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तेजस्वी Tejaswee

August 18, 2010

Tejaswee Rao
Born: 19th Jan 1991

Died: 11th Aug 2010.
May you rest in peace little princess

In one of the stars, I shall be living. In one of them, I shall be laughing.
And so it will be as if all the stars were laughing when you look at the sky at night.’
~ The Little Prince ~ Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

तेजस्वी Tejaswee

तेजस्वी High spirited, Red blooded, Powerful, Strong, Gifted, Brilliant, Lustrous
What a beautiful name to gift to your daughter IHM.
I didn’t know what to write at first IHM. What can I say that will lessen your grief? What can I do to help you in any way possible dearest friend? I am not even a mother. Will my words seem empty?

As I spoke to my mother who had suffered the loss of a brother and her memories of naaniji and naanaji who lost their son of 21, and bitter sweet memories shared by maasi who lost her 6 year old son decades back and still has an ache ….I thought I would try.
If there is anything I know..anything that I am sure of, it is this. Memories heal. Talking heals. Even silence in remembrance heals. That moment when we are overwhelmed by the happy memories .It heals. A mother’s ache…a parent’s ache can never be fully understood by those of us who are not one. We cannot even come close.

What I can do is pray to god to give you and yours strength. I am praying for you , her father and her brother to heal.I am praying for all those whose hearts are aching in pain because she is gone. We all are praying. I am praying for her soul and her peace.


Did you know Tejaswee? Tejaswee Rao? should have.You missed knowing a girl whose spirit shines through in her words.

This is IHM’s blog The Life and Times of an Indian Home Maker

This is Tejaswee Rao’s blog. IHM’s daughter. I.M.A.O (Tejaswee Rao’s blog)

Go visit them both. Go on.
Go and see for yourself how a daughter is a reflection of her mother. How the same passion drives them both.

This …A letter to the future… this letter is what made me and still makes me smile every time I read it.

I had read this letter long back.I remember a friend and I talking about this letter. But I didn’t know one thing. I didn’t know she was IHM”s daughter. I remember being impressed with this young girl who penned her thoughts in such a beautiful and lucid manner.

I followed her blog quietly until one day I realized that she was my very own IHM’s daughter.
No wonder! I should have known shouldn’t I? Could it have been any other way? A strong , passionate woman with a can -do spirit would have a daughter with the same wouldn’t she?

Words are essentially an expression of one’s spirit….of all that one is.

For the Inuits, the word to make poetry is the word to breathe; both
are derivatives of anerca, the soul, that which is eternal: the
breath of life.

Tejaswee’s words are such. They speak of her. They are gentle, they are calm. They are energetic. They are thoughtful. Her words bubble with happiness. Her enthusiasm is infectious. Her words breathe.

And in each one you see that she is having this conversation with herself. Is this right? Is that wrong? What if? If only. OMG!How dare they? And you smile. shaking your head at this young kid who is on a roller-coaster ride.

Her crush:)..her shyness, her smile…..and then her doubts about Obama in the very next one…then some pondering about the Burqa and Sarko..made me smile this one..Why?

Here is a girl who has not closed her mind to anything. She ponders, she mulls, she asks questions, tries to answer some of them herself..and then still keeps an open mind. Isnt this how human beings should be? Not dogmatic, open to everything?

And look at her soft heart. Read this story.

And here’s a secret.:) Everytime that I read a post of hers where she wrote indignantly about ”kicking is not cruelty to women? and Taliban and moral dilemna over ragging and using the word bitch , I thought to myself with a smile , there is an IHM in the making. Little did I know she was your daughter IHM.

Her musings on Delhi and her childhood memories of this place…the way she missed Pune…

Her memories of Andaman…the way her memories overlap..her thoughts jump from one to the other…she is in a tearing hurry to live life.

