A tale of two Moms (An everyday short story)


Good Morning ! Rise and Shine….It’s morning.

7.45am : And the countdown begins, seven more minutes or maybe ten more and we may miss the school bus. These last few minutes of every mother’s life especially with younger ones is pretty demanding. To manage the kid who is half-awake, half-sleepy and to board the bus on time, which is like the ultimate vehicle or carrier to nirvana is daunting. Here I would like to elaborate nirvana a bit further as we mothers mostly think that the primary road to success and prosperity for her kid is education and of course, then there is physical well being and sound emotional foundation too.

I stay in that part of the city which is upcoming and comparatively serene and less crowded. My husband works for a MNC with a senior executive role. And we could afford to live in a 4 bedroom villa with a secured and well maintained community. But then why am I writing this materialistic uppity trash; in the verge of sounding vain.

Probably you will realise once You finish reading this. I will call myself a stay home mom( it sounds a bit more respectable than to be called a housewife or houselady as I was a working lady before) now. But, Pardon me! It’s all the same for me but nothing wrong in adding a hint of sarcasm or two for terms like these which does not make a woman’s life any easier.

7.50am : I walk AB(the initials of my son’s name) down to the bus stop which is 100 mt away from my community towards the main road. It’s a beautiful boulevard with colourful flowery plants and creepers hanging on both sides of the road. This time is the most amiable and collected. It’s like a nice morning walk with the fresh sun on my skin and the hands of my son clasping me tight. The school bus may come any moment in the next ten minutes, if lucky then in five minutes.

But the story doesn’t end here, it rather starts here. The tale of the other mom. I am not going to talk about my neighbour-mom who shares the same villa community with me and who comes to drop her kid too nor I want to mention the other mom who stays in the neighbourhood posh apartment. I want to tell the story of a mom – a working lady as keen as bringing up his son into a self sustainable, adept man like any other mother in this world.

The boy is wearing a lower quality school uniform with a torned bag and waits for his school bus while his mother brushes his hair gently with her hands like a comb. Even before she could wave a proper goodbye to her son as he climbs into his bus, the customer yells at her angrily for his cup of morning tea as he is getting late for the day. Those few seconds of momentary bliss of waving a bye to her son is stolen from her. But she does not complain as this is the only way which can make his son board the vehicle to nirvana. She has a small barrow or tea stall or cart( which we call ‘thela gaadi’ in India) just beside the road. Without any hesitation or fuss, she smiles back and serves the man a cup of tea. And suddenly I am drawn to her appearance and I see her in a faded saree managed with some worn out metal and glass accessories as if scattered here and there in her body but then a warm bright smile and hands busy serving tea and sundry snacks or nick nacks to bunch of eager customers.

7.58am : AB’s school bus arrives. I wish him bye with a big kiss on his forehead pestering him to be obedient to teachers and be focused in the class and stay careful. And my little one giggles and waves me bye. What an assuring moment is that! The bus leaves. And then our eyes meet unexpectedly or quite accidentally. I smile at her and she smiles back across the road.
This has almost become a routine now. We never talk but a warm honest smile at each other most of the mornings is not a bad start for the day at all. Sometimes I feel blessed when I see her but then at times unfavourable , I feel weak and inadequate compared to her.

There is nothing common between me and her but we do share one commonality; one stratum that binds us with an invisible thread and that’s the three meaningless letters when combined together makes a warm meaningful word – MOM.