Niraj Kumar Rai



Niraj Kumar Rai


Success Cost

Success Cost

4 mins 17.8K 4 mins 17.8K

“Son, how much does two tickets from Canada to New Delhi costs?” was the first thing I faced in the morning I woke up. I knew it throughout my night out with colleagues that something serious is waiting for me at home. That was not at all new to me. I had been in the habits of such out of home parties and trips and all I would do is inform her on Whatsapp.

It had been 3 years since I moved to Canada. I dreamt of getting settled here thought my engineering and with few one-sided arguments I was living my dream. My kind of life did include my parents too, but probably not how they wanted. After a year I was able to buy a good home and came back to India just to take my 70 years old father and 58 years old mother. That bright morning I was too joyful while loading the luggage into the Innova and this fullness of joy could not let me notice or perhaps ignored the hollowness of silence inside them. Mother calmly sat in the pooja room and stood only after my reminder of getting late while Dad was already seated in the car.

In these years, I have achieved a Vice President position in my company, a sea facing bungalow, 3 luxury cars, and much more through my hard work. Besides my busy schedule of fight for achievements I made sure to spend Saturday with parents which made them alive and endowed with hope and a little cheerfulness every Sunday morning.

This Sunday was unlike the regular ones. I have been out of home since last four days. I promised mom that I will be home in two days, but could not resist a farewell party invite of my Ex-CEO.

I was stunned both at her question and at those rolling tears. I looked at my Dad who was silently into his Sundar Kand Paath. “Whom I am doing these things for?” was my reaction for mom but to dad. “I make sure I come back home every night, try to spend weekends with you, have hired a 24 hours servant for you people. What can I do if my CEO wants me to discuss my new expansion ideas with board members on a Saturday conference? I mean who in this world gets such a chance in 35 years of age? Rather than being proud of, you are upset. Upset at your only son’s success!” I shouted at him as a victim of parents’ unnecessary expectations. I could not control my anger that moment and my last words “you people are in habit of living in misery” were somewhat I did not intent to say.

Success and fame made me busy again. I was on the clouds of achievements and success stories were gradually becoming countless. However, I always made sure to call mom on weekends and talk to dad too on the iPad I sent for them, never forgot to send money on first of every month. I could not manage to see my ill dad but somehow managed to attend his last rites.

“He left his parents alone to enjoy life, he is married to a foreigner, what is the use of such fortune which could not buy him last moments with his father”, people murmured during the obituary. It was midnight and I had my return flight the next day. After years, I was lying in my mother’s lap but the usual peace was not there. Even after so many discussions she was not ready to come along. She wanted to die with her people and on her soil. Somewhat I was tired of these things and wanted to get rid of all.

I could not take “me” from that moment in mom’s lap, where I stayed with thoughts which traveled years back with unsullied memories. Those miserable nights without sufficient food, walk of more than 5 km to study in government school, years spent with single uniform were what my dad could afford as a cashier in jewelry shop. I would spend hours looking at convent school bus and with a delusion that some fine day I would be one of them with abundance of ice creams, chocolates, and everything which I could just dream of as a 5 year old kid. Time had changed and so did my dreams.

Today, I am a great leader, hope of worldwide investors, inspirational role model for aspiring business men, star of the industry, but will I ever be able to gauge the cost of my achievements?

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