Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Many Masters

“I thought about you as I read these pages today.” My mother-in-law said smilingly as I stepped out onto the deck yesterday. I had just got home, given Chip his milk, peanuts, raisins, apple, milk again, juice (grape not apple), peanuts again. Finally getting tired of the game, I had given Chip an ultimatum, poured myself a glass of juice, helped myself to the Chivda the MIL had made and stepped out on the deck. The MIL was reading, or rather re-reading after a decade, Many Masters Many Lives, sitting on the swing, a cup of coffee in hand.

The MIL and I have many things in common and over the years have bonded over it. Astrology (I never cease to amaze, do I), spirituality, classical music, cooking, gardening, metaphysical phenomena. Which is not to say we are similar in personality. She is garrulous, I am the quiet sort. She thinks too much about what the extended family will think and say, me not at all, partly because I live half a globe from all that. She has tremendous amount of faith, and me? I don’t know. We are both married to hyper-rational geeks, the aloof, mind your own business types and we bond over that. I call her Kaku – which means Chachi/Auntie. Never called her mom, aie, or any other maternal terminology. And I was forthright about it. When BigGeek and I decided to get married, I should have started calling her something motherly, but I asked her if she would be OK with Kaku and she was. There is only one mother, I reasoned. The one that raises you. And she gracefully accepted that. Despite BigGeek’s aunts being shocked that she let me call her Kaku and not Aie. But I go off on a tangent here, but well not really, it’s important to get an idea of what the MIL is like.

Which pages, I wanted to know. She flipped back the pages. “It’s when Catherine talks about one of her lives while in the trance. The time when she was born in a Victorian period.” For five minutes the MIL read out a couple of pages to me. In them, Catherine talked about what she had learnt from that lifetime. She had learnt to have faith in the masters. She did not believe in them, not in that lifetime, she did not. But at the end of it she realized that had been her lesson. To have faith in the larger scheme of things.

This was very slightly uncanny. Because while reading the book, this is exactly what I thought my task for this life was. To learn to have faith. In the really bigger picture. The MIL has this faith. From where it stems from I know not. But through out this ordeal she has remained so calm that I have to admit I have questioned if she realized the seriousness of it all.“We don’t have masters (guru) in real life. I wish we did but we don’t. " She was telling me. Maybe these are our Masters, she said meaning the book’s author Brian Wiess.

I am definitely in a crisis of faith here. The MIL is happy not knowing all the answers. She is not bothered when her Whys go unanswered. She accepts that not all can be reasoned by the mind. The self, on the other hand, acknowledges that rational thought has its limits, but that conclusion, like a strange loop, is reached though logic. So, here I am, trying to break that loop and take a leap of faith. I just wish it wasn’t so damn hard.

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BigGeek Update: He had his first day of Cardiac Rehab and it went OK. The shoulder pain shifts from one to the other and into the neck and comes and goes. It’s wait and watch. I am praying it goes away soon.

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P.S. I know I am in a funk. I’ll be back to the old self in a few days.

20 comments:

I love Lucy said...

Oh take your time,DM.You can be in as much a funk as you want to.This is your blog and we are all here for you.
BigGeek will be fine soon,don't worry.

DotMom said...

thanks sooooooooo much!!! really. really.

GettingThereNow said...

Good to know that you have such a relationship with you MIL.

Hang in there. We'll still be here when you get back to your old form. Take care of BigGeek and yourself. Lots of virtual hugs coming your way!

Tharini said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tharini said...

All through, I was enchanted to read and sense the relationship you have with your MIL. That's nice really. That you can bond over several things.

Its ok that you are in a funk. What are you apologising for??? I love that you are such a strong woman...but please...we all understand. In our own limited, disconnected from the reality of your circumstances ways..we do understand.

Your crisis of Faith. I can't tell you how much I want to reach out a hand and pull you over to where I am. Wish you some peace...that's all. But, this is your journey to make. All yours.

And ending with this note...you are an enchanting writer. Simple. straight. Subtle too. And delightful. And everytime I read your post, I get the pure pleasure waves of a good read, from a real writer.

Wishing you peace.

Usha said...

I hope the BG gets 100% fit soon and I hope he is not stressed about the backlog at work or his inability to get up to his original speed. He need sto learn to enjoy his rest and slow pace of life for a while - after all it is only for a few weeks. everything else can wait.
Meantime you take care of yourself too and please do not let the stress get you.
I know it because I went through it when my husband went through a multiple by-pass. It was the stress that was causing more problem than the illness itself.

My very best wishes are with you and the Big geek.
Hugs.

noon said...

A great post - was nice to read about the calm relationship you share with your MIL. I could realte to this post - esp the last para.
And yes why are you apologising?! You have been so strong through all this. And you are allowed (by who?!) to feel this way and it is perfectly normal!
Take care.

Poppins said...

