Diary of a LOCKEDown Mom – 2/3

Posted by Shalini Gupta, Bengaluru

Journal entry 10th April, 2020

Diary, I always thought Gayatri loved me most. But today I learnt that she used to miss her Papa so much. Shalendra’s long hours at work, six days a week, caused her much pain. But as she’s never the one to express anything negative, we never realised this. Just today I saw her beaming at nothing in particular. Upon being questioned, she replied that she was happy because Papa was with her all day long!!

She was even happier because she was doing household chores with him. Filling the water bottles, laying the dining table for all the meals, washing the dishes and stacking them in the dish washer are some of the activities she particularly enjoys doing with her Dad! I can hear her laughter and mirth, Shalendra pulling her leg about some errors as I go about writing these short notes to you!

Guess who can bring this smile on her face?

Am I jealous? Yes, hugely! My older daughter, from early infancy, was always diplomatic and said ‘both’ when asked who she loved more. But this special angel has today put me in place by declaring “I love my Papa best”!!

Journal entry 12th April

Yay! Day before, I was so low thinking that Gayatri had found her Dad more lovable than me! But today over breakfast, when all four of us were sitting together saying grace, she declared the fact that Mamma doesn’t travel out of Bangalore anymore is such a relief for her. All of us were taken aback.

Her Nani had often said that she looked listless in my absence, but everyone else maintained, including madam herself, that she was happy because there was no one to crack the whip on her 24 by 7.

Experiencing art together at the Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2019

But today, she exclaimed while giving me her all engulfing hug that we were all wrong! That she let me go because “Mamma looks happy going”! Can you believe this? This girl who the whole world misunderstood as being slow, had observed that an activity brought me joy and hence, never complained about my disappearing act…

Thank you for giving me this opportunity to know what Gayatri wasn’t expressing in words.

To be continued...

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