Picture from http://joannepeace.tumblr.com
The birds fluttering their wings and singing the morning song wake you up and as you open your eyes, the air in its purest form cuddles you. The sun rays embellished with the golden sprinklings manage to find a way to peep into your room through the window pane and kiss your skin. And, while you are still soaked in the beauty the nature showers upon you every morning, you hear your loved one approaching you, calling your name in a voice that fills you with love. You feel the hand on your forehead, the touch making you feel alive.
For some, good and morning are contradicting terms and for the virtually nil luckier lot, mornings are wrapped in a hamper with all the goodies which makes your heart melt. Different phases in your life offer you a bouquet full of memories which would bring up discrete moments way ahead in the future. Such was today’s morning when a brush with nostalgia transported me back to the stages of life which have left deep impact on me in ways that govern my behavioral patterns.
My mornings have been tinted with various shades from time to time. The days, back in school, when life seemed a playground, where you catch up with friends, share jokes, play and learn, started with, what I tag them as, curious mornings. With a military rule of switch-off-the-tv-before-9-and hit-the-bed-by-9.30 in place, wishnig hello to a brand new day was never difficult unlike other kids who were literally dragged out of their beds.
Mom, back then, worked in an NGO. She had to travel extensively throughout the state. She got up at 4 in the morning, cooked for us, woke us up, picked up the floor bedding, placing them neatly on the only single bed we had and finally left for the tiresome day ahead of her, which brought her back at 12 midnight. Super mom is a word not good enough to describe my mom.
We never had a concept of breakfast back home. Dad has always been having his lunch at 9.30 in the morning which is pretty much the breakfast time. This continues till date. The children of working moms tend to get responsible at an early age. Without creating any ruckus, by the time my caretaker cleaned the house, washed the clothes and utensils, I would finish my daily chores and get ready for school. She tied my hair in two plates with invariable perfection. While she was busy doing that, I narrated to her all the incidents that made my day exciting at school. She never, in all those years, ever got tired of listening to the blabber I tortured her with. The tune I learned in the music class, the new game we played in our physical education class, the lip-smacking noodles I managed to lay my hands on from a friend’s lunchbox with whom I shared mine, the A+ I got in a test, yes I belonged to that category, the no-nonsense-always-a-first-bencher breed.
My caretaker, at the age of 45, had to walk down 6 kilometers one way, do her chores, dress me up, feed me and leave only after I was seated in the auto rickshaw in which, along with a dozen other kids, was driven to school. But being the determined woman she was, she never showed any displeasure. All I could sense was her love for me. She has been a very important part of my life and even though I don’t talk to her or see her anymore, she will always hold a special place in my heart. At times, I can’t help but think that more than the need of money, what pulled her through was the mutual love we shared.
Those were the only days when mornings brought a twinkle in the eye and the mind was always pre-occupied with the thoughts of the day welcoming you with open arms; the times when all you had to care about were the exams, which then, seemed akin to a monster capable of gulping you in without a dash of guilt. But, as years passed by in what seemed like a jiffy, mornings started becoming more dreadful.
Before I enter that war zone from where I wonder how I got out alive and sane, instead of being lost in oblivion, I will step back and rekindle my soul by exploring all the nitty-gritties and nuances of life when the simplest of things like a toffee or an ice-cream could make your world go round.