Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Lights. Camera. Action. PIMPLE!!

Yes yes. You read it right.

On 28th July, Saturday was the shooting for Aarav's documentary at home.

We cleaned the house and made it nice and presentable. We ourselves got cleaned up nicely.
All was going well. Aarav looked like the little rock-star that he is, the house looked good, Kaustubh looked good and so did I.

Till my alter devil ego appeared on my shoulder advising me to go a step further. 

Usually I am lazy and go to a parlor, but Murphy had to get his law proved true and I ended up deciding that this time I will save a few pennies and get a home facial. 

On my own.
My skin is actually really really nice to me. I have no freckles, scars, speed-breakers or potholes on my face, and so I never needed to use anything other than talcum powder.

In other words, I am ignorant about make-up and products used.

But if I have to face the camera, some makeup should be done, I thought.
So, then lets see what works on me?

One of my friends, is a avid make up user, I asked her for tips.
(As she does not yet read my blog, I can safely say she knows so much that sometimes goes overboard by loading on enough to resemble a Geisha Maiko.)

She told me a million product names. 

The list was more than my graduation syllabus. She also told me what to use when, combinations, and sequence of use as well. 

Which I eventually forgot...

All I remembered that according to my skin type, Product A and Product B would suit me well.

I was supposed to use Product A. And then Product B.
I did a patch test and it worked wonders during the first test.

As I had very less time, I thought the process was too slow and could use optimization.

Being a nutcase geek, I derived the following.
& if 'Skin + A' = fine,
& if 'Skin + B' = fine,
Then it implies 'Skin + AB' also = fine.
I used mathematical transitivity and used Product A+B.

And in a few hours, my long lost and forgotten friend, the PIMPLE returned.
He brought with him Skin rash and Dry red Skin.

And stuck on for three full days.
Till the last video was shot.

Want to see me??


Yes it is really me in the above picture... just a bit of garnish added....

Saturday, 27 October 2012

Why cant I hear????

Kaustubh was out of town for the weekend and so for the first time, Aarav and I were all alone for the entire weekend!!
Usually getting Aarav all to myself is a treat! But today, we had something else in store for us..

We went to therapy in the morning and Aarav did all his lings well. All new and existing sounds were as expected!!
So we were hearing and everything as usual...

The therapy ended around 1230 in the morning. Aarav had a heavy breakfast but to go home now and cook lunch would have been too late for him.
So I had packed up his bag and then dropped him at daycare so that he would immediately have lunch and get some sleep.

In the meanwhile, I went back home and cleaned the house to get it ready for Diwali.
After a rather tiring cleaning session, I went at 6:00 pm to pick up Aarav from the daycare.

He had finished his evening snack and so I decided to take him to the park.

As if he read my mind, the second he saw me coming, Aarav was literally jumping and pointing at the Park gate.
The daycare and the park share a common wall. Aarav now knows that if I am walking (no bike) to pick him up, it usually means that he will get to go play in the park.

I took his big daycare bag. water bottle and snacks and then picked him up and started walking towards the park.

And then I heard.
The Neptune was beeping.

All right. The magnet must have fallen off.

Beep beep.

I checked the magnet.
It was still on.

Beep beep.

If the battery is depleted, it must be an orange light??
I started walking faster. Dragging Aarav away from the playground.
The battery I put in in the morning was full. It should not have depleted so soon.

Beep beep.

Maybe I'll change the battery just in case.
So I took him to a nearby grocery shop and plopped him on their glass table top and asked for a disposable Duracell.
I then realized that I had no money on me.

Beep beep beep.

By this time Aarav started figuring out that I may not be taking him to the park and he had started whining.
So just to pacify him or distract him for the moment I bought him borrowed biscuits and Cadbury Gems. That made him wait for a few seconds and consider that the biscuits may be for the park after all.

Beep Beep Beep Beep.

The grocery store owner finally considered my plea (and probably thought the batteries may be critically important after all especially since I was more focussed on getting the batteries then soothing my crying baby) and gave me the battery pack on loan.

Beep Beep Beep Beep.

Much to Aarav's dismay, instead of the freedom at the park I was now holding him down pulling out the Neptune. He was annoyed and had now started crying even louder...
I immediately switched off the Neptune and put in new batteries. I connected the magnet back and started the ling sounds expecting the green light to blink back at me.