Her impression of Delhi..
You keep comparing your new city to your old one. The people (skin colour, size of nose etc), the clothes (how can people wear SO much sparkly-stuff?!), the music (okay, old city sucks when it comes to this one), the lingo (arre yaar, iska feel nahin aaya… seriously, mein toh kal M-Block Market ja rahien hoon. aanna hai?), even the Ants (seriously. Delhi’s ants are HUGE!).

I remember smiling when I read it for the first time just as I am doing now…That part about ”SO much sparkly stuff” made me laugh out loud.
Touché I say kiddo. Touché:)

Psst! I could have helped you find the sandals without chamak or thin heels more easily you know;)
And I rather like your idea of dealing with chain mails.:D

Her love for Bronte’s and Austen’s works..

Her anger at ‘bandhs’ in India that serve no purpose.

The laka laka thing was hilarious!:D

She saw the Delhi monsoons. She has captured them so beautifully.

And Dilli’s autowallahs..:)

Today I sat and read each word….teared up while reading some…nodded my head in agreement at others, was and still am as confused as her about some…..had a thing or two to say about saddi Dilli;) but you know what IHM? Mostly I smiled. How could I not?

This delight of a girl doesn’t leave one with any other option. She hooks you in with her words and then leaves you smiling.

I read these words of hers below and I thought that’s IHM’s daughter to a T!
“No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted.”


And look at this;)
No more really gorgeous footballers to ogle at. Oh the meaningless-ness of my life!
*ahem* *high five Tejaswee!

”If I write what my soul thinks, it will be visible, and the words will be its body.” — Helen Keller

Her soul is innocence and bubbly laughter.

Today I went hunting for these words of yours IHM….read many other writes of yours too…all about her….your love for all creatures that she has inherited too….sibling fights in jest…her passion for gender equality…so much ..just so much to share…
What are little girls made of?
I know what this little girl was made of…

Little girls are made of a strong indomitable will, a unique kind of courage in a girl who shakes and trembles deep inside and yet stands firm by her conviction...

Little girls are made of a compassion that’s rare and a soft, mushy heart that looks longingly at her crush.

Little girls are made of that which speaks to a daughter yet who is hers in every sense of the word…

Little girls are made of unflinching loyalty and stubborn resolutions.

Little girls are mamma’s baby and daddy’s princess and partner in crime with their brother.

Little girls are made of wobbly smiles and tear streaked cheeks. Giggles that are magic and soft little palms that stroke a father’s cheek.

Little girls are ‘raunak‘. They light up your home for eternity. For, in each corner her laugh lingers forever.

Little girls shuffle their feet and look enquiringly at their mother and father who say ,”Never grow a wishbone, daughter, where your backbone ought to be. ” They digest the powerful lesson in silence and from then on each word of the little girl echoes that lesson learnt.

Little girls care so darn much about the fate of this world that they hesitate before each step of theirs wondering if what they are doing is right. And that makes them special.So darn special.


A little girl can be sweeter (and badder) oftener than anyone else in the world. She can jitter around, and stomp, and make funny noises that frazzle your nerves, yet just when you open your mouth she stands there demure with that special look in her eyes. A girl is Innocence playing in the mud, Beauty standing on its head, and Motherhood dragging a doll by the foot.-Unknown

Smiles heal..memories heal..happy ones, mischievous ones…..your heart will be healed darling friend…..she will heal all of you, her loved ones.

Look at the beautiful smile of hers that has been captured in each frame. She is with each one of us. Strangers who have never met her. Just because of you IHM. And yet I think…are we really strangers? This family of yours is grieving with you, laughing too…when I think of all that you wrote about when she was a little girl.

How can one look at her and not smile?

There is much to do. Her many, many dreams to fulfill…her causes to support. And there is not one person..not one who I can think of, who can do a better job than you IHM.

Awe is a word that I do not use. Have not used ever. Not in context of human beings. For, to stand in awe of someone would require that person to be an extraordinary mortal indeed.

I have respected you IHM, loved you, fought with you, argued, patched up and repeated it all over again. And through it all your endless patience , your gentle smile, your silent encouragement, when you fought my battles when I couldn’t, sometimes a simple letter encouraging me for something well done..

