|Photo credit: As mentioned at the bottom of the picture|
As the flight took off, I felt a part of me melting. My hands wanted to reach out for the ground, touch it, again. My heart was racing against the time that quickly flew by. The flight began reaching for the heights only moving away from the ground. Soon, all I could see were tiny houses and men which resembled my nieces’ toys. Nothing was visible clearly except for lights. Have you ever see Mumbai from the sky at night? It looks breathtakingly beautiful, like a newlywed bride, ornamented from head to toe, especially during deepawali where each house glitters with radiant lights of several colors. It looks like tiny pieces of jewels have been scattered all over the city and they shine with all their might. Soon, the flight turned and the lights flickered, slowly disappearing in the past. The fact that I had left it behind once again pinched me and the throbbing pain that had temporarily subsided, emerged out of nowhere. I was leaving it behind, a city I call home, a place where my heart still lives, with my family and friends. I have been through this several times. And each time the pain gets worse.
It has been 6 long years but I haven’t been able to accept the fact that I have moved away from home or as Mom often says I have moved ahead to build a Home of my own. She has never really accepted my sulking about the fact that I live away from her. She often tells me how technology has advanced and how we can now connect with anyone, anywhere, anytime. When she got married and relocated to Mumbai, all she could do was write a letter to her parents and wait for several days before she could even hear from them. Sometimes, the letter got lost in transit and Mom had to write another one and wait again. But now you click a button and see each other, she exclaims. She is right but then the daughter in me fails to accept it. This technology doesn’t wake me up with a kiss on my forehead by my mother. It doesn’t really cook the most amazing kheer when I crave for it. It doesn’t hug me when I feel lost and lonely. It never laughs with me hysterically for hours together over a silly joke. Honestly, it doesn’t really serve me much and I don’t have a rationale to explain this to you, or to anyone.
Please don’t get me wrong. I am happy woman. I am head over heels for my man. He is my best friend and the most amazing person I have ever come across. I live a life that several people dream of. My husband means my world to me. With him, I have found love over and over again. The city that I moved to has its own impeccable charm, the pleasant weather, the many flowers, the many chirping birds, the tress, the cleanliness, and the many lovely people. It is here that R and I discovered each other, created fond memories, and begun our new life, together. It has to be perfect, isn’t it? But it is not. I am happy but a part of me is sad, too. That throbbing pain surfaces often, leaving me in utter dismay. I cannot explain it in words, I cannot deny it, and I cannot accept it either. So what do I do? Let it torment me forever or accept it and make peace with it? Easier said than done, huh? What should I do when all I want is be in Mumbai?
So as the throbbing pain continued to hit my ribs trying to break through, I slipped in to my shell of denial and refusal. But then I also introspected for a long time throughout my journey to office, today morning. Enough is enough. This suffering cannot continue forever. It has to STOP. And it has to STOP NOW. Just then my chauffeur who drives me to office everyday interrupted my thoughts.
How was your vacation, Madam?
Ah! It was amazing, Anna.
Oh wow. Your home is in Mumbai?
Super, you have two homes, one here and one there. Lucky Madam. He beamed at me.
This thought had always been crossing my mind.I am a part of two homes, two lovely homes. But then I always shooed it away. I always found it irrational. Honestly, there is no denying that a part of me will always remain in Mumbai, with my parents. It will breathe through them. Thus, Mumbai will always remain MY HOME, irrespective of the situations and circumstances. It is the ultimate truth. But then, there is another truth too, equally right. I have another HOME. It is here, with R, where I live with him, celebrating love and companionship. R now finds his family in me; he calls this city, his HOME. It is here that we celebrate moments together. My world now revolves around R. We laugh together, fight over silly things, kiss and makeup. I have found peace in his arms and joy in giggles. This matters to me just as much as the grin on my parents face.
But I am still not convinced. I am unhappy. It is a vicious circle I am stuck in. One moment I understand everything and the next moment I am still aching to be with my parents, in Mumbai. I know I will find happiness there. I know I need to find a way out. I need to take charge of this situation.
My mother always tells me that happiness is elusive. She often tells me to find joy in the NOW moment, in what I already have. She says one can find happiness if one intends to. Yes, for someone as ignorant as me, this is too much to digest. But somewhere I know she is right. Life has indeed moved on. Nothing remains forever. Situations change. I am no more just a spoilt daughter; I am a dear wife too. So I refuse to let this throbbing pain kill me any further. I accept this change. I know it is not going to be easy. This acceptance is a daunting task for me. But I also know that I have everything to be happy about- Loving parents, a doting husband, and caring family and friends. I shall no more get stuck in this obnoxious circle of perplexity anymore.
They say,” Home is where the heart is.” Indeed, my Home is where my Heart is…. And my heart is with the people I love the most. I have two Homes. Thus, the two pieces of my heart shall henceforth blissfully live within the boundaries of love and affection in both these places that I now call “Home” – Home Sweet Home.
(I can almost see a Halo over my head)
(I can almost see a Halo over my head)