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Heal The World: Inspiring Stories Part II

“Heal the world, make it a better place. For you and for me and the entire human race.”Opner-Feed

ABHINANDA AGARWALFeed-Abhinanda-Agarwal

“Sometimes we have to experience the bad to appreciate the good. It’s destiny’s way of teaching us. This is one such time — use it to bring about positive change, because we are out of excuses not to do so.

My emotional , mental and physical wellness as well as sleeping patterns have never been better. It’s all about making the decision to clear our minds of clutter. I have cultivated a morning routine — I start my day with a dainik hawan and play bhajans for positive energy through the day. I also pray for the country and universe in Sanskrit and Hindi.

I also practice yoga and impart traditional wisdom (spiritual Hindu mantras specifically) to the kids at home who are 8 and 11-years-old. In the kitchen, the focus is now on clean and healthy food made from scratch with simple ingredients. Gone are the days of packaged foods and being lazy in the kitchen. I love sitting with the family and having home-made delicious satvic meals. We have also been sending food to homes of those who are unwell.

Let’s not waste this time — it can bring about miraculous changes not just to our individual lives, but to the planet as well.”

AMBREENFeed-ambreen-1

“Being at home for almost five weeks has been challenging yet life-changing. Last year, after living with family for almost 36 years, we moved to our own new home. The transition was hard. But these last few weeks, I have been able to look at my home as a sanctuary, where I feel the most at peace. When the pandemic was announced and lockdown was put in place, we knew it was going to be a long journey before life gets back to what was normal.

As a family, we have been able to do all the little things that we haven’t had a chance to yet. Our first year in the new house went by so swiftly, with me being pregnant, settling in, decorating and then having my baby girl who is now almost six months old. We’ve been spending a lot more time in the garden having lunches. I’m busy chasing my two-year-old around the garden and playing with her. From fixing her bicycles to colouring, having stickers stuck all over my face and having play dough on the floors, entertaining her  entertains me! Although I wish I had more time to catch up on movies.

We’ve put a more sustainable lifestyle into action. This includes using more plant-based cleaning products made from recycled plastic and non-toxic ingredients, recycling and reusing. I’ve been saving all my glass bottles to fill with lentils and am conscious about leaving taps running. Reducing our carbon footprint has been be an essential concern.

Professionally, I’m coming out my comfort zone — especially with live sessions on Instagram! — to engage and connect with more people through my social media channels. I’ve absolutely loved doing my make-up with my followers and really enjoyed answering all their questions. It’s been so much fun.

Cooking has always been a gloomy area for me. But things have taken a massive turn, and I’ve cooked and cooked three meals a day in the last five weeks — from biryani and roasts and everything in between. I’m very grateful that I’ve been able to use this time to achieve a personal positive for myself.

Lastly having this precious, uninterrupted time with my two girls and husband has been my saviour. I miss my family and loved ones. We talk everyday and I can’t wait to hug them tightly. I pray we all heal and take this time to change our lives for the best and come out stronger.”

ANUSHKA ROY KAPURFeed-Ar-2-

They tell us a pandemic has come,

But I now see hope where there was none.

Areas of brown turn shades of green

The sky clears,

Air we can breathe.

Listen closely…

You hear the birds sing,

Stand still and feel that gentle breeze.

The sun shines above me, as I look up I see,

There is so much more clarity.

Gratitude now holds fort,

The rat race is over!

We have no reason to gloat.

It’s a world far better,

There is space for you and me.

Acts of kindness, love, bravery shine through.

And so, I thank you, and you and you.

For if this were not to be,

There would be no you and me.

LEKHA SHAHFeed-LEKHA-SHAH-2

“The current lockdown has allowed to me slow down, reflect and appreciate the smaller things in my life. While we need a clean and healthy environment, self-health is equally important too. The commitment I’ve made to myself is to reduce my carbon footprint as much as I can (be conscious of my plastic, power and water usage) and also adopt a more vegan lifestyle (from both a health and environmental standpoint). I truly hope that we follow through on this mindful approach post lockdown and don’t treat it as just another failed New Year’s resolution.”

RASHMI VIRANIFeed-Rashmi-2

A world after Corona

Restaurants, parties, dressing up was fun

Make up, shellac, getting my hair done

A life so easy so free of worry and care

Until coronavirus came and ripped it bare.

A new language was quickly learnt

of masks gloves, sanitizers and meds

Isolation, lockdown, supermarket queues

and the daily numbers dead.

In my tracksuit, barefaced and plain

I am amazed at the insight I have gained

Life is actually so simple, it’s my haven my home

My family makes my heart beat, it’s my safe zone.

Eating, cooking, playing board games

Did we ever go to restaurants? I even forget the names

I’m actually quite happy in my isolation zone

Bhajans, jigsaws, WhatsApp chats never leave me alone.

The friends I dressed up and met for lunch, dinner or tea

Are so happy to Zoom with pajama-clad, unmade me!

We virtually hold each other’s hands

Laugh, share, even cry but understand!

So, this change for me may actually be inside out

Very little is needed to be happy without a doubt

So, I pledge to keep life as simple as can be

Just keeping the people I love close to me.”

ROSY JALANFeed-ROSY-JALAN-1

  “When asked to write my thoughts on the current situation for this story, my first thought was still, “What will I wear?” Which designer? Which fabulous outfit in my overfilled wardrobes will I choose to be photographed in? But very soon, even with my array of exquisite Aashni + Co ensembles staring at me, one item stood out — one I wear with immense pride and gratitude.

Like all of us, I am searching for some positivity in these otherwise dark times. Never did I think it would be my scrubs that I would turn to for comfort.

Perhaps with the success and recognition I have received along the way in my medical career, I had overlooked the reason I went to medical school in the first place: the desire to serve. It has taken this horrific pandemic and the selfless nature demonstrated by my colleagues in the NHS (medical and paramedical), to remind me of this.

I’m proud of my generation of medics, who have stepped up without hesitation or fear in regards to their own personal safety. I am proud of the young doctors and medical students who have jumped in alongside. As well as by the commitment of the care givers, nursing staff, porters, cleaners and other service workers who are so under appreciated.

Being a medical family, we are still working but the lockdown has meant more family time than ever before: Time to cook with my daughter, time to cook for my locked away parents (a truly indulgent and satisfying seva). Time to reconnect with loved ones across the world. The family huddles over Zoom — usually reserved for once-a-year birthday wishes, they are now a weekly occurrence. Time to engage with each other: argue, debate, fight and make up.

So, what will I do when the pandemic ends?

I will hug my family and friends, and find time to maintain important relationships.

I will value and cherish my fellow workers and try and ensure lasting appreciation for all key service providers.

I will devote more time to teaching and training my juniors.

I will also be more aware on a global level, and I will recycle more.

I will consume less. I will support sustainable brands.

I will never take the opportunity to go for a walk for granted.

And most of all, I will dress up, party and dance till I drop to celebrate a new and better world.”

Heal The World: Inspiring Stories Part I here