In conversation with Aparna Santhanam, a woman who wears many hats – a sucessful author, dermatologist, mother, wife, and an ardent supporter of social causes. We spoke to Aparna on life after a baby, family holidays, food, and more…..

aparna1. Has Mommyhood changed you? If yes, how?

I think becoming a Mother has been the most defining moment of my life.Everything else 

in life is on one side and Mommyhood is on the other side.To me,it is the only unselfish and 

unconditional relationship in life where you never think about what you are getting back.


2. One ‘aww’ moment/incident with your child

When my daughter was nine years old,she was asked to write about a famous figure who truly 

inspires her.So,naturally I expected she would write about some musician ,politician or some 

other famous person.She wrote her composition on me and said that “My mother is a very good 

doctor who is going to be famous!”It was not just an aww moment but has often served as an 

inspiration to me.

shy and I3. One getting on the nerve moment/incident with your child

When Sharanya was about seven,she stopped being amenable to suggestions about oiling her 

hair.I remember,one Sunday morning,she screaming and running around the room,while I 

chased her with a coconut oil bottle and finally giving up in frustration and flinging the bottle!

4. Favourite Family food with recipe 

This was a recipe I devised to make my daughter eat Beetroot and it was such a hit that no 

family party is complete without  it now!

Beetroot Dip


Serves 4

2 cups yoghurt: 2 cups

1 grated Beetroot (grated): 1

2-3 cloves Garlic (finely chopped): 2–3 cloves finely

3-4 sprigs Fresh mint (finely chopped): 3–4 sprigs finely

Salt and pepper to taste

Tie the yoghurt in a fine muslin cloth and leave for 2 hours to drain out the water for 2 hours. 

After you have drained the water, place the yoghurt in a bowl, add the beet, garlic, mint, salt 

and pepper. Whip briskly with a hand whisk or lightly with an electric blender. Chill for an hour 

before serving.

Serving Tip: Serve with Juliennes of cucumber, carrot, celery, capsicum and other vegetables as 

a dip. It can also be used as a spreading paste for sandwiches.


5. Favourite family holiday destination

This one is easy, definitely Goa!


6. What do you do when you need a break from home, husband, and child(ren)?

I have a lovely Girl gang; we meet at least once a month and completely unwind, away from 

Family et al!


7. How do you unwind/relax?

Watching TV shows or shopping with my daughter, reading and chilling at home with a glass of 

wine and close friends and playing with my lovely Labrador, Rocco!


8. What you miss most from your pre-child(ren) days?

My husband and I are very impulsive and would just pack a bag in five minutes and head out for 

a holiday wherever our fancy took us. It becomes harder with passage of time!


9. A woman who inspires you the most

My Mother ,who always  encouraged me and my brother to follow our dreams,who supported 

us through a childhood where we moved every couple of years to different states and who have 

always made us realize that the most important thing in life is to learn the secret of being happy 

in every situation. 


10. How have you managed to keep your dreams alive (most of us change /alter dreams after our 


I wear four different hats : A practising dermatologist,a brand consultant,a writer and secretary 

of an NGO called Apnalaya ,apart from being a Mom of course!To me,it is important that 

women must

a.Keep their personal dreams alive and well defined 

b.Pursue them with the same vigour that we pursue our dreams for our children and

c.Keep believing that they will come true and ensure they do by letting people who love us know 

how important the dream is and ensuring their support! 


Finally it is all about self belief and how badly we want it!