Beep Beep Beep Beep.

What is wrong!!!!???
I dint even hear Aarav crying. the beeps by now were drilling into my head, muffling my reasoning.
I had to get home. I grabbed all my belongings. Promised the grocery store that I will return with the money soon.
Picked up Aarav and started running.

Beep Beep Beep Beep.

Did the Neptune stop working?
Did he fall?
Did Aarav hit his head??? I rubbed his head to check (which made him cry even more. He was still in the tantrum for not going to the park )
He seems ok. It does not look like he has hurt himself.

It already 6:20 pm!
What should I do!! The doctors will not be available now???

Kaustubh is not in Pune. My brother is not here. My brother in law is out for a meeting 30 km away!!
What a time for such a problem!!

I better get home and check Aarav before calling my parents and running to KEM.

Beep Beep Beep Beep Beep Beep.

I have to check with the connect!!
In spite of 3 big bags and Aarav throwing a full volume tantrum, I was running.
The 5 minute distance from my home to the daycare now seemed longer than ever!

I unlocked the door and placed Aarav on the floor, ripped his Neptune off and ran to the Neptune kit with him in tow.
Connected the Connect and headphones, reattached it to Aarav's head and waiting for the sounds to come...

Beep Beep Beep Beep.
Beep Beep Beep Beep.

AA.... EE.... OO.... MM... SS... SSH...

Beep Beep Beep Beep.
Beep Beep Beep Beep.
Beep Beep Beep Beep.
Beep Beep Beep Beep.

I was feeling lost and numb. I dint know what to do.
Aarav was still crying. I looked at him and then I understood.
This time it was not a tantrum. It was real. He had been really crying all along.
I had scared him.

He was without sound all this while so he dint hear me talk to him. He just saw my expressions. He was confused and did not understand what I was doing.

I always ask his permission or tell him when I remove the magnets.
He was already annoyed at the loss of sound. And instead of helping him feel better, I had repeatedly ignored him, rudely pulled his ears out more than once.

I had been incredibly impolite. I did not consider what he might have felt !!
I kept thinking about how to solve the problem; of what needs to be done, followed the checklist of priorities, organized the plan or action. Everything.
Everything except what Aarav had just gone through.

I was rude. Inconsiderate.


I left the Neptune and kit and all the mess as it was, and picked Aarav up and walked out.

I gave Aarav a bowl of his favorite fruit and put on his favorite cartoon on television.
He sat on my lap and watched the cartoons.

And I watched him.
The boy is strong. He is tolerant. And at just two years of age, he is amazingly understanding.
He understood that I was not being my usual self. He knew something was wrong. He let me check his head again.
One little hug was all it took for me to sooth him. And for him to calm me down.
My little warm sunshine.

I kept the cartoons on mute. Aarav was not hearing them anyway.
I got some quite time to think and I chalked out my plan of action.
Call the Parents first.
Then the Audiologist.
Pack a dinner for Aarav.
Then go to KEM.
Making a list helped sort my emotions.
Always better to follow a set of steps than let emotions get over.

Time to start.

So I signed to Aarav that I'll be right back.

I went back to the Neptune and started putting the separated pieces together one by one checking them individually.
And then it hit me!!

Neptune comes with not one, but Two mikes!

I kept the aqua mike away and pulled out the non-waterproof regular mike, the chords for the new mike and connected them all.
Then I took the Neptune with the new mike to Aarav and asked him if I could put it on. He was waiting for the Neptune and said yes.

I attached the magnet and switched it on.

Beep. Beep.....................................

Aaa .. Flash of green light!!
And Aarav repeated " Aaa"

OO. MM. EE. SSSS. SSSH. ........ Blinks of the green light after every sound !!!!
And Aarav repeated them all after me.

Aarav was now hearing again!!!!
The Aquamic / Aquamic's chord had the problem. There was nothing else wrong!!

I cried out in joy!
I had never been this happy since the switch on!!!

Pure relief and Joy!


Seeing your deaf child asking for his hearing machine.

Hearing your deaf child repeat all the Ling sounds without any visual clues.

