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stroke survivorthoughts

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achandra

Usually every two years I go & meet physiatrist to fill up paper work & see if he has any good idea for us to try. After 14 years of visiting him, he has become friend to us so meeting him is always pleasure  & fun, he gives me hard time & reminds me  to wear my AFO as  I might not get lucky in my future falls, as according to him & hubby I am not getting any younger any more lol. They both know booboo I have accumulted so far So I better wear my AFO. It's always fun arguing with him about my reasons & ofcourse meeting all those young doctors also fun I enjoy teaching them they are affecting life of real people here & they are making huge difference in quality of life of people by doing their job  & also seeing our son in them makes me so happy.

Recently I had to fill up some government paperwork for getting indian visa  & I decided if my brother can do it, I can do it & start the process, man it took me solid few days to finally everything filled up correctly, I feel I deserve vacation after accomplishing that job & feel so smart now. I think my IQ level must have doubled in doing that  exercise lol. Anyhow when you accomplish something in life it does make you feel happy. So I am happy camper right now

 

Asha

 

 

achandra

I struggled big time after my stroke thinking why did I survived my  stroke in such a bad shape, what's the purpose of my life, having young family at home gave me courage & strength to fight on, in my mind I always thought God wanted me to be around for our young son & hubby, my sister joked at that age of hubby it would have been difficult to find him new wife too lol, which used to crack me up till my college friend reminded me, he got dove so it wouldn't have been too difficult for him, so joke was on me, but anyhow I thought purpose of me surviving was for them. I don't have any clue whats the purpose of my life any more. Though I now don't worry about it either, I just take one day at a time & have fun every day. I enjoy my life to fullest. I enjoy nature, my walks, my friends, my family, everything. I read great line by Tao Chinese philosopher, which says one who persists is a person of a purpose, which makes full sense to me, I persisted right after my stroke thinking about my young family, today life is fun & meaningful in everything  I do.

 

Asha

 

achandra

I have read about it, that doing gratitude journal  & being nice to others are easy happy feelings booster. I will  do my gratitude journal whenever I remember from time to time, but never knew even thank you letter can bring out such a great happy feelings. In my post stroke journey I have encountered ton of doctors most were very nice to us some had better bedside manners than others, but my cardiologist who sealed hole in my heart was way kinder to me & will always have special place in our heart. We are all very thankful to him, & today after 14 years when our son starts writing his  medical college application essay & he still remembers cardiologist who did innovative surgery on his mom with minimum downtime. It reminded us of great doctor with amazing bedside manners & who had  kissed me on my cheek during our consultation visit with my husband after listening to ordeal we had gone through & now came to him for alternative surgery instead of open heart surgery to fix that hole in my heart.

Anyhow sending him that thank you note made me feel so good, hope it brightens his day too. I can see power of being kind & nice to others is biggest mood booster. such simple tricks to do in life to be happy person.

 

Asha

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

achandra

I love Oprah's super soul Sunday series & love authors she talks to on her show, it opens up my world & I get so many AHAs & feel great about my own journey. This week she was talking to Eat,Pray & love Author Elizabeth Gilbert, who was sharing her life experiences & strength she got from reading Heros journey by Joseph Campbell. In a nutshell all of us are called to do something out of our comfort zone & when we face our fears & accept the challenges given to us, that's when hero is born. & in that challenge lot of time we all get fear whether we will be able to do it or  not based on our our fears & we either accept challenge or ignore it, but when we accept challenge that's when hero is born, since this journey is never easy, its filled with lot of fear, people not helping & lot of other drama, but when we rise to occasion something beautiful comes out of this experience. Our challenges & sufferings are our biggest teachers, if we , instead of resisting, go with flow & learn lesson it is trying to teach us, something very beautiful & powerful comes out of that suffering.  whole hour while watching show I was going YES SO TRUE.

 

I remember asking God to show me some sign that I am on right path when I had decided to go on disability,  & my attention was drawn  to logo of college I was attending which was upside down of company I  was leaving behind. & I remember feeling at peace with my decision, & today looking it back I feel it was one of the best decisions of our life.  today I am actually thankful to all my experiences in my life it has taught me some great lessons & I am thankful for all those lessons. Just today while enjoying our Sunday brunch  at home while watching birds on our feeder & feeling so happy & was telling hubby missed all these relaxing morning when we were young, since you are always thinking of what things need to be done instead of enjoying your present "now". My stroke experience taught me to be in present moment.

