People still look at me quizzically when they see me going everywhere with my dad. I know what they are thinking, ‘She is 26 and yet needs her daddy to go to the nearby store.’ And I agree with them. I mean, I rarely go out to a place without my dad. It’s automatic, I plan all my plans with him in the picture.
There is a reason for that.
When I was a kid, it was only my dad’s presence that could make me happy. When I was very young and till 3rd grade, I was one jolly and cheerful kid. I always had a smile on my face and filled with enthusiasm. I was an excellent student and almost always at the top of the class.
Then things started to change. My grades got a little lower, and my mom’s anger got higher. She would be very pissed seeing that I ain’t the topper once or twice, which resulted in disciplinary actions. I would get nice thrashing and was forced to study. This made me disinterested in learning. My character changed from happy to serious. By 6th grade, things started to go out of hand and my grades got so low that the ambiance totally changed from the people at my home and school. From being the ideal child who all looked up to, I became the one all of them despised. This was followed by my friends in school too, wherein they were instructed from their parents not to be friends with me, in fear that their child my turn out to be bad in studies just like I was.
What was weird was I didn’t understand this at that age. I just didn’t know why my friends started behaving the way they did, isolating me from them on purpose. I found my solace in sports, which turned out to be a bust because I would bunk classes in the name of some made up practice session of some game, and soon enough I was caught. I used to go and sit in the ground alone, at a corner where no one from the school building would be able to spot me, and spend about 2-3 periods in solitude, yet lonely…
Days went by, my frustration towards myself, my studies, my mom, my teachers, all emerged in the form of migraines. To make matters worse, I became an epilepsy patient by grade 9, and everything tumbled down since then. From being hit by my mother for all the complains from my teachers, to having no real friends to talk to, I was done with everything and trying my best to isolate myself from everything. I would hide myself in the school toilet, and back home I had created a corner in between a shelf and a sofa, where only I could fit that too with much folding. I didn’t mind being restricted and uncomfortable, as long as mom couldn’t reach me or touch me.
My only solace was when dad arrived back home from work, I would come out from my hole and was free. There were times when mom had hit me so hard with canes and combs, that it left marks on my body, which I would show late in the evening to dad. Dad would console my tears, take my side and tell mom how she was wrong in doing so. Those were the only moments I felt as atleast SOMEONE being capable of seeing the injustice being done to me.
I grew up in this same loop for most of my teenage years, till I entered for graduation. My worst enemy was my epilepsy, giving me attacks at my vulnerable points of life. Was I happy? No.
I suppose that’s why I still stick to him and love him to the core, because he sticked through with me when everyone else didn’t. He still does whatever he can for me, and I appreciate it to the core. Yes, I’m not independent yet. I know I need to be soon, and I know I need to grow. But if my presence in his old age can make him happy, I would do everything for him in a heartbeat!
I don’t know if anyone would be patient enough to read such a long post of mine, but if you did, thank you…