Words Left Untold
Words Left Untold
“Dad please don’t go.” Niharika pleaded.
“You have your mom with you. She will take care of you. And we would meet every weekend.” His dad assured, kissing her on her forehead.
Niharika’s requests were ignored by her father as he went away, closing the door behind him.
Niharika woke up with a jerk. Shit. She was having the same dream yet again. She checked the time It was three in the morning, she still had four more hours to sleep. It was impossible for her to sleep again, she had been having those dreams for the last few days and every time she woke up with the same jerk, it had become impossible for her to sleep after that.
She tossed and turned in her bed, something which she had become habitual of. The ringing of the phone alarmed her. It was her mom. Her mom never called at such an odd hour, when she knew that she would have been sleeping.
She picked up the phone curiously.
“Niharika.....” Her mom sobbed.
“Maa, is everything alright?”
“Niharika... Your Dad...” The sobbing increased.
“Maa, you need to calm down and tell me what has happened?”
“Niharika your Dad passed away last night. “ A familiar masculine voice had taken over the phone. It was her cousin's brother.
There was silence for a moment.
“How is Maa?”
“She is not doing well, you should come to India soon.”
“Bhaiya, I am taking the next flight to India. Please take care of Maa.”
Niharika was numb, she didn’t feel anything at that moment. She went into her kitchen which was through the living room of her big apartment in New York and fetched herself a glass of water. After drinking water, she composed herself a little and went into her bedroom, opened her laptop and booked the next flight to India.
As she looked past the New York City through the window of her cab, she realized that she had literally spent over eight years here, working in a Corporate Bank had made her lose track of time.
Looking back at the last time she had been to India, which was practically eight years ago only, all the memories of the past returned.
She was a little girl when her father had left her mother and her for another woman, and broken all of the ties with them for ten years. In all of those ten years, it was not even once that he tried to contact them. It was her teenage when she had realized that her father would never be the same for her. There was a certain void, which had been created between them in the past ten years. What she hated the most about her dad was that he had come back to save his marriage and build a relationship with his daughter when they had gotten used to living without him. Although her Mother had forgiven him, Niharika was too stubborn to do that.
Niharika tried to put all of the memories away, but they had been too long suppressed by her. They needed a way out.
She left the country and made her life in New York with her job, instead of mending her relationship with her father. She had even tried to take her mother with her, but she wanted to live in India and let her husband make it up to her for those ten years.
She had come way too far, it had been eight years and somewhere or the other the death of her father had shaken her up a little. She felt a tinge of the disappointment of not trying to talk to her father when he had made numerous attempts to do that. She had heard about his ill health but, somewhere or the other when her heart allowed her, the mind didn’t.
The Journey from the Airport to her home was nothing more than a bore. It was particularly nothing that she loved about India. The pollution, people and almost everything had given her reasons to hate her own country.
On reaching home, she felt her knees going weak. She had never felt so weak, so why was it now? She wondered. Looking at the white sheet spread over her house made her want to turn back and go away. She went inside only to find a lot of relatives sitting beside her mother who had her head hung low in front of her father’s photo.
“Maa.” She placed a hand on her firm shoulder.
Without saying a word, her mother looked up at her, her eyes fill with tears. She hugged her mother in an instant.
“He’s gone Niharika, he’s gone.” Her mother said sobbing.
“I know Maa.”
She gave her Mom a glass of water and made her sit. Her mother’s condition had changed a lot over the past eight years.
After attending people and doing the last rites later at night, she sat in her bedroom, a place which she had missed terribly. It was her solace.
Diverting her from her thoughts was her mother standing in her room.
“Maa are you alright?” Niharika asked, concerned.
“No, I am not. It will take time but I would recover.”
There was silence in the room for a moment.
She noticed her mother from up close, her eyes were swollen due to all the crying. She had become slightly weak and she had a few strands of grey on her head.
“He really loved you.”
“Maa, you don’t have to do this.”
“I have to Niharika.”
Niharika obeyed her mother. With a pause, she continued.
“He wanted to make it up to you for those ten years, he was planning to come to New York until his illness had struck him. Niharika he was really guilty for what he had done and wanted to mend his relationship with you, but you never gave him a chance. Every time he called you, he just wanted to hear his little daughter’s voice. I know he did very wrong, but everybody makes mistakes Niharika, you just need to give them a chance. That’s it.”
Tears welled up Niharika’s eyes when suddenly her mother brought a diary and handed it to her daughter.
“These were some of the letters he had written to you. He wanted you to read them. It was his last wish. I am really tired now, I am going to sleep. Good night.” Her mother got up and kissed her on her forehead.
Niharika fought back her tears and opened that diary with a lot of courage, went through all those letters. Her Dad is an Author, had his own unique way of writing.
Each and every letter asked for forgiveness and the love that she had craved throughout those ten years. With every letter, she realized that she should have come back and tried to change things between them.
On closing the diary she realized the one thing they had in common. Words.
“I miss you, Daddy. Love you.” She hugged the diary and cried.