I hear the shriek of the little boy asking his mother to push him higher on the swing. His sheer joy at sailing through the sky makes me smile indulgently. He wants to reach out to grasp the cotton wool clouds for himself.
I see him leap off the swing and jump into his mother’s waiting arms. Confident of his welcome. Secure in the knowledge that she will catch him. There’s no apprehension, not even a momentary one, in his leap. Just a trusting conviction that she’ll be there for him, as always. His little hands loop round her neck as he receives the kisses she rains on him. He pulls back to grin at her and plants a cute smacking kiss of his own on her cheek. I see the love shining in both their eyes. A picture of such pure innocence. It fills my heart with warmth.
But then why do I suddenly feel tears welling up in my eyes creating unrelenting paths down my cheeks. Why do I feel this sudden pang of loss? Where has that erstwhile warmth disappeared suddenly? Why do I feel the creeping up of an unknown ache for something I have accepted as a given for so long.
Or had I? It was a coalescence of chance and circumstance that lead me to tread this path. But one that I felt I had chosen consciously. One that I had accepted. One I had made peace with. But had I? Was it merely a superficial veneer of false comfort? A way of appeasing myself? A way to mollify myself over something I couldn’t control?
Why did I suddenly yearn to have someone look up at me with unquestioning trust and confidence in my ability to slay all their demons? To have a high pitched voice shouting Mom’ at me. To demand I do things for them. To just hug me.
It’s true life is full of choices. But not all the ones we make are deliberate. Sometimes life just happens. And you just go with it. The ripple effect of the choice slowly dies down as the concentric circle of life edges towards the shore in ever widening eddies. The reason for their existence forgotten. But sometimes the lapping water hits you and demands your attention. Demands that you question the very reason for its journey to the shore.
And that’s when the melancholy hits. But, as always, you gather yourself and wait for the tears to dry. Wait for the indulgent smile to come back. Wait for the joy to fill you again as you watch a little boy hugging his mother.
A mother who isn’t you.
I penned these thoughts inspired by a story my dear friend Jigs is writing Revealed
Thank you so much for indulging me and reading my pensive musings.
Please feel free to let me know what you think 🙂