Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Remembering 'ma'

Today morning, in a mental state when you are awake but not out of bed, i suddenly remembered my mother. She died some 15 yrs ago-May her soul rest in Peace-.What i was trying to remember was our life in 70s.

My parents were both Doctors, GPs in Mumbai. They had pretty busy but comfortable life. My father died of Heart Attack.At that time my mother must be 53 or so. I had just passed my MBBS and was doing MD. i was staying in Hostel. My sister had moved to USA. At home only my younger brother was staying.

For the next 5-6 years I was pretty busy as resident Doctor. i hardly had any time. Even when off duty i had to stay in Hospital,at most could get 3-4 hrs off to go out,or visit home. It was difficult to spend any quality time with mother. she used to go for movies, outings, long vacations with my father but after his death suddenly she was isoleted and alone. Ofcourse she had her practice where she met people( It was a time when your Family Doctor was part of your family). But for her Social needs there was no one.She was young widow and Social norms of the time did not allow her to go out alone for movie. I dont remember any movie that i might have seen with her. We did go out for vacation together, but mostly it was short vacation to nearby hill stations or to Nashik-Shirdi. She had my other relatives for company but they would go out together for social functions in the family and she was not very comfertable as she was from different community- she was Saraswat from coastal Maharastra married to Guju Brahmin. Those 10-15 yrs must be really hard for her.

Looking back I feel guilty. In those days we were brought up in joint family and we did not have much communication or interaction with parents. Her being busy doctor didnt help as she would be busy in the evening upto 9 pm. We spent most of the time with friends.At home other relatives were there to take care of day to day issues. We had our vacations,outings etc with friends. I dont remember even thinking about how her social life must have changed after my father's death.she loved touring and she did visit Europe and USA for very long 10 weeks. I used to coax her to go for vacation, but it was with other relatives. I didn't have time or inclination to go out on long vacation or tours.It didnt make sense as well for just 3 of us ,with different interests and outlook of life to go for Family Vacation. Besides at that time going out with parents for movie or outings was not very common. Things did change after I got married. We had family vacations,outings etc. but by then she had got used to her life i guess and was very reluctant to join us. --- PK