Full Circle

“I am committing suicide and hence no one should be blamed for my death. Also do not inform my old and blind mother about my decision. Though she has never lived a life but I do not want to be the cause of her death. 

She has grown blind by blowing at fire in the earthen hearth. A family of seven with no steady breadwinner( as our father scooted away with some vamp leaving all of us) doesn’t get lucky everyday so we ate whatever meager was cooked along with her waning eyesight. As she has grown blind she has became irate and curses all of us, herself and the whole wide universe. 

I do not have complainants about her or lack of food or the bitter fights that would happen with my siblings on smallest of morsel but about my eldest brother as he used to hit me and then warn me with dire consequences if I revealed my beatings to anyone. The randomness of those beatings became a pattern and I used to dread them like a baby is terrified of abandonment. 

When he and his friends taunted me for my limp or when they teased me for scars on my face sustained during my birth, I felt like drowning in shame. However I did not have to do it in shame as he performed the ceremony in water. Having pushed me into the pond he kept my head submerged and had it not been for local pundit ji coming back from a marriage I would have been dead already. 

However hunger and beatings apart my misery dosnt seem to have an end. I had these persistent headaches for last two months and now our Doctor Sahab has told us that I have a brain tumor that will need to be operated upon. At 16 years, with no health, education or money, with no love, chance or hope; I am left with no present and no future. 

So I am giving up this miserable life of mine though it has not given me anything”. 

Today while cleaning an old drawer I came across this crumpled note that I had written about 40 years back. It cajoled me to assess my lifes journey thereafter. 

Leaving my farewell note on the bank under a big stone I had indeed jumped into pond the next morning, however as luck would have it Doctor Sahab who was going to his clinic after dropping little Harsh to school saw me. He fished me out, soaked me clean and questioned me dry. He also retrieved the note. 

Learning of my plight and being the kindest man I have ever known, he took me to his home. My home now, that I have never left since. He got me operated, educated and tended, like his own son. With him, though he was a widower, I found out what home meant, what family was and most importantly he made me believe in myself by believing in me. I could do anything in the world but could never even think of disappointing him. 

Time passed and per his wishes and intense coaching, I became a neuro surgeon. A good one he used to tell me. He even left Harsh in my care as his elder brother when he died twenty years later. 

As I stood holding my little note that I had found in his drawer amongst his papers, I started to cry feeling overwhelming gratefulness for the man who was more than my father. 

Dinu Kaka, our servant for decades entered the room and seeing me holding the paper and crying, inquired: 

Sahab Ji, what unique thing is written on this piece of paper. Baday Sahab also used to keep crying after reading it often.