 

Asha

 

 

 

achandra

as most of you know I am blessed with amazing family, who has great dad who provides his unconditional love to all of us & we also have very bright son who on most days is nicest, wise young man who does right things, but I find it sometime we have to push him hard or ask ton of questions before he will do things which is utmost important at this point in his life, so it just escapes me what is he really scared of, why is he not doing what is required of him to do, to be successful in life. I get so annoyed when after telling him something to do million time & he will say yes & when time comes he will not keep his words, such a childish behavior escapes me. I blame me since its not hubby's quality, that lazy quality is of mine lol. but I have learnt my lessons through some of those mistakes of mine, & I don't want him to go through hardship because of it, why not learn from mommy's mistakes than learning from his own.  Anyway I had to vent. I just pray he never pay costly price for his laziness. I tell him he is lucky we are his parents so we won't give up on him & keep on trying our best but be worried when other people start giving up on you, and you loose best opportunities in life.

 

Asha

 

achandra

Happy Mothers day Everyone. hope every one celebrated  mothers day in their own special way. I did too, I feel so grateful & blessed to have wonderful son & hubby who made sure that they follow my orders on what I want to do on mothers day :). and we all had great time together.  We went to see great Indian movie & I  also feel same way how lead role character tells  his son to do when he dies, whistle instead of crying when  he is  gone, that's what I am telling my family too, I m telling my family to do the same, whistle with joy that I lived my life with full of joy.

 

I am thankful for this stroke also which gave me second chance to enjoy my family  and this world with complete different perspective. I am grateful for all new opportunities, friends, books I have encountered post stroke which has made the person I am today.  life is great  once again with full of meaning & joy, nothing I do any more today without appreciating the fact that I feel so lucky to be able to do simple things in life. who would have thought doing home chores & going to bathroom without audience can bring so much joy in one's life, I agree so much with Diana Nyad who says when things gets tough in life you have to find a way. I do feel with supportive family & my own initiative I have found a way to appreciate all days. Since I have seen in my own life after dreadful day sun eventually comes out, it  is just behind those clouds, all I have to do till then, is  just keep my head above water & not drown myself in self pity.

 

Asha

 

achandra

ok  found reason for my good leg knee pain, I have torn miniscus in my knee. if it hurts a lot then surgery needed to remove it, but in future it can cause arthritis & knee replacement surgery  or deal with pain meds since knee is not yet so bad that it gives out or locks. you know how the world  feels when you are in pain, sunshine, flowers, warm temp, ocean water, beauty, money all feels worthless when you are in pain lol. how our view on life & world can change in an instant when you are in pain. of course I have very loving family who gets stronger & closer when one of us in trouble, & usually its me cause hubby is stronger tan me in dealing with these kind of things. they both call me high maintenance person since I feel & see their love when they both are by my side & keeps on checking on me by phone calls or texts. Anyway I am old enough to know I still got of positives in my life to focus on in life  than just focus on this little pain

 

Asha

 

achandra

Right now I am going through severe pain in my good leg & I feel guilty for putting my lovely family through trouble because of me. I was thinking how will I ever compensate my family for putting them through my health melodrama. I was praying to God that maybe I should get lottery & if I win that way at least I won't be burden on them. My "rich"(content) husband reminded me he has enough & all he wants is my health nothing  more. I was telling him money is not for him, money is there for me  to make me feel better about my existence lol.  I just pray OTC pain meds works & I m pain free.

 

Asha

 

 

achandra

As I am going through my own life's experiences, I am realizing power of grit. hubby always says I am very fast  in  some of the things than him, but there is underlying difference between him & me, hubby never gives up on any thing even when things get very hard case in point our own marriage after my stroke, giving up on us was so easy, I was so close to doing it, thank god for our young son & all support from my family & friends, that I persisted & learnt valuable lesson of life, to be successful in life Grit  & being organized plays valuable role in life.  Slowly & steadily I am developing that grit muscle in my life.

