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Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Kalki Koechlin on life in lockdown: Sappho is brightening up our days

Actor Kalki Koechlin on her three-month-old daughter Sappho, and her career so far.

Written by A. Kameshwari | New Delhi | Updated: May 21, 2020 8:21:43 am
kalki koechlin on motherhood Kalki Koechlin says she cannot wait to be back on the sets. (Photo: Kalki Koechlin/Instagram)

These days, actor Kalki Koechlin is busy taking care of her three-month-old daughter Sappho.

During a Facebook LIVE on The Indian Express page, Kalki opened up about her experience as a mother, her newfound love for lullabies and Ukulele, and much more.

Here are excerpts from the interaction:

Q. How are you spending your lockdown?

Being a mother, feeding my baby six times a day and changing diapers – that takes most of my day. Apart from that, I am homeschooling my younger brother. So, I am a mother, teacher and the list goes on. We also adopted a cat. She just had two little kittens. So, we feed them every day. This is the time when we all have to look after each other and be kind to each other as much as possible.

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We call her Cat. #shewantsmilktoo

A post shared by Kalki (@kalkikanmani) on

Q. How is Sappho?

My baby is now over three-months-old. She has started to do combat crawling, which is so exciting.

Q. How is motherhood treating you?

It has been tough yet exciting and beautiful. I don’t think people talk enough about the tough part. There is no sleep for the first month. Also, no matter how much you try, nothing is going to prepare you on how to handle this small, vulnerable creature. You are full of anxiety and in every two hours, you wake up to keep a check on her, to know if she is okay and breathing. So, yeah, it is full of anxiety and worry.

Also, you learn a lot. You get poop all over you (laughs). But there are wonderful parts of motherhood too, like when she smiles. You kind of remember where life begins and how you learn what you learn, which is so beautiful. It reminds us of what is important.

Q. What inspired you to learn different lullabies?

I don’t know. I started learning Ukulele while I was pregnant and I thought it will be nice to learn some lullabies. There are so many different languages. Also, I like the sound of the instrument and the languages. So, I learned even if I do not understand the meaning of it.

Q. How has motherhood changed you as a person?

I am definitely more patient. I have never been this patient before. You just have to be in the moment; I am learning that. Also, learning to let go off things I cannot control, asking for help knowing everything cannot be done on our own. It’s a job that helps you to understand how much you are part of a bigger picture. It helps you understand nature.

It is one of the best phases of my life. I am thankful for it and for the fact that Sappho is here, during the lockdown, brightening up our days.

Q. Did your mother give you tips?

With time, you forget the details of bringing up a newborn. She has been a great help. When I gave birth to Sappho, my mother was with us for the first two weeks. She and my mother-in-law were super helpful.

Q. Talking about work, will you play Ukulele on screen?

If the director asks me to, of course, why not.

Q. What else is happening?

I am taking Hebrew classes online. It is a difficult language. My partner says the same about Hindi.

Q. Will we soon see you in a film?

Who knows? I am sure cinemas won’t open for a quite long time but yes, I cannot wait to be back on the sets.

Q. Have you been keeping yourself updated on what’s happening in the industry?

Not much. My manager updates me sometimes regarding what is the scene about safety on the sets but nobody has given a specific date when things will be back to normal. My next series, which I was supposed to start in May, has been pushed indefinitely.

Q. Anyone from the industry who you took motherhood tips from?

Yes, I did talk to Konkona (Sen Sharma). She shared the tough times she went through during pregnancy. And Nitya Mehra. She had a kid two months before me. Not that anything prepares you for it! (chuckles)

Q. Your social media is so real. What is the idea behind that?

There is no doubt that social media is a marketing tool and a way to connect to people but it is also a place to feel less alone. That is why I decided to post things which are not perfect or selling. Some things we all struggle through. Not everything is perfect.

Q. Are you satisfied with the work you have done so far?

Sometimes yes, sometimes no. Every actor wants to do something they did not get. I want to do a rom-com where I get the guy in the end instead of killing him. I want to do an action movie. So, yes, I do have my own fantasies. I am grateful for the kind of diversity my work has had. From Zoya Akhtar to Dibakar Banerjee to Ayan Mukherjee to Anurag Kashyap, they all have such a different technique to work and tell a story.

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