Everyday is a special day for it opens for you a storehouse of opportunities. It is up to us whether we look for the opened or opening windows or pine and sigh for the closed ones. Given that, I still say today is a special day to me. The day I became a mother in 1985. I still remember the teeny weeny little one curled up in my arms, holding my finger tightly and instinctively with her tiny fingers! It was as if she knew even then that she could hold my hand, through thick and thin.
This day, way back in 1985, was a special day for us in Kerala, for it was Thiruvaathira day. Falling on a full moon day, the festival is related to Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva & Thiruvaathira are much more important to me as I grew up in a rustic village called Pallavur. Pallavur boasts of a beautiful Shiva temple (not so beautiful anymore as some “bright sparks” decided to lop off all trees in precincts of the temple and making the soothing green haven one of stark brown earth, crushed and paved stones!).
In Kerala, the festival is celebrated as the birthday of Lord Shiva. ‘Thiruvathira’ is the nakshatra or star of Lord Shiva as per the Malayalam calendar . And Thiruvathira happens to be one of the important festivals of our temple. “Thirivathira means sacred big wave using which this universe was created by Lord Shiva about 132 trillion years ago. Before the Big Wave there was nothing. Modern scientists confirm much of these theories outlined by ancient Rishis (Indian Sage scientists): their claim is it all started with a “Big Bang” and that the elemental forces are wavelike. The discrepancy is in one minor detail: the age of the universe per modern scientists is 13.8billion as against the 132-trillion-claim of ancient Indian Scientists.” (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pallavur)
So, it was on such a festive occasion that my daughter was born. She was named Aathira as she was born on Thiruvathira day. Well, it would never be a hyperbole if I say that she made our lives too festival-like! Full of vitality, verve and enthusiasm. Today, when she is a self reliant young professional, I thank our Lord Tripallavurappan for all His infinite mercies showered upon us. We have traversed arduous journeys together and have been there for each other all the time – though physical space had actually separated us. It is said that the best things we can give our children are wings to fly and roots to grow. I honestly hope I have given her both. Let me wind up this post with a lovely poem titled “Roots and Wings” I found in this link: http://www.vanier.com/roots.wings.shtm
If I could give you many things,
I’d give you gold and silver rings
Of knowledge that I’ve gained with years
The gift of smiling through the tears
Confidence, courage, determination,
Laughter and spirit and love of creation,
Wrapped up in a box with a bow,
I’d give To you these gifts to keep for as long as you live.
If I could give you just two things,
One would be Roots, the other, Wings.
Roots, not to tie you to the ground,
But to guide you to where your fulfillment is found
The nourishing start, the firm foundation,
The source of your inner determination.
Wings to soar over obstacles, wings to fly free,
Wings to glide to the heights of the best you can be.
And when obstacles loom, from your Roots grows a hand
Providing a strong, sturdy, safe place to land.
I’d choose these two things for the gifts that are best,
For with Roots and with Wings, you’ll find all the rest!
P.S: to Aathira: Wish you a happy birthday my little girl; being mom to you has been the ‘bestest’ ever that has happened to me!