Other than birthdays and wedding anniversaries, I have never really bothered to keep track of other special days that keep popping up thanks to commercial considerations. I think the last time I fell prey to a similar commercial enterprise was in class 6, when "friendship day" was in vogue. I am proud to say though that even then I preferred to make my own braided friendship "bands" than go buy the ones being peddled in the market. I don't know what kind of a victory that is, but never mind. Little 12-year-old girl: 1; card making and gift items company: 0.
So today, Fathers Day may have gone unnoticed too had it not for this beautiful video posted by good friend Saina J Paul (;) on Facebook.
Touched a chord. It was not difficult to imagine dad and badi mummy sharing a poignant moment.
I remember a time when my grandmother told me the story of how dad at three days old fell terribly sick. How she did not put him down for three days nursing back to health her first born, her kanwar bir, prince among princes. I remember how she breathed that heavy sigh, reliving those three days when he was battling fever and all she could do was will him to get well.
And now I see the pain mirrored in the son's eyes. The hurt in his eyes every time he sees her struggle to sit up and the desperation in his voice as he goads her to complete this simple task, and a triumphant smile when she finally manages to achieves it.
She broke her hip four months back, no one's sure if she will be able to walk again because at eighty, plagued with Parkinson's, and weak bones, it is an uphill task. But dad believes that she can. Even if it meant travelling four hours everyday to see her at therapy; even if all it would allow her to do is walk for a few minutes inside the house; to provide her with a means to become as independent as it would be possible for her.
Every evening at sun down when it is time for dad to return from work, granny would ask me if it was my dad at the door, if it wasn’t, she would listen out for his return, and when he did, she would lie content, waiting for him to come and greet her. And the first thing dad would do is to come and let her know he was back. He could well be a ten year old coming back from school and she an active thirty waiting to know all about his day.
Her downward spiral began a few years back, he tried desperately to stem it. But life had other plans, but he took it all in stoically, supported by another strong woman in his life, his wife. He made all efforts to make granny’s old age as comfortable as possible.
The message at the end of the clip tells you, "How one generation loves, the next generation learns". And I can vouch for its truth. I learnt how to love from two generations, and I can only hope I could be as good a child to my parents as they have been to theirs.
In being a good son, dad’s been a great father, friend and sounding board. We have had our run-ins, agreements to disagree. Growing up I have given him quite a few opportunities to wonder if he failed as a father, but I know that I couldn’t have asked for a better person to be my father. He always let me be my own person, the best gift he could ever give me. For all this and all the love, support, encouragement, and much much more, my appa = bestest.