Sharanya Misra

This post is part of my Mommy Moments series.

They say life is all about the unexpected. A story of the unprepared chancing upon the unplanned. And sometimes, this chance meeting can be serendipitous.

We came back to India in Feb this year with a buoyancy in every step. We were back, just in time. A chance to celebrate our daughter’s first birthday with friends and family, many of whom we hadn’t met for ages. And then, when everything was in place – the hall booked, invites sent out, dresses purchased, gifts wrapped – covid-19 took Pune by storm. Or atleast, it had just begun to. Good sense prevailed and we shelved the whole thing two days before the big day. It was the beginning of the unplanned.

I had quit my job when I returned, and with covid-19 turning all our lives around, I knew there was no way I could find child care for my daughter without exposing her to its risks. I settled in for a COMPLETE lockdown with my little girl, with no end in sight. Believe me, I haven’t stepped out of my house since March, way before the official lockdown was even announced.

Nothing since our return has gone as per plan. Yet, with each passing day, I cannot help but marvel at the time that I have been granted with my daughter, and at the circumstances that have allowed me to give her my undivided attention. From the time I wake up in the morning to the sweet word ‘Mumma’ till late in the night when I finally manage to extricate myself from her clinging figure to drift off to sleep myself, my life has become ALL about her.

She amazes me every day. I looked on in shock when she learned to not only say, but also aptly use the phrases “Arre Yaar” and “Oh No”. The other day she suddenly learned to say her ‘L’s, so a ‘ball’ is no longer a ‘bu’. Since a couple of weeks now she has begun to string words, particularly with “Come”. So everything comes. ‘Mumma come’ ‘Papa come’ ‘Hathi come’. But this is just about the speech. What’s more interesting watching kids grow, is observing their personalities develop. Oh, and does she have one! She has choices of her own that she expects to be respected. She already wants to be a decision maker. So one moment she’s a headstrong little girl strutting around confidently, and the next she’s a little baby crying for her mumma. It’s a mixed bag each day, and it’s a wonder to be able to watch it all, to be a part of every growing moment.

Spot the Mommy! A fun moment between mommy and dotty!
Spot the Mommy! A fun moment between mommy and dotty.

Life as a working parent can be difficult, especially with young children. You are forever torn between the time you devote to your work and your child. I experienced it first hand when I returned from my maternity leave. But the challenge of working from home with a toddler, is an altogether different ball game. So while at the outset I had had a tiny thought flaring in my mind questioning my decision to quit, looking back today, I know it was the best thing I could have done for us.

I will not claim that I do not miss working in a corporate environment, or that I do not crave the challenges or satisfaction that environment provides. Nor does this mask the reality of my eventual return to work. But everytime I sit hunched up with her over a book, or play peekaboo or watch her learn to eat with a spoon or draw with a pen, or teach her something new as she looks on with wonder in her eyes, I cannot help but feel blessed for this moment and this time. For getting to be a part of a phase of her life when she is becoming a tiny ‘big person’, exploring the world around her, and not just on work-free weekends. The feeling is nothing short of surreal.

Being a parent teaches you to be thankful to the universe for a million reasons. And while we all sail in turbulent waters, for all the twists and turns in my life that led me to this exclusive space with my child, I send out a million thanks. Amidst all the negativity these times bring, this little positive brightens my days like nothing else can. I guess this feeling is what it’s all about. Serendipity.

Click here to know more about my Mommy Moments series.

Mommy Moment with my daughter.

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