Thursday, November 09, 2017

The Ones That Love Us, Never Really Leave Us!

Today is a sad day! This morning when Dad called and said that my Uncle (Mom's brother), expired I was more like a professional receiving a bad news and handling the situation very sensibly. I even told my Dad, tell Mom not to think too much as Uncle has been suffering a lot lately and we all should think it's a relief for him from all his pains.

Like we all do some news takes time to sink in. My mind unconsciously was processing this news though I was attending meetings and adding value to come up with a business decision. Even when I went to the gym I was telling myself I am going to release all my stress here.

I came back to my desk and while having lunch I wrote a note to my cousins

"Heard the news... Don't know what to say I grew up with him. All my childhood memories are covered with him... It's sad yet feel good that I was able to meet him when he was serious first time... I will always cherish the best and will feel happy for having such a Ammavan (Uncle) in my life who was a kid with me when I was a kid and he walked through with me as a friend, guide, advisor always ♥... I don't want anyone to feel sad because being so good he suffered a lot in the past 21/2 years and he needed this rest but he pulled along because of the love that he has with all of us. Peace and Love"

As soon I wrote this tears rushed into my eyes, as if the writing made me to sink in that news and I was all of a sudden feeling that a big part of my childhood is gone and now it's only memories.
I couldn't stop at that as things started rolling in mind... 

He was very close to my Mom and then when I was born he really spoiled me. My first time eating beef that too in Jayanti Janata Express train, I remember writing a post on this.
I was always a special niece for him as all my other cousins either they are scared of him or out of respect they will never come in front of him.

I was always different because I never believed that one needs to be away from someone you love and respect. I remember how my Uncle used to play pranks with me and he used to lift me by my legs and put my head down hanging. All this circus I used to enjoy while my Grandma used to get worried.
There are so many memories that it just brings the moment live in front of my eyes.

I remember one time when my neighbor friend called me to give him company to go to the nearby grocery store to get some item for his mom to cook in the kitchen and I agreed to go with him.
It was not dark as sun was still there however, sun was planning to set and by the time we came back it was little dark and my Mom was waiting for me with a stick in hand. That day my uncle was visiting us and he was also standing next to my Mom.
The moment I saw both of them, I knew I am going to get it today and that too a good one.
I started apologizing from far and said Mom, please don't hit me I will never go again. But my Uncle came forward and by holding my hand he brought me closer to Mom and said but this is important so that you remember very well next time. I was totally surprised at that. He always  pampered me and always supported me in everything but this time it was different. 
I wondered what happened, but yes he cared for me dearly and never wanted me as a kid to be in a crowded place that too without my parents or guardians when it was about to get dark.

The best thing about life is that small incidents no matter how old it is the person makes it special and memorable that no matter how old you get it remains fresh in mind as if it happened yesterday.

I have spent a very good portion of my childhood with my Uncle and when he is gone from this world, all I feel is a big part of my childhood is gone. It's a big void and I hope wherever he is, he should be in peace. I will dearly miss him always!

"The most painful goodbyes are the ones that are never said and never explained"

~ Dawn

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Country roads, take me home, to the place I belong...

This time of the year, I really miss India, specially Pune. Growing up in Pune as a Malayalee (Keralite) is one thing but I grew up watching and being part of Diwali celebration.


I think every year I did something or the other and celebrated in my way but this time probably I am feeling its all fake. My friends say I should still do it that's how kids are going to know and learn about it. But Diwali is not only about one person it's about everyone celebrating and when you don't have that kind of unity it's a failure.

"The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate" ~ Oprah Winfrey

Being in NDA, Pune I celebrated diwali with friends and family by wearing new clothes, exchanging sweets, mom used to make sweets at home- I miss karanji the most and play with fireworks (Laxmi bomb, Vishnu bomb, paanpatti, phuljhadi, ladi, captain bomb, rocket and so on) - it was fun. But when I got to live with Maharashtrians in the family I fully lived the 6 days diwali celebration and each day had its meaning and purpose and there was so much of enthusiasm that no matter what issues you have all goes away during festivity times. The weeks ahead preparation of sweets, shopping for 6 days different clothes and matching jewelries and so on... the crowd used to be fun and late nights coming home with eating dinner out as no one has time to cook and yet excited with the whole nine yard celebration. 

