Once upon a time there was a boy who loved a girl, and her laughter was a question he wanted to spend his whole life answering. ―
Motherhood is not always a happy ride. I say that and add, ” But I accept it with a big bear hug.”
I hug my daughter often, more often than my mother did. In my very Indian childhood of 90’s, love didn’t always come to me in words or in much hugs and kisses. Love came in a platter, in different shapes and pre-cut slices. Most frequently love came in large portion of Sunday chicken curry, a ritual I loved in the household. If I fared well in tests or in some life-altering phases, my mother would shower me with two chicken leg pieces with extra creamy curry. If I scored a hundred in maths test, she would rush to her temple to shower God with gratitude and sing a silent prayer for my future.
I am not like my mother at this starting point of motherhood marathon. I am verbose. My love is vocal, in extreme words, in long kisses, in hour long hugs, and in occasional write ups on my gratitude journal. And in extra creamy curries too.
I express love and happiness very loudly. So does my daughter.
She smiles so often that I try extra hard to find out reasons. Truth is, there are many reasons to smile every now and then. Life throws so many oddities and eventually evens them out.
This month my daughter started laughing. First it was just a chuckle, as if this mundane world tickled her and fled from the scene. Then after a day or two, she threw a big belly laugh. That sound of her laughter is my award. I did cry a little and became nostalgic about the whole year that passed like a crazy waterfall in love with the motion.
I couldn’t help but go back to our last Valentine’s Day. We ordered paella on that cold evening. A lady was singing an old Spanish song, and an old couple decided to be on the candle lit dance floor. There was a beautiful melancholy in the atmosphere. There were claps, and laughter. There were love stories around us, without age, gender, or racial discrimination. I was thinking to myself, “What fun! I wish life stays the same. Always in love, in peace, always cuddled up with happiness. “
I didn’t know I was pregnant then. The paella didn’t go well. From that evening I started having food aversion, and the rest is just another clichéd story.
Here I am again, on another Valentine’s day, thinking about various facets of love, and singing to my little girl a catchy love song.