But of course we are back to normal programming by which we mean last moment posts to ensure we do not break the streak that has lasted 11 days already.
Anyway, we are back to Pune, and the Dude, and in short, life. If all goes well, hopefully also back to healthy, controlled eating, decent hours at work, and working out a bit. The travel was alright, and exhausting only Zo decided she didn’t want the seat belt, and wanted to sit on the floor in the plane and do ‘Potty’, right when we were about to land, which meant I was kinda pukish, and my ear was blocked and hurting, and the air hostess was repeating that I either had to hold Zo on my lap, or belt her, and I was saying I knew that but seriously what can I do, look at that thing, you think I have any control over what’s happening help me!
Anyhow. We landed. Alive. And the airport was a happy place with Zo loving her ride on the luggage cart. For once, our luggage was not the last one to arrive (the last but one perhaps, but not the last, and that’s a big deal), and as soon as we got into the cab, she fell asleep. Phew.
I think having Zo, if not anything else, has made me way thicker skinned than I ever was. By nature, I am someone who embarrasses very easily. And get way to apologetic in general. Take this for an example. About 12 years ago, we were at the famous annual exhibition in Hyderabad, and while walking past the numerous stalls, the sellers would call out to us. And I distinctly remember saying ‘ No, Thank you’, ‘Sorry’, to almost all of them. Very very silly, if I think back, but that’s just one exaggerated and unfortunately very true incident.
Otherwise, I am very particular about not being a nuisance, even indirectly for anyone. I usually choose seats in a corner, where no one has to pass through, plug in my earphones, or get engrossed in a book, only to look up when really needed. I always choose the window seats, because then no one has to ask me to move. It is mostly for my own convenience, but also because I just don’t want to be anyone’s path. So much so, that during international flights, if i need to visit the washroom, I wait for the person at the aisle to wake up before stepping out. Or in case he is watching a movie, I kinda try to guess if it is some super interesting part he wouldn’t want to miss, and then decide to excuse myself. Seriously.
But with Zo, things have changed. Zo is a hurricane. An unstoppable, energetic, relatively loud hurricane who doesn’t care a bit about what people around her think. I know, it is the same with most babies, but in this case, it is much more obvious, because she has a mom who flinches at the thought of some random person’s thought bubble saying ‘Oh, what a pain!’. While I understand that it is possible that said person might be thinking ‘Oh, poor woman! Look how her little monster is troubling her!’ (and no, I wouldn’t like that either), but I usually assume it is the former. In fact, at first, even the cutesy things Zo did publicly, if they were even a little loud, I would look around giving sorry looks to people. It doesn’t help that The Dude is exactly like me in this.
But over time, I think I have come to accept these things. And pretty much let things be. By which I mean every time Zo creates a mini-ruckus, I block all sounds and thoughts from my head. Today Vertigo helped, but even otherwise, the best way to go about it is to act like you are home and you are trying to calm Zo down, and not bother finding faster, more effective methods because there are people around, because come on, as if that would work.
And that itself is a massive achievement. But I really hope I get better at this, and handle such situations more comfortably in future. I mean, one does get used to things right? And the more often you face a situation, the more used to it you get? Either that, or I wait for Zo to grow up and out of all this eventually.
I think I have a fair idea what will happen first. And it is not making me feel any better.