Friday, February 25, 2011

Here Tomorrow, Gone Today

"Hey mom, I bet you didn't expect me to write a letter to you, but here I am :)," Meghna held a scented letter comprising of three off-white textured papers in her hands and read out loud to herself in a soft, broken morose tone with a pint of disgust, a pint of regret and a whole jar of sadness.
It wasn't like she didn't expect her son to check on her rarely but affirmatively, but it was her decision and rather her rude wish that she should not be contacted ever by her "son"....

With a lamented attitude, she continued reading further.
"I'm sorry if in any way this letter or my mention has irritated you or caused you any suffering and/or anger, but it was important for me to write this one and I promise you that you will not hear from me ever again after this :)".
With a scornful mock, she held the paper and even though she was least bit interested, she resumed reading.

"Aah there's so much to tell you mom, but I don't know where to start from. I guess it's been so long that we haven't spoken that I cannot really fathom all that that's going on in my mind right now. To be honest, it's like a thousand thoughts running here and there in my head. And forgive me mom, but today, in this letter, I want to tell you all that that I have felt for you and the incidences, that I couldn't muster courage for all these years. Okay, without wasting any more of your time, maa, I really want you to know that I've always loved you. Though things weren't really the way they should have been between us as a mother and a son, but I have really cherished every moment with you maa, every single one of them :)".

"Hehe remember mom, when I was eight years old and dad had bought a new cricket bat for me signed by Kapil Dev. How I had jumped around the house and showed it off to my friends and how they had envied me.
And how in my happiness, I didn't realise how sad you were that dad had bought that cricket bat from the money that you thought you would spend it on a new saree for masi's wedding. I'm sorry maa that you had to wear an old saree to masi's wedding because of the tight budget, because of me".
What does he want now reminding me of my husband after all these years of loneliness, after all this pain, after he died fourteen years ago, Meghna thought wryly to herself.

"Had I known or had I been mature enough to understand, believe me maa, I would have never accepted that bat and would have told daa to return it and instead buy a saree for you............", there was a long pause not only on Meghna's lips but also on the paper.

"Mom, you remember how you used to make my favourite french beans vegetable when I used to least expect you to make it. How wonderful a surprise it used to be and I used to munch on it like a glutton after coming back from the school hehe. Later Tina didi told me that you used to make that vegetable only towards the end when the vegetable was about to perish because daa used to bring it for me specially since I loved it so much and you didn't like that. But I don't believe her mom, I'm sure Tina didi was just teasing me, atleast I'd like to think that way :)". That was the reality huh, it's upto you if you want to remain a fool all your life, Meghna scoffed.

"Mom, do you still have that painting I had made for you when I was 13 years old ? Wow, it might have been, what more than 20 years I think since I've seen that painting.
And how is everyone at home ? How are my baby nieces doing ? Hope they all are good :). And how are you maa? In all the excitement to write this letter, I had almost fuhgotten that I didn't ask you about your health. Hope you are in the best of your health :). If you still have any problems with your medication, consult Dr. Sharma immediately. You didn't consult him last time and played with the dosage yourself and you had to be hospitalised. Please be careful this time mom".
Will you just stop that :O, half the time your worries are fake, Meghna blurted out.

"I was thinking a few days ago, why was it that you went so away from me?
Why was it that I didn't get that love from you that Tina didi and Aisha didi got?
Sometimes I thought they are girls and they get married and go away from you forever and that is why every parent loves his/her daughter more. But still, why was I not considered worthy of your love maa?"

"Daa and I always had a great relationship. He was a guide, a philosopher, more than a father, he was a friend to me. Why didn't we have that kind of rapport maa? Everytime you favoured my sisters more than me, everytime you thought about them but never for me."

"I'm not complaining. I understand and I am more than happy about that (because they are my sisters, if they are happy then I'm more than happy about that), but whenever I remember those days and these feelings, I don't find myself anywhere amidst them?"

"Earlier I thought that I must have done something very terrible to receive such a treatment from you which I probably deserved.My conjectures, I thought, were right or was it that I was overlooking something ?" At this point, Meghna preferred sitting down on the nearby leather couch, as she was tired, not only by standing for so long, but also by that sudden cold chill that ran through her spine-a feeling she was trying to avoid all these years.

"Tina didi told me a few days ago, when she had come to meet me, something that I couldn't really absorb for the first few minutes. But when I finally released myself from the precarious blindfold, it was all making sense to me. It was as if every missing link and every missing piece from my life's puzzle was laying itself out in front of me : solved.
Am I ADOPTED? Is it true maa, what Tina didi said? All these years everyone around me prevaricated at the mention of any adoption story or even when I used to ask why you are so different with me? Never took care of me, most of the times gave me leftovers to eat, never took interest in my school, my homework, my friends, my girlfriend, my marriage, not even in my kids maa?" tears scrolled down from Meghna's eyes because she knew it was all true. And inspite of being consciously aware of her behaviour with and the gross treatment to her son, she had chosen it was best to ignore her conscience.

