They belonged to her; each one of them. From a quaint village to the city she had braved every storm. Raising her five kids within financial constraints is no joke. Moreover, she was illiterate. Yet, her daunting spirit attracted applauds. She loved guests and heartily welcomed them despite adjustments and toiling in the kitchen for long hours.
The beginning was not that bad. The kids grew and treated their mother as a goddess. The financial crisis minimised, thanks to her two bank accounts, as her husband joked.
After their marriage, they found new shelters. Some esoteric spell must have happened to build walls between her and her children. Along with her husband, she shifted to a faraway place. Yet, her benighted heart yearned to be with her children. Since the mind knew about the restrictions her steps refrained too.
First with her husband and then alone she had suffered ignominy all through her life. She became the iconic ‘bhaager maa’*, like that movie ‘Baghban’. Her uncouth behaviour, speech, and ways began blocking their progress. The shadow which protected them from dangers in their nascent stage now suddenly turned a hurdle. She had too many faults to be ignored. Yet, two of them were still kind and generous to her. And, she indeed felt at home with them.
However, a mother that she was, she never talked about her agony to anybody. In fact, she implored everyone to attend the functions organised by her children. Despite their blatant accusations she digested and forgave them.
O! I’m sorry! The three of them were too nice and took turns to keep her with them. They bought for her delicacies and mementos from their travels and all. They took her to restaurants. They gave her pocket money. They gifted her appropriately on occasions. However, their tight schedules and future plans barred them from hearty chitchat and spending enough time with her. Moreover, her gluttony and childish attitude and demands embarrassed them. Obviously, that made her a misfit in their fast-paced and modern lifestyle.
I wonder, had she communicated her pathos to her children, would they’ve listened and corrected themselves? She must have tried. What do you think?
And, then she breathed her last, not on the hospital bed, but as every parent yearns, in her son’s home. And, that cascaded praises for such a devoted son.
Only God and the mother knew the ice between her children and her. Do you contemplate that she will narrate her tale of misery to God? Nah! She was overwhelmed by her motherly role way too much.
Nobody took one step to raze it and brush aside their megalomania and inflated ego. I know she had silently borne all those pain inflicted heroically by her children. Did I mention pain? I beg your pardon.
Again, a thought enters my mind. How couldn’t her death alter their impassivity?
Money is such a powerful weapon, invented by man and destroying feelings, emotions, and basic values. The glittering greed and lust for a hefty bank balance are addictive, blinding them to the actual elixir of life - Love. Sadly, even this pandemic didn’t make much of a difference to such stoic personas.
- Bhaager maa – a mother divided among her children.