But today I stand in awe of you IHM.

”It’s difficult for me to talk about it now. All I would say is we have decided it would help tremendously to channelize our grief in some positive direction.

We have decided to understand that everybody has to go someday, she left earlier than we would have liked. We have decided to see which of her causes we can support. One of the thoughts is to start a scholarship in her name, maybe a fund. I would appreciate suggestions for this. And also any suggestions that help us stay positive.”

Now I know why I wrote these words for you long back…

Indian Home Maker or IHM as we all know her:) The most strong individual I have met here:)
it would be of a woman who stands ever so strong….
it would be warmth defined…
it would compell you to search for your own tune..
it would be the beat that you’d want to join in…
it would lead to revolutions long due…
it would sometimes break your heart…
it would sometimes make you see…
it would be a foot tapping number you couldn’t resist…:)

IHM -For being such an amazing ,warm hearted person.A strong woman who has very strong beliefs.She is in a class of her own.She appears almost magically the first time and leaves a comment.:)A comment that encourages you to take one step further..There is this ‘something’ about her.Quite hard to define really.Those who know her would understand what I am saying.:)
After receiving this award when I went blog-hopping again,you know what I noticed?That she has given so many awards!A cup here,a shield there.A generous,generous soul this lady is.And you say you don’t do much IHM?Ask those whom you have touched.So this award and every one which comes my way is yours.Really.Truly.

And I had just known you for two odd months. And yet I would devour everything you wrote, ponder over it, fall in love with your loved ones. One’s instincts never lead one astray.Mine didn’t.

I saved the best for last IHM.
Look at what she shared here..
‘How many boards would the Mongol hoard, if the Mongol hordes got bored?”

I tell you she is just cracking up on that one:)

PS:- And IHM? You haven’t watched French Kiss yet?o.O She is right you know. Meg and Kevin are adorable in it.


Death is nothing at all.
I have only slipped away to the next room.
I am I and you are you.
Whatever we were to each other,
That, we still are.

Call me by my old familiar name.
Speak to me in the easy way
which you always used.
Put no difference into your tone.
Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.

Laugh as we always laughed
at the little jokes we enjoyed together.
Play, smile, think of me. Pray for me.
Let my name be ever the household word
that it always was.
Let it be spoken without effect.
Without the trace of a shadow on it.

Life means all that it ever meant.
It is the same that it ever was.
There is absolute unbroken continuity.
Why should I be out of mind
because I am out of sight?

I am but waiting for you.
For an interval.
Somewhere. Very near.
Just around the corner.

All is well.
— Henry Scott Holland ~ 1847-1918
Canon of St. Paul’s Cathedral

Death is not extinguishing the light; it is only putting out the lamp because the dawn has come. -Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore

अम्बर के आनन को देखो
कितने इसके तारे टूटे
कितने इसके प्यारे छूटे
जो छूट गए फिर कहाँ मिले
पर बोलो टूटे तारों पर
कब अम्बर शोक मनाता है….

Tejaswee Rao
Born: 19th Jan 1991.

Died: 11th Aug 2010.
May you rest in peace little princess

50 Comments leave one →
  1. August 18, 2010 2:38 am

    Indy, this is beautiful… and it speaks of three people, this post. Tejaswee, IHM and you.
    I am too choked to be able to say anything of consequence, or otherwise…

    IHM will always have the friends she made, beautiful hearted ones like you.

    And that verse, just totally nailed it…

    I am but waiting for you.
    For an interval.
    Somewhere. Very near.
    Just around the corner.

    All is well.

    Just when everyone is at a loss of words, you write this post that says everything that’s meant to be said and shared…

    Tejaswee. I read her blog only recently. That quote on Calvin on her blog reminded me of IHM commenting on my C&H post and talking of how her kids love the strip.

    Her letter to the future… yes, her conflicts with herself, her thoughts… her blog reflected her persona, and you Indy, brought it more to life with your post here…

    I cannot explain how I feel about certain blog friends i have come to know… Hugs!

