Friday, April 07, 2006

A tear trickled down her rosy cheeks and dropped on the most dreaded papers in any married couple's life.Yes,divorce papers!She signed them
with a hard yet soft heart.If this is what he wanted then so be it.How can he do this to her she thought.After spending the most loving and
memorable years together,he of all the people ,he-her most prized possession,he-the one whom she cared for,she had loved all
these years,devoted herself to,respected,he-the one who had taught her how to love had shattered her heart into a million pieces that it seemed practically impossible to join the pieces back together.Why God?Why me...was all she could ask the Lord above..She saw the hate in his
eyes,she saw the unforgiving look and the love theat they had shared for so long,she saw slipping away.The promise that he had made to her
that he would be right next to her all through her ruffled times,she saw it breakaway.She wanted him now,she wanted him to stay.She wanted
to feel protected in the warmth of his arms,his arms where her whole world lay.She wanted him to wipe away her tears and tell her those
soothing words in his soft voice that,'baby it's gonna be ok.'
But as her attorney slowly asked her to remove her wedding ring,it all came all crashing down on her and she knew it was over.She removed it
with great difficulty.It felt stuck.Ofcourse,why wouldn't it be.It was where it belonged.It felt like removing the most important piece of a
puzzle,apiece that completes it.She looked at him with tear-struck eyes.He didn't bother looking at her.She moved away as he left,not
glancing even once to say goodbye,not a kiss,nothing,something that he hadn't forgotten to do all these years.He had divorced her for the very sorry reason that she was unable to bear a child,a son, a heir.She had suggestedto go in for a surrogate mother
but he had refused.She suggested adoption next.Again he refused.He wanted a child of his own.A child that bonded him to her.Unfortunately
she failed to accomplish that.On her way home,she wondered what life would be like.After all her better half was now gone.With whom was she to share her joys,her
sorrows?Who would take care of her now?Who would help her stand back when she fell?Who was there to understand her now?
She had married him against the will of her parents .Her parents were rich but were cold and distant.People thought she had a picture perfect life
but they were wrong.When she sought love,they gave her luxuries.Maybe this was one of the reasons why she loved him so much 'cause he was
the one person to understand that materialism and wealth are not at all the keys to survival.Love is!!!She had gone against her parents just to be with him and now he had deserted her.She felt all alone and lonely.She felt trapped and confused.She
felt empty.At the tender age of 28,when for most people life starts,life had came to an end for her.She had once thought that he was the love of her life.The light in her dark world.The inspiration to most of her triumphant victories.She didn't
believe in love at first sight,he didn't either.So they both took time in knowing each other.they didn't want to speed on in their realtionship as
they both had had bad experiences in their respective love lives.Nobody's perfect they saybut he was perfect,atleast for her.He fit into her so well[;)].They were like river and fish,sweet and sour,angel anddemon.He had given her what she had always wished for,maybe more-love,respect,care,understanding,loyalty and in return for all this he had
only asked for a child.When after two miscarriages,the doctor warned her about the difficulties that she she would face if she opted to get
pregnant again.This had angered him.He had come back home and instead of supporting her and being sensitive,he had cursed her.He cursed
her badly,abused her with words,called her names and said that she was uncanny and useless.He reminded her of all the things that he had
provided her with,all the sacrifices that he had made and she couldn't sacrifice her health just to fulfil his one deepest and most favored desires.In
the midst of his anger,he had asked for a divorce.She knew she couldn't blame him for his decision and agreed to it.She slowly drifted back to reality and invited herself into an empty home.She walked upto the refrigerator and got herself a glass of chilled
water.She sat herself down at the counter and a thought struck her.Should she call her parents and let them know that she was a divorcee
now.Maybe that would soften them a little.Maybe they would even suggest that she come over and stay with them.After all they were herparents.Wise people say,it is the parents who forgive their child when all others seem to hold them guilty.With hope in her aching heart,she dialled her parent's number.It kept ringing the first time.It rang and rang.No one answered.She hung up and
