Friday, 31 March 2017

An open letter to all working mothers

As the clock ticks on my desktop, I remind myself that I should not miss my bus, trying to complete a task for which I got warning to do by myself and not delegate, I realised I missed my bus. One last look at mail, few seconds waiting for any replies and still the heart feels, you might get the bus, try harder, you have to reach home on time so the baby sitter can leave. I called my friend to ask if the bus has left and she(also a working mom) asks me to chase the bus as it was stuck in traffic. I was running helplessly on the streets of Hinjewadi, took lift from unknown strangers, and chased the bus before two signals down the block. Only so that I can be home on time just to spend few extra hours with my son, who was sleeping when I left for the office today morning. 

Yes we are the working moms of metro cities who spend 3 hours in travel depending on traffic, 9 hours in office and the remaining hours in home that too doing work not leisure time. Yes, we leave our kids with strangers(baby sitters). Yes, we delegate our work at both places, in homes to our maids and in office to our co-workers and yes both places we hear that we are not putting our best.We give fake promises to our managers yes I will complete work on time, we give fake promises to our kids yes we will come home on time. We are the moms who don't make puran polis on Gudi Padwa because, we don't have holiday. The sari that you plan to wear on your niece's birthday and parlour visit don't just happen, we end up reaching the venue directly in our office avatar if it falls on weekday. We are the moms who cry in our office corners when our kids call us and tell us that they miss us. We don't change our jobs after having kids so that we may loose our comfort zone, we don't accept good offers from other companies fearing that we may get more work priorities. Yes, our kids have picked up our baby sitter's vernacular accent because they are the ones with whom they speak the whole day. 

Yes we carry guilt everywhere. In homes we feel guilty that we are not able to give enough time. In office we are made to feel guilty as we are not able to give more time. The HR of our new company spoke a lot about flexibility and work life balance on the Women's day. Apparently the same HR's forced us to take second shifts promising flexibility for us alone. Whom are we kidding trying to juggle all these tasks. What is the end result that we get even after putting so much efforts? We get bad appraisals just because our maternity leave. Sometimes all these efforts just don't seem worth it. A bad day sometimes makes you introspect about the harsh realities of our life. Sometimes, we just need a break from all these activities sit back and relax. A small dance with our kids, his laughter does make us forget the bad day... but leaves a question lingering behind is it worth all this pain?

----A truly frustrated working mom.

Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Illegal female foeticide racket a day before Women's day

While I was planning on writing a Women's day special today, I was utterly disturbed by the news going around. In Sangli district, 19 female foetus were recovered from sewer. Yes tomorrow our nation will be celebrating women's day and look what is the reality of our nation. Last weekend I visited my maternal aunt in her village. My mom along with three sisters has no brother. And even though they don't have brother, their parents are well looked after by all the sisters, even better than the parents of many sons in their village. Even after all this they were made to believe that there is some stigma that they don't have a son in their family.

The fact that I have a son, is something of such a pride that every single visitor who visited me in that house was told that yes she has a son. What disturbs me is that this fact is not limited to my mom's generation. Even in my generation many believe that having a brother or son is something very important and if you don't have a son, you are missing something very important in life. Sometimes I doubt how come I became a feminist even after being surrounded by so much negativity around me regarding female progeny. 

When I was surfing channels, I saw a serial called "Nakushi" meaning unwanted in Marathi. The serial was based on a girl child who was not welcomed in her family and hence they named her Nakushi. There are many such Nakushi's in our villages. People in village are at least blunt that they accept this fact. However, people in cities, talk about saving girl child but secretly wish for male. Innumerable prayers and fasts have been conveyed to our God for the want of a male child. When are we going to stop it?

What is it that a woman can't do in this era? Why is such a strong desire for having an offspring of a better gender? Who decides what is the better gender? How can parents be so cruel to something that they have created? Why aren't they afraid of their karma? Or do they bribe their Gods for this ill deeds? The questions never end, and this remains the hot topics for generations to come. The number of unborn girls in India is increasing because they are killed before they even see this world by those who created them in first place. The day India will truly celebrate Women's day is not on the day it falls, but the day every single parent will think of a female child no less than a male one and truly celebrate her birth...