And then, watching the TV together with the volume on...


Friday, 26 October 2012

Guest Post from Aarav!!!

Hi All!!!
I am Aarav.

Few days back, I was just browsing the net to check up on my own blog.

And I was surprised!!!
Oh Mom!!!! Tch tch!
She dint keep it updated like she used to!!! 

Do you know how long my blog was dormant??? 30 days!! 1 full month!!
I grew a full year older during this time.. and my blog missed it!!

I told her to listen to me.
I begged.


I scolded her.

I even tried to physically get in into her head.

I tried my best puppy-dog eyes..

And my best girly-blushy-beautiful-melt-any-mom-eyes smile..

But aaalllll in vain.

Well, to be fair, it was not her fault.
She did have quite a lot happening in the last month.


I fell sick...
Then she fell sick..
Then dad fell sick..
Then me again...
Then our cooking Aunty stopped coming...
Then our other cleaning Aunty stopped coming...
Then my progress report..
Then Ganpati celebration at home..
My everyday study..
My birthday picnic and planning..
The cancellation of my Birthday picnic..
The celebration of my birthday and new planning done at the very last minute...


She was pretty wrapped up.
Even more than me.

Thank god for dad's planning. He's the organized one.

He tried to tell mom to relax and compartmentalize.
But its a difficult concept, you know.

So I demonstrated.

So now she's better.
And she said that she will start updating my blog very soon.
And because I am a good son, I wanted to help her.

Mom made a list but never posted... So I helped post her ready list.

So that once it is posted, mom can update each and every individual update when time permits...

So you all can stop staring into space or pulling out your hair...
The wait is finally over...


Thursday, 25 October 2012

The last month's updates....

This is what happened in the last few weeks.

10-Sep-12 : Have you planned to get a second CI??
We went for therapy today and also got the Neptune mapping done.
This new map for Neptune is the first real map after the Neptune-switch on.
Our Audiologist explained to us the benefits of getting the second CI done soon.
In case the recipient is bilaterally implanted within a small time gap, then the brain adjusts and tunes both ears such that the responses from both become identical.
More here…

12-Sep-12 :
The Second CI
I read about the benefits of a second CI today. Again.
We see no demerits apart from the fact that the amount involved is a bit too high.
Aarav is not well today. Fever and cold.
He has not been well from 2 days actually. Today it just was a bit more than usual.
I took a leave from work and he is now suddenly his usual bubbly self!!
He did keep me busy all day. But it good to have time together.

13-Sep-12 : Neptune's price list.
As I had mentioned previously, we need Neptune's dry kit.
I received the price list today.
The prices are same as what we had expected, but seeing them in black and white makes quite a different impact.
The decision to go for a second CI is dwindling. Not because we think it is wrong.
But because the other parameters involved are too overbearing at the moment.
The decision to get a second CI has now been postponed indefinitely...

14-Sep-12 : Progress Report
Today we had Aarav's progress report.
This was supposed to be the 3 Month-Post Implant Progress Report, but due to some reasons it got delayed and today we have the progress report.
Aarav's score has been 33 out of 40!! A brilliant progress so far!!
The score is based on a set of 10 questions and Aarav's responses to each of them.
Though the score with the hearing aid is 2-3. :(

I would have expected responses to at least loud sounds.. I think we need to get Aarav's hearing aid fine tuned again.

15-Sep-12 : A brush with the deaf culture!!!
This was quite and experience in itself.

A separate blog post on this... Click here...

We are happy we met this lady. No credit to her but because it was an experience we should have had.

It is good to know what correct decision one has taken.
But it feels even better when you understand what WRONG YOU HAVE AVOIDED…

Planning to have a small Ganpati decoration at home as well…
Aarav will enjoy.
With all the everyday prayers and sweets, this will be an added enjoyment for Aarav plus good for learning too!!

19-Sep-12 : Ganesh Chaturthi
Ganpati week here…
Went early morning to take blessings of Lord Ganesha.
Dagdusheth Halwai Ganpati pune 2012.

Aarav dressed up like a "Dhol-walla" in his school!!
I simply love his daycare!!
He had Ganpati decorations in the daycare and story telling.
And all the kids were dressed in traditional wear as well!!
More soon..

