Someone somewhere (I don’t know who) once said, “Let your weird light shine bright so that other weirdos know where to find you.” This got me ruminating:
A. Why did I not come up with that? I could’ve totally said something like that!
B. This at least proves there are more weirdos out there.
C. If my weird light shines bright and all the other weirdos find me, will we still be weirdos or will it then become the new normal? (Tangent -> Isn’t my weird different from yours? What is weird, anyway? Where exactly do you draw the line?)
Chronic over-thinker, occasional over-sharer, procrastinator extraordinaire (My knowledge of useless, unrelated trivia is impeccable!) and a self-diagnosed jack of all trades (aka multipotentialite), I don’t fit the bill of your usual mom blogger; although that is the general direction I set out for when I started this blog back in October 2014. But turns out, my weird oozes through the flimsy veneer of my normal. So, I stopped trying. But since you are here and since your curiosity made you click the “About” link, here’s a glimpse of who I am and what this blog is all about.
But first, the biodata stuff…
I am an electronics and communication engineer as per my college graduation certificate. Apparently, I am a pretty good one too! (I graduated second in my class, although the total number of days I worked in my field of learning is a big fat zero).
As per my resume and for all practical/financial purposes, I am an ex-software architect – Java being my primary focus. I joined my first (And last? I hope not!) software firm – a Global Top 10 IT Giant – nine days after my graduation and fell in love with my job, at first “slowly, and then all at once” 😉 (to quote from “The Fault In Our Stars”) and was a happy computer nerd for more than a decade (12 years to be exact).
I traveled the world (That’s an exaggeration! Read – the UK and the USA) on and off for a handful of short and long stints over the course of my career. Getting a glimpse of a way of living differing (on many levels) to my Indian roots made me develop a global outlook and learn to understand and appreciate the cultural differences and more importantly, the underlying similarities. Currently, I am calling Basel, Switzerland my home and am learning new things daily (Language: German, included) and falling for this beautiful country with each passing day.
But all said and done, India is still home and I love being there the most. As much as I love and miss the Chicago snow, the omnipresent sun and the colorful Indian life makes me very happy (India is a mini-world in itself – I think Coldplay said something like that – to give you an idea of what I mean).
After our son was born, my IT job – my obsession, my passion of my 20s – became what it should have been in the first place. Not my whole identity, but a part of the package – a fulfilling, yet distinct entity separate from who I am. After trying various permutations and combinations of work-life balance – daycare, telecommuting (work from home) etc. – I eventually pulled the plug on my software career when our son was 3 years old. This break, this distance from my “identity” is what gave me my first true perspective on the things that I am passionate about (Software architecture is still very much there, but there are many new exciting facets to my personality now). And I have been on this life-changing journey of discovering my particular flavor of weirdness since 🙂
What’s in a name?
Now that you know the key biodata points, I have a confession to make. When I started this blog, I adopted a pen name “Daisy Suman”, because I was not ready to declare my writing experiments to the world through my legal/official name yet. Also, because I wanted a clear segregation between my two professions. Over time, the boundaries have faded. All my friends including many bloggers/writers whom I met online (and who have now become a part of my online circle) know my real name.
Nonetheless, I held on to my pen name for the sake of nostalgia. Till.Very.Recently. Thanks to the EU GDPR changes (effective May 25th, 2018), I finally did a major overhaul and simplification of this blog and ta-da! After more than three years of starting this site, I reconciled my pen name with my legal name and changed it everywhere…well, almost everywhere 🙂 (You will still find fragments of my pen name scattered in the little nooks and crannies of the internet here and there especially on the websites where my writing was published before this change.
In case you are curious (like me!) and want to know how I came up with my pen name, here’s why I was “Daisy Suman” in the blogging world for three-plus years.
First reason. My son started calling me Daisy a couple of months before his 3rd birthday based on one of his favorite cartoon characters at that time – Daisy Duck from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. Every time he called me Daisy instead of Maa, it would entail fits of giggles and sometimes uproarious laughter from him, so much so that hubby dearest decided to change my name on his cell phone to Daisy as a joke. And it sort of coincided with the birth of this blog!
Reason Number Two. I never officially “took” my husband’s surname. No, not because of feminism (My personal brand doesn’t require such shows, sorry!). But because, well, I think it’s pointless. Changing legal names takes effort. Also, a change in name does not really change who you are, so unless your old name is a hideous one like “Princess Consuela Banana-Hammock“, why bother? 😉
Anywho, adding his surname to my adopted pen name was my way of stating that this blog is a three-person endeavor despite the single-name author byline.
Interesting Side Note: Since that first name change, our son has changed our names at regular intervals over the years. Here are some of my favorites:
Planets (again! It was more than a year-long celestial obsession):
Cartoon – Nature Cat:
SON: Nature Cat, Tally Hoooooo
SON: Han Solo
MA: The real Wonder Woman
PAPA: The real Super Man
Movie – Toy Story:
Movie – WALL-E:
Movie – Inside Out:
Movie – Star Wars:
SON: Han Solo
Video Game – Super Mario Bros:
Movie – Alice In Wonderland:
SON: Mad Hatter
Cartoon – Scooby Doo:
SON: Scooby Doo, the dog (Again, he insisted on “the dog”)
Cartoon – Dragon Ball Z:
Book – Peter Pan:
SON: Peter Pan
Why should you stick around and how?
