Family Ties

Today is my Mother’s birthday. There is something about occasions which make you reminisce and go back in time.

We are a middle class; close knit family. Father used to work for Bhilai Steel Plant, India. Mother a housewife. And we three kids- sister, brother, me. Life in the small township of Bhilai was very simple, uncomplicated revolving around home, school, and friends.

On the home front, it was fun. There was just a 3 year gap between my sister and brother while there was lot more between me and them. So they used to gang up together and leave me aside. Sensing this my parents were more ‘friendly’ with me while my siblings were more disciplinarians.
Night times I was made to sleep early as I was ‘small’ while they used to study late as they were ‘big’. But as soon as they felt that I was sleeping they would start recounting their adventures of the day and I would be lying under the quilt storing everything in my memory bank. Whenever I had to take revenge, one of the stories would be narrated to my mother and the events that followed would fill me with joy initially and later with remorse.

My father was very strict and those were hard times financially and otherwise too. Raising three kids, giving them a good education is never easy, is it? But I being the pampered one always used to have my way. So whenever my sister or brother wanted something they would first butter me up and then off I would go to petition my father. Oh the innocence of those times.

I am a born destructor. Nothing survives my hands whether it be crockery or electronics. My brother had a very good collection of pens and knick-knacks which he used to keep hidden from me. Whenever he was not around, off I would go to explore and invariably break something. My mother on umpteen occasions has had to take the blame.

Numerous such anecdotes which come to mind but difficult to narrate.

When my siblings got married, it was difficult for me to accept their partners. To a xenophobic me any outsider coming in was just that-an outsider. Until my own marriage happened and I realised what a partner means to anybody.

Over the period of time our equations have changed. The relationship between me and my sister has blossomed to a more friendlier stage. She is the one whom I can narrate anything, anytime, laugh with and cry with. We lean to each other for moral support. While my brother has become the ‘Big brother’. Always ready to help out in hours of need, always ready with his friendly advice, always a rock to lean on.

Well with my parents life has again come to a full circle. Again we are friends, but this time around I find myself in the position of advisor, counsellor, cajoler. But the bond still remains.

Today I would like to thank my family for being always there whenever I needed them and never turning their back on me through my innumerable mishaps. For letting me spread my wings and allowing me to fly. For allowing me to be as I am. Very few people are so fortunate to have such a family. And I am one of them.

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