An Old Letter from my Ma


It was a day when I finally took up the most arduous tasks of all—cleaning up my office room. What a job it was but some pleasant discoveries peeping from the places where I least expected them, made my day. One such was an old letter from my mother. Written on an inland, it reminded me of the days gone by when the postman was the most sought after entity as he would bring to me letters from my ma. My mother was a stricter for writing letters. She would get up at 4 AM every day and would start writing letters to each of her children. Her drawling handwriting would cover all available space on the inland letter and it would be a wonderful experience to read all those sentences that would be written on the side folds. So much so that the postman also had become so familiar with her hand writing that he would tell me, “It is your Ma’s letter.” It was a time when letters were the only way to be in touch. I have a stack of such letters. It is a pity that I don’t have a single letter from my father as once trying to getting rid of clutter, I tore all the letters and unfortunately after that he left us. I am never going to forgive myself for this.

But it was a special treat for me today. Getting my drawers cleared of so many papers that it held, I came across an old blue coloured inland letter and the most surprising thing was that the letter was written in 1997. Reading that letter I thought that if the date is changed to 2006 I would not be able to find any difference in the contents as even today she says the same things to me. Do mothers never change? But one thing has changed for sure—the way we communicate with each other. Now it is the telephone that keeps us connected and not the letters. I don’t remember when did she write her last letter? Must have been years back that she wrote her last letter to me. I am really missing her letters badly these days. I would read and re-read her letters time and again and even today when I open the old bundle of letters, I sit for hours together reading and reliving all those moments. I experience all those moments that made her write those letters to me. In one she may be worried about me, in other may be happy with me and in maximum she would give me banal advice. Banal I thought it to be at that time but today it seems like a precious one. The letter that I was reading today made me cry as in that she had acknowledged that she made her daughters workaholics as she herself was, rather still is, but had realized that it was a mistake. I think she must have been a little disillusioned with persons around her for being shirkers from work whereas her own daughters were conditioned to work under any conditions and pressures. She felt like being hard on her own daughters.

No, Maa you have not been hard on us but rather have given us the best of the values. And work culture. I need to talk to you though I know that you would not even remember writing this letter as you wrote so many of them to us.

But you don’t write a single one these days. Do write to me. I feel like a small girl when I get letters from you and I really would like to be treated as a small girl. For a change may be!

2 thoughts on “An Old Letter from my Ma

  1. aarkay

    Very nicely written. Brings back the nostalgic memories of my childhood when as a ten year old I started exchanging letters with a classmate friend who had shifted to Delhi due to the transfer of his father.The post card had enough space for whatever we had to communicate and share at that point of time. Later we graduated to using inland letters and envelops. How eagerly I waited for hear from him. Now a days persons sitting in any part of the world are just a call or a click away but this has taken away the old world charm of writing, waiting for letters and enjoying reading them.

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