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Festive Season (Diary Page 15)

Festive season

For us Gujarati, Navratri is a huge celebration. At my mom’s house, we do ‘Garba Sthapana’ and pray for nine days. A lot of relatives visit us during these nine days. We even host a grand Garba dancing function on one of the weekends at the club. 

Navratri starts with seasonal change. And this change impacts the spiritual, physical, and emotional levels of our existence. The festival enables creating newer relationships and reviving old ones through social and cultural gatherings. It is a symbol of the victory of good over evil. It stands for embracing oneness by leaving behind limiting prejudices.  I devoted myself to Goddess Durga, who is the protective mother of the Hindu Universe with the hope of transforming my negative energy into positive energy. Fasting, meditation, and chanting mantras helped me accept reality. Dussehra, which is considered an auspicious time, paved the way for hope and new beginnings for me. 

I resumed work and gradually started socializing. Winters are the peak months for our business. The season is full of weddings and celebrations. It keeps the entire team on its toes. These events are "once in a lifetime" occasions for the families. We have to make them flawless, as we have done for the last 14 years. Papa formally asked Sameer to join the business. Sameer agreed to spend more time at the business, concurrently running his deal advisory and consulting business. 

This came as a great relief to me. Something that I can't describe in words. Under his leadership, it was a great learning opportunity for me and the entire team. The excitement of traveling, working, eating, and spending time together was another factor. I wonder how many women are as fortunate as me to have their professional careers centered around their loved ones. Sameer won everybody's heart in no time, not as the son-in-law of the owners, but as a true leader who led from the front. It was very exciting. 

Immediately after Diwali that year, my parents embarked on a 540 km padayatra (walking tour) to our Kuldevi, Shri Boot Bhavani Maa. It was a very ambitious goal. But with good planning and strong determination, they set out on their journey to seek spiritual connection. 

Exactly a month later, just as planned, on Papa’s wedding anniversary they successfully completed their padayatra. We visited them a couple of times on their way and walked several kilometers with them.  It was an achievement for everyone in the family. With Papa away for almost one month, we had even more responsibility. We had to not only make sure that everything went smoothly but also scale operations to newer heights. I involved myself deeply in the operations and somewhere that also helped me.

For our anniversary and the new year’s celebrations, Sameer took planned a vacation to  Prague, Vienna and Budapest for a white Christmas. They say “Time is the best healer”. Time may not completely heal but it surely makes us grow with the pain and move on. It worked exactly that way. 

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