I almost deleted this blog today because I could/can foresee my dwindling perseverance and sincerity in this regard. I always begin things very ambitiously but lose interest so very easily. In this case, it’s mostly because I am too tired to switch on a desktop (pretending that if I ever own a laptop, I would be diligent in my digital note-taking of day-to-day affairs) or watching the dummy box while lying in acutely relaxing postures on the sofa is the idea I am likely to entertain. I try to hold on to my patience. I don’t think I will be frequenting this particular digital vent as much as I wish to. It makes me feel guilty about the leather-bound diary for 2014. It’s the coolest-looking journal I’ve owned, of all the years I have been writing. It is a habit that I am extremely proud of, even though some may say it is my escape route out of ever making a human best friend. I don’t blame them. I hardly entrust anybody with secrets.
I think, Ma’s mood swings are fairly cyclical with prolonged phases of self-pity that include a million things to worry about. I have never behaved so consistently polite with anybody, let alone my own mother. I have put in 200% effort into ensuring that I never crease a brow in front of her. It’s been a success after the operation; not so much during the chemotherapy cycles before it. She underwent her procedures on Monday (7th April) and there were complications owing to the sheer unprofessional behaviour of the hospital. We reported at 7AM, Ma on an empty stomach as ordered by the doctors, but the operation began only after 3:30PM. It was torturous for her to lie on her bed and not be able to even heartily drink water (forbidden). Against her body’s will, she chose to return home later that day. I have never seen a stronger person. The test of a person’s strength and patience is so very truly during a moment of crisis. She inspires me every day. While she lay drowsy on her bed (at the hospital), just after the procedures, I was glancing through the extensive biopsy report of the samples taken during the Total Abdominal Hysterectomy Bilateral Salpingo Oophorectomy (as well as other operative procedures) conducted two-and-a-half-weeks ago. The cancer has progressed to Stage IV, as opposed to my belief regarding the current prognosis. 33% survival rate for the next five years has been prescribed by many of the search results on Google. In that moment, I was sure that the 52nd birthday that my mother would celebrate next week would perhaps be one of the last, if not the last itself, and I could leave no stone unturned to ensure that it was memorable in every way. I poked and prodded my mother to tell me what kind of cake she would like for me to bake for her. Her lack of enthusiasm wore mine down considerably and until today afternoon, I was sure no plans would materialise (even though I had researched a few recipes and was considering the idea of a mini-party). I was not sure she would be able to eat any of what I bake. I do not bake very well at all; making it a very sensitive issue with me for my food to go untasted or the like, even by Ma (or worse, her not exhibiting interest in my work 😦 ).
As I was walking back from college to the bus stand today in the afternoon, I impulsively made some very good decisions 🙂 I called up a friend’s friend and suddenly, I was taking note of things to purchase from the market, brimming with confidence again. I was in full throttle! I bought chocolates; so did my friend. She (and her sister) even made a card for Ma. It is also my maternal grandfather Dadu’s birthday. I bought a sticky note pad for him (and a chopping board) (Dadu and Dida stay with us, FYI. They take care of the household even though they themselves need much of caring). Having spent over 500 bucks on these things and 30-odd balloons (and a body razor each for personal care), we retired to a local mall.
The point of this particular ranting, I now figure, is that I lose faith sometimes and I gain it back other times. I sometimes am polite and friendly to those around me and otherwise, not. I oscillate. Although I am consciously subtracting myself from the social obligations and frenzy around me, I still need to be cordial on a regular basis. As sensitive as I am to the friend who has recently lost her grandmother, I must also put in a wee bit of effort into every other relationship that I have. I hung/hang up my boots too easily. I must live hoping for the best even though every second I foresee the worst and prepare for it. There are tears sometimes. Sometimes not. As I spoke my mind aloud, justifying my behaviour, in front of a friend today in the mall, probably hurting her feelings even though she says otherwise; I realised a very important thing – I must have faith that Ma will recover. Her otherwise healthy body must bear proof to these sentiments. Not to forget her iron will.
When we had moved to the house that we now live in, there would be scraping noises outside my room (still is) and I would be terrified like a small kid (I was probably 16 then) of the ghosts outside. Even though Ma would reassure that they were produced by a group of cats, I would not be able to sleep the first few nights here. She was the person who stayed with me till I fell asleep and there were no scraping noises. I was never told that I was behaving like a child.
PS: Yes, Ma and Dadu are born on the same day 😀