"I think this news couldn't have arrived in my life at a better time than this. Atleast now I know what the bittersweet truth was...is. But one painful question is irking me since then. Why did you adopt me if I was such a thorn in your life? Or was I adopted against your will? What is the reason, mom? I don't know now if I was in more pain before knowing the truth, or after...," a lonely tear fell off Meghna's cheek.

"Everything has baffled me beyond comprehension. First I wanted answers and when I got those answers, there arose more questions. I wanted more answers and then more and then more and then more...It's madness. Hundreds of WHYs and voices are floating in my head, asking me the same question again and again and now I don't have any more strength to face it mom. I don't have any more strength to fight it. Probably you won't answer these questions, like always. Or probably it'll be too late by the time you read this letter and decide to reply. I'm progressing towards death as we speak :). I have Leukemia, final stage. I didn't get what I wanted all my life, your love, but I hope with me gone forever, you will get what you want-no son to bother you every time :), no expectations, no demands. I hope this mitigates your anger"

The room was filled with deafening silence.
The stone cold room couldn't have gotten any more eerier than it already was. Meghna froze and looked straight at herself in the mirror-as if she had fuhgotten to blink, fuhgotten to breathe.
She had clandestinely wished out of anger, on various occasions, for Dhruv's death-but now, now when god had finally granted her much-awaited wish, that she realised, or atleast tried to realise what a big mess she had created. Her hatred for him didn't reduce in her heart, but for the first time in her life she realised how painful the whole experience would have been for Dhruv.

She clenched the paper tight in her hand and walked consciously toward the telephone. With shame trying to overpower her hatred, she dialled the difficult numbers with her clumsy hands.
With a faint heart, she sat down on the rocking chair next to the telephone as she heard the deafening tring tring on the other end. Before the recipient could pick up the call, she disconnected it in a jiffy and clung to the receiver tightly against her warm chest. A cold sibilant breeze entered the room and just when Meghna closed her eyes in regret, allowing tears to escape her cold eyes, the breeze subsided almost instantaneously, as if it had arrived only to fetch Meghna's soul.

Meghna died before she could tell her "son" how she felt.
Dhruv would never know now what went on in his mother's heart.
He would never know if she ever had a change of heart.
He would never know what that call was meant for before she died.

His questions went unanswered and counting his last days, he didn't know how his life's journey would end-in peace or confusions ? The only thing he could calm himself was by telling himself that he would meet his mother in heaven and then, and then he will have infinite time to talk to his mother and all his painful questions will be answered...one day...some day...

6 comments:

  1. very nice post... The ending, particularly was nicely trimmed. I didn't expect it to end that abruptly but came as a surprise to me when it did... Keep writing!!

    --
    RoHiT

    ReplyDelete
  2. If it has any reality behind it, it would have been really painful. I really feel for the subjects involved.
    I don't feel it is something new or out of the box otherwise.
    Personally, I really can't accept that a mother can treat kids in her house differently irrespective of their relation with her. Probably, I have been strongly connected with my mother, that is the reason it is beyond my imagination.
    Mother's love is beyond what we can think of.
    Nice to read!
    Your Follower- GvSparx

    ReplyDelete
  3. The ending is typical of life. There are no easy answers to hard questions and sometimes the words remain unspoken...

    ReplyDelete
  4. You bring out the emotions very well. Love reading your posts. What follows next is an attempt at constructive feedback, please take it with a pinch of salt:

    Dhruv's terminal disease was very apparent to me from the start. But was not expecting the mother's death. It did add a element of surprise but the sudden unnatural death also took away from the element of realism in my opinion. Maybe that was deliberate?

    Also, I was a tad bit disappointed at your use of 'fuhgotten' amidst all the carefully written proper English though I am almost sure that was deliberate too. :)

    ReplyDelete
  5. @ bb-thnx :p. d abruptness ws d highlight i guess :D

    @ gvsparx-every fiction has traces of existin reality. My main aim is 2 write about simple things in life with complex nature and hence you might or might not find some of my stories any different than basics.
    N not only a mother, but any and every individual in this world treats every relation differently in dis world, some in a gud way, some in bad.
    As they say, "reality is stranger than fiction".

    ReplyDelete
  6. @ zephyr-yep thtz tru. Though some answers r easy, but v r so used 2 complicatin our oderwise simple life, tht instead of lukin @ life in a simple manner, v assume tht our so-called complex probs will hv a complex answer-wich mite not b d case always.

    @ ankur-Thnx 4 d appreciation :) n any criticism is most welcumed. If my readers are helpin me become a better writer, I am more than happy with the feedback :D.

    Like I've mentioned previously, "reality is stranger than fiction", just bcoz one isn't aware of the various realities co-existin in this world, dusnt mean these realities dont exist :). The only reason the mother is dead in the end is bcoz one can never be too sure about life and just when a person thinks life cannot be this harsh, life proves him/her wrong :) and hence I tried to portray that same in my story :).

    N about "fuhgotten", yes it was deliberate :D. Some trademark words you can say, that I like to keep the way they exist in my world :D.

    N thnx again for the constructive criticism. I will definitely keep them in mind for my works henceforth wherever applicable :).

    ReplyDelete