My name is Vidya Sury. I am a full-time work at home Mom, Freelance Writer and professional Blogger. I also work with an independent ethics committee that reviews protocols for human clinical trials. My focus is my family and my relationships. I feel blessed to see them growing stronger with each passing year. I enjoy life and share my thoughts, views and friends on my blog Going A-Musing - Collecting Smiles and writing about life, fun, humor, love, health, technology and so much more! I am hoping to finish my first book this year. I love photography and Do-It-Yourself projects, and believe everything must be tried once.

My journey of awakening and personal expansion

I grew up in a family where love was more abundant than money. My Mother was a single parent and I grew up with my Grandmother. My goals, from early on, were to get a good education and a well-paying job that would enable me to support my Mom and myself. I got my first job as soon as I got my Bachelor’s degree and I continued my education a few years later and got an MBA.

Sometimes I think I woke up to the possibilities in life when I got my first job – because it had nothing to do with my education. My boss was a maverick and encouraged me to explore. My work involved translating his notes from French to English and as a 20-year old, I loved it. Subsequently, I worked in advertising, transport, office automation, telecommunications and pharmaceutical exports. What I appreciate most about my life is the wonderful “bosses” and colleagues I had the pleasure of interacting with and learning from. I believe they brought out the best in me, professionally and helped me grow. From a Trainee in the projects department, I said goodbye to my corporate career in 1997 as the Regional Manager of a UK based company.

Personally, my Mom, whom I consider my mentor, inspiration and best friend, was an example to me. In spite of the stream of tough situations we faced, she was always strong and believed there was something to learn from every experience, no matter how trivial. I am convinced I was able to excel professionally thanks to her constant encouragement and unconditional love. Today, I am gratified that my family and friends see me as someone they can rely on and trust.

My first big milestone in life was moving to a different city with my Mom when I was 24 years old. We survived on very little, scrimping, saving and dreaming of a better future. But we had wonderful friends and were very happy.

The next significant moment was when I quit my high-flying corporate job to get married.

But the big turning point in my life came when my Mother was diagnosed with interstitial lung disease in 1997 and was given, at most, six months to live. I’ll never forget that day – nor my Mom’s words “I love deadlines, don’t you?” I just couldn’t come to terms with Iife without her. I can’t remember another time in my life when I felt more pressurized, even though I function well under pressure. I calmed down, and made up my mind, at that moment, to live every moment mindfully. I began to be conscious about every little thing and consequently, the joy of being alive. There’s nothing like the knowledge that one’s days are numbered to open the eyes, the heart and mind. This realization changed my priorities.

It seems odd, but I think I became a different person overnight. I learned to loosen up and let go of perfectionism. I stopped job-hunting. And I learned to live with uncertainty. I felt I could handle any situation life threw at me thanks to an amazingly cheerful Mom who was ready for anything. Life took on a different meaning where I rewrote my wish list. I prayed for strength to face and handle the things I could not change.

My Positive Life Changes

I believe I can do anything I set my mind to do. I draw strength from the memory of my Grandmother, a very strong and silent woman whose most frequently spoken words were “you CAN”. I still needed a job, even more so now that our medical expenses were mounting up. The job market was dull and with home loan payments ticking away, I was close to panic. I took stock of my capabilities. I opened myself to take up any work and the moment I did that, opportunity literally knocked at my door.

I knew life is what we make it, but realized it even more strongly at this point. I got a job that let me rush home whenever I needed to, as Mom sometimes needed emergency care. My job let me spend time with my son and family and look after my home. I feel completely blessed I was able to do this. And? I was lucky my Mom lived for 12 years before she passed away in Feb 2010. I am so glad my son knew and loved her.

Personally, I learned to manage my time efficiently. I’ve always been an early riser but I started getting up an hour early adding valuable extra time to my day.

In 2004 I started my freelance writing career and I have earned the respect of my peers and clients. I am grateful for their support. I have realized that it is quite okay to ask for support when in a tough situation.

I have learned to simplify life because in the end, loving relationships matter the most. I am very lucky to have a wonderfully supportive husband who always encourages me to stretch myself.

I start my day with prayer and this helps me prepare for the busy day ahead.

Most of all, I am happy in my own skin. I have faith in me.

My Next Steps as an Evolving Being

My biggest project this year is my first book “The Complete Health Guide for Women”. The first draft is ready. This is a labor of love and I am writing it in a conversational tone as an exhaustive reference guide. I am covering topics like: women’s overall health, nutrition and fitness, pregnancy, breastfeeding, mental health, menopause, osteoporosis, STDs, healthy aging, health screenings, tips and information about various health conditions (heart, digestive, oral health, etc.) what to expect, natural ways to handle them, guidance about when to see the doctor, when not to panic, the first line of action to take, and so on. I am adding a section on home remedies since I grew up with those. Eventually, I plan to split the book’s topics into smaller booklets.

This year, my aim is also to be even more supportive of my son who is in grade 10, a crucial year at school, when he chooses which subjects to pursue. We intend to support him no matter what he chooses. Like every Mom, I want him to grow up into a fine person who follows his passion.

My husband and I are in the process of setting up a trust fund in memory of my Mother to benefit economically weak students in their education.

My ultimate goal is to financially support an entire orphanage and share my time with people who need moral support and encouragement.

I am working hard to realize my dreams. I hope to leave a positive mark and a smile in the heart of everyone whose life I touch.

My Advice to Others

We only have one life to live. Some things I have learned that I’d like to share are:

  • Worrying does not solve anything. Taking action does.
  • It is okay to ask for help when life gets tough.
  • It is okay not to be perfect.
  • Love matters above everything else. Say your “I love you’s” without waiting for an auspicious moment.
  • Each one of us has the power within us to achieve what we want.
  • Don’t expect something in return for everything you give. Life has a way of balancing things.
  • Be kind and compassionate.
  • Rejoice in your loved ones’ happiness.
  • Let go of petty grudges, anger, pride, ego and sadness.
  • Believe in yourself. You are your best friend.
  • Be grateful for every little thing.
  • Relationships are everything.
  • Happiness is a DIY project.
  • A positive attitude is a huge plus.
  • The little things always add up.
  • Unplug from all things digital, occasionally.
  • Look after your health.
  • Live with purpose.

Everything happens for a good reason.

Cherish, experience and enjoy.