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From Caterpillar to Butterfly

by Ritu Gulabani

Transformation is a beautiful process and we all transform but transforming from a tiny seemingly insignificant camouflaged caterpillar to a colourful spectacular butterfly intrigues almost all of us.

But isn’t it the way, we all evolve and revamp our life, when we really want to?
I said ‘when we want to’ because the beautiful process of transformation starts from a strong internal urge to change and work on it. 
This blog is all about such beautiful evolution.
So before I introduce myself, I must tell you my story, my first step towards my dreams and my transformation.
So here I present my first real life story:

A New Step

“Let us sit here, this rock is almost like a chair.” said daddy positioning his two-wheeler on the side path of the highway.
“There is neither a tea shop nor a place to relax,” replied mom holding my hands.
 “Come and Relax! Look at the river cutting the rocks with force and still flowing so swiftly. Breathe in the air, you won’t see or experience this, once we are back in the city,” he said loosing himself in the beauty of nature.
Though not that day but slowly, under his umbrella, I started relishing mother earth and its beauty.
Daddy was an avid traveler, nature lover and an adventurous person. From him, I learnt to travel and enjoy every bit of it, the cuisine, nature, language, culture, perhaps every unique thing of a region. Geography became an obvious choice as I grew and did my post graduation in it, though I later landed in banking industry.
After marriage, I discovered that my better half, Anil also loved exploring places. His style, was however different. He loved traveling in luxury, while I could ride the cart and go camping. He would relax and watch, sitting on recliner where as I would bask in nature and go for trekking, jet skiing etc. He would capture nature in his camera while I loved feeding my eyes with picturesque sceneries.
However our financial constraints and family responsibilities restricted us to nearby destinations whereas we both had a vision of world tour. With time, the dreams started fading and when I conceived my second baby and resigned from the lucrative corporate job, it just got lost in my long list of responsibilities. Resignation from the job, I had loved and nurtured, pushed me to the edge.
But I was daddy’s mighty girl, taking risk and ambitions had seeped into my blood cells while I was growing. In search of some vocation from home and to keep myself motivated, I started reading self-help books.
I prepared a course on motivation and delivered motivational lectures to the teenagers and females. In the process, I found that I could improve my life lot more. The life transforming books, clicked me so much that I started writing my own gratitude journal and my dreams. I got a new ray of hope that I still have chance to live my dreams.
I sat with my husband and together we wrote the goals. This was the time when we were facing our biggest financial crunch. Our income was downsized by almost half and we had to pay our debts too.
But this was definitely the first time, we were writing our goals and working to save some money for our dreams.
Since I was going to be at home the salary of nanny and cook, a major chunk was going to be saved.  My husband, being a banker, designed a rather workable solution. He said, “First, we will not go and eat outside. This will not only help us in saving but will keep a check on health as well. Second, we will not go to malls and those shopping streets to shop unwanted stuff, till I get a raise. Third, in case of requirement, you will sell your ESOPs (employee stock ownership plan) in the multiples of five.”
I was brimming with excitement by now, although a challenge. But for the first time, I was visualizing my dreams. For the first time, we concentrated on “how can we afford it” rather than “it’s difficult to afford”. Prior to this writing assignment, I had been blank…..blank about my future and my goals. I was working like a robot and because of the guilt of not being at home with the family and baby, I was overspending.
“I have many saris and so I will not buy any dress, Indian or western, for any function. Babies are already being showered with new and used clothes, toys and books from all our relatives. So for the next few months, we are going to purchase only our needs,” I replied without any reluctance.
With an unrelenting passion, we strictly followed our plans. Within four months, Anil got a raise and also went to Hong Kong, his first foreign official trip. I couldn’t accompany as the baby was only a few months. But this tour opened the window of hope for all our dreams.
My faith was giving me wings and an adherence to plan, a training to fly.
Within two years, Anil had received a promotion and a good raise. The finances were under control and I had started some baby shopping too.
I vividly remember that Christmas morning, 2010, Kids were busy opening their gifts, when we saw an Air Asia sale from Delhi to Kuala Lumpur. It was only a hundred dollar ticket. Hardly did we realize that Santa had given us a gift too.
By afternoon, Anil had booked the promotional tickets. Since our tour was in May, we had sufficient time to prepare. Now, I was more interested in visiting Indonesia, as it was quite near to Malaysia, and my mother’s birth place.  All my maternal relatives lived there.
Within a month, we banged into our second great deal. We booked our flight from KL to Jakarta in KLM Dutch at quite reasonable prices, within our budget. The surprise, the fun and the travel did not stop here. Now Anil decided to see Bali too, since we were going to Jakarta. With this, he searched for tickets and another surprise was waiting for us, the tickets were within our budget.
That night, the list for my gratitude journal appeared endless. I had so much to thank for, I was going to live my dreams. The dream I had seen when I was child and met my filthy rich maternal Uncles.
Now we were desperately waiting for the day to fly and there I was, with my huge maternal family for the first time in thirty seven years of my life. The room was filled with faces, I had seen mainly in pictures. Some old Aunties brimmed with tears and almost all of them showered me with so much of love, cash and kind that the rest of my travel was Cinderella’s.
Seven years have passed; I have not stopped writing my gratitude journal. I have seen five countries, my relationships have improved, and my motivational writing is taking its shape. Love, happiness and hope exist in abundance now.
With this, let me introduce myself now.

Hi! I am Ritu A Gulabani. I use A because A stands for Ahuja ( my pre-marital surname) and I am indebted to my parents, grandparents, siblings, cousins and the whole Ahuja family. A also stands for Anil (my husband) who loves and respects me and my feelings. I live in Noida, one of the best satellite towns of Delhi-NCR. I have been living here since 2001, the year I got married and shifted with my husband and his family.

I have been a Geographer and a Physicist by education, a Lecturer by certification, a Banker by Profession and a life and travel enthusiast, a writer and a blogger by passion. 
Follow me on Facebook – facebook.com/ritu.gulabani and twitter – @RituGulabani.
You can also write me at [email protected]

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0 comment

Unknown April 5, 2018 - 1:16 pm

Awesome bhabhi!!!
A great story to start the blog. God bless you

Unknown April 5, 2018 - 2:25 pm

Beautifully presented. …
Enjoyed reading it.
All the best for future blogs

vini hundlani April 5, 2018 - 3:15 pm

Maasi this is amazing 😍😘❤ I love the blog title and the blog post as welll. I am soo proud of you 😘 keep writing and inspiring. Looking forward to read more of your posts❤

fromcaterpilartobuterfly April 5, 2018 - 8:43 pm

Thank you so much dear

fromcaterpilartobuterfly April 5, 2018 - 8:43 pm

Thanks Saahil

fromcaterpilartobuterfly April 5, 2018 - 8:45 pm

Thank you Vini! Your appreciation means a lot to me because I know that my little girl is a far better writer and poet than her masi.

Anthony Basumatary April 5, 2018 - 9:58 pm

Beautifully, beautifully written Ritu! Thanks for sharing your story. Keep realizing your dreams… best wishes!

fromcaterpilartobuterfly April 5, 2018 - 11:46 pm

Thank you so much Anthony. Would request you to share in your circle too. I would be grateful 😊.

Pebble In The Still Waters April 6, 2018 - 12:48 pm

A very good start, I must say. Keep it up. Never let your passion go away.

fromcaterpilartobuterfly April 6, 2018 - 11:06 pm

Thanks a ton Sir. I am grateful you stopped to read it and comment.
Would request you to share in your circle to create the buzz.


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