Click here for shortcuts to regional language blogs and city-specific events.
Ashima was a New Mom. All of 27. She delivered the baby through C-section and yes never did she made a hue and cry out of it. It was supposed to be and it happened. As she often says, “I had to have it the hard way to receive my bundle my joy”.
Her home-coming was well sought after, taken care of all things from health to room’s décor. Her husband loved her to bits and In-laws just adored her. After all the little one was the apple of everyone’s eyes. Her Mother-in-law did not spare a ritual to welcome the new born. There was the mandatory fifth-day head wash, the thirteenth day head wash and lots of ajwain wala pani but no other water for her. It was for her own good.
She drank it with the ugliest of faces. Guests came, guests went, endless parties and then a sudden silence !
She was alone with her 3 month old munchkin. Just her husband by her side. In laws were off to Bhopal to look after their other home and work. The huge house screamed with happiness but a deep longing sense of loneliness scared her.
“What am I supposed to do with this little ball of cuteness’’? “Feed him the entire day, wash his pee and poop and make him sleep and yes sleep while he’s sleeping.” That’s what everyone from a recent mom to an 80 year old aunty had told her. She was intelligent enough to understand the underlying statements.
But G was all that she had. Husbands resume their routine life within a week and this was at 3 months. He used to go in the morning and come back at night. She was wary of keeping a maid to handle the baby. “What I am there for” she thought under her greying hair.
One such day, husband came home from work early, just when baby was sleeping and Ashima was cooking dinner. The slight that a new-born’s sleep is, he woke up in his father’s arms. Father started swinging him only to feel a bit of sudden warmth.
“Oh no, he has pooped” said the father.
“Please wash it yourself as I am making dinner, the gas is on’’, mother spoke from kitchen.
Mother: “Go na please, you are a good father’’
The ardent father made a try to wash the squishiest of poop ever done by baby. Baby knew, ‘’Its my Dad this time, let’s give him some”.
The reluctant Dad came back with the fastest of speed out of the washroom and tied the nappy back. He was holding the baby as if he is a napkin of poop.
“Mumma, please come, it looks scary and unmanageable”. Screamed the father helplessly.
The baby cried meanwhile, “Mom, this guy is going to drop me on the ground, come fast”
Mom in her head, “That was the only thing I asked him to do for baby”.
Mom washed her hands quickly as she could, held the baby in her arms, removed the actually squishiest of nappy and was ready to take him to the washroom with his bumps in her hands.
The baby wailed on top of his voice. He CRIED as hard as he could and as loud as possible. Mom in an angry tone, “Dekha, I told you to wash him, you couldn’t, all that acid is troubling him”. “No baby, don’t cry, Mumma is just cleaning you up”. Ashima hurried up her act but the baby was just inconsolable, his cried at his peak every time the mother washed his two cute little hips with her soft hands.
What could possibly be wrong? Was the water too cold for him, was the water too hot for him, is he hungry, “Chalo, lets feed him”. Exclaimed the mother and sat down to give the baby the elixir for life. Answer to every problem in the world, at least for an infant.
Five minutes of feeding but the poor guy couldn’t stop crying either, so mother thought of changing his nappy. To her utter shock, she saw baby’s bum all red like a tomato. “How could this happen. Just because of a delay in Poop cleaning”?. “Let me apply my trusted Himalaya Rash Cream, the rash will go in nano seconds. The rash started disappearing with the rash-wonder, the baby slowed down crying.
All that insane crying had made him weary, he went back to sleep and Mommy dearest back to her kitchen. She went back to what she was doing earlier in the kitchen and that was cutting Green Chilies for Dal’s tadka. She had an instant flashback. “Aji sunte ho, the green chili was the culprit, I hadn’t washed my hands well before handling baby”. “Baby, I’m so sorry, I was at fault, good night”. Mom kissed the baby good night as he slept peacefully just like a baby.
All this while, the father was at the receiving end till the mother realized what was wrong from her side. And then, obviously no one can say a thing to a mother because she is one roller coaster who does everything!
Don’t we all Mothers sometimes need to laugh upon ourselves amidst being a machine which we are 24x7? Who else would dare laughing on US??