“where are you going now?” dad asked me. I did not replied as I never cared a damn about him. He again asked, “I am asking you something.” My mom was sitting on the sofa and I could see the tension on her face. I replied, “I am going out with a friend, it’s her birthday today.” My dad raised his eyebrows and asked, “Her!.....with a girl?” I took my wallet and watch from the table and said, “Yes, a girl, do u have any problem?” My father sat on the sofa and said, “No..No..why should I have a problem,,it’s her birthday,,,go with her ,,,enjoy,,huh!” Everytime I used to go out, my dad used to make me unhappy. I left the home on my bike.
I hated my dad. Though there were many reasons but one big reason was the fact that she killed my sister namrata. This thing used to disturb me.
I reached THE METRO WALK where simran was waiting for me. I loved her deeply and she loved me too. She was looking like an angel that day in her red and black salwaar kameez. My mood got better but she always used to catch my expressions. She asked, “ You again had a fight with your father?” I replied, “Yeah, I had, i know that I am very bad at hiding my sad expressions!” she smiled and said, “Yes, you are.” I said, “Ok let’s go and celebrate your birthday.” She stopped me, “Hello! You did not wish me even and you want a party from me and tell me where is my gift?” I smiled and wished her,” Ok Ms simran verma……a very very happy birthday to you…I am so happy that you turned 40 today.” She almost slapped me and said, “Shut up!...I just turned 18 today!” I joked, “C’mon! since last 3 years you are 18 only,,now please grow up.” I ran away after saying this as I knew she would hit me hard.
We shopped till the evening, actually she shopped till the evening and I kept the smiling face every time she used to look at me. I gifted her 3 teddy bears as she loved them. I still don’t know that why the hell girls love teddy bears. I spent Rs. 2000 for them. I would had bought one fine reebok sports shoes but she chose her teddy as a gift. We went to a restaurant to eat and we were accompanied by lots of shopping bags and 3 teddy bears.
“How is your granny?” I asked her. She hated her granny as much as I hated my dad. The reason for the hate was that her granny could not keep herselftidy and could not comb her hair. It is so difficult for a 75 year old to even walk ,just forget about combing hair properly but simran never understood these things. She felt that her granny makes her feel ashamed in front of her friends. Her friends also used to tease her about that.
She replied, “Please naman! Don’t ask me about her.” I asked, “But Why? She is your Grandmother, you know what I really miss my Grandparents and you have them ,so you must spend sometime with her.” She replied, “Did I ever asked you that why do you hate your father.” I paused for 10 seconds and replied, “I have told you that what he has done to me, there is a lot of difference between mine and your case.” She replied, “Please stop this now, don’t waste my birthday.”
We finished our dinner and then I dropped simran at her home. I came back to my home. My dad was sleeping but my mom was awake and was waiting for me. I said, “You are still awake.” She replied, “Yes, I was waiting for you, you had dinner or should I bring some food for you.” I said, “No mom! I had dinner with simram, you please go to sleep.” I was about to go to my room when my mom stopped me. She said, “You forgot!” I turned back and asked, “What?” she replied, “It’s your father’s birthday today.” I was not surprised by this as I always used to forget his birthdays. I said, “Oh! yeah I forgot, its not a big deal mom.” I smiled and turned back again to leave. She again stopped me, “You will not wish him?” I turned back and said, “You want me to wish birthday to the man who killed my sister.” My mom replied, “He did not killed your sister, you do not know anything as you were just 10 years old.” I replied frustatedly, “Please mom!, stop that now, i don’t know why do you defend him all the time.” I finally went to my room and closed the door behind. I sat on my bed and looked at a 10 year old photograph in which my father was playing with me. I did not know when my eyes closed and I fell asleep.
AFTER 6 MONTHS
Six months passed away very fast and I completed my graduation. I started the hunt for a good job as I did not want to live under my dad’s control. No company was giving a look at the fresh graduates, each of them wanted the experience holder. But one day I got a call from a software company which was ready to pay me a good salary. I joined the company.
One day when I was coming back from my job, I received a call from simran. She was crying on phone. She said, “Please come to me,,,I need you.” I took a bus ride to her home. I reached to her home and after looking at her home I felt as if someone had died. I went inside and saw simran coming to me with tears in her eyes. She hugged me and said, “Granny has left us…she is no more,,,,and I don’t why but I am feeling very bad…you were right naman!..i should had spent sometime with her but I did not and now I realy miss her…….do you know what she really loved me.” She took me to her granny’s room. She showed some very cute teddy bears that her granny made for her to gift her on her birthday but she died before that. Her granny left a letter for her.
THE LETTER READ……...