"We don't call it homesick. We call it missing home. There's not a sickness involved, it's a state of mind."

I miss all that today and feels a vacuum everywhere. So many messages, celebration pictures on social media and all this is reflecting on me and my thoughts.

A diwali where I am missing my mom's homemade sweets and the traditional aspect of the celebration.

"Sometimes you will never know the true value of a Moment until it becomes a Memory"


Happy Diwali!!!  




~ Dawn

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Dear I Love You!


Dear, I love You
Where are You
Why I miss You
When I know
I am far from You
These were the words
For You!
The voice came across
Dear, I love You
I am here for You
Always and forever
You!
They were far away
Not even reachable by highway
They were in different country
Yet,
They never stopped dreaming
For their togetherness
And kept accompanied with love
And hopeful words and expressions
The only thing kept them alive was and is
Love!

~ Dawn


Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Discomfort is always a necessary part of the process of enlightenment...!!!

Many times we follow certain tradition because we grew up watching others. As we understand sometimes we do ask questions and sometimes it doesn't bother anyone as part of tradition it's more of celebration and social engagement hence it doesn't come out as a question as why do we follow this norm.

"Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought" ~ John. F. Kennedy

My story about 'Durga Puja', is somewhat similar to that. Even though born in a Keralite family (Kerala, in South India), I grew up in Pune (in Maharashtra State) and that gave me the exposure to diverse India. The people, food and festivals and traditions. I always felt I am privileged as I got the opportunity to be part of every celebration or festivity whether it belonged to East, West, North and South India - I had friends and their family who had these traditions and festivals that they maintained and celebrated and I just merged with them.

It's with the same spirit I enjoy all festivals here in USA as well. "Sindur Khela" is where every year I look forward to attend as part of Durga Puja, and my thoughts and understanding was limited to as it's part of Durga Puja and it's a fun game. Being a feminist, for me Durga is a symbol of girl-power and every girl must feel proud of being one. It's interesting how we start reading about these when we have to explain to our non-Indian friends about these festivities. 


As I read about it, it totally changed me. My excitement and enthusiasm somewhere vanished. My heart started questioning why do I call this a celebration when it's not something that every women can enjoy?
At the same time Durga Puja and Sindur Khela is all about power of womanhood. If that is true then why every woman is not allowed to participate in Sindur Khela?
Why unmarried, widows and divorcees are not allowed to be part of this Sindur Khela, aren't they women? Aren't they powerful? 

"Tradition is an explanation for acting without thinking" ~ Grace McGarvie 

These thoughts really crushed me and made me feel dejected. In the name of Durga Puja and Sindur Khela it's again the hypocrisy of manhood that is celebrated in the veil of womanhood. The male dominant society created another tradition which seemed like for women to socialize, celebrate and pray for the happiness of husband and children. Shouldn't that be the same for the husband too? He should also pray for his wife and children's happiness so why not men has any traditions to follow? How do we justify single moms or widow moms? Don't they also want their kids to be happy and safe?

"Myself worth isn't determined by others"

Marriage and sindur is all about men and about their manhood. It's not about women celebrating themselves. 
I am an ally at the LGBTQ community and I believe in equality in every respect and this is something against my belief. Hence something all these years I rejoiced getting decked up and getting colored in red sindur and socialized with friends and others has made me to think.

I don't think there is sindur khela for me next year because I don't support something that discriminates any human being at any level.


I have though seen and witnessed some of the divorcees participating in Sindur Khela in the events that I have attended and it only made me happy to see that but my real thoughts are with those who are barred from participating in Sindur Khela. In their name, I decided not to enjoy anymore such traditions.

