This morning, as I set off to my office I phoned my mother who is back in my village. My mother, who is in late 50s, was preparing breakfast for my father. She was quite surprised to receive call from me again.
“You just called me yesterday and we talked at length. You have anything to say?” she sounded very concerned.
|From left: my mother, father and elder mother|
I responded thinly, “Nothing special, but just checking out how you doing there.”
“Your father and I doing well…. just waiting for this unusual rain to stop,” she told me and indeed I could hear the rain’s sound.
Then, she went on to saying that it has been raining heavily in Chuzagang and the farmers were worried that it may not allow them to plant crops like lentils and millets this autumn.
“Thimphu is just getting cold and I am pretty much shivering now,” I told my mother, laughingly.
Actually I was shivering, seriously. These days we are experiencing a kind of quick-change-weather: sudden rain, warm during daytime, and cold at morning and evening.
And today’s morning was no different. It exactly was raining, gloomy and cold. But I just want to let my mother know that today is very important day of my life. It is the day I was born.
So I gently nudged her, “You know…today is my birthday.”
She sounded a little bit more cheerful. But she doesn’t remember my birth date; she remembers only the season and how and where I was born. The truth is that my mother is illiterate. Fortunately, my father remembers my birth date; else my CID would read something like 1-1-1983.
|The tree where I was born|
I was not born in the hospital, by the way; I don’t have health card. I was born beneath a tree nearby my house which still stands tall. When my mother had labour pain, she alone went straight to the tree and gave birth to me.
The family members knew about it only she when came with the baby holding in her hands.
She still carries the memory. When she narrates, I can only imagine but she knows the harsh reality and risks of giving birth to me. However, she seemed like she was smiling on the phone. Maybe because her son was asking about it, or just maybe she was happy to let me know about it.
“Many children who were born didn’t survive. You were born very weak and you had a bleak chance of surviving but you beat all odds,” she explained to me after taking a moment to think.
Those days, even minor diseases like diarrhoea and fever and light injuries would kill infants. Two of my brothers who were born before me didn’t survive; they are believed to have passed away because of “evil spirit”.
Knowing this incident and hearing the reality of how I was born gives me deep chill of an eerie and wrenching feeling. My eyes welled up with tears. But I admire my mother’s strength and bravery to no end, because not everyone had the same power of endurance.
After the call, in my office, I didn’t work much but took my time to truly reflect and remain thankful for everything and everybody who are very close to me. I called and messaged each one of them. And to my readers and fellow-bloggers, this is for you, thank you.
So far, I had enjoyed the birthdays to myself, but this year I am sharing my happiness and dedicating the most beautiful day of life to my mother who has sacrificed so much for me. Thank you, mother, it’s your day too.