    Peace be to the little princess indeed. And to all those who live by her memories.

  2. August 18, 2010 6:17 am

    I don’t know what to say…You’ve taken the words right out of my mouth…

    IHM, I wanted to say all this but couldn’t because I don’t have a way with words…

    Take care

  3. August 18, 2010 8:01 am

    You put this so beautifully, Indygurl, that it says everything I could not, to IHM and to Tejaswee…

    I have not words, not for the happiness at having found kindred souls in IHM and Tejaswee, not for the grief, for snuffing out a life from the physical world so carelessly, or for the way my heart speaks also, here.

    IHM, as Indygurl has said, the strength and wisdom that emanate from you is tangible. I know I will ever look up to you, more so now!

    God Bless, Meggie!

  4. August 18, 2010 8:03 am

    I spend a whole night reading her blog and the more I read it the more I fell in love with her… the posts that u have mentioned are the posts in my bookmarked list too and the posts on delhi left me so warm and fuzzy inside

    hats off to IHM and its a great a loss to this world having lost… such a brilliant girl


  5. August 18, 2010 8:26 am

    May Tejaswee’s soul rest in peace…

    Oh yes I so could see Ihm in her, when I read her blog, I never knew of her till only when Ihm gave links to her blog, but I could see it was a daughter Ihm was proud of… and like you said this lady is made of stuff that is something else… I was amazed at her strength and will always be… she is a lady who has always made me reason and question myself… and we need more people like her…. a very very heart felt post, at times all this was just building inside but you have just helped let out a bit… I cried reading this but smiled too… 🙂

  6. Indy permalink
    August 18, 2010 9:34 am

    Indy you have written so beautifully about Tejaswee! Truly beautiful! Reading her blog was such a calming experience as well as sometimes, I just could not go further as tears started to well! By now my dawter has come to know when I am thinking of IHM just by my expression , and when I am on Tejaswee’s blog too! She is every woman’s dream dawter, someone I wish my dawter would emulate! Her words echo IHM’s spirit and I almost feel she herself was IHM’s inspiration! I think I have been mumbling too much abt this at home and seeing the courage IHM is showing at this most difficult hour, we all have no idea just how much we have yet to learn from this courageous lady! She and you were the first bloggers, along with Corinne that I loved to read years ago on the Indian blogasphere! You are all wonderful!

  7. August 18, 2010 10:23 am

    😦 I still donno what to say. 😦 May she Rest in peace.

  8. August 18, 2010 10:45 am

    At a loss for words. But you have said it Indy.

  9. August 18, 2010 10:49 am

    I totally agree with Monu. I don’t feel like I hv never met her or known here. She is so much full of life and I fall in love with her again and again.
    Hugs Indy. Such a beautiful post for a beautiful Tejaswee!

    • August 19, 2010 12:30 pm

      I am reading soo many of her posts again and can’t help but comment on them, bcoz I so feel she talks to us thru her posts and so we need to reply bk too!

  10. August 18, 2010 11:04 am

    Abhi, its such a beautifully written post. You’ve said all that I’ve wanted to but could not. Words always failed me and they still do.

    When I read Tejasvee’s letter to her daughter and then the post about ‘Growing old and Dying early’ I was amazed at the her maturity, her optimism, her clarity in thoughts, . Like you said, how could it NOT be IHM?? And her effervescent, so infectious! She spread so much of positivity around and continues to do so.

    May she be at peace wherever she is.

    • August 19, 2010 1:54 pm

      I meant ‘how could it NOT be IHM’s daughter’.. pardon my typing error.

  11. August 18, 2010 11:08 am

    RIP! nothing more to say!

  12. August 18, 2010 12:22 pm

    Hi, I think this is the most poignant post I have ever read.
    RIP Tejaswee.

    take care

  13. August 18, 2010 12:50 pm

    I am getting emotional indy.Hugs to IHM and to you.

    RIP tejaswee.

