31st Dec 2010
Leaving NY was the hardest decision that I have had to make in the last 7 years and that includes getting married to a man I knew for 10 days, switching fields from science to arts, having a baby and choosing to postpone getting a doctorate. We have always thought about coming back to India. I wanted my kids to know the joys of having grandparents at their beck and call, having cousins tumbling over one another and having a whole host of uncles, aunts, grandpa’s and grandma’s, great grandpa’s and great grandma’s. I have always imagined my life and home to be full of people dropping unannounced, the kitchen full of people and the loud arguments about politics and religion, obnoxious people trying to take over arguments and what not. And yet, when the offer cropped up to leave the home that we had made for 7 years and leave the life we lived for 7 years, I got cold feet. I have moved all my life, to homes big and small, I have moved when it was the most welcome change and when we had no option but to move, but I was not an active part of the move, in the sense that I was not the crux of the decision making, nor did I torture myself over the hows wheres and whys. It was not my home. This was. I put the serene Buddha over the fireplace, the cheesy wedding photo in the shelf in the living area, and the mug collection on the display shelf. We painted the house fully, while agonizing and squabbling over the colours. They say a home is made with love, laughter, hope and a whole lot of hard work. We made this home together. I was no longer part of this bubble that lived in a home that my parents made and that was perhaps why it was such an agonizing decision.
I came to NY 3 months shy of 21. Married to a man I fell in love with during his sister’s wedding and travelling halfway across the world to spend my life with him, I landed the day after Christmas in a snowy NY with temperatures already dipping below 0 deg C. I loved every minute of the long drive home. The roads, long, wide and smooth…lined with gorgeous firs cloaked with snow. The chill biting into my toes and numbing my hands, the tip of my nose turned red and my ears were cold…yet all I could think was how gorgeous the world was, how absolutely wonderful winter was. Heady would be an understatement to describe my feelings. I have felt the feeling every winter, the anticipation of snow, the wait to unfurl my fancy scarves and heavy coat, the joy of pulling a long, warm woolen coat around me, the happiness, in sinking my foot knee deep into snow. I will miss the NY winters. I will miss feeling like a new bride every winter.
We landed in India in the wee hours on the 1st of Jan. The last month in NY and the US was a blur. Packing, shipping, packing more, throwing random junk away, donating usable items and trying to imagine how life will be in India. I come with hope…hope that home ultimately is what I create and all I need are my husband and my little implet to make any four-walled building into a home. We are moving to a place neither of us is familiar with. The challenges are going to be many and some are downright scary to imagine. I am going to have to make my peace with dealing with all kinds of people and advice from all quarter, whether solicited or not. I am going to have to come to terms with the fact that my time with not always be my own and the expectations that will be generously heaped upon me. I will get through this phase. It is a New Year. A good time to make resolutions, a great time to turn over a page, ring in new bells and make a huge move and change life dramatically.