tried again.This time a male voice answered.She asked for her parents.He passed on the sad message of their demise a few years ago.This
disheartened her even more.They had left all their wealth to a charitable institution.One last hope of repenting her sins was now dashed to the
ground.She raised her tear struck sore eyes upto the Heavens asking for mercy.A week later after her divorce she went upto see her friend,Aira.Aira and she had been friends at school.They didn't interact much but were
good friends.Aira had left town soon after her wedding but now had come back with her husband and child to reside in the same
town.Grabbing the opportunity, the two friends became close and revived their friendship again.Aira understood Amni's feelings,her loneliness,her despair.Aira was not very rich in the common sense of the word but she was a mother andthat made her the richest in the world.Not all are bestowed upon the fruits of labor,the gift of being a mother.Aira gave Amni all the
emotional support she needed in her time of despair.She made Amni see the brighter side of life when she had thought that the torch in her life
had burnt out.She made her walk out of her guilt that was driving her nuts.Aira made her gain control of herself and her life.Aira knew deep down inside that her friend blamed herself for all the misfortune caused and she also knew that her best friend was desperately in
need of someone.Aira suggested that the next child born to her,she would willingly give to Amni.Amni was left speechless.She didn't know
what to say.Soon,Aira went into labor and delivered her second child.She gave birth to a healthy and strong baby boy though Aira faced some
complications with her health.But she kept her promise and gave off her baby to Amni to take care of.Amni was happy.At last her wish had
come true.Jus t to hold the little angel in her arms was a blessing in it's own.Amni now found a new meaning to her lonely and meaninglesslife.She was truly grateful to her friend.A few days later,she received a letter from Aira stating her sudden read:My dear Amni, You may never realise how happy I am that at last you have become a mother.Your dream of having a child has been realised.I know you will
fulfil your duty in being the best mother to my child.He is very lucky indeed.I know I have made the best decision by leaving him under your
care.I know you will take care of him alright.Amni,I am going to a place far away from here.I donot want to be tempted to claim him from
you.Maybe this is not the only reason.Maybe there are many others.I don't know.I really don't know!
When she rushed over to Aira's home,she found it empty.Aira hadn't left a return address neither any contact number.She hadn't even
mentioned to where she was going.She was unable to understand Aira's behaviour.She tried to locate her but all her trials went
unsuccessful.But,now she had a new goal in life.The only way to repay her friend for the sacrifice that she had made was to take care of the baby
and to provide for him all that was required.So she focussed all her attention onher son,Mikal.Days,weeks,months,years rolled by.She turned into a middle- aged woman.It was Mikal who kept her going.She provided him with all the
luxuries.All the love that one could possibly ask for.He was given things before he had even asked for it.Mikal grew up being pampered by his
mother.He turned out to be what seemed to be like a good example of a spoilt child.Everyone had the impression that Mikal was
selfish,irresponsible and careless.Amni turned a deaf ear to all their rude remarks and criticisms.Naively,she thought he wouldn't do any
wrong.She had so much faith in the love she had showered upon him that she knew it wouldn't go in vain.She was totally devoted to him.She knew deep down inside he had a soft and beautiful heart.One day,she received a letter.It was from Aira.She was surprised and happy at the same time to hear from a friend after so many years of
silence.She was about to read the letter when the phone rang.She went to receive the call leaving the letter open on the dining table.Just then
Mikal walked in through the back door.Seeing the letter open,out of curiosity,he picked up the letter and started to read.It read:Dear Amni, How are you doing?I know you must be really surprised and shocked to see my letter.You may want to know the reason why I am writing to
you after such a long time.The answer is to take my child away from you.Please give me back my son.I know I may sound selfish by saying
this.But he is my last hope.My husband and son passed away 5 years ago.I have wanted to write so much to you before but I just couldn't get
myself to.They both lost their lives in a tragic car accident.I have no one left in this world except my baby whom I had leftunder your
care.Please Amni help me.Help a friend who had helped you in her time of need.Hand me back my last ray of hope.I am coming there soon.