If we believe in all traditions then 'Sati Pratha' was also a tradition that was followed in ancient India and one should follow that too, isn't it?

I think we all must question these traditions just like how we question our constitution because things have to change with time and for the betterment of the human beings and our society. Otherwise, unknowingly we are supporting discrimination and we must not give wrong message if we are sure that we don't support it.

"Life should not only be lived, it should be celebrated"

Now, I am only going back and thinking about those moments where without any idea my heart was enjoying the celebrations and festivities with friends and family...and someone from inside says, 'It's okay because you didn't know about it'!

"Sometimes your heart needs more time to accept what your mind already knows"

~ Dawn

Sunday, September 17, 2017

I have him to rely...





There's a warmth in him,
A soothing care,
An inspiration to rise and shine,
A perspective to look forward,
A view that makes you fall for,
The aura that gives colors to your dream,
The hope that I can depend on him,
The dream that as long as I live,
I have him to rely...
I love him for being my strength,
For bringing my Moon to me
And soothing my nights with love ❤️


~Dawn

Friday, August 18, 2017

"Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate."

“A desire to help others and give to the world before saying adios to this place, it was that desire as a seed, seeded inside me and Good Gigs let that seed sprout out.


What is born needs to be nourished well for it to grow and spread the good health across and hence Children were always special to my heart.
By helping and supporting the education for children will layout the foundation that will let these children to grow and flourish and spread the goodness across and this will multiply, so at Delta Utah my focus was children throughout and hence the planning to make sure the training we give to the teacher initiators and teachers are easy enough to adapt and in return the teacher's roll this out to kids in an easier manner.

"Every child you encounter is a divine appointment" ~ Wess Stafford

In doing this, the preparation brought the best of the minds together to brainstorm and the outcome was incredible.
It was not easy to be frank. When we prepared our training deck, it was easy to believe that we captured every detail to show how the tool works. The challenge was how to deliver this simple deck to the teacher initiators who are actually well educated with full of awareness. Teaching a teacher is a challenge and believe me or not it needs lot of preparation, guts and confidence to hold their hands and walk along with them.
Good thing to be part of technology industry where it allows you to play with the tool and learn the hard way. To get to the level of each teacher initiator based on their understanding of the technology and then take that ride to a standard level was a worth learning experience for me personally, as it helped me to learn from the teachers and the details of the tools as well.
How to teach without intimidating and be part of the learner group to discover and explore the findings.
The teacher initiators and teachers loved each and every small thing that they learned about technology be it a copy/paste or right click and select. It taught me how simple things can bring happiness to you it doesn’t have to be expensive that costs money.

"Life is really simple, but we insist on making it complicated"~ Confucius 

Though VMware and Dell and other institutions took that expense to support this cause and the result was happiness, full of confidence, achievement and looking forward with technology in mind as a goal. It was an emotional ride for everyone be it the Millard School District High-School members, teacher initiators and teachers, people of Delta Utah or even the students of Millard School District schools – it is an emotional bonding that lead us to win everyone’s heart, it's the people!

The personal touch with each training helped me to connect with each individual of Delta Utah that we associated with. Be it CoSN, SEDC, Millard District Office members, teacher initiators... the parting was painful yet the emails and connections through messages is keeping this bondage going with the hope to support each other going forward.


The motivation, giving confidence to make that first mistake and letting them to correct themselves with support, perseverance, and letting others to grow is the key to be a leader.

"If your actions inspire others to dream more, learn more, do more and become more, you're a leader." ~ John Quincy Adams

While doing all this, there was not a single thought of what I am getting out of this because all my actions and thoughts were triggered towards to give the best to them to make a success for their day to day life. In doing so I learnt a lot from others about the approach, individual thought process, perceptions, emotions and vulnerability, those hugs and caring moments all adds up to climb the tallest mountain in the world. To let others to flourish with your support is the key I learnt in my leadership role.

