So far so good. Peaceful morning. Just happy that it was just that.
My friend lost her aunt yest. Though I had never met her and her family, it feels like I had known her. In recent she was in a lot of pain thinking about her daughter. Lately she had been discovering things about her daughter … or she wanted to do something about what she already knew but was in denial for all these years.
Lets call this aunty’s daughter Prathibha. My friend Shilpi happens to be Prathibha’s cousin from her paternal side. Though Prathibha has an elder brother, she always would find comfort in connecting with Shilpi. And Shilpi being an only child always loved having a little sis.
Last year Shilpi was all worried about Prathibha. Prathibha, an outstanding student, had just lost her father the previous year and could not appear for her engineering exams because of a migraine attack and therefore lost a year of college. To top it there were a host of other problems. She had just discovered that her boyfriend was lying to her about everything he was, including his name. She was not getting along with her brother – he used to say some nasty things to her(my friend has been witness to this). The poor girl understandably was under a lot of pressure. My friend was beginning to worry if Prathibha would buckle. We discussed various options and thought it was better if she could visit a councelor. And so, Prathibha started seeing the councelor. Lets call her Triveni.
Triveni helped Prathibha a lot. She even helped her get a job at an NGO till it was time for her to get back to college, hoping this will keep her mind off all the pain. Then her brother’s wedding was arranged. She couldn’t get along with the would-be-sis-in-law. A few weeks before his wedding could take place, aunty fell ill. She was always asthmatic, but this was a bad asthmatic attack.
Unfortunate for aunty, this was to be only the beginning of a series of hospital visits to mend her failing lungs. In the midst of these visits, she saw her son’s wedding, the rift between her daughter and son increase, rapport between her daughter and daughter in law going from terrible to manageable, her daughter-in-law getting pregnant, her son amass a massive debt of Rs.1,500,000 because of these hospital visits, Prathibha got back in college. The last time she was in the hospital she had prayed that if she ever was to come back to the hospital, she didn’t want to go back home. And sadly this time she had her way.
This is a bitter truth that we all will come to bear, that just like us, our parents are not here for too long. What makes her story particularly sad, are the discoveries she made between her last two hospital visits.
A couple of months ago Prathibha came home to tell her brother that she didn’t know that she couldn’t join an academic year mid way. So, now she needs to pay her annual fee(50,000) again and join from the start. Shilpi was devastated at why God would be so mean to her lil sis. When she shared this, it somehow didn’t add up. Her brother said, he would pay but he would need some time to arrange the money. She said that was fine for her, but he needed to go to her college and talk to her principal. Her brother took the day off but for some reason could not go to her college that day. When she came back all hell broke loose. He was blamed for not caring enough, that she is dependent on him so he has taken her for granted, she wanted her share of the property, she insulted him for never knowing about how it was cos he never studied to be an engineer. Now, this is a terrible thing for a mother to hear. Her brother tried explaining and then went and locked himself up in a room. Aunty tried to console her daughter who swore to not eat, that she need not think that the food was comin from his money. Aunty tried explaining to her to take it that both she and her daughter were using her late husband’s pension.
From the way she was behaving, aunty got worried and asked Shilpi at 11 in the night to come over and stay to diffuse the situation. Both aunty and the sis-in-law were worried Prathibha might do something to her self and hid all the knives and scissors in the house. Now we had thought that it was the hasty impatient mind of a young girl that caused all the problem. Her brother needed a chance to explain himself. But this was the night Shilpi would start to suspect that her sister was more than just what meets the eye. She learnt with that stay that her sister would not miss an opportunity to make sure that Sands and her mother or Sis in law talk. She even tried talking to them after it had seemed that Prathibha was asleep… but there Prathibha would be, shouting that people were talking behind her back.
(Think my journal is turning into a story. Rest tomorrow)