 

I guess what I am trying to say here as long as one don't give up & keep on trying help comes along & life becomes beautiful again, that's my spiritual lesson of the week " Never give up & keep on pushing the envelope & somehow God will help out along the way & you will be on your path of happy new normal"

 

Asha

 

 

 

 

 

achandra

I am really blessed person to be married to real patient guy who has always lifted me up  from day we got married, yes he has its own other faults, he is man of very few words, & he is not romantic guy. but he does right things, he is our encourager  in chief. When we first married & I came to this country, we were starting out in this foreign land with nothing but just each other & two suitcase of clothes & some pots & pans. he was making sure to save enough so that he can send me to graduate school, luckily I got job right away in high tech company based on my college education & company I worked for paid partially for my graduate studies. so we were fine, but hubby has always encouraged me to do more in my life, while I was working full time & going to college in the evening, he was my equal support system I can count on. fast forward 10-15 years in my life & I had to go through my stroke  journey  & without this patient caregiver  who has made me thrive back in my life so much easier.  I learnt valuable lesson of  what love really means. Every time I wanted to give up in this post stroke journey he gave me strength, reason & hope for better tomorrow, & glad I persisted, life  has become  so much fulfilling & I love to be around people. I never had thought I would find happiness again. my husband is  is such a patient guy, he never rushed to helped me, & would wait patiently till I figure out how to do things for myself & ready to help me any time  if I ask for any help. Those qualities of his made me more independent & confident in my new abilities. Anyway later in my life after kido went to college he encouraged me again to do more for myself, he encouraged me to learn new things in near by community college & step out of my comfort zone & learn new things, and once again I m thriving & enjoying life again. Anyhow I feel  so lucky to be married to such a great guy who has supported me every day & when he is around me, I know we will be fine whatever happens in our life.

 

Asha

 

achandra

So many things going on in my life, that I have it to get off my brain & on here, so that I can make a room for new fun-filled memories. one of the highlight is our son just turned 21 & also scored well in his exams. the way he procrastinates till last moment, hubby & I were wondering & congratulating ourselves, that maybe someone watching over him for him to do so well without working hard. He does work hard but at very last moment & that does make both of us sweat & make very uncomfortable. Anyhow now to next unpleasant topic I do have knee pain in my good leg, I am managing it with OTC meds & other pain relief ointments. Pain is no fun though it does have power to put things in perspective. Another thing I am noticing about people around me people have stopped excusing me for using my stroke card like we do for our son. he can't use excuses for not doing something he was asked for.

 

Asha

 

 

 

achandra

Nothing new to report  here, time just fly by. I blink & weekend is gone & so does the week.  recently after my fall on stairs I was having pain in my good leg knee, went to doctor to get it checked & according to him, he did not see any fracture or any other major trouble so his suggestion was take OTC pain relievers like aleve or anti-inflammation pills. pain is no fun, though it has power to push you to dark place fast if you don't keep eye on your thoughts. So I am keeping eye on my thoughts. Sunday is usually reserved for watching my super soul sunday show on oprah's OWN channel which does great job of mood equalizer and puts me on right direction. yesterday she was talking to author Iyanla vanzat about her new book trust. listening to author about her life experiences which were rock bottom & still finding courage to climb up from that muck was quite inspiring. We all are total sum of our experiences in life & our decisions & choices we make during our life's journey. I realize having great set of parents & family did give me head start in my life, parents who made sure to give us best education & always looking out for us, things we take for granted.

 

Asha

 

 

 

achandra

as most of you who follow my blogs will know this about me that I love reading books & get very energized by spiritual thoughts or books or movies that make me think &  go AHA there that's what I feel & now feel wow its all now falling into place. Today heard Hoda kotb on Today's show mentioning that just talent in itself does not make you successful, Its also other trait that you don't give up & still show up day after day even when things get tougher, that makes person successful & that line clicked with me that was my AHA moment of the day.  its sticking out with something you feel is worthwhile is underline good quality of the successful people.

