From a precipice a faded voice crossing all boundaries reached me. Though it was conspicuous that the voice from the darkness had a message, all I heard was only a melancholic strain- a song which enveloped the atmosphere with its untold story. My heart developed a feeling of familiar strangeness. The tune was familiar, it was similar to the chiming of the church bell full of hope and vigour.
Gradually, it sounded like a death toll. My heart began palpitating, trying to comprehend the hidden structure of the song. The tone was strange though I knew it was a child’s. Twilight was transforming into darkness, the waxing moon was all set on the grey sky. Darkness covered my thoughts as well.
I had to go home after a hard day at school. I had left home to work for twelve hours then. My feet were soggy and numb due to constant standing during classes. They have held and balanced my body weight as much as they could. At any moment they would give away and I would drop down. Nothing was as important as sitting down and stretching my legs. My legs were firm arrows, ready to rush.
The child…her voice grew louder and louder and laid itself as bridles for my eyes. Sorry I couldn’t move further. Though I had assembled myself as a machine for years, the voice pierced my flesh and bone, reinforcing I was still a human.
My heart sunk asking “Why does this happen to me Oh God? You know my turmoil, I will have to complete my school works. I have to prepare for my classes too.” The child’s wavy unseen hand held on to me. She had no patience to wait until I respond. She spoke to me as a sharp hit of an axe. “I hate everyone. I just want to go way far from the maddening crowd”. Words were so intense contrary to her little fragile fingers.
The torrent of her words overflowed as she remembered how she was dreamt of- a bundle of joy, on being conceived in the tabernacle of her mother’s womb. She was the little princess moving in the regime of her house until the cards kept changing. Her father lost his job and how could this ever relate to the child? The little one was the target of the parent’s emotional outburst. She was called names; names such as ‘unwanted child, it’s because of her, she should not have been born, why this one is born to me and so on’.
The child had accumulated all the bitterness right from the least. As the little girl told me about her unrevealed long for her mother’s touch, her father’s time with her and how she has merely shut her mind, heart and mouth, tears rolled down my eyes. A thunderstruck the ground hard, it wasn’t only for the ground, and it was for me as well.
Yes, I just remembered, I am also a mother. So was it my daughter’s voice reaching me as an illusion? It is the call for all of us. We have given our best in our workplaces and we justify that the hard work is dedicated to our children. We deceive ourselves by saying so. It’s sheer self-praise. The assets, the luxuries with which we adorn them are not a matter to them. We give them a strenuous timetable for study, confessing that we are systematic. We are just finding a way to satiate our unfulfilled aspirations. We force feed them with whatever we bake. We want them to do as we expect.
The little hearts of your children are swollen either by these hard feelings or by keeping their emotions to themselves. Beware! The worse is to come, once their hearts break. It’s never too late. Let us pull up our socks. Behold! Children are the slice of your souls. They are the rarest and the most valuable gifts of God.
Who on earth gave you the rights to name them, ignore them, humiliate them and speak of their destiny? Firstly, let us start loving them with all our hearts. Do not compare them with others. Let your appreciation for your child be honest. Replace yourself with the entertaining deadly gadgets.
Most of all, hug them and kiss them once a day. Be with them when they close their eyes to the day. Tap gently on their head and tell them nothing is more important in the world than they, nevertheless how old they are. Better late than never!
The child holding my hands had laid its trust in me that all the parents would patiently listen to a teacher and so do I. Children are your priority, your life and your pride. Dear Parents, your children are calling out to you “Will someone listen to me?” Do not turn a deaf ear to them now. Leave the other tasks. Open your arms to them, for we pass through this life only once!
Love them now, when their eyes can see and hearts can know, do not wait until they are gone.
Ms. Anita Deborah
Velammal Global School, Puzhal.
“Enjoy your Path to Mom. Relish every moment!”