Home is where the mum is

Apologies for being absent from the enigmatic world of the Internet for such a long time. The ongoing exams forced me to adopt a pretense of studying and therefore the Internet, naturally, became taboo. However, I think that today, on the extremely joyous occasion of Mother’s Day, I can make an exception.

If I am perfectly honest, then I don’t really have much to say. The reason I am writing this is because today, I wish to show my mother how much she means to me in ways more than a phone call can express. Were I at home, I would have probably laid claim to the kitchen and tried my inexperienced hand at whatever I could cook up without burning down the house. Alas, I cannot. Sitting thousands of kilometers away from home, with very little skill to my credit, this is all I could think of. Apologies for being generic and mainstream, mother, you raised your kid up to be a dramatic.

All mothers are great, of course. Dysfunctional families notwithstanding, children have always found comfort with their mothers. Be it the delicious comfort food which somehow tastes tenfold better when prepared by a mother, or the long talks about trivial problems which leave one feeling all warm and chocolate-y on the inside; mothers have become a central part of our lives. Even in old age, when parents feel that they are being neglected, we have a soft spot for our mothers which will never lose importance, however bad it may seem.

Today, I want to do something which I haven’t done a lot before; something which every good child does every once in a while: I want to apologise. I know I have been a very difficult child at times, and there have been incidences where I have felt great anger towards my mother even when the fault was entirely mine. For being a colossal pain at times, and being rather unbearable most other times, I would like to apologise. I would also like to apologise for all the times I’ve let her down. Like the wonderful human being and the fantastic mother that she is, she never let her faith in me waver even a little, and I do believe that I have repaid her very poorly. I would like to apologise for not living up to your expectations.

I would also like to tell my mother that I love her very much. Most children don’t say this to their mothers often, mostly because we feel it so intensely that we believe our mothers must know it already. Between all the fights and the harsh words and the distances, it can become quite easy for emotions to go awry. So today, when the world has been kind enough to set a day aside especially for mothers, I want to tell her that I love her more than I can express, and certainly more than I can express on a small post in some obscure corner of a worldwide network.

But the apologies and the love are tacit. My mother, being the wonderfully brilliant woman that she is, knows full well that I am sorry for letting her down and a million other things. She also knows, bless her soul, that I love her despite not being regularly in touch and the incessant quarrels. What she doesn’t know, or maybe she does but hasn’t acknowledged, is my dependence on her.

Often, fear strikes within me, uncontrolled and unprecedented, about what would happen were I to lose my mother. Even though I know it’s only a matter of time before I have to say goodbye without the promise of “see you soon”, I find it harrowing to think about what would happen when the day actually comes. I feel both empowered and completely crippled when I say that I am more dependent on my mother than I care to admit. She is the greatest support system I’ve ever had and the thought of losing her drives me insane, as it does every other child on the planet, I’m sure.

It is, of course, quite possible that this entire range of emotions has been launched into overdrive by the stress of the ongoing examination. Perhaps the darkest corners of my brain have, in an attempt to have some light for themselves, latched onto the brightest deities of my mind: the thoughts of my mother. Just because these thoughts are stemming from a stressed head, however, doesn’t mean that they’re not true.

And now, as the cruel education system beckons, I must end this small token. Even though I know that the attempt has been futile, I only hope I’ve captured at least a small ray of the vast spectrum that is the love which I feel for my mother. People usually say that their mother is their friend and parent and companion and all. However, I feel that my mother is a mother; she transcends the trivial relations of friend and parent, and exists in a dimension of her own which is beyond the reach of anyone to have ever existed in the entire universe.

As tears threaten to spill onto my computer, I put an end to this little post.

Thank you for being there even when I thought you wouldn’t be. It means a lot.

I love you, mum.

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Dancing Tables

There is something undeniably eerie about the mysterious companion we lovingly call memory. I have found myself, on more occasions than I can name for lack of remembrance, thinking about the unending onslaught of memory. The devious monster parts ways with us when we need it most of all, but returns with vivid images of a past we have long forgotten when we are least on guard. Usually these flashbacks are a consequence of lack of activity, yet there are days when the cunning scythe of memory eradicates all in its path and resurfaces, unabated.

