we can always buy things and replace them to comfort ourselves.  But, we cannot replace the love, warmth and care of the people around us.  It is this realisation, which makes us human and helps us to keep our feet on the ground.  It is important to realise that we can never repay this debt in life.  It is an emotional debt and has to repaid by love and care only.

At this moment, when our elders grow up, we may have to realise that it is not good enough for us to provide them with physical comfort.  Even they can buy them from the market place, which they can afford.  We need to repay our debt by unconditional love.  We have to be with them not only when they need us but even when they may not expect us.  

Like in the photo above, the baby elephants may miss their mother after they get separated from her in the wilderness of the forest.

Life is a journey and we need to learn from all that we miss, which we do not have today.

S Ramesh Shankar

Who is the ultimate judge ?

There have been many instances in my personal and work life when I have felt that I was misjudged.  Let us start from my personal life. As I grew up as a child, I felt I was scolded by my parents or teachers for no fault of mine.  It could be a simple incident wherein your younger sibling could have done some mischief but you are scolded by your parents as the elder one. Similarly in the class room your teacher may scold you for some nuisance created by your neighbouring classmate. In all such cases, you feel let down. 

The work situation is no different.  You give your best and feel that you have had a great year.  When the annual appraisal is done, your manager assesses you as below par.  All through the year, you are praised by everyone for your contributions – team members, colleagues and even seniors.  But, when the promotions are announced you are ignored or superseded.  You feel miserable and feel the whole system is unfair to you.

So, whether it is the work situation or your personal life, such instances occur in regular periodicity.   I have always wondered as to “Who is the ultimate judge ?”.Some may philosophically state it is God.  But, having experienced many such situations at work or my personal life, I feel the ultimate judge is our own conscience.  If we ask ourselves objectively, what is the answer you get – that is the ultimate truth.  What the world sees is extrinsic but what we see from within is intrinsic.

It is easier to look back and examine it objectively.  It is very difficult to go through a situation like this and digest it.  I have gone through at least three such situations in my work life and may be many in my personal life too.  Each time I have felt very bad and deeply hurt.  It has taken a lot of time to recover and bounce back.  But, each time, when I have asked my conscience, I have got the right answer.

Today, when I sit back and reflected on these moments of my life, I laughed at myself.  It may neither be easy to cry nor laugh at oneself.  But, when you reach a stage in life when such incidents can be taken in your stride, you start believing more in yourself.  One sure shot answer to judge yourself apart from your conscience may be the feedback you get from all the people around you other than the person, who has misjudged you.  If the majority opinion is similar to what your conscience states, there is nothing to regret.  On the contrary, the person making the wrong judgement may regret such a judgement on you some day.  After all they too have a conscience and it will tickle them some day to wake up .

Life is a journey of ups and downs.  Each incident teaches you something.  It is up to us to live through and learn from them. It may be easier to learn from the positive experiences rather than the negative ones.  It takes time to reflect on the negative experiences but when you are able to do it, it could teach you more than the positive ones.  It is like failures teach you more than successes in life.

Like in the photo above,  God does not necessarily exist in a puja room.  God is within us.  

Let us listen to our conscience every time we are in doubt on anything in our life.

S Ramesh Shankar