  14. August 18, 2010 4:04 pm

    You are not alone, Tejaswee.

  15. rainboy permalink
    August 18, 2010 5:00 pm


  16. Ayush permalink
    August 18, 2010 6:14 pm

    She was a truly amazing person. Thank God people remember her and know about her passions and desires. Rest in peace Tejaswee.

  17. August 18, 2010 7:24 pm

    I am in love with the girl. Pity that we had to know her writing after she was no more. Everything you have written is beautifully expressed. You have said everything that I ever wanted to say to IHM, and more. Bless you.

  18. August 18, 2010 8:19 pm

    I returned after ages to read this news 😦
    I dont have words to comment on IHM’s post:(
    You have truly done justice to Tejaswee and IHM. No one else could have done a better job.

    May she rest in peace 😦

  19. August 18, 2010 10:25 pm

    Noone could have said it better, Indy !!
    And although I didn’t know her at all, reading some of the entries from her blog do reflect her strong personality and a person so full of life.
    May she rest in peace.

  20. August 18, 2010 10:44 pm

    You know Indy, I tried not to read Tejaswee’s blog for the first 2 days because I was scared that I couldn’t stop myself from crying. How wrong I was. She took me on such a wonderful trip of various emotions. She made me laugh like a nut, made me think, nod my head in agreement, marvel at the way how keen an observer she was, giggle at her crush and she made me dance along with her in the Delhi rains. I am sure she never gave a dull moment to anyone who touched her. She is an angel who knew the right magic to make people smile.

    Indy IHM is someone I can’t get enough of. I salute her.

    Love your post Indy and Cheers to all of us who make this blogworld a happy family.

  21. August 19, 2010 12:40 am

    My eyes misted over reading this. You have captured every emotion and thought so beautifully, my dear AP. I can think of no better way to help heal a very dear friend…

    As I told her… smile and cherish the memories, rejoice in her birth rather than regret her ..departure… But I cant say she is gone … she will always live in our hearts…

    As the poem rightly says:
    Why should I be out of mind
    because I am out of sight?

    She’s always there…right by us… just out of reach…and out of presence of finite eyes…
    But right there…watching…smiling…guiding…loving…

    RIP Tejaswee…..

  22. August 20, 2010 1:11 pm

    When I read her blog, her letter… I was stunned by the similarity and strength it bore to IHM’s blog. Wonderful girl, beautiful thoughts ….

  23. August 20, 2010 6:02 pm

    Time, and talking, and timely silences….these will lessen the grief without dimming the memories. I am sorry, this is beyond my capacity for comment.

  24. August 20, 2010 10:53 pm

    She was a nice human being and a wonderful promising young lady. Thanks to the technology, she lives with her blogs. How I wish this same technology could have saved her. Rest in Peace Tejaswi. May you get a much better world out there.

  25. August 21, 2010 9:46 am

    Heart-touching post…beautifully written.

  26. August 21, 2010 1:08 pm

    Whenever I started reading this, I was not able to continue after reading a few lines, indyeah. You have expressed every feeling of IHM’s friends.

    Henry Scott’s poem says it all…’Call me by my old familiar name.
    Speak to me in the easy way
    which you always used.
    Put no difference into your tone.
    Wear no forced air of solemnity or sorrow.’

    Blabberbhah’s name is in my ‘follower’s list’. It had been there for sometime. I tried to check, who it was, but I could know only see the list of people whom she followed. She loves animals esp. cats, I feel. One more name is there which mentions the list of ‘cats for adoption’.

    ‘A letter to the future’ shows her soft side… I am not able to write anymore…

    Blabberblah will read my Golie’s post too, I am sure.

  27. August 21, 2010 6:25 pm

    What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful girl…so sad to hear this..after reading IHM’s blog, I felt so close to her!What a huge loss, may God give her the strength.

