Friday, January 09, 2009

"08"... Done and Dusted...

My customary summary of 08 is long overdue! The delay in the post in itself shows how busy the year was.


I welcomed the new year with Sudarshan and Natasha. What a day! Can't beleive that that was over a year ago now!

After living in Australian for almost 15 years, we visited Melbourne for the very first time - and absolutely loved it. More than anything else, I think it was the company that did it for me (and for everyone else there). Who could forget the singing of "Happy Anniversary to you" at the 12 Apostles, the ever-famous "Saavu giraaki" speech at Phillip Island or the tireless driving had by all? I think we all forget just how gorgeous Australia really is sometimes. There is something about being a tourist - you think you can do whatever you want without worrying about what anyone else will say or think. We should all be tourists more often...

On our way back from Melbourne, at 12 midnight, we stopped over somewhere past Wodonga at a service station and were warmly congradulated on reaching the ever-so important milestone of completing 1 year of our married life together. I remember being hit by a surge of emotion at the time. I can't explain what it was now but I remember holding Sudarshan's hand really tightly and wanting to cry.


That was when Kevin Rudd said "Sorry". What a moment.

I remember talking to my Thatha in February and he would tell Sudarshan and I constantly how happy he was with the two fo us. He would constantly tell us how he saw that we both stood by each other and how much he loved that about both of us. "Made for each-together".


My Grandparents, great-aunt, mom and Srini all left for India in March for a short break. That was the last time I saw my Thatha. I remember how their was a technical difficulty with their A380 and so couldn't leave till the next day. It was like he had come back to properly say "good-bye". I hugged my Thatha before he left - something I don't think I have done very often (if at all!).

They all left for India, Rama came to spend time with Sudarshan and myself while they were away. When Srini came back, he too spent time with us. I enjoyed looking after my brothers.


I was hurriedly working on my thesis and finishing off experiments. I remember being kept busy - both at work and at home. I had my brothers with me and my mum was back too. I spent a lot of weekends eating out at family friend's houses that month.


My mum was back, and we were all on our way to a friend's house. My dad was expected back in Sydney the next day. We suddenly got a call from my dad saying that rather than flying to Sydeny he would be flying to India as Thatha wasn't feeling well and had been admitted to hospital.

Things can change in life so suddenly. We did go to our friend's house but left early and Sudarshan and I spent the night with my mum and my brothers. There was something not quite right. I remember telling myself, "Thatha said he will come back - so he will."

I was the one to take the phone when my dad called to break the news. Somehow we had all been expecting it.

Never having lost a close relative, it was as if we didn't know what to do. We all got very busy suddenly. I volunteered myself and Sudarshan to go and buy the air tickets for my mum to leave immediately. I was in the car when I shed my first tear - then it was hard to stop.

I developed hatred that month. I hated certain people. I don't know why. Maybe bereavement does that to you. It is all too hard to understand.


June was spent coming to terms with what had happened and with realising that life doesn't stop. A certain kind macabre peace was felt - "People die. You are in grief. Then you get on with life." If I was to die, people would mourn but they would get on with their lives. It doesn't stop. It made me strangely more accepting of the world and made me see just how transcient it really is.

I still feel sad sometimes and happy at other times - but, I now know that it isn't going to last forever.


With both my parents back, our family was suddenly different. We were suddenly looking for a house to buy.


I presented at a conference and was awarded for the same. Sudarshan and I bought a house. My grandma came from India. And things were back to normal. My father in-law joined us. I got a job. I don't think I could have squeezed anymore into the month if I had tried!


The after math of all that happened in August was lingering on. I spent much of Septemeber moving and working on my thesis. I started at my new job. I don't really know where Septemeber went. It is all a blur now. I remember thinking, "If I can get through Septemeber, I can get through anything."


October is always a busy time of the year in my family. Rama's 21st, Sudarshan's 28th (so old - and I make it a point to remind him every opportunity I get :P), my 25th... Working two jobs, writing in my spare (??) time...

Stressed? Perhaps...


I started to feel calm again. I started to feel like everything was going to be ok. I was extremely grateful for what I had and had a sudden surge of self-confidence that made me feel like I could do it. Perhaps it was surviving September and October that did it!

I too was taken by Obamania and started developing a strange thirst for knowledge outside my field. Maybe it was just masked procrastination.


December continued in very much the same pace as November. However, I had started taking each day at a time and thanking my good fortune at the end of each day.

I think I was a good person this year.

There it is. 2008 - officially the year of "Accepting circumstances and valuing goodness."