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Mother’s Day — through my kaleidoscope

 

A little boy, Rick, writes to his mother, whom he remembers very faintly because they were separated when he was only three years old

 

 

Dear Mom,

Happy Mother’s Day, Ma! I miss you so much when I see my friends with their moms. I know you had reasons to abandon me after you discovered I was autistic. I promise you I won’t hold you back if you come once, just once, and give me a hug Ma. Please…?

Love,

Rick

 

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A top-notch finance wizard, Jay Mukherjee, inaugurates an old-age home where he says, ‘Janani swargadapi gariyasi’ amid huge applause from the gathering that thinks he is no less than God who has descended on Earth to spread holiness and goodness, but no one knows how his octogenarian mother back home suffers in silence.

 

A few excerpts:

‘Jay dear, the pain in my left joint is excruciating. I can’t bear it any more. Will you please take me to a doctor?’

‘Can’t you see how busy I am? Why don’t you realize you’re beyond any treatment, Ma? Just take it easy. I’m giving you painkillers and those should be enough.’

‘Painkillers only give me temporary relief. But, at the same time, they’re damaging my kidneys.’

 

 

‘Wow! I didn’t know that you’d done your MBBS? Anyway, who’s driving all these weird ideas into your head? I can now see your daughter-in-law’s correct in saying you should be barred from meeting outsiders. They’re feeding your mind with all sorts of poison and negativity.’

‘Jay, beta, I’m in great distress. I’m tired of moving around in a wheelchair because I know some massage and exercise can improve my health. Can’t you arrange for a physiotherapist, at least?’

‘Ma, I know you’re bored with life and are constantly seeking excuses to meet people so that you can spill your venom about my wife and me.’

‘What are you saying? I’m your mother. I’m merely sharing my agony with you as I have no one else.’

‘Why? What about your darling daughter who comes and brainwashes you?’

‘My daughter? She hardly visits me because your wife thinks she’s trespassing.’

‘Why the hell do you always drag my wife into everything, although she’s the only one who really takes care of you?’

‘We disinherited our only daughter as you insisted because you felt insecure. And talking about your wife, well, I haven’t seen her for the past month.’

‘What do you expect of her Ma? You want her to waste time on you instead of enjoying her life? If you want us to leave you, say that out straight and you’ll realize our true worth.’

‘Jay, why are you so harsh on me? Did I ever say that? But I never thought this would be my fate after your father’s death.’

‘Why what’s your problem? You have a tendency of complaining and whining all the time. What’ll the physiotherapist do? Your bones and nerves have weakened and I’m sure you don’t intend to compete in a race? Relax and try to accept the reality. I’ve wasted enough time with you. I have to take your daughter-in-law to her mother’s place.’

While the old lady bursts into tears, there is a clarion call from his wife from the next room.

‘Are we going out or not?’

‘Of course, darling. You must take care of your parents. We’ll have to buy a gift, too, for your Mom this Mother’s Day. And don’t forget the wristwatch I got for her from Singapore. I was thinking if we could take her out for dinner tonight?’

Thrilled to the core, the woman giggled aloud within earshot of the old lady who was suffering badly from her joint pain.

If this isn’t an irony, what is? I wonder why the karmic wheel has ceased to function in this case.

As articles on Jay Mukherjee and interviews with him keep getting published in magazines and newspapers, where the hypocrite speaks about how mothers should be the top priority as they are the true representatives of God, I cannot help laughing to myself. Really Mr Mukherjee? Did you say mothers, or was it misspelt? I guess it should have read ‘moms-in-law’…

Facebook and other social media are flooded with messages from all the famous people, but we know what the reality is… aged women are suffering because they have invested blindly in their infamous children. And, yes, they have all sealed their own fates!

 

 

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Pulak, a daily-wage worker, gets a washing machine delivered to his single-room, rented home. He has been saving the money for months. After waiting with bated breath for the company to deliver the stuff, he asks his mom, who is still struggling with her arthritis, to open it. Not knowing what it was, she asks, ‘What are we going to do with this son? And how did you manage to get so much money?’

‘I couldn’t bear to see you wash our clothes and slog it out day and night.’

‘But…,’ and she hugs her son as tears of love flow down her face.

He whispers, ‘Happy Mother’s Day, Mamoni.’

 

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Twenty-five years ago, when Hrid left Usha, she did not agree to abort her child in spite of severe threats and pressure from her parents and society. She gave birth to her son, Bodhi, against all odds and brought him up under stringent circumstances.

When all her efforts went in vain, she worked as an escort to make both ends meet. She never allowed her son, who studied in the best institutes, to know the source of her income. When he came home during his vacations, she made it a point to spend most of her time with him.

Today, when her son graduates from one of the top grade B-Schools of the country, her joy knows no bounds. Seated shyly like a persona non grata at the back of the colossal auditorium, engrossed in thanking God silently by constantly folding her hand in prayer, she suddenly hears her name being called out. Two young girls come up to her and help her towards the stage.

Amid huge cheers and applause, as she slowly reaches the stage, her son comes up to her and, holding her in his arms, announces, “Respected dignitaries, dear friends and all of you present here today, this is my Mom and whatever I am today is because of the love and sacrifice of this great lady who has brought me up single-handedly because her husband deserted her when she was carrying me in her womb.

 

 

She could have aborted me, or dumped me and led a happy life as any other person, but she didn’t. This brave wonder woman fought her battles all by herself.” And then, putting his cap on her head and handing over the certificate to her, he continues, “Everything for you my Goddess, because you’re the best.” Silent tears well up in her eyes as she feels her heart thumping rapidly amid the deafening applause.

Coming down from the stage, Pratham, holding his mother gently in his arms, says, “We’re going home, Ma.”

‘No, I can’t; if they know my true identity, they’ll throw you out, too.’

‘They need my brains, they need my talents and I care tuppence for anyone, Ma.’

‘Please… let me go.’ She struggles to free herself, but fails.

‘Ma, all these years I’ve listened to you. But, today, if you don’t come with me, you won’t see me again. I’ll give up everything and disappear forever.’

‘You have a bright future Pratham, don’t ruin it for me.’

‘I’m nothing without you, so I insist that you come with me.’

‘What if they say slanderous things about you for me?’

‘I can leave the whole world for you, Ma.’

On reaching home, she is surprised to see her picture on his study table, beautifully decorated with beads and crystals. He touches her feet, hugs her and whispers, “Happy homecoming, Ma. Happy Mother’s Day!”

About the author

Padmini Dutta Sharma

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