"Hi, friends, welcome to my story. Name is Sangeetha. This is the 143rd day of my hospitalization, am paralyzed from waist down and as far as the whispers go, I don't have much time left to finish paralyzing my whole ..........
Sangeetha saw that her mother who was holding handycam was shedding tears silently...
"Ma, what happened...???.... Ma, mamma, oh come on, don't cry......... Look at me mom... look am smiling, don't worry you will be fine.... "
and she smiled at her mom encouraging her to do the same. When her mother gave the most insincere smile of the world, she said in a soothing voice.
"Okay, close the handycam and come sit by me. We will finish recording after sometime. Now you tell me the story of how you met dad again."
Sujatha smiled back to her only daughter and she stopped recording, when she closed the screen the camera was blinking 7:43 a.m.
Exactly One year later....................... at 7:43 a.m.
Sujatha was standing near the kitchen sink and swallowing two aspirins to control her headache.
She checked herself in the bathroom mirror and saw the pale grey face, red puffy eyes, the abundant black hairs were now grey thin hairs. But she didn't notice all these.
She cleaned up herself and went to have breakfast. A single plate was set on the 12 seater dining table. But she didn't notice this.
She finished her breakfast, cleaned up after her and went to get ready for work. She picked a black and white salwar and it hung on her like it would on a stick doll. But she didn't notice that.
She locked her home and started walking towards her stop to wait for company bus. Some of her neighbours were out and as they noticed her, there was an immediate reaction of pity in their eyes. But she didn't notice that.
She reached her office and her co-workers gave a wide berth to her. Some didn't know how to behave with her, and some were tired of trying to engage her in anything. But she didn't notice that.
She sat down on her seat and switched on her computer. And Sujatha's day had started exactly how it was starting from last 11 months.
But today didn't go on as exactly as other days. As the clock ticked Sujatha's demure changed, by the time it struck 4:00 she was very impatient, agitated and nervous.
When she closed her eyes to calm herself, all she could see was people running. The panic in her mind was so strong that she started feeling it around her, like she was living it. She was living it in a way. She was reliving that day all over again in her mind.
After some time Sujatha decided that she cant stay here anymore, and went to ask for permission to go home. Her manager didn't even let her speak, he just took one look at her and said her to go home and take rest.
When she reached home, she had no recollection of how she reached there. She immediately went and took a cold shower. She stood under the beating pellets of water, trying to get herself under control.
By the time she came out of shower, she knew she didn't control herself anymore. So she let herself to drown in the flow.
Sujatha entered Sangeetha's room after a year to this day. It exactly how her daughter had left it. It was clean as she made sure the maid cleaned it frequently, but she never entered it. She couldn't enter it. The hurt was very fresh, the memory still thick with emotion.
Sujatha just ran her fingers on all the things at hand, just feeling the feel of belonging here. This room was control room of her daughter, the place where she laughed, cried, dreamt, blushed.
Sujatha sat down on the bed feeling the feel of the bedspread. It had the print of butterflies, her daughter was crazy about butterflies. Sujatha recalled how Sangeetha used to say "Mamma, if I get a wish, I will become a butterfly and fly away to the stars". Oh she had flown to the stars.
Sujatha felt moist and touched her cheek to find that she was crying. She laid down on the bed and cried to her heart's extent.
She opened her eyes to see that the sun had already set down and the house was in darkness, she had slept and slept soundly like she had never slept before. Her heart beat was down to normal and she was experiencing an unusual calmness in herself. She got up and flicked on the lights of the house, prepared dinner for the first time in months.
After dinner, Sujatha willed herself to see all the video recordings her daughter had insisted on doing during the last days of her life. By the time she had finished half, Sujatha had smiled, laughed and cried like a normal person. When she had reached the last recording, she had prepared herself to the hurt she was going to experience.
But when she heard Sangeetha say "... look am smiling, don't worry you will be fine.... ", Sujatha was sure she heard it wrong. She went back and listened again carefully "... look am smiling, don't worry you will be fine.... "
"I will be fine???? I will be fine..." at that moment Sujatha understood the meaning and value of those precious words. Her beautiful daughter, in her short 16 years of life had taught her mother the most valuable lesson of her life. The last conversation on the day she died, she had assured her mom that she will be fine.
Sujatha felt like a hand of god waking her up from the darkness of her life. And said to herself "Yes, she will be fine, she has to be fine. Because after everything, there is one person still alive. Herself.That no matter what happened she was still alive and worth living for. She was fine when Sangeetha was a baby of 5 months and Arun was killed in an accident. And she will be fine now. " She had mourned her daughter hard and long. Though loss would never be filled and she would never stop missing her, but now it was time to move on. And she knew in heart that that's what her daughter wanted.
Sujatha got up with new energy and purpose. She picked up some empty boxes and went to Sangeetha's room. And with much care and love, with lots of tears and smiles, she packed all of her daughter's things. She decided to donate most of her daughter's things and kept the most memorable things for herself.
By the time she finished the night was over and morning sun was yawning to get up. Sujatha smiled to herself and did the first crazy thing in a long time. She called her best friend of years and said "Pammi, its me, can you come over here now"
Pammi who knew the pain Sujatha was going through till then, didn't waste a minute and drove to her friend's rescue. When she reached her home with hundred's of questions in her head and saw Sujatha smiling, she was surprised for minute and she asked "Suji what happened?? Are you alright??"
Sujatha invited her best friend in and said "Am absolutely fine" and she smiled again.