Sunday, October 23, 2011

Long time no see!

I survived the R2I. Its been 3 months now. There were days it was crazy and other days it was not so bad. There were a handful of awesome days. But none of that has to do with moving back to India- if it were left to me and me alone, I think I would be fine- of course all the things that frustrate one at first about India would still frustrate me- the lack of efficiency, the lack of accountability, the daily struggles, lack of systems- but I got used to most of it really quick . I then find that my husband will probably never be ok with it. Given a chance, he would want to leave India the first opportunity we got. To each his own, but that kind of unhappiness is not easy to deal with. Nor is the realization that your happiness is so inextricably linked to anothers. I think I have had the biggest trouble coming to terms with that.

I started working a month after I got here. The job search was also interesting. My interviews went well and my talks were well-received everywhere I interviewed. Offers took their time coming, and I took the first offer I got - essentially because I could no longer sit at home and do nothing. Now I have 10 - hour long work days and 2 hour long commutes. I enjoy my job for most - the exposure, the responsibility (group leader in a small sized co.) and all of that- but I hate that I have to pay such a huge price for it with my personal life. I work 2 Saturdays too. So that leaves me no time to spend with my husband. Having spent 2 yrs in the long-distance, I was looking forward to returning to India and living a normal life and doing fun stuff together. Instead we have my FIL to look after, cannot plan out of town trips unless we take him with us, and essentially I feel like we have gone from long distance to leading the life married people lead after several years of marriage- totally skipping that in between newly married freshness. Sometimes I even feel like our LDR was more fulfilling in its own ways. Given that most of the causes for this are out of our control (work hours, commute time, FIL) it is all the more maddening and disheartening.

On the bright side, I do think we have brought a huge improvement to my FILs quality of life by moving back and living with him. I am very very happy that we are able to do that. I feel very proud of us and very conscious of the sacrifice we have made to be able to do this, because it is not one bit easy. Every time I feel excessively down I draw strength from the fact that we have helped him live a better life in his present condition.

In the early days after we moved back, my FIL was quite appreciative of the changes we have effected in his life. Now he has lapsed into a phase where he feels restricted (he can not continue with the same freedom and ease here in the new apartment as he would in his old) and as if we have locked him down. I guess the novelty wore off soon, and also a lot of it is just an outcome of his condition- it will be given to bitterness and frustration and all of that. We will have to learn to let it not bother us. We would benefit by slowly getting him to learn some of the things that can enable his independence to some extent, and we are doing that- but it demands a lot of patience and we cannot always do it. So we have managed to teach him to go down for a walk, using the stairs, and the building watchman ensures he gets back into the lift and makes his way home. So he at least gets to have his walk everyday. Us sleeping in on a sunday means he would be sitting up, aimlessly, waiting for us to wake up because he is unable to work the door and take the milk to make his coffee. Its small things like that, that make me feel terribly frustrated at times.

B and I do enjoy some of the fun parts of married life such as shopping for house stuff, buying our first car together, etc. So that has been fun. I have his unfaltering support in my professional life. Being new to the corporate world, Id run every one of my office life issues by him and he taught me how to deal with stuff. I can readily commit to out of town assignments and he will pack my bags while I am frantically working on my powerpoints until the last minute. He took the day off when I was sick to be able to tend to me. He has dinner heated up and ready when I come home tired after office every day. We have a nice maid who cooks our meals, and is nice and considerate with my FIL. We never have to worry about cooking and dishes- a huge and welcome change from our lives in the U.S.

But life easily slips into a routine and theres little we seem to be able to do to fix that. Perhaps all life does get routine at some point, its a question of me realizing it and coming to terms with it. My close friends tell me to give it time. I just keep hoping that in that process, this doesnt become our life. Let us see.

I miss the outlet that blogging gave me. It feels good to come here and vent.

15 comments:

Ni said...

nice to see a new post.

This post has so much of my life post marriage.

" I then find that my husband will probably never be ok with it. Given a chance, he would want to leave India the first opportunity we got. To each his own, but that kind of unhappiness is not easy to deal with. Nor is the realization that your happiness is so inextricably linked to anothers. I think I have had the biggest trouble coming to terms with that. "
and
" I feel like we have gone from long distance to leading the life married people lead after several years of marriage- totally skipping that in between newly married freshness."

That would sum up my newly married life and its struggle.

Of course we took some brave but foolish decisions and got ourselves in financial mess as well. There were other nasty things but I will leave those out here.
This post brought so many flashbacks , left me bit disoriented.

Wish you lots and lots of happiness and hope you find those little that save the days from looking like one big stretch.

*Hugs*

Badri said...

Don't wait for anything to change by itself. Take steps towards changing it, else things will remain the same and before you realize time will fly by!

Anonymous said...

Oh! How much I missed you and your thoughts! Now dont go away, ok? :)

and yes, as a fellow R2I er, I totally understand your frustration.*HUGS*

Sangi said...

Hey, you are back! And here! Please ping on anything I can do to help, any time. Hang in there.

Would love to meet up - when things settle a bit for you?

ferret said...

So good to see a new post here. Congratulations on the job and the surviving the R2I. Hope to see some updates here every once in a while :)

ps: when you get the time, must go to infinitea,,, it is my most favourite place to hang out!

aequo animo (advocatus diaboli) said...

Your location is disclosed ;).. upto the city ( well 2 hr commute did give the bigger hint )

TGFI said...

Ni,

Hugs. Hope your struggles have let up. We are still figuring things out, so I hope that time does help.

Badri,
Yeah I often debate between giving things time and wanting to fix them right away- I still need to find a balancing point.

Anony,R2I to R2I hugs. ))

Sangi,
Thanks a lot! We also need to get out and start socializing a bit, will definitely reach out to you soon..

Ferret,
Thanks, Infinitea is it? Will check out.

aequo animo,
Hahahahaha! Well done Sherlock. p

La vida loca said...

welcome back! Miss you

greensatya said...

Hey, good to hear from you after the long gap. Congratulations for your job. Keep posting and wishing you good days ahead !

Anonymous said...

Hello TGFI,

Happy to hear from you. The two body problem, and the things we have to do to resolve it is often difficult. Hope you enjoy all the benefits of being in India as much as you learn to deal with the difficulties.

Best Wishes,
sd

TGFI said...

hey greensatya!
how you been? Thanks..

sd,
yes indeed, the two body problem. not always easy. we are enjoying plenty benefits of being in india..i think over time it gets taken for granted...thanks

anantha said...

Woohoo! just the other day you *were* a topic of discussion on Twitter among a handful of us readers who were wondering about your silence!

Welcome back! Nice to hear you are settling in and all that :D

And congrats about the job!

poorna said...

Hey TGFI,

I've been a silent reader for a long time, but I empathised so much with your line "Nor is the realization that your happiness is so inextricably linked to anothers" that I had to drop a line.

Hope you find a way around it soon :)

Anonymous said...

Glad you are o.k. I was worried about you. Hoping you can manage all the demands with grace and love.
A

Tachyoson said...

that bit about commutes is such a big reality in Indian working+married life. good to hear from you!