Thursday, July 17, 2014

Happy birthday, Mommy!

Facebook, Google, my phone, people everyone has been reminding me it's your birthday. Like I could ever forget! Like any of us could. I have been thinking about your last birthday, your sixtieth, you share your birthday with my aunt, your soulmate and you both celebrated it together. We all did the pre-celebrations at Neemrana Fort, stayed at the beautiful room which used to be the king's courtroom in the 15th century, had time under the stars, walks, dinners, pool and photo-sessions. We came back home to have a house full of people, lunch with family and dinner with your friends. J was here so was your darling Ayaan. All of us were together. You looked so beautiful and the photos tell me how happy we all were.

You loved your birthday so much and received all the love, adoration, gifts and wishes with such joy that the giver felt like he/she was the fortunate one, being able to be a part of your infectious happiness. You welcomed the party, the plans papa made, the zillion calls to wish you, everything in a way that said  - of course! its my birthday, it ought to be special and happy! I look back and realize that while we all want love, you knew how to give it in a happy way and to receive it with joy. Your family, your friends, your people have been calling me all day because they are missing you, because they don't know where to send the love they have for you, because they don't want your children to feel that they are alone. I don't know if I will ever be 'not alone' anymore but I have to say it helps and it moves me in a way I can't explain. 

It's your birthday but don't worry, you will always be young, like you always wanted. You will always be beautiful and laughing, like you wanted to be. And how do I wish you all the love in the world? You already have it, from so many people.  Happy birthday, Mommy. I miss you. 

Thursday, July 10, 2014

I lost my mom. 

In the past four months, I have said these words more times that I can count, in my mind, out loud and to people. I have prepared myself every time I know I have to say or write these words and I have said them.

My mom, I lost her. They have baffled me every time I have had to say them. I lost her. They seem to suggest that I should have kept an eye on her or held her hand, not let her out of my sight, like I do with my three years old. But I did, hold her hand and kept her in my sight even when I had no inkling that I was about to lose her. I am positive, I did. I held her hand and helped her sit in the car, I smiled and waved and I looked at her till she was out of my sight as she left for the hospital with my father. I laughed with her and dressed up to go to a wedding, I wore thick layers of clothes to go to a vacation with her. I packed and unpacked with her as we traveled and returned. I looked on with her as her pride and joy, my son, played. I talked to her deep into the night as we bared our heart and souls and laughed and cried as we always did. I finally even learnt to make her tea, just the way she liked it. I did all this in the last fifteen days of her life. How is it possible that I lost her.

How is it possible? That she is gone. We did these things like we always did, like we will always have this time. Like we will always make these plans and meet every couple of months, to live our lives together, to share our time with Ayaan. Like we will always have each other, to fight and make up, to laugh hysterically, to share books and family gossip. Like I will always have her help me bring up my little boy.

I didn't know. We didn't know. Even as I cooked her meal that my dad carried to the hospital so that she could eat something she liked, I didn't know it was her last. I didn't know that it was my last, for my mom. As I waved her bye I had thought I will see her the next day and she would be home the day after.

How am I supposed to believe that she is lost to me? That she will no longer fill my days with her laughter, with her enthusiasm, with her concern, with her conversations. That she will not be calling me and that I do not have to plan my days around phone calls to her. That every time I travel, see a new place, do a new thing or eat at a new restaurant; I will have to remind myself that she will not be asking me for a review and to give her a verdict whether she should consider doing it too or not. That the one person who was always interested in my life, no matter what, is just not there anymore. 

Its difficult, every time I say it, to believe that I lost her. That she is lost to me. I am not sure how much longer it will take for me to believe that this is true. That she is gone and I am the one who is lost.

The light of day

Sometimes when you have been silent for so long that you don't even realize it. It takes someone to call out and say they were listening, that what you said mattered for you to startle and look up. To realize that as you go through the business of life, letting go of this, this place where you talk to yourself and others, is a big loss. I had forgotten how comforting this place was, I could smile, talk and be sentimental at whim. Thanks BreezerMum for calling me back.

So much has happened in the past four months that that's all I can think about, not sure of why I was not writing here for the last two years. There are some very old posts in the drafts which i have been reading, then there are the scribbled notes and emails I have written to myself and my mom in the past months. I think its time they see the light of day. I think its time to lay it bare.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Unexpected , Unexpectedly

Some days you miss someone unexpected, unexpectedly. Its someone you weren't really expecting to miss and you wonder what was it that made you think of him or her to begin with. It might have been the sound of the rain and the way the street below looked in the yellow light. It could have been some song stuck in your head which just wouldn't come unglued. It might be a random swirl of wistfulness. It could be that this is how you felt when you came to know that person and feeling this way - lost and lonely for no reason; takes you back to that person.

