Monday, September 2, 2013


If they do not hold up the light
when the night is troubled with storm,
O thou of evil luck,
with the thunder flame of pain
ignite thy own heart
and let it burn alone!

(From Rabindranth Tagore’s poem – ‘Ekla Chalo Re’)

I met a lady today. In a few days, her only daughter, who has just married a NRI, will be leaving for UK to settle there with her husband.

Some twenty-four years ago, the lady and her husband - who were, then, childless - were dying to have a child. So, they ended up adopting this girl-child and raised her with all the love and affection in the world…gave her the best education… and, now, got her married to, what seemed to be, the best man in the world!

Well, that’s a very familiar cycle of life. Whether the child is your-own biological-one or an adopted one, when the time comes, one has to be prepared to give her up…

“I remember, all that my husband and I wanted was a girl-child to raise up as our own, to give her all the love and care in the world,” the lady told me, “but, we never thought, then, that one day, we may have to give her up.”

I saw tears in lady’s eyes. “It will be difficult for us to cope with this for some time,” the lady said, “but, we will have to learn to walk alone.”

Walk alone?

The phrase hit me hard. I had, often, used his phrase in different contexts. “Finally, we all are alone in life, no matter how filled with people – relatives, friends, acquaintances and neighbors - our lives seem to be… how well-knit our families seem to be…

We are alone in our togetherness… Not lonely!

We are alone in our love… Not lost or bonded!

We long to walk together 

only to learn to walk alone!

Why did the lady and her husband long so much to adopt a girl-child, to raise her up as their own with all the love, affection and care in the world and, then, one day, only to give her away to someone?

There is as much strength packed in these questions as there is anguish… There is as much beauty in this reality as there is harshness…

Yes, it is something amazingly beautiful about living with our human attachments. Very reassuring... Very empowering.


Pic.: Anima D'Cunha
Video: YouTube


Vinod Lal said...

Very touching post. The reality of life. Vinod Lal

Eashan P. said...

You always weave something priceless out of such commonplace incidences in our lives. Hats off sir.
----- Eashan P.