“I was alone, alone in this big, bad world. I felt as if I was drowning, drowning in the sea with not even a twig to hold onto for my dear life. I was alone when I fought the battle and I am still alone, after the Battle’s been completed. Nothing changed. The torment, the torture, the fear… Nothing changed. For whom am I supposed to live? Whom should I satisfy? My mother? Whose least favorite child was me… Or my loving father, who’s no longer with me? My siblings? Who loathed me and were jealous of me? My ex-husband? Who would do better with me dead than alive? For whom am I supposed to live?
This madness is sickening. I am alive, but nothing better than a dead log. I am trying to live, but life has left me long ago… It has left me when I submitted to my abusive ex-husband… It has left me when I couldn’t save a penny for myself. It has left me when I suffered a kick on my womb when the baby was due next month. It has left me, when I couldn’t feed my daughter. It has left me, in bits and pieces, with every tear I shed, with every breath I took and every day that I lived… There’s nothing more to say. Nothing more to do. This society fails to accept me, my family refuses to save me and I’m left all alone in this big, bad world… This madness is consuming me, wherever I go. There seems to be no escape, no remedy. Death seems to be the only solution… I apologize to The Almighty, for I intend to take not just one, but two-”
Was it my imagination? No. I could swear that I heard it. I looked at my 6 month old daughter. She was playing beside me. She was fascinated by some light patterns created by the rays of the setting sun. I looked at her happy, innocent face. I touched her. She stared back with gleaming marble eyes. Those eyes. Such a twinkle in them. She laughed, trying to hold the light in her palms and failing. She offered her catch to me… When she realized that she didn’t catch the light, she was perplexed!
It was funny to look at. I let out a half-giggle-half-sob sort of sound. I hugged her close. “Mma” she said again. This time, there was no mistaking. Her first word. “Ma”. Such a beautiful sound. One syllable, but heavy with meaning. Mother. Such pleasure it gave me, hearing utter her first word… She was still trying to hold the light. I lifted her up and took her out into the balcony. She snuggled into my shoulder. It tickled. Tears ran down my cheeks as my thoughts started drowning me in my madness again. The sunset was beautiful. Such a picturesque landscape.
I placed her on the little chair of hers and took out the camera to take a picture of her. She looked up at me and touched my cheeks. She was looking at the tear trails with a confused expression. She hugged me, as if trying to console me. Her little palms gave me a comfort; her smile, a new confidence. Her innocence seemed to drive my madness away… As I stood on the balcony, watching the sunset with her, I found my reason to live: her.
My suicide note lay unfinished, forgotten in the moment of happiness…
“Hi Mom! The room is great. It has an excellent view of the campus grounds. My window faces west. So I’ll be having pretty good view of the sunset” rang her voice from the other end.
“Wow! That’s great news!” I replied.
“I almost forgot… My roommate’s from Lucknow too. Her name’s Simran. She is cute…” I listened as she rambled on…
As I was going through her old stuff, I found a note. An unfinished suicide note. One that was eighteen years old, upon which an addition has been made, in a handwriting similar to mine, yet a little childish.
“For me, mom. What would I have been without you?”
She thought I saved her, for she didn’t know that it was her word which saved us back then…