“Are you sure, you will be OK?” He asked once again.
“Only if you don’t miss your flight” I replied.
He planted a loving kiss on my forehead and I bid him farewell waving the hand of my two months old. Both of us were nervous as this was the first time I would be alone with my baby. I was on maternity leave and my husband had to go for some urgent office trip for a week.
First three days passed quite well. Although, I was bored as I had no one to talk to. I had plenty of friends and I chatted with them online or on phone day and night. But the only human being I actually came in contact with in past three days was my baby. It was then, when I realized that post-delivery the only human being I have conversations with is my husband.
“Let’s go for a walk.” I said to my baby while lying her down in stroller.
Although, it was within the radius of 2kms from my house, it felt like these surroundings were strange to me. I saw many trees I had never noticed before. I looked at people around me to find a familiar face. Everyone had their heads buried in their own world. Surprisingly, their world could shrink itself to fit in a 4”x6” screen. We were taught in school days, human being is a social animal. Then, what were these strange creatures around me?
“All these years, had I been one of them?” I wondered.
“COFFEE BAR” I saw the board. Baby was asleep. This coffee will prepare me for another sleepless night, I thought. I had been here hundreds of times before, but this time it felt different. I tried smiling. No one but a waiter smiled back.
I sat there for two hours, had three coffees, just looking around. Two men left, one woman came in. I was surrounded by 8-10 people, but didn’t spoke a word except for my order.
That night, I realized my baby had a temperature of 102 degree. I rushed to hospital. Doctor said, it was an infection and would take 5-7 days to go.
The new mother in me was scared. I wept uncontrollably. Next three days were miserable. I gave temperature lowering syrup to my daughter whenever required and cradled her to sleep in my arms.
All the time I wanted one person to tell me, she will be fine. Doctor said it, but in a professional tone. My husband said it, but on phone. I wanted a personal touch, a hug, a faith that someone is around.
After seven years, I opened my own café. “Arshiya’s” I named it after my daughter.
“I will have the first coffee here” My husband dragged a chair.
“What’s the wi-fi password” He asked looking into his laptop.
“Oops! I almost forgot.” I pasted a sticker on the door. It read:
“We don’t have wi-fi. Talk to each other, pretend it’s 1992.”