Today was one such day. You see, I had been busy all day long, and whereas I had willingly kept myself preoccupied with trivial ongoings, I was largely unavailable for random thought through no effort of my own. Yet despite being so very engaged, and with yet a truckload of very consuming chores lined up ahead, I found my mind drifting off into a time which I vaguely remembered. After fighting the subconscious recollections of that past for some time, I gave in and decided to embrace my enemy as a friend.

But I refused to be thrown into a pit of sorrow on a day when things had been favouring the tide. So instead of wallowing in the more demoralising parts of my existence, I decided to focus on the fair. I am proud to say that I did not fail. In fact, I succeeded rather remarkably. I managed to look deep into the recess of my mind and find the one memory which is the high to all lows, the up to all downs, the sunshine to all clouds. It is a memory of the simpler days, when being carefree was the only care we had.

Amongst the many great things about this one memory which has helped me through thick and thin is that I can share it with someone. It may seem like a trivial point, but in a way it makes all the difference in the world. I do not know what it is, but there is a feeling which fills your mind when you think of a happy moment spent in the company of someone you swore never to forget, and that feeling drives all worries from your mind. The feeling probably cannot be described, for it is slightly irrational, making it all the more satisfying.

Only the other day I was telling a close friend of mine about the basic principles which govern our lives, for no other reason that to make conversation, when I realised how flawed all my theories would have been were it not for this particular memory. For I have based almost all my life’s greatest decisions on the sensation of comfort which this memory gave me. Today, while trying to remember the feeling which the memory always left me with, I was presented with the greatest curse to have befallen mankind since temptation: forgetfulness.

I have spent the last few paragraphs speaking about the sweet comforts of a memory which I claim has stayed with me all these years and has been a  great part of my life, yet I honestly cannot recall most of the details of the memory at all. I do not know what I was wearing that day, what the weather was like, what time of year was it, or even how I ended up in that particular place at that particular time. So why is that memory so significant?

I do, despite my rather pitiful recollection powers, recall the person I was with, the joke which had us laughing for almost half a day hence, the place where we were and the disinterest of those around us. The disinterest, in the most corrupt way possible, gives me hope: it tells me that even when no one else cares about that one day sometime in the last ten years, I always will.

Does that suffice? Are a few details about a once happy-go-lucky time spent with an old childhood comrade enough to imbibe the feeling of warmth, comfort and security? Is that all it would take for someone to calm me down: a sketchy picture of a past I barely remember?

Somehow, I find that very unconvincing.

It is not always that I sit at my desk and lose myself in a sea of memories only to resurface hours later bathed in the sweet joy of recollection. In fact, when asked, I would say that I am amongst those few unfortunate souls who condemns dwelling in the past. And so I find myself justified when I say that there is something about this memory which not only allows me to let go of my principles, but also encourages me to indulge myself in a habit I can only ever call pathetic.

Think as I may, I cannot find the answer. I do not intend to pile upon your already swamped lives the trifle tale of a troubled boy, and I shan’t either, but in this time of the unknowing I find it best to share my woes while harbouring the illusion that someone is listening. You will find on multiple occasions that you, too, have this sketchy, unusually comforting memory, with no apparent reason for its existence; tell me when that happens, and I shall be all ears.

Life has always had a way of presenting me with opportunities to create great memories out of, and I shall be forever grateful for that. However, I do wish, on occasion, that since life is so gracious in giving memories, if it would be just as gracious with taking them, if only to create space for new ones. It is not that I do not value this particular memory above all others, for I do, but as long as this one has caught my hold, I doubt I’ll be able to move on to a newer, potentially more comforting one.

At last, I would like to thank the person who shares this memory with me, making this memory and my life come alive when I most need it. For I may one day forget all the details of this memory, and I may forget the memory itself, and the feeling that this memory leaves me with and anything about this memory, but I shall always remember my companion.

Thank you dear comrade: Dancing Tables.