 

now next to another interesting topic recently watched movie POST after hearing great reviews about it & gotten recommendation from blogger I admire, was in my list to do this last weekend, & boy we were not disappointed . Near the end of the movie they quoted Justice Hugo Black’s argument for ruling in favor of the two newspaper’s right to publish the then-classified Pentagon Papers and against Nixon’s attempt to control the press and I was able to google his words. They’re important words, words that matter today every bit as much as they did in 1971 when the court ruled 6 to 3. He wrote, “In the First Amendment the Founding Fathers gave the free press the protection it must have to fulfill its essential role in our democracy. The press was to serve the governed, not the governors.   

my life today is so much richer & interesting because of these two different subjects. I am loving the new me. I feel making me aware of all good, bad traits about me is giving me opportunity to grow into person I am proud of. like I know I still need to develop trait of being assertive without feeling bitchy about it, the trait The Washington Post's Katharine Graham (Streep) developed over the course of her stepping into role of first female publisher of the post after her husband's death.

 

Asha

 

 

 

achandra

I am so tired & need vacation to recover from our vacation. after we came home from our vacation we had guests from India & canada, so I did not get breather to recover from our vacation & my fall right after our vacation was also no help. luckily it was nothing major & just bruised ego & scared me for few days.  hubby was also sick so no help anywhere. I think now that guests r gone I will be able to recover this weekend & get into my old routine back. I get all rattled when my routine is upset, though I end up going with flow & enjoy the day, but still feel something amiss in my day.  Currently I am reading great book. I don't know how but I have always found for me I have found right people, books, friends in my life when I needed them most. & some with lot of efforts on my part, some fell in my lap on its own like this book, which has made me firm believer there r no accidents in life. any how life has its own ups & downs some days r good, some not so but eh who cares I am happy person as long as I get up & have my morning coffee with amazing breakfast, life is good in my mind lol. book I m reading right now is following one.

 

Asha'

achandra

recently hubby & I traveled to India to visit our family members back home, this year we had planned pilgrimage trip to temples in Nepal & India with hubby's family. My brother in law had done all arrangements & off we all went. there were in total 10 of us with different ability & disability, so it was entertainment in itself to get us off the bus or to location. three out of 10 people had hearing issues & two of us had walking issues. luckily every one liked every one, so there were no issues there. we had my two sister in laws taking care of hubby's older sister who had recently broken both of her wrists & used cane for walking, & hubby was my caretaker who will not let go of my hand or me. though in uneven terrain when I decided not to use his help, I did stumble & went down & hit my head on iron pole. luckily it was just superficial cut & was treated by doctor near by who got big chuckle when I asked him will I survive this fall? of-course that made hubby also relaxed that his Asha is back who is always laughing or singing badly in his ears during our trip. I just realized good quality about me, that I am one happy person & can find joy in all circumstances of life, which makes people around me also very happy.no  wonder I get along well with every body I come in contact with. I also attended my niece's wedding & it was awesome. In this  trip we took excursion to fly over mount Everest & it was breath taking trip. makes one wonder why any one would climb such a tall mountain or do this arduous journey. Overall I feel so grateful & joyful to be able to spend time with my lovely family. I feel grateful that my disability isn't so bad that hubby & I get deprived of this joyful vacations. So I am one happy person right now even though I have back ache, neck-ache from 16 hours flight. though happy to be home again & get my home bed & home bathroom.

 

Asha

 

achandra

my gratitude list

I know we should do this every day, but I have decided to do at least on thanksgiving day things I am grateful for

 

1. I am grateful to be still alive & with my loving family who are always by my side on my good, bad & worst days, that makes my life journey so much joyous & meaningful.

2. I am grateful that I can still walk, talk & enjoy life to fullest.

3. I am grateful that my sense of humor is still intact so that I am able to laugh through my difficulties & still able to have loads of fun.

4. I am grateful for family & friends who chose to stay or come in our life & some who decided to walk away, taught me some great lessons in life.

5. I am grateful for all experiences in my life, they have made my life so much richer & meaningful due to it.

6. grateful for my stroke too, it taught me some beautiful lessons in life which otherwise I would have missed it

7. grateful for all of our abundance in life, which I had never even imagined in my life. God has been very kind to us & I am thankful for all of it.

8. I am grateful for my loving husband & our loving & mature son without them this life would have been meaningless, joyless & boring.

9 grateful for my mom, brother, sisters,my in laws all of them make my life so much colorful & joyous.

