You lay there still with your eyes closed, without any movement. No motion, no arguments, no howling, no reasoning…. nothing….absolute quietude today !
I have never seen you this quiet! You have always been like an excited electron that is eager to go to the next higher energy level. Every single time you have wanted more in life, more marks, more recognition, more appreciation, more ability to shoulder any kind of responsibility in life …and so on…
I had thrived all these years because of you probably! You kept me on my toes because your demands were never-ending! Sometimes you needed books that were not easily available, sometimes you needed a racing cycle that had to be sourced from a distant location, sometimes you needed the best cricket kit, sometimes you had to travel to different cities for participating in various tournaments… I did it all despite my humble earnings! You too have always excelled at everything giving me zero scope of denying to fulfill your demands. My life had been eventful because of you I guess.
But why do you not speak with me today? Are you angry? Will you not look at me once? How can you be so cruel to snatch away the opportunity from me to apologize…completely!
Well… probably ,you have all the right to be vexed with me. You have pleaded in front of me hundred times to accept things as they are but I just could not see beyond my ego . I could not understand that even though you are my only son, you are now an individual who has all the right to make his own decisions. Why could I not see or understand your emotions even though you are my own part? What stopped me from becoming a human being? Why does ego become so important in our life after all? What do we gain by holding on to it? Instant gratification? Self-satisfaction? A morale boost? What…. exactly? What did I gain…. truly what in the world did I ever gain?
Wake up, will you? How can I face your wife and your little daughter, now? Tell me ? Every time they look at me , I feel as if they have so many questions to be answered from me! Tell me what do I say them, tell this society? You have given me absolutely zero scope of correcting anything! Is this fair ?
Pandit ji, please get up! its time lit the pyre! Its time!
What… it is time? It is time? How can it be ? At this age I should be lying there , on those log of woods. Not my son, who succumbed to his injuries after the road accident! He had just started his family life!! And you say its time?
How can it be? Do you know when he was born, the doctor said if he is not quickly shifted to an ICU, he won’t survive! We did everything and with a lot of difficulties my son grew up to be a fine gentleman! How can he punish his dad in this manner? I have lost everything today .Tell me what do I regret? Everything seems futile today?
I had never thought he will take the bold step of marrying Jennifer, someone who does not understand our tradition or culture! I had never imagined that he will go against his own Dad for a stranger! But he did and why not, it was his life after all.
We had not spoken for the last seven odd years. Since the day he announced that he registered his marriage in a court, the parameters between my son and me changed completely. He had tried a lot to persuade me… sometimes directly, sometimes with the help of his Mom! But I did not budge! I lost my wife during this period and still that had no effect on my stone cold heart. I could not see that he had his own ideologies , his own way to handle life situations.
I was blind then and see what I see now… in front of me! Dead body of my Son, with scratches everywhere on the body due to the accident that took him away from me for ever!! Why did my God not save him ? I had not spoken to my own blood for the sake of my God! But why was He so helpless to save a young life? He could have killed me , instead? I was at fault but why him… my only son…. why ????
Pandit ji let out a loud cry !
After the funeral ceremony, when he came home, he kept his shivering hands on the head of Jennifer and blessed her. Yes, Jennifer whom he had never accepted as part of the family !
“Don’t you worry , I am your father now and everything that belongs to me is yours, my child. I know nothing can change and my life itself is nothing but a regret now but this is the least that I can do.
Jennifer, with tears in her eyes, put the pallu of her saree on her head as a mark of respect towards her father-in-law and bent down to touch his feet. The little Janaki held on to her grandfather’s hand ,unable to understand the turmoil that had changed her life completely.
Sometimes in life, regret is not just enough and it is too late once we realize our mistakes!
I have decided to take up an emotional joy ride with this year’s A2Z challenge where my focus is to showcase different aspects of human behavior . I will be penning down pieces of fiction centered around emotions in alphabetical manner. I have a title for my theme and it is : A little bit of you; A little bit of me .
I’m participating in #BlogchatterA2Z -2021
You can click on the alphabets below to read the stories that have been published so far.