Ah a comrade, one who questions the faith. I wish for you that you make that leap of faith, put your trust in whatever makes you sail through this crisis.

I remember feeling this way when I read that book too. There's a bigger message for you, for all of us somewhere in the middle of all this.

Please take care. Big Geek will get better, keep the faith.

Love !

Squiggles Mom said...

I just came along after a few days. I hope BG gets better soon. You will be in my thoughts.

Noodlehead said...

oh dear, my first time heer and i'm awfully sorry to hear that bg is sick :( wishing him a speedy recovery! you hang in there, he'll soon be as right as rain!

btw, my husband calls my parents "uncle" and "aunty"...it's a hangover from our dating days. always surprises everyone :D

everyone around me is reading that book....and i've been dying to read it! the first chore on my weekend list is to buy the book and read it!

B o o said...

Your MIL and my mom seem very similar on the faith part. I used to wonder where she draws the strength from, how can she unquestioningly believe in something and not even waver for a second, be cool under any circumstance, be a pillar of strength for others,.. oh I can go on.

Since being a mother myself, I have realized that I should just take the plunge without thinking about it too much. After all, thats FAITH, is nt it? I am still trying though...

All our sincere prayers for Big Geeks speedy recovery. You take care too!

DotMom said...

gtn: thanks for the hugs!!!

tharini: yeah, I lucked out with the MIL. @faith: yeah I just wish someone pulled me to the other side.. but like you that's not how it works. I must find my own way. Thanks for all those divine words :) You made my day! Just knowing one person 'gets' what you write is more reward than I ask!

usha: gosh usha! I hope Mr.V is doing well now.. maybe one day you can do a post about the diet he follows and some heart healthy recipes? thanks for your encouraging words.. the stree is worse than the illness!

noon: thanks! I thought you would resonate with this post.

poppins: oh yesh.. some find it easier than others!

squiggles mom: thanks!

noodlehead: thanks for stopping by. its good to surprise every one with things like uncle-aunty, isn't it :) oh you so should read the book.

boo: seriously.. that generation went through so much more and still are so unruffled. I want to be there.

Anitha(Nikki's mom) said...

I would be in deeper funk than you, if I were in your situation. I wouldn't even be blogging I guess. Good that you have such a nice MIL with whom you can relate with. You are a strong woman DotMom, you will sail through this and BigGeek will get better soon. More power and peace to you!

PS: regarding faith, my thoughts have always been in a flux, so no comments there.

kodi's mom said...

The relationship btn you and MIL - something to really treasure and cherish! it is really beautiful.
as for faith - here's a thought, why not give it a beta run? I mean break it down into workable things - a 10 min meditation, 5 minutes of listening to a prayer/a chant/a vedic hymn while driving...soemthing. just try. see if it appeals. simply food for thought, not trying to pull/push you anyway.

Sue said...

Stay strong. We're all here for you and you know something? Your faith is what has you, not the other way around. So it doesn't let you go.

I'm glad, since you and your MIL get along so well, that you have her around at this time.

DotMom said...

nikki's mom: that's what you think.. every one has tremendous reserves of strength. And seriously, I do fall apart more than I admit. Your wishes mean an awful lot. really.

kodi's mom: it is. I lucked out :) rotfl@beta run. hmmm... wonder if that can be done. it's all or none, right? or maybe not?

sue: thanks hon. how was the trip back? you are true in a way about faith.. but so is tharini. so many questions, so few answers..

Parul said...

Obviously so many questions, so few answers - shows the brain is ticking away!

I have so much to say to you on The Faith Thing - primarily because I have been through it all when my dad was ill - but it will really just take up too much space and not actually resolve anything...it hasn't for me...not yet.

So will just say - hope BG's cardiac rehab goes well...and hope he gets back into shape..double time.

As for you - you will be just fine. That I KNOW.

Fuzzylogic said...

You do share such a wonderful relationship with your MIL. As for the leap of faith hang in there dotmom. Losing my dad threw me right back into those very same turmoils too.
You are really an inspiration.Here's wishing very speedy recovery to Big geek. Take care girl!

Shobana said...

Keeping our fingers crossed for BG and hope all will be well. And, really, you lucked out on the relationship with your MIL..good for you my lady..god for u.

Faith...it is very tricky and slippery for some of us. Lots of questions and so few answers. But reading Tharini's post abt religion really did some help for me and for that I am thankful. One day your questions will be answered and I hope for you, that you will reach that end of the road of questions and be able to embrace what is right for you.

Good luck adn lots of hugs.

DotMom said...

parul: the old brin has to keep itself amused! thanks for the positive spin.. i really needed those..

fuzzylogic: so sad to hear about your loss. That must have been tough...am glad you made your peace with that. Thanks for the really kind words and sharing something so personal with me. Just makes you feel you are not alone!

shobana: Thanks Shobana. Faith is indeed tricky. Some find it easier than others.. wish I were the easier one!