Lost youth: What we are and what we have been
The end of an Era
“In a few decades, everyone you know would have died…”
- Edward Cullen.
My mom is sitting with me, almost crying. My mamaji (maternal uncle) is not well and will be going to Mumbai tomorrow to see a cancer doctor. “It’s all going away,” she says. “Soon there will be no one who remembers me from before”. I tell her that it’s illogical to think so. She will definitely die before me and due to the torture that I faced in my teen ages I would surely remember her; if not love at least.
She doesn’t smile at this. This makes me a little worried. She starts talking again. “When I was young, we used to make Jhaaki (floats) of ganpatij (Lord Ganesha) at our house. Everyone would chip in and ours used to be the best jhaaki in the gully. There used to be so many people who came to see that police was required. I was class valedictorian. I used to wear bell-bottoms ….”
I didn’t know any of this. That last piece of information does shock me. I never knew mom could to wear anything so…for the lack of a better word…modern? I couldn’t imagine mom in bell-bottoms…She doesn’t even wear chudidaars now, how could this be? But I think for some time and know that this has happened to me too, this is how it’s always been.
I am plump but nobody in my office knows that I was underweight till class 12th or that I took medicines so that I would put on some weight, forget about knowing they wouldn't believe it unless they see some photographs as proof. I can't believe that my bosses were once freshers and enjoyed office as much as I did when I had newly joined my office.
That’s the same with mom. That part of her life where she was so young and carefree is now gone, but it did happen. Sure, mom can remember all she wants to. But what happens when there is no one to validate these memories? How lonely is that? I think about all my exploits in school and colleges... I don't want them to fade away... but how can one stop memories from growing old?
I am already feeling depressed. Mom realizes how I am feeling or senses it…so she gets up to cook something nice for me. God bless her.
It’s time for me to read. Like a drug for a painful headache. I read.