We are in mid-November which means the year is going to end in the blink of an eye! Am I sad? Am I looking forward to it? Am I excited? I don’t know, but does it really matter? No matter how I feel, the year is going to end. Period. So, I would like to take this time to slow down, just breath and focus on one thing every day that I am truly grateful for until Thanksgiving (Until Thanksgiving, because I will be heading to India to visit my family! More to come on that soon 🙂 )
Hope everyone’s having a lovely November and getting ready for the festivities and holidays. Please do take some time for yourself in the midst of all this and just pause and smile 🙂
In today’s post, I want to talk about the Indian festival of Diwali, which can be considered as an Indian Thanksgiving because the entire year builds upto this festival, we gather around with friends and family, wishing everyone prosperity and just being grateful to be together. I remember, as a kid, all the excitement I felt right from buying new clothes, the delicious sweets and savory that mom would make and hanging out with friends in anticipation for the day of Diwali. We would start bursting crackers a couple of days ahead and the sound would fill the air with more excitement. Everyone would deep clean their house to welcome the warmth and light that Diwali represents. We would visit friends and family and exchange goodies , buy diyas (lamps) to fill up the entire house inside and out, put up string lights on windows and doors. What a sight to see! You could see every single house and building and even some of the roads decked up in pretty lights. The atmosphere sucks you in and you have absolutely no room for anything else other than happiness! There would be street vendors everywhere selling locally made lanterns, lamps and various home decor items.
On the day of Diwali, we would wake up before dawn, the cool November breeze would freshen us up and we would have no difficulty waking up so early that day. Mom would give us a hair oil massage first thing in the morning until we were soaked in it. There would be Diwali special TV shows and movies that air from early in the morning up to night. We would all just enjoy a cup of coffee together, watching TV and then we would take bath, pray to God and put on the new clothes that we purchased. We would then go down the apartment building to catch up with other families who have completed their rituals at home and we would all just burst a few crackers welcoming the morning as sun begins to rise. We would have a heavy home cooked meal, thanks to all the hard work that mom would go through, sleep in the afternoon (i.e food coma) and get back up again to have another round of snacks and change into another set of new clothes, go down and burst some more crackers, hang out with friends and families through the night.
As we grew older, we started realizing the impact of firecrackers and we stopped purchasing them and instead focused on the other aspects of Diwali – quality time with everyone we love and enjoying lighting lamps and gorge on sweets as if we would not be getting any later. Which is almost true, Diwali is one such event during which it was OK to have sweets as your breakfast.
I am truly grateful for every single festival that we celebrate because it brings people together, forgetting each one’s differences and focusing on one common event that we all love and enjoy. I’m thankful for all the memories that I have had the opportunity to cherish through the years with friends and family, there have been times where I did not feel the best even in the midst of all festivities, but I know that I have many shoulders to rest my head upon, that I am not alone, that everything will be alright and there’s light at the end of the tunnel, because Diwali is all about lighting every corner of your life.
I would like to say, take a moment today, to recognize and cherish such bright moments in life and thank the folks who have been with you through such memories!
Stay warm, cozy and most importantly stay positive y’all!