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Happy Birthday, Dad! Love you Lots!

Today is my Dad's birthday and he is spending it just like any other day - working nearly 12 hours without rest. So today, I am going to get a bit emotional about Dad - who is always my hero, my best friend, my spiritual guide and mentor. 


It's not been easy growing up as Dr. C.R.Raghunandanan's daughter because people have expectations that you will be a chip off the block - which turns out to be not the case when it comes to me. 

No, Dad isn't a celebrity. He loves to travel and has a penchant for poetry, philosophy and adventure. But I think he is more of a doctor-turned-saint because he is well-known and highly respected for the service that he does. 

If he isn't working 24x7 in hospital, you will find him going early to pitch in for medical aid camps to islands where villagers have no easy access to doctors or medicines. 

On a Sunday when he can take rest, he sets out early morning to distribute the medicines and to serve those who are ill. He will skip marriages, social outings and functions and find greater joy in doing this.

People from all walks of life come to him, unburden all their troubles on him and he has this amazing, heart warming way of consoling people. 

I can give you lots of examples of how he transforms lives and empowers people but I won't. He won't like it and also, that is his nature - to love all, to serve all. It's not up to me to judge that.

But I'd like to share some core values that my father has taught me and I believe that has helped me grow as a human being:

1. NEVER EVER treat a person with scorn or disrespect or as though the person is beneath you in social rank or status. 

2.  If some one has disclosed something personal/confidential to you, do not EVER betray or exploit that person's trust. Do not reveal it to another person.

3. Work hard and honestly. Don't take short cuts or dishonest routes to earn name, fame or money.

4.  Listen to your inner voice always. Follow your heart. Pray to God.

5. Always be grateful to those who have helped you in your time of need. Find a way to repay the debt in little ways and do it with a feeling of love, not compulsion. 

6. Time is God. Don't waste it. Do something useful or creative but don't allow yourself to be complacent or idle.  

7.  Never choose a profession because you believe it will bring you name, fame or social status.  Do what you love and do it with passion. 

8. If you can do something to help one person a day without expecting anything in return, you will make the world a happier place. 

9. The good that you do will always protect you in time of need.

Happy Birthday, Dad! Love you lots and I am constantly inspired by you!
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