As I looked at the woman scurrying around the room searching for something, I thought to myself about the love that I have for her. She is a sweet lady that has been my support system for a long time.
“Put down that wretched Ipad of yours and come and help me,” a shrill female voice breaking my thoughts. So much so for being sweet!
I got her when she had already passed her youth phase. Confused? Well, we are two siblings. My elder brother has been away from home for almost 10 years now. So I got the undivided stay with my mother when she was already turning into a wrinkled person and everyday would bring a new body part to pain.
I most definitely can’t say that she is a friend to me. She has never been a friend, but she has always been a mother to me. Even though I am 25 years old independent girl, soon to be married, it is difficult for her to let go of me. If we are visiting the doctor and we get seats that are apart, she’ll come and keep on checking on me time and again, or worse yet, she’ll shout my name to get my attention.(Sometimes I think she does it on purpose, like her only aim is to embarrass her kids) If I get late from office, she’ll give me calls every 15 minutes to ask if I’ve left for home or not, and if not how will I reach home as it’s already dark out there.
She’s a funny old lady, never content with any amount of food that I have eaten any particular day. Any problem of mine will magically be connected to the fact that I don’t eat enough. Like if I met with a small accident, her logic is that it is because I had not eaten properly that day and so I didn’t have the strength to stay on my scooty, or I complain about the hot weather, her reasoning will be that I am feeling hot because I do not eat properly.
In both my brother and my life, she has played a vital, typical Indian mother role. When it was time to enroll us in school, my mother had put her thoughts very clear that we will be studying in English medium school and not the regional language school. I am so grateful to her for this decision of hers. When we were kids, my mother used to make us walk approx 9kms to take us to watch animated movies in English. She used to buy used comic books for us and give us to read while having our lunch. I guess, I got my passion to read, watch and write from all this. If I get excited at the “Columbia pictures statue”, or watching the new “Beauty and the Beast” movie (Which she reluctantly accompanied me for), or love the smell of a book, I owe it all to her. I still prefer Hollywood movies to Bollywood movies, I still buy used novels than new ones. When someone compliments me on my command over English, it is because of her. These traits were formed early in life.
But now she has turned really old. Nonetheless, it hasn’t stopped her speed in work. Every morning it looks like a tornado has hit our house, she is like this insane chucking train that won’t stop till everything is spotlessly clean. I am the exact opposite of her. Lazy and really slow around house work. I still remember how I used to stand on other side of our kitchen window and watch her cook. Now I do that, while she works outside in the veranda and if needed she stands by the kitchen window peeking inside whether I put in the right amount of spices or not. (I still am learning how to cook! I still give her a hard time for it.) I remember the times when she used to comb my hair and make them school ready, otherwise I was always the wild child. Now, I am the one who plaits her thinning hair. How time changes!
Today, when people say, now that you are going to get married, leave her dupatta alone. (I still have the habit of holding her dupatta and walking in crowded place.) She is no more your business. It is the duty of your brother to take care of her. I get pissed off. This short, plump, wrinkled person is and will be my business. Now and forever.