With Love,
When Amni hung up and saw Mikal at the table with tears,she was puzzled.He handed her the letter.All the while he stared at her while she
read.When she had finished reading,she looked over at him.Mikal now knew the truth.She didn't know what to say.For the first time in her
life,she had failed to ease his pain.Mikal slowly stood up and without uttering another word left the table even before she had time to explain
anything to him.He went to his room and closed the door on her.Amni sat there not knowing what to do.She wanted to cry but she
couldn;t.She felt choked.Aira was coming to seize him away.It had hardly been time since the shocking news had sunk in that Aira herself
showed up the very same evening .Aira seemed alot more stressed and tired.She was weak and had lost alot of weight.The two friends hugged
each other and cried their hearts out.But even before they could utter a word to each other,Mikal came out of his room,saw the two
ladies,walked over to Aira,took her hand in his own and walked out of the house without even as asingle glance at his foster mother.Amni just stood there watching him walk away.She was heart broken again.He too had walked on her just like Ayaan had 20 years ago.Mikal eminded her of him today.The same poise,the same look,everything.It seemed as if she was reliving the nightmare that had shattered her.She
was speechless.Friends,neighbours,colleagues were all shocked at Mikal's callous and ruthless behaviour.They felt sorry for Amni.They blamed
her for this.She was the one who had spoilt him.Had it not been for her easy going upbringing he wouldn't have walked out on her.Amni too
blamed herself.Where had she gone wrong?Again.People came and visited her.They said they felt sorry for her but stabbed her in the back
too.She din't know who to trust.She was all alone now.She cried herself to sleep everyday.After a few days,Amni went into Mikal's room She had been avoiding it for quite sometime now.She felt an invisible presence in his room.She
felt closest to him there.Everything in the room reminded her of him.Unlike other boys,Mikal liked to keep his room tidy and organized.She
started to recall the moments they had spent together and the bond that they had so beautifully shared.Sudenly her eyes drifted to a piece of
paper.It was a note from Mikal which was addressed to her.It said:
My dearest Mama, I know by the time you read this letter you must be shocked at my apparent cruel behaviour.You must have started to hate me by
now.Iknow people must be blaming you for the decision I have made.I am really sorry Mama.But,Mama do you remember a story you had
narrated to me when I was 5 years old and was in bed with measles.That story taught me an invaluable lesson in life.Let me remind you of it.In a
city full of troubles,God sent an Angel.He directed the Angel to take care of all the problems faced by the villagers.The Angel did as he was
told.One time the Angel fell ill and so did a villager.The people of the village were left confused.They didn't know what to do.They didn'tknow
who to save.They called a meeting.One of the villagers suggested the wisest of solutions.He stated that they save their fellow villager.The others
were left shocked and surprised.They remindded him of all the help the Angel had bestowed upon them.It was their one chance to repay
him.The villager defended his statement by saying that there was no need to help the Angel as he was strong.Just prayers to God would heal
him.They needed to help the mortal soul and that was their fellow villager.Mama, you are like my angel.You are strong and pure.God has helped you and always will.You needed me when you were in need.God
answered your prayers then.My real mother is like the human being from the story.God will help her too but through me.She needs me now
Mama.After all she is my birth mother.I am not saying that you were any less.I am very grateful for all you have done for me.I donot know
how I will ever be able to repay you back.God will surely.All I want you to know is that I love you very much.I hope you understand this.Please
forgive me if I hurt you.
Your ever loving son,
Amni joyfully wiped away the tears.A radiant smile lit up her face."My son,indeed today you have made this barren woman a true mother",she
said."Bless you my son,bless you"She knew she had raised an obedient and dutiful son and this very act of his put a period to others criticisms.