Thursday, September 6, 2007

Locating the I Me and Myself in a Space Usurped by the Kids

Well I have nearly survived the whole of the week without the in laws and have even managed to find time for blogging! There is a two way force working in me a part of me wants to be involved in every aspect of my childrens' growing up process from wiping potty bottoms to sorting out fights with classmates. The other part of me at moments such as this when the elder one is watching TV and the baby is sleeping soundly, wants to look back at the life I have lead as just ME not mamma. My Institute where I worked before my little one was born. My married life and the special relationship that I share with the husband, all this runs through my mind.
I have always been very opinionated and argumentative with a very strong sense of right and wrong fair and unfair, these personality traits are least accepted in daughters in law, so my love hate relationship with my in laws also has been quite interesting and something that can be given much thought to in such reflective moments.
I think I have had quite a good life till now, relationshipwise. My family, friends, teachers, students, husband and family, and last but not the least my children have given me lots of love and support, perhaps more than I deserved.
I think most often also of those that I have lost firstly my grandmother who was a woman os substance and did everything in her power to control our lives. She was more like a mother to me than my mom who is a peace-loving mild and unobtrusive kind of a person. We (including my mom) had always been under the shadow of the personality of my grandmother- I could not imagine living my life without her trying to control it. But yet she is gone I expected her to shrug off the sheet and get up and say 'what nonsense, why are you crying, I am not dead' till the moment that they took her away for the last rites. Gariahat Market in Calcutta, which was her favourite haunt, did not seem the same again after she was gone. Calcutta itself does not seem the same after the death of my father's friend B uncle. I always headed for his house on the very day that I reached the city, now I steer clear of the very road on which his house stands. Another death that I cannot come to terms with is that of my aunt, we had wept in each others' arms when my grandmother died and stayed up all night next to her body, to lose her to the same killer disease as my grandmother's scarcely nine years later is a grief that I cannot come to terms with. This aunt was very much like me in temperament very direct and with a keen sense of justice and right and wrong. Ofcourse she was much more accomplished than I and she was very dutiful hardworking and self-sacrificing to the extreme, I cannot hold a candle to her in those matters.
Another needless and shocking death was of my uncle in a road accident followed in quick succession with the death of his father my maternal grandfather who could not bear the loss of his son. My maternal grandmother was spared the grief of losing her son as she had passed away a few years earlier. So now my parents are the only members of their respective families who have survived.
All these people, those who are gone and those who still survive have shaped my life and make me what I am. My children are lucky that they have both sets of grandparents at their disposal and I do hope that these memories stay with them for ever and the grandparents are blessed with long disease free lives so that they may participate fully in the lives of their grandchildren.

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