I know that I make you feel ashamed in front of your friends but actually I cannot do anything. I cannot comb my hair as my hands shake, I don’t know the reason but I think I am too old now and this is the only reason I can mention here. You will always be my lovely Granddaughter. I want to live till your birthday but you are not sure about life , specially when you a 75 year old woman. This is why I am leaving a letter for you, I hope you read this. I have made some teddy bears for you kept them in my almirah, I made them only for you. I know that you love teddy bears.
Take care of your parents.
I read that letter and tears rolled into my eyes too. Simran was sitting with her teddybears in her arms and she was crying for her granny
6 MONTHS PASSED AWAY
It was 18th September again, the day when simran was born and also the day when my dad was born. I called simran as she was in pune for her post graduation. I wished her. My father called me on my cell phone but I switched it off and kept it on the table.My boss came running into my room and said, “Is your mobile switched off, your mother is calling you, your father is not well.” My mother was calling me by my father’s mobile phone and I thought that he was calling me and this is the reason I did not picked up the phone. Me and my boss ran to my home. We picked up my father, he had a heart attack and this was his second one. We took him to the hospital by car.
The ICU doors closed and I kept watching his face through the glass. It was 3 on the clock and I was amazed to see my boss sitting there with me. I asked him, “Sir! you came running to help me take my father to the hospital, do you know him?” He answered, “Yes, Mr. Sharma and me and are good friends, I was his client.. it is your father who approached your name to me for your job but he told me to not to say anything to you and now I think you must know that how much he has done for you.” I was shocked and angry too after listening all this. I shouted, “what?..he…how can he….what does he….aahhh???!!!!!” My boss explained, “Your father is fighting for life and you still hate him." i was still in anger as my boss continued ,"Yes your father approached me for your job but it was only because you have some talent in you….and these words are not mine but your father’s.” He continued as I looked on the floor, “I am telling you this as a father figure……your dad loves you,, and every father likes to do something for his child.”
I said, “You don’t know anything sir!..he killed my sister…she was just 17 but she commited suicide because my father was against her wishes, she loved someone but he did not cared about her feelings.” I was crying when my mother said, “He did not killed her, he never wanted to tell you this thing but now I think you must know……….your sister was raped by the same boy with whom she was deeply in love and then because of this she commited suicide…..you were just 10 years old naman……..you don’t know anything,,,you don’t know how much he loved both of you and still he loves but you even cannot wish him on his birthday.” She cried and continued, “Do you remember his last birthdaywhen he asked you that where were you going?” I answred,”yeah.” My mom replied, “He made a plan that day …he wanted to take all of us to the same place where you ,namrata and your dad used to go for picnic,,,but you did not cared about his feelings…..you ever thought of that?”
I was in tears, I was so wrong. The only good thing was that my dad still loved me. The doctors came outside as I was still crying. The doctor said, “Mr. Sharma is safe now, you can meet in an hour
I said, “I will not be able to face him mom……he will never forgive me.” My mom came to me and hugged me and said, “it is not the flesh and blood but the heart that makes a father and son…go to him,,he loves you.”
After an hour my mom and my boss both went inside but I went outside the hospital. I came back after half an hour. I opened the door of the room. This time I had a birthday cake in my hand and some candles.I came closure to my dad as my dad looked at me. I was hiding my tears inside and I was sure that he too was doing the same. I kept the cake beside him and came to his feet. I touched his feet and wished him,“HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!” I was not able to control my tears inside and the emotions came out rolling from eyes. My dad called me, “come here..come here….let me hug you.” I went to him and he hugged me. I cannot describe you that how peaceful I felt in my heart. I said, “I am sorry dad!....i was always wrong.” My dad replied, “no son…..i am happy that you are back.” We hugged each other for almost 10 minutes. My dad cut the cake and all of us sang..”happy birthday to you.”
My dad’s birthday was the best day of my life. I forgot everything he did to me. I forgot the morning when he came with me to drop me on my first day at school. I forgot how he defended me in front of my teacher when my teacher said, “Mr Sharma, your son is not studying.” I forgot the day when he kept the keys of my new bicycle on my table. I forgot the day when he celebrated my 9th birthday as if it was my marriage but i…..i never cared about him…I never cared to even wish him on his birthday,,just forget about celebrating…I was not there when he needed me. I wonder what a birthday can do. I have had many hardships in my life but my hardships are nothing against the hardships that my father went through in order to get to me where I stand today.
My 5 year old son arjun is playing with my father. My father is enjoying every moment with him and more than them I am enjoying watching them play. I wonder what would have happened if I had not dared to wish my father that day. I would have never enjoyed these lovely moments of my life.
I ama father myself and I know how happy a father feels when his son acknowledge his efforts. My 5 year old son did the same to me when he composed a very small but a cute poem for me….
The peom reads..
“THE GREATES GIFT I EVER HAD
CAME FROM GOD; I CALL HIM DAD”
© Copyright 2016 shubham pandey. All rights reserved.
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