10. I am grateful for this second chance.

 

Asha

 

 

 

 

achandra

recently someone sent message on what's app about race & how some people get ahead in life aka race  thanks to other conditions in their life which does not mean they were smarter than others or anything. Sometime you do feel cocky & feel oh its all you & not realize how you were blessed to have set of parents who made right choices in life for you & raised you well which allowed you to get so many opportunities along the way, so can't puff your chest & think oh its all me  & not realizing how you were placed ahead in life's race by your loving parents who did right thing. I remember growing up  & even in my adulthood I blamed my mom for being too strict & always comparing me with other siblings or neighborhood friends to inspire me to work hard & do more yes those techniques did create other side effects for which I blamed  my mom. but now that I m mother & mature enough to understand all those tricks & able to forgive my mom in my head & heart. I am actually so thankful for having set of parents we had, mom did most of the heavy lifting in raising us & dad stayed in background providing for us with best of his ability. I have been talking with all my cousins recently, & that thought has been running my head,  I can see with our set of parents we did get head start in  our life & all us siblings did pretty  well in our life. yes all of us have gone through our set of troubles in life but by helping each other out & being there for each other we have done good in life.

 

achandra

After going through my stroke trauma, I have gotten great post traumetic growth. I have realized nothing in life is guaranteed or certain & we don't have control over everything even though we like to believe otherwise. Though but we do have control over two things & that's where whole crust of how life lived. first control we have in life is how well we prepared for circumstances of life & second how you respond to any event in your life good or bad. Rest is  all illusion.

achandra

my 75 year old mom finally became US citizen after living in this country for more than 15 years. We all have become US citizens long time back, mom did not since she can understand English  but can't speak. So was kept on procrastinating, finally we were able to convince  her that she can give exam with interpreter and give it a try. so finally she agreed & gave exam, my mom is very smart & hardworking woman all her life, gave exam & passed with flying colors. all three of us siblings went with mom for her interview & oath ceremony. I vaguely remember mine. I felt this ceremony was more poignant & beautiful, agent talked about how US as melting pot & each immigrant who decided to come in this foreign country after leaving all that they knew in their home country behind & made US as their home. As an immigrant they brought their culture, food & some of that rubbed on people living here before them & some of the American's culture rubbed on these immigrants, so its one big melting pot, there was president Trump's welcoming speech & then pledge of allegiance & our national anthem. This was most beautiful ceremony & I felt so happy & proud to be in this new motherland which has given us all love & allowed us to make home away from home. I had to thank INS officer for wonderful service they did of-course it choked me up, though it made her very happy too.

achandra

wow what a week

I guess I should never say life is usual, nothing exciting or bad. I guess when you got active child in college things do happen, but of-course being older he thinks he has to handle everything himself  &  making us obsolete. yes as a parent you want your kids to be self reliant & making their own decisions. but I feel scared of letting  him go. recently at college while playing basketball he dislocated his dominant hand's thumb it turns out to be ligament tear, right now he is in cast & doctor will decide in a week whether he needs surgery to fix it or not. problem is he is  handling all by himself going to ER & then to orthopedic surgeon, & letting us know what did doctor suggests & so on. of-course as a parent I feel very scare of him handling all this alone, but got no choice then just to watch from sidelines how his life is going to turn out.  Though going to ER does make him empathetic person & let him see what he needs to do to become better doctor. I was worried how he is going to handle all his tests & so on in college, but he is handling it pretty nicely, at-least in his latest exam they allowed him to take it on computer & allowed him extra 30 minutes which helped him take his tests nicely, so that part I m relieved. oh recently he gave medical entrance exam & scored very high in it. though he was upset saying he could have done better, so would like to give one more time. again lot of things I don't understand since he is handling by himself so I just pray for him & us lol.  On my super soul sunday I do marvel at my life with eyes of gratitude about how my life turned out to be even with so much loss in our life. First & foremost I m so grateful to be married to such a responsible guy, who makes sure to take his responsibility very seriously & never utters word of frustration even when sometimes things don't go as planned. slowly & steadily he keeps doing right things & things chiseled out to be better than before. he never gave up on me or our relationship which I feel has made me better person & our relationship much stronger & lovelier than before.  anyway other than that life is still great lot to be thankful for, fall is here already love the crisp cold air in the morning when I am about to go out for my walk