So far so good, right?
But then, what’s in it for you? Why should you stick around reading about my life (rather my perspective on life)? Why does it matter?
Well, it doesn’t.
Not in the sense that all hell will break loose if you don’t. Not in the least. But it is an interesting ride and sometimes a little bit of intrigue and curiosity is all that is needed to make soul connections.
So stick around, because this space is complicated and it will resonate with our complicated narratives of today. Stick around if you like my perspective on authentic living, mothering, working and surviving and want to see me work through obstacles as they arise. Stick around if you want to see me change and to experience my soul grow (sometimes shrink). I try not to sugarcoat anything – although my introversion, by definition, may make some harsh things sound somewhat “mellow”. So, yes. In short, my lack of niche-based writing in favor of life-based writing may give you some food for thought. So stick around – more so, if you fall into the category of my ideal reader 🙂
And yes, the best way to do that would be to follow our page on Facebook. Why? Because, I tend to break one of the basic rules of online writing – which is to have a regular schedule. I usually don’t. I write as and when something inspires me and I have the time to write it down 🙂 You may feel let down if you like schedules. So, instead, it’s better to just like us on Facebook and forget about me and this little blog till I resurface from time to time like an old friend or a memory in your news feed 🙂
Ten weird things about me
Now that you know some things about me and about this blog, let me shine my weird light a little brighter. You are welcome to check these ten confessions and decide for yourself if we vibe and whether you would like to hang out in this little nook of the internet I call home 🙂
- If you ask me whether I have a dominant left brain or right brain, I’d go “Umm, err, uh, I dunno.” because I fall smack-dab in the middle of it. (See below. I swear I did not fake the test or the results! Also, just so you know, left-right brain dominance idea is a myth 😉 )
- If I like (I mean really, really like) a song, I listen to that song (and that song alone) in a loop for almost a week (sometimes even longer!). Till I have dissected every chord of the song, its lyrics, its history, its musical arrangements, it’s popular covers and so on and so forth. Then I stop. Sometimes to return to it in a year, sometimes in five years, sometimes never. In any case, chances are I will never forget it’s lyrics and will probably correct you if you get them wrong!
- If I read a heartbreaking novel, chances are I will never re-read it or for that matter read another novel by the same author. Case in point – The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
- I strongly agree with Sheldon Cooper when he says “Starting to watch a television show that might run for years isn’t a decision to take lightly.” because once I start watching it (read make it past season 1), I don’t stop no matter how boring/predictable it gets over time. And yes, like Sheldon, I also have a pathological need for closure 😉
- When I am not working, I enjoy being at home the most. If I don’t have to run errands (or take our son outside to play), I sometimes stay home for 10-15 days in a row and I couldn’t be any happier 😉 Consequently, I have more conversations in my head than in real life and I generally tend to be my own personal psychotherapist. This is how my MBTI assessment looks. A warning though: MBTI assessments have been widely criticized in psychology circles. To quote Adam Grant – “If you put a horoscope on one end and a heart monitor on the other, the MBTI falls about halfway in between.” (But eh, I am from India. I believe in astrology and heart monitors and everything else in between.)
- I never have to pretend that I like playing with our son because I actually enjoy it very much. More than I would like to admit. I have a serious dislike for all conversations of small talk variety (Not to be confused with exchange of ideas and things people are passionate about, I enjoy those conversations immensely!). Sometimes, I choose to avoid adult conversations in favor of talking to and playing with our son and his friends because it is more fun and less stress. Same goes for cartoons and kids’ movies.
- Don’t ask me my favorite anything – color, food, book, movie, song etc. Unless you are holding a gun to my temple. In which case I will pick the first option that comes to my mind. Otherwise, my choices vary depending on my state of mind (which btw, is in a constant state of flux).
- I don’t like jewelry – not gold, not diamond, not platinum. If I am wearing any that’s probably because I have to go to a wedding or something. Or afterward, because I was too lazy to take them off.
- If there are two ways to get to an answer – A. Ask an expert B. Research on the net, I will choose Option B 99.9% of times (unless I am in a time crunch). Research helps me form my own opinions about a problem statement and not just gives me a ready made answer but additional tools that I may need in the future.
- I like automation. If a repetitive blogging task takes 10 hours per month and it would take me 60 hours to write code to automate it, I would rather spend 60 hours writing code than doing the same thing over and over again, even though mathematically speaking, it would take me 6 months before I could reap any net time-saving benefits from it.
Here’s a link to some of the well-received posts from me on other (better-known) online magazines: Published Works
So there you have it. A little glimpse into my current state of mind and the general non-specific set of directions this blog is heading including but not limited to – parenting/blogging tips (only tried and tested ones), healthy living (both physical and mental), books, music, TV shows, movies, kitchen hacks, recipes, random musings…this list goes on and on as I discover new passions and inspirations to write about. So, yeah. Stick around if you find my journey interesting. And I’d definitely love to take you along as I tumble down through the rabbit hole into the wonderland called life.