It’s been long but today I want to tell you a short story; about a girl, just like any other.
She grew up being a ‘father’s daughter’. And why shouldn’t she be? Father was the one dealing with the world, treating patients, earning for the family, making the hard decisions, disciplining the children. There were times when she resented him a lot for all the rules, the strict disciplines being imposed on. Slowly but gradually, those formed her character and discipline is what got into her blood. Yes, of course, mother was there but she was always doing all the household jobs. So learning from mother never occurred to the young mind. Who would always be bothering about what to cook, whom all to invite, what to feed and n no. of other things? Mother is admirable but she was never keen on following her. As a young adult, it was inscribed in her mind that her father’s exemplary life and principles are all she needs and the world can be dealt with. Of course emotionally she would need the entire family with her. But she doesn’t recall of having observed her mother or having learnt anything in particular from her. She was so busy following her father.
But things turned out to be different after her marriage. Nice and so simple but yet father’s advice and principles didn’t fit in any situation. Unknowingly, in her mind it was always the image of her mother and the way she usually responds to such situations. The world was different than what she had always known it to be. It was better and happier but how did following father not solve situations? Why was it always mother & her grace?
Yes, now that she recalls mother was always graceful whether in or out of the kitchen. She was always there and not just for her, brother and father, she was there for the entire family but for herself. What all had seemed fully unimportant and easy then, became very important and difficult to achieve for her now. And it struck her… it was mother all along! Because she was there, father could be what he was; the kids could reach where they are now. Because mother was there in the kitchen, they didn’t have to care for meals.
Oh there WAS so much to learn from her! Mother managed the family without a single sweat. At least father’s work used to get over daily but mother’s never did and is still going on may be. Why does getting a good meal now seems so difficult for the girl with everything around? Now the girl works outside and even with her husband’s help can barely cook a meal and not feel tired. How does mother still continue to take care of everything?
Slowly but steadily, the girl learns to take on her mother’s steps and live. Right from decorating the house to how mother would have responded to people around seemed to get the girl out of all situations with flying colors every time. There is still a life time of things to learn from here but unknowingly enough the girl has at least all the impressions in her mind of mother’s. She was never asked by mother to follow her, or to be like her or to learn anything from her. Mother was just there, always there.
“Hello Maa, if you are still listening, it’s me, Chaiti. Thank you for leading the life to learn from without explicitly teaching anything. Thank you for your presence so unnoticed, and yet so powerful. Thank you Maa for being my Maa.”