Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Some day you just need to get away from your reality.

Music is food for soul, it talks to you on a level nothing else can and together with powerful words I think it can take you on another planet where nothing else exists. When I got the email about a Ghazal Meet, the name of the singer was compelling enough to make me mark my calendar. A dear friend called him a “crown prince of Ghazals” years ago and I remember very clearly how this new singer stole the heart of Ghazal lovers.

I had a crazy weekend and Anand wasn’t well but the thirst to listen to some ghazals won over. I told myself Anand is well taken care of with dad and brother. I have no guilt in saying now that I am very glad that I went and honestly, I forgot that I had a sick kid at home. Dr. Roshan Bharti made me forget that I was a mom, wife or anyone else for those hours. I was just a girl who fell in love with Jagjit Singh at the age of 13. Listening to RB was all about me tonight. He sang everything I have heard before but every ghazal sounded so fresh and felt so new. He, very respectfully, gave those classy ghazals his RB twist. Each and every ghazal started as Jagjit Singh’s or Khan Sahab’s or Ghulam Ali’s but soon became Roshan Bharti’s. Slowly and lovingly he played with our emotions and took us on a different journey beautifully. All of us in the room were in a state of bliss. With each ghazal he showed how much control he has over sur and taal, the talent and the years of rehearsal was so obvious. But at the same time, he was so contemporary and confident in taking some liberty with playing those classical ghazals. It was like he exactly knew how his audience was mesmerized. He sang a philosophical one and in the middle without any warning he sang two lines of a classic Rajasthani folk so easily and then went back to finish that philosophy. I remember Jagjit Singh’s combination of “shayad’ from Ahmad Faraz and Heer.

Today we saw another side of a singer too, a father, who introduced his son to a brand-new audience. How proud a parent feels when the next generation takes over, we all want our kids to do better than us. I could feel the excitement when his son sang two ghazals. That would remain the highlight for me. The proud dad and talented son, the image is stuck in my mind. for me that remains the most critical aspect of parenting. to teach our own kids, guide them and help them navigate them find their own path. I so could relate to everything RB said to introduce his son and asking for wishes for him. 

After a crazy weekend, the crazier week starts in my household. With Anand’s last week in high school, very important meeting deciding his next year, senior week for him and graduation on Friday and uncle visiting from India, Ajey’s internship begins I am not even sure how I will survive but I think I will be much better because I had “my” time tonight. As I was explaining someone how family, kids, work, responsibility and life take over,but music gives the much needed personal space and energy to be a better person.

He sang “ Tishnagi Jam gayi hoton par pathar ki tarah.
Doob kar bhi tere dariya se main pyasa nikala” 
तिश्नगी जम गई पत्थर की तरह होंठों पर डूब कर भी तेरे दरिया से मैं प्यासा निकला
It wasn’t enough. Muzaffar Warsi wrote this couplet to explain what we felt last night. 

बे-सबब बात बढ़ाने की ज़रूरत क्या है

हम ख़फ़ा कब थे मनाने की ज़रूरत क्या है

Muheet sang Ghalib, I have been a loyal fan and lover to Jagjit Singh and refused to believe anyone can do Mirza Ghalib better than him.. This kid stole my heart last night.. 
दिल-ए-नादाँ, तुझे हुआ क्या है
आख़िर इस दर्द की दवा क्या है

 then he started  - a perfect tribute to Khan Saheb
आये कुछ अब्र कुछ शराब आये
उसके बाद आये जो अज़ाब आये
कर रहा था ग़म-ए-जहाँ का हिसाब
आज तुम याद बेहिसाब आये 

 A big thank you to Akhilesh Jha for introducing me to Roshan Bharti. A ghazal lover in me had a treat. 
Saree Stories continue beyond 100SareePact.. Bagh Print on Silk. A MP handloom.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Stop fighting within and fight for a vision

I was invited for “Federations of Children’s with Special Needs’ annual gala”.
Being part of something of this kind is always exciting and amazing. I was in the room with 100s of people to celebrate some “out of the box” thinkers. They thought and worked beyond their time and envisioned the world differently for differently able people. I came back inspired and determined to do more not only for my child but for others too. That is the power of having wonderful people around you who shape you and guide you without you even noticing. I was in that room witnessing some of those people being honored. Every special mom with young kids knows about early intervention and is thankful to that program, having the person who is associated with this revolutionary idea being honored was something awesome. A mom was being celebrated who is an advocates and fighter and at the same time gives a comic twist to life. Making our kids independent Is the ultimate goal for us as parents, kids with needs or not. I was in awe knowing that someone thought of it in 1983 that these kids need their own housing. The Wizansky thought of something way beyond their time.
I shared the table with someone who has made the world better for many Asian families. I could hear the life changing stories, how a person, a phone call, a note changes someone’s life. How the community came together and made things possible which was never thought of.
Its been a week and since then I have been thinking about how incredible parenting journey is. How people get over their own boundaries and look beyond their own limitations. How it is so important to hit the rock bottom and come back with full force.
How this process helps you grieve and then makes you stronger and then you start thinking beyond the boundaries. I wish we all have given that power to know when to stop feeling helpless and become the strongest version of ourselves. That’s why these celebrations are so important, just to know when to stop fighting within and start fighting for a cause.
Thank you Susan Arndt for all the work you do for our kids. I wish I had taken a pic with you. This pic of me is my tribute to all your work

Inspiration all around, I am in awe of generosity of these people. Very successful fundraiser    

 the wonderful staff of federation who works tirelessly to help families. 

 Oanh,  a force to recon with, a wonderful mom, an amazing advocate.. I am so proud of call her a friend. She started one of a kind support program for Asian familes, extraordinary individuals for the Beacon for Inclusion Award by the Institute for Community Inclusion (ICI- UMASS Boston) 

#100SareePact and Beyond. My love for Saree. someone walked over and said - my blue Saree is always the highlight of registation table and she looks forward to it..who says no to a compliment? right?    
Support Federation in any ways you can.. Your name should be here next year :)