Affirmations

I hate how really  small things can really throw me over the edge now. Yikes! I need to be emotionally more stable and calm. I need to calm down. I need to learn how to breathe and be in the moment. I need to believe. I need to trust. I need to be patient. I really need to work on patience. I want everything now and  just the way I like it. I really need to realize I have to work hard for the things I want. It is not going to be handed to me on a silver platter!

People say Bikram Yoga changed their lives. I am on a 21 day challenge where I plan on going everyday (today is day 4).  I felt the change within me yesterday.I was just having a crazy wacky day. I heard some bad news and felt awful. I was in a bad mood, and just feeling very anxious and nervous.  I forced myself to walk into class even though I dreaded it.  But that 90 mins of being present in the moment, and looking at myself really helped. I walked out of class relaxed and just happier.

I hope Bikram Yoga can continue to humble me.  Even though my main motivation for doing Bikram yoga is weight loss and getting physically fit, I look forward to accepting all the other benefits that come with it.

 

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What’s in a name?

I have been thinking about writing this post for a while. Why did I decide to call myself a bou/wife in this blog?

After I got married, I did not take Hubby last name. I am deeply connected to my own name. My first name has a part of my dad’s name, and my last name is my mom’s first name. In essence, I have two first names (SS). It is very musical name :D. That is my formal name (bhalo naam). I also have a nickname (daak naam).  Those who have read The Namesake  by Jhumpa Lahiri know what I am talking about. My daak naam is a very Bengali and translates to Rainy Season in English. I was born in during the monsoon season and my name signifies that.  My daak naam is used by my family, family friends, friends from my childhood.  Most of the time now, when I introduce myself I use my bhalo naam.  Even though hubby uses my daak naam , I call him using his bhalo naam (I should really change into using his daak naam).

After I got married people who call hubby Bhai (A respectable term, refers to being an older brother…in Bengali culture we usually don’t refer to people with just their names as it is disrespectful if they are older than you) started calling me Bhabi   (Bhai’s wife). People who started to call me Bhabi included my brother-in-law, and hubby’s friends. To my brother-in-law, I asked him to call me apu (older sister). My brother calls me apu  and I consider my brother-in-law as my own brother. Using a term like bhabi reinforces the fact I am connected to him by marriage, not by blood. I really don’t want to differentiate between him and my brother. So I prefer that he calls me Apu. 

To Hubby’s friends, I always remind them to call me by my name (as most are older than me and some are my age). I want to reinforce that I have my own identity. By allowing myself to be a bhabi, I feel like I exist because there is a bhai or hubby.  Whenever I am introduced to new people as bhabi,  I always take a stand and correct people. This is, I guess, taking a feminist stand  (in my mind).

Considering the fact that I do not like being called a Bhabi, why am I calling myself a Bou (wife) in this blog?

I have spent the last 11 years of my life outside Bangladesh and only had very limited interaction with Bangladeshis. When I married a Bangladeshi guy, my connection to my homeland, my culture and my heritage was reinforced. Becoming a wife allowed me to connect to my culture in different ways. Becoming a wife has also changed me for the better. Becoming a wife has made me very happy as I found an amazing life partner. Being a wife has also become a large part of identity. I know there are certain things I will not do because  I am a bou and I know there are things I will do because I am. My relationship with parents have changed because I am married.  I have learned to understand life differently since I got married.  To appreciate all of those things, I decided call myself a bou as how and what I write about is effected  by my marital status.

Hair

I didn’t realize how long my hair had grown until my cousin uploaded a picture of me taken last weekend. Considering I never spent that much time on my appearance when I was young/teenage…most of the time I had really short hair or bad hair. As I am getting older, I realize that the genes are really not on my side. Both my parents have lost most of their hair in their early 30s, so I started to take care of my hair. Avoiding heat products, conditioning it, and just taking care of it. I know compared to other people my hair isn’t that long, but this is the longest I have ever had it.

Now that my hair is this long, I have a crazy idea to put red streaks on my hair. Not the bright red, but more of a brownish red. I talked to my stylist, she told me that as my hair is jet black she would have to bleach it first and then put the color in. I am quite worried about damaging my hair.  To all the dark haired girls, did you ever bleach your hair? What was your experience with it?

 

On a serious note: Army

My mother always said that in our family we don’t marry anyone in the army. Considering the fact my grandfather was a prisoner of war for 4 years during the Bangladeshi Liberation War in Pakistan, I understood her position. Her family had a very negative impression of the armed forces.

In a few of my classes, we discussed the need and role of a professional army and its implication.

Few days ago, American Marines urinating on dead Talibans caught  the media’s attention. And now there is a new video out of a few Indian Border guards brutally torturing a alleged cow theif/smuggler who is a Bangladeshi. The man is beaten, his clothes were taken off….I haven’t been able to see the video till its end. I am embedding the full youtube link, but I don’t know how it will stay there as the video has already been flagged. The sound captured in mostly hindi….but the images of violence and torture are universal.

 

Is there a connection between being part of an armed force and brutality? What happens to their humanity? Is the power they hold because they can legally carry weapons? Or is it the training they go through that makes them so inhumane? What happens to them?

I wish we could live in a world without the need for a professional army.

“YOGA MAKES ME SMILE”

I finally broke down and bought something from Lulu Lemon. Being a struggling graduate student and poor (now underemployed and poor), most of the time I cannot justify buying anything from Lulu Lemon as they are so expensive. I usually go to the store or look online and sigh!

As a restarted doing regular Bikram Yoga, I decided to splurge! Last time when I was regular, I realized I feel much more confident in class when I have two water bottles (2L). I think they become my security blanket in class. There were few days I actually finished my water, but knowing that I had water was a great relief. I hate leaving the class in the middle of the session.  So I was using two of tattered nalgenes from my undergraduate days. As I have been revamping my kicthen and life, I threw away those, and bought one from Kor from Winners. I got a colour called sunrise orange, and paid about 15 bucks.

Now, for the second bottle: I got one from Lululemon! It was on sale for 14 dollars, so I thought: Why not? I am going to pay  around the same price for a regular bottle!

So this is the bottle I got!  Yey! And I LOVE LOVE LOVE the slogan on the bottle. YOGA MAKES ME SMILE! And it came in one of those cute Lulu Lemon totes! Small things make me so happy!

So I totted my two water bottles to my Bikram Yoga class. I had a great class. The instructor Mr Tall-Beardy has a great energy! I love taking his classes. Tomorrow I am hitting up a women’s only Bikram Yoga class. I am quite excited since I have never done one of those.

P.S: One thing I do to encourage sustainability is that I always carry my water bottle with me. I refuse to buy water as it comes in a  plastic container. I know this is not a huge step, but it is something! Any other easy ways to reduce carbon footprint and promote sustainability?

P.S 2: I got the picture from the Lulu Lemon Website!

Gallery

Creme Caramel

This gallery contains 1 photos.

I stood in front of the refridgator holding a teaspoon in one hand and the door handle with the other one. I was crouching towards a rectangular shaped plate on the bottom shelf and savoring the creamy, milky, cardamom-y deliciousness … Continue reading

All is well

Hubby and I made up today! Phew! I hate fighting and being angry, and holding on to grudge. Is it just me or do other people have physical reaction when they have huge fight with their partners? The first time hubby and I fought, I ended up massive headache. The second time, I ended up having a UTI ( yeah, I know!) and this time I ended up with a fever and a cold. I feel so much better after making up with hubby! This is when I feel long distance really sucks! If we were together, we would probably cook a nice meal and spend some quality time together :p.