Just a Little Love

Where did it go? A few sheets of paper have disappeared into thin air. Aha…that’s Soniya's pink frock! The frills are still frothy and effervescent, containing a part of her infectious laughter. I vividly remember we had bought it for her fifth birthday. She looked every bit of a princess in it. “Rosy cheeks, dimpled chin…Mama's pet, is that you?” Rakesh would tease her till she crimsoned. As an elder brother, he pampered and annoyed her in equal measures. Not an ounce less, not an ounce more. Their bond only flourished with years. Hey, what’s this? The first ever rakhi Soniya made for Rakesh. Her hands had turned stickier with the overuse of glue and glitter. She stuck each sequin with the precision of a designer. Her bhaiyya was no less than a celebrity! Years of languishing in this trunk, the glitter has turned black although the thread is unbreakable, like their indestructible bond. The albums are caked with dust. I remember my favourite: Soniya and Rakesh with their hero, their Papa. One sits smugly on his lap while the other stands guard.  Where am I? Probably, behind the camera.  ‘Being Behind’ was my trait. After Rakesh to be punctual. After Soniya to finish her milk. After both of them to settle in life. I didn’t realize when in the whole process, I was left behind! Anyway, why fret now? Let me see what else lies hidden in this magical box.  Oh, why have I even kept this file? My medical reports portending the forgetfulness. I didn’t recover but my children sent me loads of assurances and advice. Aren’t they forms of love, too? Love can never be enough. My endless, unposted letters to Rakesh bear testimony to this. The ink has faded, but the yearnings, still raw. For the joy of seeing him prosper, I sent him away. For the joy of seeing Soniya soar, I pushed her into the sea of competitive exams. What else can a mother ask for? Just a little love. The trunk has frayed and its interior resembles my gray hair. It will take another lifetime to revive the treasures hidden here. My fingers are getting stiffer, aching like my hollow heart. Maybe, rigor mortis is setting in.  What do I search, you ask? My will! The children couldn’t locate it. Together as always, they fought over my decision to donate. They were united even when it came to uncontrolled betting. Covering each other’s backs with every debt they amassed. A mother’s love is endless but her patience has limits. Both tried hard to revive my memory, but finally, they dumped me inside, snapping the lid close.  What a useless old hag I am, right? Couldn’t give my children what they wanted the most–my money! The will has disappeared of its own will. Must be here somewhere,but untraceable. How much can a dead woman rummage after all? Only pray that her two children stay together in all the endeavors as killing their mother!    Penmancy gets a small share of every purchase you make through these links, and every little helps us continue bringing you the reads you love!