6

War wounds

I have a scar on my right hand. Well, my right wrist actually. It is a pretty nasty scar and it pretty much looks like I slashed my wrist. I did not, but it looks like that.

Over the years, the scar has been a great conversation starter. People who accidentally see it cannot help but question how I got it.  It is also pretty prominently placed and there is no way I can hide it and so the chances of people seeing it is pretty darn high. I think there is something magnetic about the scar cause one look at it and people want to know how I got it.

Even, seemingly less intrusive people ask me about it. I guess they want to know why I tried to slash my wrist cause in all fairness, it does look like that. I am normally a very cheerful person and so perhaps the possibility of my darkest hour leaving a mark on my hand intrigues them. I am a lover of drama and so I admit it, I feed their curiosity too. I make dramatic sighs, droop my shoulders and avoid eye contact. I smile and refuse to answer their question and that drives them nuts. 

The scar has got me many things from hugs, to knowing smiles, to understanding glances and at one time, even a free muffin. People assume they know how I got the scar and I thrive on their assumptions. If I am in a particularly dramatic mood, I even take the game further and embellish it to my liking. On somedays the scar is the result of a heartbreaking break up. On others, I am the disappointed in myself. I’ve however, never once said that I’ve slashed my wrist. Never. Not once. Yet everytime people assume I did.

I’ve wondered how they’d react if they found out how I got the scar. The true story. That it is the result of a freak accident when a 13 year old tried to throw out a candy wrapper after having sneaked it from under the watchful eyes of her sister who was on candy watch (Don’t ask me why but I don’t seem to remember by she was not sharing that bowl of candies). So engrossed was she in keeping an eye out for her sister that she completely missed noticing that the glass window was not open. She pushed her hands through the space with enough force to propel the candy wrapper to the bin on the outside and was instead met with glass that cut into her hand and gave her that scar.

It is a simple, childhood story yet to this date it provides me with so much drama. Not that I’m complaining cause this story would most definitely not get me a free muffin.

 

 

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7

“Mooooooossssssaaaaaakkkkkaaaaa”

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I still remember my first boogeyman. The only one.  I’m pretty sure he was born from the depths on my Mother’s imagination when I threw a tantrum or refused to finish my bowl of cauliflower soup. Nonetheless, he was an important part of my childhood. My scary ‘Moosakka’.

In retrospect I realise that it was not even a scary name. Moosa is a pretty common name in India. Its the Arabic version of Moses and ‘kka’ simply means brother. Logically, it should have been the worst boogeyman ever. I mean, who calls their monster, their brother? But my Mum being the ever so polite person that she is, decided to adoringly call it Moosakka. I guess kids are oblivious to logic cause this Moosakka was my stuff of nightmares.  Every time I was naughty or unmanagable, mum would call out his name in a low, hoarse voice reserved just for him. I don’t know if it my imagination or if she really did it but it always appeared to me that his name was called out in slow motion.

No attempts were ever made to tell me how he looked like. Well played Mum, cause in the absence of a description, my little brain began to perceive the most horrific figure. In my head, Moosakka was a huge man with a minaret for a head. SCARY! Well, not so much now, cause I am used to mohawks that resemble minarets but to a 4 or 5 year old it was.

Moosakka never did anything or I never gave him a chance to do anything. My Mum had me around her little finger thanks to him. I distinctly remember wondering where Mum got to know all these people and wondering if Mum kept the right company but I dared not question her lest she summon Moosakka. He was always just around the corner.

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I did eventually get over him. Today Mousakka is one of my favourite dishes and the instead of sending chills down my spine, it gets me salivating and hungry. Have you tried it? Its most yum! As my friend, with whom I had the same conversation yesterday, pointed out, it is the saddest fate ever to befall a monster: his transformation from horror to deliciousness.

As a mother myself. i completely understand why Moosakka was born. We underestimate our toddlers. We underestimate their power for chaos. They thrive in chaos and confusion and gain strength as our resources go down. And then they send their bowl of soup flying around the house. If you have ever had to sit and pick spaghetti off your hair or wipe clean the walls off any remnants of beetroot puree,  you will know exactly why Moosakka was born.

I haven’t yet created a boogeyman for Z. The impending worry of a possible  ‘Time out’ seems to work just fine for him. I know a lot of mothers turn their noses up at the concept of scaring their kids into obedience. I say to each her own. I grew up scared of a monster but only scared enough to tow me back into line. Infact the monster has  left me with more memories I cherish, than nightmares.

Someday I know I will need my Moosakka again but until then I shall chase him away. He has done me no wrong but I need him to lurk in the background for now cause while he’s the monster my Z may deserve, he’s not the one he needs right now. So I’ll chase him away, because he can take it. He’s not our hero. He’s a silent guardian of Mothers’ sanity. A watchful protector around the corner. The Moosakka

Pic credit: 4.bp.blogspot.com                                                                                                     simplyrecipes.com

15

Pants of Fire: Rule no 324 of Mommyhood: Some lies are OK!

Lies are an essential part of being a Mommy. No matter how hard you try or how much you tell yourself that you will be 100% truthful with your child, you end up lying. Not cold calculated lies but little white lies to make your life simpler. No matter how careful you are, you slip. Its one of the rules to mothehood. You lie and its OK!

Here is my list of blatant white lies I’ve knows to say without so much as a twitch in my face,

If you don’t finish your food, Peppa Pig will be so sad. Peppa Pig is a cartoon. Pegga Pig knows only what the cartoonist/animator wants her to know. Z can skip all the lunches in the world and Peppa will not know. She just won’t care.

When you sleep you grow bigger. I don’t know. I have no documented proof of this. But I do know that when he sleeps, my sanity is restored albeit briefly.

You are hurting me. Z can try all he wants but that little hands cannot hurt me. I am physically bigger and stronger but when he starts to raise his hands at me, I know I have to stem it before it spills over to his friends, and always a Z, you are hurting me does the trick. That is his freeze line. I can say that and he will drop what he does.

We are all out of TV. Z tends to get carried away watching TV. I give him limited TV time each day but he does everything in his powers to stretch the minutes. Simply switching off the TV might bring on a full on tantrum and so I have to discreetly change the channel first to a blank screen and then throw my hands in the air and dramatically exclaim, “I think we are all out of TV”. That he accepts.

Hmmmm..Yummy (accompanied by a pat on the tummy) Spinach puree as for that matter, veggie purees are NEVER yum. Never!

Daddy will be back in 5 minutes. Daddy never is. Daddy goes to work ahead of us on most mornings and so excusing Daddy for a quick 5 minute outing is the only way to prevent a full on tear explosion.

No! Cockroaches bite. Ok, I know I am being mean here but I hate those little creatures and he loves them. This way, I am hoping he wont bring one into the house.

and rounding up the list, something I heard quite often growing up but haven’t yet used on Z.

Salt makes you stupid. When I was little, I had great affinity for salt. Mr Salt shaker and I used to disappear under tables, under the bed, inside the closet, under covers etc where I used to feast on his saltiness. When my Mum found about this, she ruined my relationship by telling me about the kid who was very very smart when she was born but became increasingly stupid by the minute because she used to sneak off everywhere and eat salt. Needless to say, it put the brakes on our passionate relationship.

I don’t know how many so called ‘parenting rules’, I’ve broken as a result of these above mentioned lies but it sure does restore peace and harmony in my household.