  28. August 23, 2010 11:36 pm

    beautifully expressed… as someone said its real justice to IHM and TR… am a first timer here… have followed only IHM’s blog… but man – this was one hell of a post… humans i think r best gifted when it comes to expression but to express like this… am out of words seriously… am sure teju would have smiled reading this… n no doubt teju is IHM’s daughter hey na… rest in peace tejaswee….

    may His loving grace heal the family…

  29. August 24, 2010 4:37 am

    You know, Indygirl, I came over to your blog to see if you had written anything lately. And I found the most beautiful and touching tribute to dear Tejaswee and IHM. Seriously, one read at TJ’s blog, and you can see the same spirit, indomitable and radiant, that is evident in IHM’s blog. Like Mother, like Daughter 🙂 Every time I see TJ’s page on Facebook, I choke with emotion. It is so unfair. A girl like her being taken away. The world needs people like her! Vibrant, confident, beautiful women. I hope there is a God who is listening!

  30. August 25, 2010 1:59 pm

    That’s very sweet of you gal.

    With such thoughtful friends around, IHM and family will get better soon.

    Love is a powerful thing. Heals faster than anything else.

  31. August 25, 2010 2:52 pm

    Thats so nice, I hope and wish everyone has good people like you in there circle.

    I have been reading about Tejaswee on different blogs , each time i read i get to know her a bit more, Indeed its OUR loss to have not met her.

    God does make cruel decisions sometimes, but we mere mortal cant do anything other than accept his ways, though if given a chance would like to ask him/her why was this decision made.

    We I guess are unlucky to have lost such a beautiful mind and heart, I do wish I had come across IHM’s blog a bit earlier and met such beautiful people earlier. God bless everyone and may he give the strength to bear this pain to all who had know Tejaswee.

  32. August 25, 2010 3:13 pm

    You have written the tribute so beautifully! Truly touching.

  33. August 25, 2010 6:50 pm

    What a lovely, lovely tribute. Wow, Indyeah!

  34. September 1, 2010 11:58 pm

    Heartfelt and unrestrained.. Thanks for sharing this, especially the lovely poem by Henry Scott Holland. It had been published in a newspaper years ago and I remember cutting it down, having just read it a few days after a schoolmate died of brain tumour.. I wanted to send it to her parents, wrote a letter but faltered at the last moment. It sometimes becomes so difficult to reach out to someone who is grieving, you feel so small and inept.. I am glad you have expressed yourself so beautifully.

  35. September 8, 2010 4:29 am

    I’m speachless Abhi!

    That was just beautiful. 🙂

    R.I.P. Tejaswee!!

    May God bless your soul. 🙂

  36. September 13, 2010 2:57 pm

    Indy, That was so so touching.. I have been reading Tejaswee’s blog, and it is amazing, the maturity, the enthusiasm, the radiant spirit, that it is tough to believe that she is gone..

    You have written so beautifully about her and IHM, Indy.. As for IHM, she is one incredible lady. The way she has handled it, is so very inspiring. She will definitely live on in our hearts.

  37. September 22, 2010 8:18 pm

    I really can’t go to IHM’s blog these days. It makes me cry every time I start reading her posts and then I’ve to stop. I don’t really know what to say in the comments. You’re awesome Indy. I’m sure IHM needs this, but I just don’t know how to do it.

  38. September 23, 2010 1:32 am

    Abhi, It took me so many days to read this. Every time I started reading it, I just burst into tears and left. It was same with Tejaswee’s blog. I just couldn’t read her letter and then finally did it few days back and also mailed IHM about the same.

    Heartfelt post! Hugs.

  39. November 18, 2010 5:47 pm

    I discovered IHM’s blog two days back and yours now from two completely different channels…it’s a such a co-incidence for me to see such a beautiful tribute to IHM daughter ( I read Tejaswee’s blog too–I couldn’t sleep that night). yes, as someone else has said, this post speaks of you too! I have tears in my eyes extremely saddened about Tejaswee but also happy that there is so much love still left in this world! Thank you.

    I still haven’t written to IHM, just don’t have the courage yet but I will do it soon 🙂 and yes am a complete stranger 🙂


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