Went to the city to see Ganpati processions today evening.
I was afraid Aarav would be scared due to all that excessive noise, but he seems ok. In fact he was intrigued by the music and lights…

26-Sep-12 : New true words!!
Aarav is now saying Thank you!!

27-Sep-12 : Medicine time with Aarav!!

Aarav and medicines... Its is quite a routine...

29-Sep-12 : Ganpati visarjan
Went to the city to see Ganpati processions.
Aarav stared intently at the Dhol procession. He was not scared by the noise. He was intrigued!!
He understood the source of sound and wanted to keep on watching till the procession passed us by…

5-Oct-12 : Diveagar
We had been planning for quite a few weeks to go to this vacation.
It is raining today. And there is news of a storm coming in.
We will have to now cancel the picnic.

We will not let Aarav’s birthday get missed due to a silly storm.
We will be celebrating it!!
Now starts the planning :D

6-Oct-12 : Birthday!!!
Birthday program at home. The decision to celebrate was taken a yesterday night!
Superb day!!
Aarav enjoyed his birthday a lot!!
More soon..

22-Oct-12 : Typical Boy!!

Monday, 22 October 2012

Shot down by a toddler.

Aarav absolutely hates being cuddled and kissed against his wish.
All the lovey-dovey cuddles he permits me are "at-a-distance" or "on-his-permission" only.

Even if he suspects that I am about to catch hold him and kiss him, and if he is not interested, he will simply run away.

But. HE will come and give me drool-covered bear hugs when he wants to.
And these rare precious hugs last only till he is comfortable... as soon as he has had enough he gets up, and runs away.

When I want to cuddle up and sleep, he sleeps facing the other side with his back to me..
And I am not allowed to disturb him.
But when he wants me to face him, he will scratch + kick + pull my hair + yelp out loud till he has my attention. (we co-sleep)

When I want hugs, he wants to run away.
When he wants me, no amount of dirt / grime / raw mango / sleepy mom / tired mom / angry mom / busy mom will deter him.

Grrrrrrrr. I hate it.
Aarav is such a typical Boy!!!

Can someone please explain to Aarav that touch deprivation by babies and older children has drastic effects on parents, some of which, if left untreated, can span well into adulthood and beyond??
This has been medically proved, you know?

- Proof from the net –

Touch Deprivation - What Does This Mean to You?

As parents and primary caregivers of our children, we need to be aware of our children's innate needs. Holding, rocking, hugging, and cuddling a crying child (or one who is not crying, for that matter) does not constitute spoiling, but is an instinctual response to a child's primary needs for love, security, and affection, as much as providing nutrition is necessary to a child's physical well-being.

Corollary to the above :
Aarav please read this–

As a Toddler, you need to be aware of your Parent's innate needs.
Holding, rocking, hugging, and cuddling a waiting Mom (or one who is not waiting, for that matter) does not constitute spoiling, but is an instinctual response to a Mother's primary needs for love, security, and affection, as much as providing kisses and hugs is necessary to a Mom's physical well-being.


Due to Severe Toddler Hug Deficiency (STHD), I have taken a decision.

I will have my hugs and kisses. Whether Aarav wants me to or not.
So every time I need a hug or a big kiss, I simply pick him up, put him on to the bed and pin him down, hold his hands and shower him with the biggest, bite-iest (as if that's a word), drooliest (or that) hugs and kisses for as long as I want ...

That may sound a bit cruel.. but Aarav thinks it is some sort of physical play and he giggles like crazy..
And I make him repeat "aai baas"**
to make him say that he has had enough... But he repeats it only if I make him, and I just do it only when I want to stop :)

** Details = It means "Mom thats enough / Mom stop"
Aai = Mom
Baas = Stop / enough

Yesterday, I realllllyyy needed the biggest hug dose from Aarav, so I went on for a bit more than usual..
When Aarav saw, that there were no signs of me letting him go..
He tried to cry... correction - fake cry
I still held on to my bear hug.

Then he twisted and turned and looked at me. In the eye.

Wrinkled his eyebrows..
And said "Aa oo. Baa" **

** Details
aa oo = Nako. (No)
Baa = Baas (enough)



Point taken.

Shot down by a toddler.

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