I was actually destined to have a girl and then a boy. No-no, I am not joking. There’s a story behind how the second one became a girl.
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I have this little brother, my cousin (maasi‘s son) who is as good as my son. He happens to be the first child born in the family after nine years of my little sister’s birth. Yes, we are thirteen years apart and that made us do everything for him from feeding him Kora (malayalam word for Raggi), Kaya podi (Raw Banana powder) to giving him a bath, to putting him to sleep to cleaning his poop. Yuck!!! We did do it back then, such was the love for the little brother. He was also born as a second child to his mother, who lost her first child hours within delivery because it was a blue baby. Being born a boy in a family, which had only two girls as heirs and being a much prayed for baby, he was the apple of everyone’s eyes. An extremely hyper-active and highly mischievous boy.
As we grew, he used to spend quite a lot of time with us during our summer vacations, pooja holidays and winter vacations. Thus our bonding grew very strong.
Just a decade back, when I got married, this guy who was just 10 years old then, comes and stands right in front of the husband, with his hands resting on his waste-line, giving that macho expression and asks, “What is your post? How much do you earn?”
An extremely concerned brother…isn’t it?
After his eighth grade, he came here to stay with my parents and continue his schooling. This is when we again happened spend quite a lot of time together. By then, I already had my first-born who was a fan of maamu jaan.
He had the luxury of having a stay-at-home-mom, who would get up right in the middle of the night to get into the kitchen, just because he felt like having samosas or adai and she would prepare it. It might not sound annoying to many of you, but it does to me and my sis, because we had a working mom and a dad who was based in a different country and many a days, we ended up having just rice, curd and kadu manga (tender mango pickle) for lunch. Of course, Amma was tired having had to spend the day with 7 out of 8 periods working. Essentially, we always had one or the other person at home and hence Amma never really had any rest apart from the one or two hours afternoon nap that she could get. We had a cousin chachu, our mamaji and a cousin brother staying with us. Apart from them, we also had occasional guests who would spend a day or two in Delhi either on their way back to India or on their way back to the Middle East. We used to be happy having them over as they would bring along a packet or two from our Dad who was based in the Middle East for over a decade. She made delicacies like appam, madhura sewa, ribbon pakoda, suji laddoo, mixture (namkeen) or others mostly during summer vacations or pooja holidays and we were absolutely fine with it.
So this little boy of mine grew up like a prince and his luck brought him to stay with my parents for four years. My Dad being from a family where mostly men are either into the Indian Armed Forces or the Indian Navy, is a strict disciplinarian. He never ever sits idle and does each chore to perfection. Open his wardrobe and it still puts me to shame because I am not even half as good as him at organization. His used clothes are folded and kept with such diligence that you can never make out if they were used at all. The shirt that he wore the whole day, would not have a single crease. And here my little brother, a highly disorganized one, was there to spend four long years with him. 🙂
He was here when I was expecting my second one and due to certain complications I had to be at my mother’s place for almost 2-3 months. This is the period when I was already at the verge of a nervous breakdown owing to the high stress on personal and professional front. And then there was A, my brother who was so cool that even after something is told a hundred times, he would not budge from his place. Nothing and nothing affected him. (Haa…I wish I could live such a life for at least one day.) And he wasn’t alone, he had company. Mr. Right, of course. This irritated me so much that I ended up praying wholeheartedly that I do not want a son. I prayed so, not because I have any vengeance against the opposite sex, but because I was sure if I had a boy, he would have to bear the brunt of my irritation and frustration with this casual attitude of Mr.Right and my brother. People used to tell me that it’s going to be a boy and I silently prayed that come what may, it should not be a boy.
However, I made a mistake as I wasn’t clear in my prayer and though as always He listened to my prayers and granted me a girl, he missed removing the hyper-activeness, excessive mischief and the cool attitude. Going by her attitude and mannerisms, Lil Love was indeed supposed to be a boy.
Oh dear Lord, I have another prayer:
In my rebirth (if any), please please please make me as mischievous as Lil Love and as stubborn as her and please please please make her my Mom.
Every time she makes me go crazy, I keep telling her that I’ll die of heart ache and will come back as her daughter and will trouble her the same way she troubles me now. To which she politely replies, “I know how to handle naughty kids. If you want I can teach you too.” And then she winks.
Bhagwaan, mujhe bachao is nanhe toofan se…
- Did I give birth to an FM Radio Channel?
- Don’t scold them. The world scolds them enough.
- Motherhood: Moments to Cherish
- Lil Love in conversation with Papa