Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A Battered Aspect of Loss.

Posted by Sunaina Patnaik at Wednesday, August 16, 2017
"Make sure the kids eat."

Those were my mother's last words. I guess she was always extremely particular about what I ate and what I didn't. Just like all the other mothers out there and I saw no reason why she shouldn't have been one, especially because I was such a fussy eater right from the time I was an infant. Although I like to think that I was a wonderful daughter to her, I gave her a tough time. I got into trouble frequently and blamed her for spoiling me rotten.

I think of her often. At places where I shouldn't. And on moments when I should. At work, when I'm writing an essay or when I'm talking to someone; when I'm buying clothes for my birthday, or when I'm just eating or having a cup of coffee alone. When I lost her a year ago, I was utterly clueless of what would happen. Sure I was confused but I was also consumed by something inexplicable. I've heard that when you lose someone, your brain sends signals that trigger the same parts when you're hurt physically. A pain that exists with an invisible wound but doesn't leave an ugly scar on your body.

She taught me a lot of things, but what she reprimanded often was that her life should be an example of everything my life shouldn't be. In fact, she didn't have to spell them out loud as I perfectly deciphered what she struggled to express. We don't realize that some of our biggest lessons are taught by our mothers. We don't realize it when they are standing in the kitchen, cooking. Or praying with nonchalant expressions on their faces.

I don't know if she did everything that she ever wanted. I don't know if she led a fulfilling life, but she taught me that no matter how short your life is, you should live it well. It made me redefine a couple of relationships in my life as well. I tell people I love them, and I tell some that I hate them. I have left the trepidation of holding myself back from people and places in an unnamed lane I'm never going back to. So, you see when she left me for real, she left me a little fearless. She left me with a pair of wings and the liberty to do not just what I want. But also what she wanted.

Now, going back to where I started, I still don't eat properly. I guess this is my way of pissing her off wherever she is.

P.S. Although I've written this post a good 20 days ago, I'm posting it today because it's her birthday.

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