Outside in

So, a new year.

The last one just sort of flew by for me. We all say it every year but last year beat most other years for me. I lived with a sense of impermanence, a sense that made me feel that I had to keep my bags packed and ready to go.

Sometimes, I wonder how I became a mother of two (yes, for those who don’t know Utkarsh was born August last year and is now a bonny lad of 4 months) in about as many years, if not less. I don’t mean I wonder about the technicality but like my lovely sister in law Y (Hi Y!) said, I am watching this whole thing from the outside instead of being in the middle of it all. Two new year’s eves ago I was getting drunk and coming home barely able to keep my heels on and this new year’s eve I had a quiet drink at home because going out would mean two diaper bags, formula dispenser, wearing a feeding bra and going some place that would have low light/sound/breeze/personality and being very worried about irritating fellow diners (party-goers being an impossibility) with a stubborn, fussy baby.

How did that happen?

On the one hand, I am 30 and should feel glad that I’ve had my marriages, divorce, unemployment, career break and kids. On the other hand, the Me that’s watching all of this in my life can’t quite figure out whose life she is living. Because it certainly ain’t hers! Her life is somewhere in a smallish apartment in a locality by the sea that she has done up in fairy lights through the year, where she cooks to impress herself and wakes up early to go to her dance lessons; not because her babies won’t let her sleep. In that life, her skin is how it used to be at 27 and her overflowing wardrobe wasn’t the source of her guilt. She’d be with at least two men, separately, if not together, and she’d be deeply interested in a third. She’d be barefeet, tv-less and have a hot pink book shelf, a vintage mirror, rugs everywhere and glittery curtains.

A life in a Middle Eastern capital, working for a magazine and raising two laughter-inducing, joy-giving kids was never part of the plan. It’s not a bad thing, not at all, considering the kind of money I am going to be able to spend on clothes, books and make up, but it was not my plan.

Happy 2010 all.

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