Li’l Love is one curious alien sent to Earth by mistake. No. Not an alien. She’s a research fellow from some advanced gola (planet) that the universal stork dropped into our home. She keeps asking questions and questions all day long. From why was she not available on our wedding, to how did she land up in my tummy, to why can’t she adopt a child at the age of seven. She needs logical answers, or else she dismisses your response altogether. In short, Mamma needs to go to school all over again as she hasn’t learned her lessons perfectly. And if at all Mamma happens to satisfy her, she says, “Google ne bataya hoga.” That’s my reputation. Sigh!
The other day, they were home and were watching 102 Dalmations. The Nivea ad appeared in the ad slot. And it went, BFF, BFF, BFF…
My little chipmunk sat up and asked, “What’s BFF?”
“Silly girl, it’s Best Friends Forever”, said the slightly over-confident big sister.
“Forever means forever….err, it’s like something that’s there till you’re alive”, answered Anu Didi.
Not convinced, Li’l Love came up to me and asked again, “Mamma, what’s forever?”
I said, “Forever means Hamesha (in Hindi). Like, I will love you forever because you will be my best bachha (kid) forever.”
She smiled. Jumping happily, she went back to where she was seated.
Though I managed to satisfy her for now, I wasn’t myself satisfied.
What is forever? Is there something like forever and always?
February, the month of love, has given me a lot. Almost all the things that I hold dearly in my heart. The love of my life, freedom from a wretched life I had to live for a few years, my firstborn, our home and many others.
February also happens to be the one that took away a precious person from my life. Latha, my BFF. My bestest friend ever.
We had promised to be friends forever. But destiny had other plans. Latha and I were separated when we were in class ninth. Their family moved to Kerala. But still, we were in touch through letters. Five years, our relationship did not change much. She was still my bestest friend. The only one who knew me inside out. And then, she told me about getting married. I was in my first year at college. I was shocked. I thought only my parents were getting proposals for me even though I was only seventeen. She got married and as promised shared pictures immediately after their honeymoon. She went to her new house but her letters did reach me regularly. Later, she informed me of her pregnancy. I felt like being by her side. She then wrote about her elder sister being blessed with a son. I was very happy. Never knew that that would be her last letter to me.
In February that year, one late evening when we were at the dinner table, the phone bell rang. Dad picked it up and said it was some boy for me. Like all conservative parents, they stood next to me to know who the guy was. When I picked up the call and he spoke, I froze. It was Latha’s elder brother. He said that she died because of postpartum haemorrhage. The end of our Forever Friendship tale.
And that was the end of my belief in ‘Forever’. Nothing is forever. It is all momentary. Our love, our anger, our likes, our dislikes…everything is just momentary. It does not take forever for two people to separate. It does not take forever for a mean person to change for good. It does not take forever to forgive someone. It does not take forever to mend a broken relationship.
We cannot control what tomorrow holds for us. Or for that matter what the next moment holds for us. We cannot control other people’s feelings for us. We cannot control our destinies. We cannot control anything, but this moment. The one that we are living in. We can choose to keep grudges. We can choose to be bitter. We can choose to be rude. We can choose to be selfish. But we can also choose to forgive. We can also choose to make friends. We can also choose to share happiness. We can also choose to do some mischief. We can also choose to confess. We can also choose to love.
Nothing is permanent. Nothing is Forever.
Forever is just this moment. The one that we are living in. Let’s make this forever beautiful. We never know if there is another moment or not.