After spending a few precious months filled with immense happiness, pampering, laughter, celebrations, cries, fears, sorrows, and most of all-togetherness, with her family, finally, the time had come to leave. There were mixed emotions in her heart. There was excitement to start a new life overseas, at the same time, there was some uneasiness and discomfort. On one side, was her husband and father of her kids, and on the other side, was her own father, ailing, sick.
She feared, every time, she looked at his face, how would he live without her and his granddaughters. Amidst all the illness, injections, pain and pills, only they were the reason for his smiles after all. Playing and pampering all his three dolls filled his heart with abundant joy. She knew he will miss them but will not express. She knew he cried hard with her mother in silence, thinking when he would see her daughter next.
She knew the home will be filled with tears and vacuum once she leaves. She knew the loneliness she would be leaving behind. She knew he will be inconsolable. She dreaded the moment of her bidaai, once again. She hated that feeling of choosing one – her dad or her kids’ dad. But the choice was obvious. She had to follow the customs and drift her focus from being a daughter to a responsible mother and wife.
He didnt cry:
Before leaving, she went to meet him in his room, unaware, it was the last time, she was seeing him, touching him, talking to him. But he didn’t bid her goodbye, he was not well, not in his senses. He didn’t cry. He didn’t know she was leaving. Or was it God’s way to escape him to face the reality?
The moment she was dreading the most, never came. There was no bidaai again. She had a satisfaction in her heart to see her mother standing as a pillar beside him every time. She knew things will be taken care of well. She left leaving a note for her mother, “Papa is like a kid now, take care of him like your baby, Mummy. You are the strongest and bravest woman. Love you”.
Two years passed by.
Things changed, she changed, places changed but the love, pain, memories, and the guilt are still fresh and will always be. Does she have an answer and justification for anything? NO! She will never have.
She searches for solace. An escape, but its momentary. She narrates her childhood stories to her kids, which she always wanted him to narrate to them but there is a permanent role reversal now.