achandra

I haven't blogged for a while so just have need to blog, nothing exciting or miserable to report, life goes on, though I do feel like time is flying by, & week & weekend just flies by. must be good thing. oh I finally got my first evaluation PT after getting my brace. It was interesting turn out to be young Indian therapist though from name & looks I could not decipher that information. I hope to improve my gait & balance with this therapy which I am getting after 13 years on this post stroke  journey, so it will be lesson learning to get rid of bad habits I have picked up over the years. Other than that life goes on, do get AHA moments every Sunday while watching super soul Sunday, which makes me wonder was this books & teachers weren't available in my pre-stroke life, then how come I never got attracted to them earlier, why did I have to go through such a bad experience of life to learn these beautiful things about life which does make my life today richer & better. I had read somewhere, in life when drastic change happens be sure to look out for something beautiful to emerge out of it. while having major discussion about it with hubby, he does not believe in that sentiments, he says dead man can't defend  that theory. in forest fire lot of young, vibrant & green also burns out, so believing something good will come out of this tragedy is hard pill to swallow. But I believe it, since I have seen in my own life, my life today is more fulfilling in all areas of my life than before, and I feel lucky & grateful to be still here with my lovely family.

achandra

I don't know somehow I feel I get same AHA moments by noticing behavior of people, I guess when you are pregnant you notice all pregnant woman around you, so maybe since I woke up from my own sleepwalking & started noticing "how my choices  in life has created my destiny" AHA moment & will tell every one around me to notice it too. I realize I have been blessed with amazing parents. They were not perfect but did best of their ability in raising us kids, which has also instilled in some fundamental values in us, which has helped all of us do better in our life. I have always worked very hard all my life & luckily that habit is still there, though I am still learning to figure everything out from scratch, instead of asking for help right away. so basically get lot frustrated before asking for help, hard thing for me to do. anyway all these realization came when I talked with same age cousin whose thinking is quite different than mine. why work when you are sister of four brothers, so they will help you out in your hour of need or your husband, I guess I have different outlook there, cause I believe in if I want something in life I need to work for it  and can't depend on husband or my family for it.

 

Asha

 

achandra

today we went to check out our son's off-campus housing.  after checking out the place when we were leaving on top of the stairs I lost my balance luckily our son was right behind me & held on me tight till I could regain my balance. it was so close had I fallen would have break my neck falling from top of stairs. man it was  close. It was miracle, I felt gods hands holding me tight on stairs, I did not get scared or anything & did right things to balance myself when he was holding me tight. so feel so fortunate.

 

Asha

 

 

 

achandra

trust

just heard oprah discussing new book trust on her super-soul Sunday series. & it does make me think about trust & it is so hard in our difficult times to trust God or someone that something better is going to come  out of this ordeal.  Sometimes when you venture into complete unknown territory  like bird learning to fly for the first time  & jump off its nest, trusting in his wings that it will be able to  keep him off ground & able to soar & not jump off to its death. does make me think about how I struggled  when I decided to go on early retirement & venture into complete new territory, I was so afraid though I remember very distinctly thinking God please show me some sign that this is right decision I am doing for me.  & he did by drawing my attention to logo of my college was similar to company I decided to leave behind, that made me realize that I need to just relax & trust power bigger than me & enjoy my journey. I am so thankful for all this valuable lessons in my life  where sometimes when I look back it feels like there are no coincidences in life. how one would explain all choices , decisions & opportunities I got in my life. those choices, actions made me person I have become today.

 

Asha

 

achandra

I sometime forget that I am stroke survivor & try to do things  beyound  my limit., but when something needs to be done I push myself & do more things I ever did prestroke or post stroke for that matter, so had to pay price for it, luckily no damage just day spent in ER & came home to get more checking done on monday. Anyway last week I met my grade school friend after some 20+ years & day before & after had family reunions to attend, so had lot of fun in all events, stayed long hours up to make food for party & guests coming at our home. So anyway after all that ended my body also gave out & was feeling uncomfortable on my non affected side of body, so went to ER got it checked out nothing showed up at ER now have to do more testing on Monday hopefully it will be nothing, learn to treat my half body kindly just because I can do it, does not mean I should. anyway  there were extreme emotions on all days. this is first time all of my siblings were together. So it was very nice  & get together of all my extended family members are always memorable & on top of that meeting my school friend  made it sweeter, so visit to ER was good equalizer of the all positive feelings lol

 

 

Asha

 

 

 

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