Story – Dilwali Diwali
“Excuse me, where is the Halloween costume section,” I asked one of the sales people at Walmart store. This store was the nearest one in my vicinity and the best part was that it has everything and they keep stuff as per the coming occasions. Halloween still has 15 days to go, But if I will shop now will get some good stuff with this thought I moved my shopping trolley towards the east of the Store. I took a few steps back and looked towards the gleaming corner which was so beautifully decorated with Diyas, Rangoli and many Puja idols with a beautiful hanging “Happy Diwali” This reminded me of our Dilwali Diwali.
Diwali preparations back in memory lane started floating in front of my eyes. Mom making Coconut ladoos, Papa decorating flower garlands on the doors, Me and Niti making Rangoli. Mom begins cleaning the house and making ladoos in advance. Me and my sister Niti we start buying new dresses and other stuff.
Diwali was always a fun time ,Loving memories, Guests who use to visit us once a year and say “Kirti you are a big girl now”. “Twenty-two dollars Mam!!” sales girl at the counter asked. “Here you go” I gave money and took my bag. “Have a great day !!” Sales girl replied with a smile and handed over a bill to me. I kept thinking about Mom, Home, Diwali and India. Last Diwali I saw in India was in 2005 before Papa left us and Mom alone. Going to India is not that easy.
“Mom, What is this Vihaan asked”? was holding toran from the shopping bag. “Vihaan that’s Toran,we use to hang it on the main doors on Diwali day” I replied. “That’s beautiful Mom” Richa replied. Mom has not seen Vihaan and Richa yet. Life in the US is very busy. “Ok, Now Both of you Please Finish your snacks and sit for study”. I went to study room was thinking to call Mom But, I knew What will she say “Come home beta, Missing you “. “Dad, Do you know Mom got stuff for Diwali and its beautiful” Richa had non-stop material to conversate on Dining table. “When is Diwali?” Sudhir asked.
“It’s on the 5th Sunday of the Month” Vihaan replied. Richa asked”Dad, can we go to India this year on Diwali”. The discussion was on for an entire Dinner time. I was just lost and wish to remain in my childhood memories. Mom and Papa use to treat us like Princess. While thinking all this I started scrolling my tab and I found there was a Diwali offer on Air India Flights and the rates were cheaper like never before.
I went to Study where Sudhir was working on his laptop, I asked: “Sudhir, Is it possible if you can manage kids for 7 days I can go and meet mom, it’s been years you know”. “I know, but you see as a part of the legal team in my company I have so much work pressure my company is not in a good phase you know that, And Funds for travel where will they come” Sudhir Replied. I had tears, but no guts to show Diwali Offer from Tab”Ok!!” I came back to my favorite place in the house kitchen.
15 yrs before Sudhir was not like this we did promise to each other that we will come to India once in 2 yrs for sure. But once he had some official pressure and we broke our 2-year cycle since then I am caged in this house that what hurts me. “Mom, it’s me Kirti” I called Mom. “Kirti, Why you didn’t sleep, missing me ” Mom knows everything. “Beta do as your heart says, today if you will not listen to your heart tomorrow you will not feel any emotions coming out of it” without knowing my situation and before I could utter she gave me the solution. I think Mom’s are like this they know what solution we need for our problems in life. “Mom, Have you made Ladoo’s?” I asked.
“Oh Yes I made 3 Kgs” she replied.” Mom, please make some for me as well” I said. “You know that I do every Year, and distribute it to the orphanage, I know beta Life is a big cheater Parent raise their kids and this life takes control of them, But I know you and Niti both think of me and I am ok You both call me that’s more that enough for me beta. ” Mom said. I had tears listening to this”Beta are you there, Please don’t worry for me, I have all memories of you, Niti and your Papa I am not alone Beta” She added. “I am a Strong Woman You, know why? Because I followed My heart always”, “That’s Why I tell you both to lead your life and follow your heart”. “Love you, Mom, Bye!!” that’s What I can reply to the Strongest Lady I have ever seen. I sent a message to Niti on messenger and told my feelings on chat. She wrote,”While raising us, Mom and Papa have heard this many times these are girls they will marry and go for forever and we are proving it right by not listening to our heart”. We decided and agreed to have Diwali this time at Mom’s Place. I booked 4 tickets and mailed to Sudhir and went to Sleep.
Next Morning: I heard kids were up and Sudhir was guiding them to bring something. I went down to see and was not able to understand the chaos in front of my sleepy head and awaken eyes. Sudhir looked at me “Someone wrote a mail to me yesterday that had a message If you wish to feel the pressure non-stop, keep working and cancel your ticket attached in the mail. Else join us in Diwali celebration for a few days in Delhi and enjoy yummy Ladoos” he was smiling, “I opted the second choice we are coming to enjoy yummy ladoos”. I jumped and hugged Sudhir my tears were non-stop flowing. Today 28th October. Kids were uninterrupted asking questions about the Diwali, Preparations, celebrations and what not. Sudhir was busy on his laptop, and I was eagerly waiting to see my Mom’s face and her reaction. We landed at Delhi International Airport. I got a call from Niti “Hello, Kirti have you reached we are in Taxi and reaching home”. “Niti Yes, we are on the way Home,” I replied. My emotions were round-the-clock flowing thru my eyes. We all wished to surprise mom together, I rang the bell, Mom opened the door while giving instructions to the maid to put flower garland and Dip Diyas in water.
“Mom, Surprise!” we in the Chorus. I, Niti and Mom with a teary rhythm did a group hug . I held Mom’s hand and said “Happy Diwali”. Mom kissed my forehead and replied “Happy Dilwali Diwali”. it’s so Obvious Festivities begins when you are home with your loved ones. We, women, feel scared of following our heart. Let’s follow our heart because before being, Mom, wife, and daughter in law we are Human beings. I followed my heart today and broke one aged old tradition that we women after marriage must celebrate and do Diwali Puja in our home i.e. in-laws home.
Happy Dilwali Diwali!!