Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Ramam's first stall

The pani puri stall as mentioned in my previous post  at the Christmas carnival at Bubbles was a hit. Ramam also participated in the whole process. He helped us with few plates, and kept humming Master Chef to himself .The cashier, my daughter was a little defunct as she had to handle coupons and not cash as anticipated. She had kept a sheet of her multiplication tables with her as a ready reckoner, in the case she will have to handle money and give change back to customers.

           I have to mention this. Two mothers, Chithra and Lalitha waited very patiently just to have Ramam make the plate for them, giving him instructions, and praising him at the end of it. God bless you both. It is only for these few cherished moments that I put up the stall. For him to interact with others and feel good about the whole thing. And yes, in between all this, he helped himself to few pani puris too!

             We shall now steer clear of pani puris for at least another 6 months. Ramam has been practising it for a month and the family has been force fed paani puris for a month. I chose Pani Puri, as I felt it was a more like an assembly job. Things go into the puri in a sequential manner one after the other. But in the chaos that followed in the stall, there was no assembly line, just a rush to cater quickly.

               I had promised my daughter the profits would go to her piggy bank, but finally donated it. It didn’t go down too well with her. Anyway, she did a round of mini shopping at the other stalls and was happy at the end of it.



Friday, December 13, 2013


                         I met this mother, Deepti yesterday (she also happens to be friends with me on Fb) for the first time. She introduced herself and asked me why I stopped blogging. I gave her some vague answer and told her probably nobody reads it. Just some ramblings of mine. She then told me I read every post of yours. That gave me a high. And so, this post is for you, Deepti.

                           Looking back, I started this blog with the sole purpose that it helps somebody in this autism community, they get a parent’s perspective of the journey with autism. And so, let me try and be regular again.

                           I just was reading a blog post by Kelly Magro, who has a video blog called “My Autism My Voice”. To quote him, My parents are strong. They are saints. Without them I have no idea where I am 5 years down the line let alone 20.”  Many of our kids, unlike Kerry do not have the power of expression, but they do love us immensely and it tends to manifest itself sometimes in appropriate ways and most times in the most inappropriate ways.  Just to hang on and give them hope, courage and confidence is something that we can to do and probably that is all they expect from us.

                      Ramam is extremely fortunate to have a circle of well-wishers. When one of his old therapist calls up to say I have been thinking of him, I really wanted to reach out and give her a hug.  A soldier who had served under my husband in the army called up one day to ask his date of birth to make his horoscope, and again you are deeply touched. I would then like to thank all of them, because there is something so powerful in all the good wishes that he gets. And more importantly, they are all hopeful something will work out for him and encourage me to keep the momentum on.

                     He has come a long way. Yes, there are lots of unresolved old issues, some new ones, but then tomorrow is another day. It is a great pleasure to hear him sing some Bollywood numbers, to hear his therapist say, he is doing well.   His passion is cooking, and so for the Christmas carnival in the school, he and his sister (Isha) are going to put up a Pani puri stall, “Ramish chats”. It remains to be seen how it goes. I think the biggest advantage in a place as this is you are serving “sensitized customers”, if there is a word as that.  An occasional pinch or shout might be taken in the right spirit.

                I would like to thank all the readers for the occasional word of encouragement. We do need our reinforcers.  Just before I close this post, I would like to share these words, as they come back to me often, “Pace yourself, you are running a marathon and not a 100m dash.”
               Wishing everybody good health, peace and happiness this festive season.

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