The Daughter5 mins 524 5 mins 524
Droplets of water were dripping off the leaf from the tree outside the window. Prapti was watching her mom Hema from the bedroom. She was not sure how long her mom Hema had been watching the droplets drop. It had been a pretty stormy night. The morning seemed to be a new beginning carrying faint memories of last night. The sound of the alarm clock snapped Hema out of her thoughts. She had a long day today and thought better to gear up to face what the day has in store for her.
Hema went to her kid's bedroom to make sure that they do not sleep off after snoozing the alarm. Prapti woke up, hugged her mom tight, and rushed to get ready for her busy day at school. Anand her son was still snuggling in the cozy bed not ready to face the day yet. Hema always gave him some extra time to sleep. Prapti adored her brother. She was always game with the extra love and care her brother used to get. She idolized her brother and was ready to fight with the world to make sure that he is happy always.
The past 4 months have been a rough patch for the family. It was difficult to judge who was most affected and the most in pain. Life can be cruel when you least expect it to be. It's been 4 months since Hema lost her husband. The most loving caring and trustworthy husband. The husband who was always smiling and enjoying life. Hema still could not believe that he was gone leaving behind loads of memory.... the memory of a lifetime.
"Can someone take the bags to the kitchen"? Prapti ran to the door as soon as she her heard her grandfather's voice. She picked up the grocery bags and took them to the kitchen. He looked at Hema and said are you ready for the big day today my lovely daughter? Hema smiled and said, "hope so, Appa". Hema always wondered how does Appa keep a smiling face, in spite of all the adversities he has seen in his life. The kids also appreciated the positive attitude their grandfather had towards life. There was a lot to learn from this great man.
Prapti knew thatha (Grandfather in Tamil) was as anxious about Hema's first day as a teacher as she was. Hema has been a dutiful and loving housewife all her life. Now life has put her in a crossroads where she had to step out and do something to maintain her mental sanity. It's been only 4 months since Prapti & Anand lost their dad. The family has been struggling emotionally and financially. They were all fighting with their own sorrow but did not want the other family member to know the magnitude of their sorrow. Hema was literally losing her mind but she successfully hid her emotions from all. More than the children she wanted to be strong in front of her 81-year-old Appa since she did not want him to see how broken his daughter was.
Anand was getting ready for work and college, Prapti was getting ready for school, Hema was cooking but her mind was preoccupied on how she was going to teach high school kids English. Hema was well educated, in fact, she was a gold medalist in her college days. She never went to work as she prioritized taking care of her family above anything else. Today she has an opportunity knocking at the door to go out & work but emotionally she is stressed out and hence worried about how she would do in her trial class.
Prapti was wearing her shoes when she heard thatha go into the kitchen and say, "You will be fine Hema, you will do well. He further said, " if you want to study further, you have my full support, my daughter". Prapti knew that those words will help Hema overcome her fears and do well today. Prapti was very touched by thatha's words.
Prapti left for school saying bye to everyone. While jumping down the stairwell of her apartment she reminisced how her mom has been a great emotional support to Thatha in the last dreadful 4 months. She herself was struggling with her loss but at the same time, she constantly tried to lift up Appa's (Father in Tamil)spirits and be by his side. She fondly remembered the lovely relation that Amma (Mother in Tamil)and thatha shared. Mutual respect and understanding were amazing. Prapti grew up thinking that Amma was thatha's daughter. She never realized that her grandfather was actually her dad's father.
25 years fast forward Prapti was sitting in the swing in her backyard sipping a cup of coffee and seeing the droplets of water drop from the leaves. She did not remember how long she had been watching the droplets drop but she did remember the rainy morning 25 years back, 4 months after her Appa's death. The first day of her mom as a teacher, the most important person in her life her brother, and the unforgettable thatha. She fondly remembered them and reflected what a beautiful relation her mom shared with her father in law. They were so bonded together that during the last days thatha identified Amma as his daughter and Appa as his son in law. That clearly explains the beauty of their relation
This was one of the numerous beautiful bonding she witnessed growing up which formed the basis of the relations she formed in her life. It taught her how in-laws are your parents not just your husband's parents. One is so blessed to have 2 sets of parents and 2 sets of siblings to share one's life with. It is a beautiful blessing for sure.
Memories are the best treasure you can possess. They are priceless. Prapti finished her cup of coffee enjoying the weather and feeling very rich since she had a huge chest of treasure in her heart. She felt priceless!!!