It reminds me of discussions on topics I loved, conversations where what I said was understood - witty or emotional and how that brief exchange would make a small difference to my day. Its a useful memory , it makes me realize that for all the warmth of known relationships and the security of labeled emotions, there's something to be said about the undefined ones. Simple, undefined connections which neither defy nor threaten the usual definitions; they are just happy friendships which somehow managed to remain happy memories.

It starts a chain of thoughts which makes me miss other people in my life who in their small and big ways made me feel happy, understood and liked. It also makes me realize that I HAVE so many of them in this one life. I'm not sure anymore about why should it be so unexpected, its just the kind of people and kind of thing one should miss. Isn't it?

Purani Jeans

A few mornings ago, taking out a bag of old clothes to be sorted and donated turned out to be a different kind of cleaning than I thought it was going to be. When I unzipped that bag I was not looking to take down cobwebs from distant memories and wipe the dust off some windows way back in the past. That's exactly what I ended up doing. As I took out each layer of clothes, each new one revealed more landmark events in my life and in the ones entwined with mine. It was like a time capsule.

MICA interview, the first job interview, the first salwar suit - a blue one I got stitched for a birthday when I was in college, the t-shirt I was wearing when S and I first made out. A few of my and jijo's favorite ones. I don't remember doing it but clearly as I sorted out the clothes I didn't need (or fit) anymore and packed them away to be sent to Goonj; I kept keeping these few aside in this separate bag. Looking at them put me in a strange mood, part nostalgia and part melancholy. These scraps of memories made me think that even though I'm making new ones everyday there is a completely different and irreplaceable quality about these old ones. The clothes may be out of fashion now and may not fit anymore, the memories - they are always going to fit. They are from a time when I was really young, free and fearless; they remind me how it felt to be like that. Today the fearlessness and freedom are still very much there but they mean totally different things. Its a strange sense of loss, may be this is how it feels - to finally accept that you are a grown up and knowing that there's no way out of this one :)

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Fir Wahi Raat Hai

Its one of those nights. Nights when even after everyone is asleep and your tired body is demanding sleep it badly needs, your mind refuses to. Or is it your heart that does not want to?

Nights when you feel that strange delicious melancholy that you do not want to let go of, nostalgia that you want to linger in for just a little bit more.

Nights when you want to listen to songs that make you feel warm and alive and lonely at the same time.

Nights that make you yearn for something unknown that you feel you lost. Yet, you know not what.

Nights when the heart unlocks its forgotten doors and entices you to take a walk down lanes whose memory was starting to grow hazy for you; and once you decide to take that tentative stroll it takes you down paths you once knew and comes up with memories you didn't know you had lost, like shiny-bright pennies on a foggy night.

One of those quiet nights when I think about and feel nostalgic for many such nights in the distant past, a past which sometimes seems like it was yesterday and like another lifetime - all at the same time. Like the one spent watching the rain-slick, yellow-lit Delhi mall road from my window. Or the summery one spent watching the stars as I lay on grass slick with dew and listened to distant sounds of life and laughter elsewhere. The one spent on an overnight train, sharing a shawl and life stories with someone. Oh, and that one, one of my favorites, on terraces of various houses and hostels - spent chatting with my sister and/or our friends. Listening to music. Always the music in the background.

A night which makes me think about people in my life, that are. Of those who were. Friends who belonged to me, or the ones I belonged to. People who touched my life and went past ... like the proverbial trains in the night. And the ones who made a place and stayed on. About old, rusted questions that I have answers to now and the ones which remain. Lending a little mystery and romance.

This night makes me gaze back for no reason and when I do, those distant days seem like small pods where we lived uncaring of the past and oblivious of the future. Even tonight, there is no joy or pain or fear or excitement in looking back; just a calm curiosity. Like wiping a window frosted with time to see what lies behind.

This night. These nights. They leave me with the dreaminess I need to go on. Go on till I will have another one of these trysts. Raat to roz dhalti hai magar, Kaun jaane fir kab aisi shab miley. Who knows when that will be.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Know who to ask

This is how an SMS exchange between Praks and me over the weekend goes ...

Praks: I'm getting a hair cut. This guy is suggesting that I straighten a bit of hair in the front and leave the rest curly as is. What to do?

Me: Go ahead!It may look good, if not, you could just straighten all after a few days

Praks: I knew you would say this! What else can I expect from a girl who colored her hair magenta. I shall go for it :)

Learning- If you want advice you can follow, know who to ask.