There is no race, there is no game, because we all are in this game and have to make the team be comfortable. It doesn’t matter who made the goal in the goal-post as long as we have made efforts to make that goal to win the game. 


This Good Gig has given me an opening to the world which I was thinking to enter after my retirement but I guess I don’t have to wait that long if I have to do a good gig I can do it anytime. The journey continues for me... and I am happy if you want to hop along with me 

"Never get tired of doing little things for others sometimes those little things occupy the biggest part of their hearts"

~ Dawn

Wednesday, August 02, 2017

The best and most beautiful things in this world cannot be seen or even heard, but must be felt with the heart..

It's been 5 days in Delta, Utah Millard District School. When it began I thought I will be able to write each day about the experience but I realized it's tough.

Each day things change and we adapt it as best as we can. My team has the job to teach the teacher initiatives on Google Suite for education and we did came prepared before we took our flights to Utah.


After coming to Utah, two days we were learning and understanding the requirements which were sometimes different than what was assumed by us prior to our landing here at Utah.
We had some great teacher associates, principals who graciously supported us by giving ideas what may work best with these teachers.
There were some teachers who were totally unaware of technology and then there were some who had some idea but didn't had the confidence to use.

Much of the time would go in brainstorming and discussions and finally we will come to a solution which usually used to be at midnight or past that and then once the solution is out one need to work on getting things ready on slides.

"Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success." ~ Henry Ford


I literally had to count to check how many days are over because it seems like we have been here forever.
Everyone is tired yet they all are contributing because the goal is to uplift this District Schools with technology for the better future of the children of Millard School District.

Finally, our day came where we planned our training and set the stage. Somehow in my mind I was very confident about we as a team will have a great success and hence that gut feel kept me motivating my team as well.
I kicked off the training and brought others who gave a demo with an equal interaction session where teachers had an opportunity to play with the tool while the demo was shown.
In the afternoon we had grouped in four different countries and took each teacher on a tour.
The teachers loved it and the session was a big success. Teachers were ready to spend more time and some even said, "I am more hungry and want to learn more, some said, wow! I never knew life will become so easy, and some just hugged and said you made my life easy".


I think the team did a great job.  The best part was when the Millard School District people showered with compliments for the huge success, it was a great relief.
The people of Delta, Utah are so simple, loving and caring that they are ready to do anything for us, just because we are there to help the school teachers and children.
When we go to the restaurants, people out there treat us with love because they know we are in town from all around the world to help the Millard School District Schools and this shows how the entire town is focussed on one goal.

The days are hectic with  our schedules and nights goes in brainstorming, discussing and implementing those plans on slide for presentation. However, this brought everyone closer in the team. The Delta community was ready to help us to help the students and teachers, so was our own team. Everyone was ready to give a hand to the other and teamwork not only gave us a successful delivery but it also brought lot of fun and excitement for everyone.

"No one can whistle a symphony. It takes a whole orchestra to play it." - H.E. Luccock

I don't remember when was day 5 as this post I am able to post after my 2 weeks trip to Utah and a week of vacation to Canada. 

There are so many things that I want to summarize whether it's about what we as a team served, or learned or even the emotional moments that touched each other's heart - sometimes words don't do justice at all.

I want to cherish and re-cherish those moments that I spent in Delta, Utah. I probably met the best people on earth and the best people with whom I worked. 

World is full of beautiful people and all we need to do is extend our arms and hug them, receive them and love them.

There is nothing bigger than Love and this I have always experienced in my life, in my journey whether it was when I was in India, or Canada or in USA - people are all same and understand the language of love. 
One warning, it is contagious so watch out to get more love and more hugs in return :)

"The best love is the kind that awakens the soul; that makes us reach for more, that plants the fire in our hearts and brings peace to our minds. That's what I hope to give you forever."

~ Dawn

The Ones That Love Us, Never Really Leave Us!

Today is a sad day! This morning when Dad called and said that my Uncle (Mom's brother), expired I was more like a professional receivin...