When I started to write a post I suddenly remembered about another blog that I started in 2005 and had written something about my childhood. I thought of reading that today and ended up pasting the same post to my readers:
Unmasking the real self would be a torture and I never would have thought of doing it had it not been to see my real self. I think that I have hidden myself behind so many masks that even I would have to meet my real persona through this blog.
Have I really grown or it is the same old girl inside me that has refused to grow with time. I am old and have three kids of my own who look at me for inspiration and safety but I am really baffled at times as I think that I am not what everyone thinks me to be—a strong person.To find answers to as to why I feel like that I have to peep inside my innerself and this self realization through self-questioning would help me, perhaps to see the real ME. The quest may go on and on and I may not find answers to questions that trouble me.
Should I start from the very beginning when as a child I starting introspecting myself as an entity different from my parents and having an identity of my own! The feelings, emotions and dreams that I had at that time would perhaps help me find the real me.
I remember myself as a very young girl who was called Kaloo as she was not as fair as her elder sister was and the first memory that I carry is quite negative in its inception. Wait there is another flooding the gates of my memory and I can vividly see my mother and my aunts talking about me and laughing at the THING that I was during my infancy.
I remember hearing a number of times the story about me being so frail and weak during the early months of my childhood that my mother took me to a Peepal tree and bathed me under one of its roots that had somehow above the ground leve as according to some hearsay that would make me healthy.This story made me love my mother who had a real concern to see me healthy or was it just to make me look at least somewhat respectable so that noone could blame her for neglecting her second daughter. I am really happy that there was no such concept as a small family during the days of my childhood otherwise I would have blamed my parents for all that I hold against them– to their frustration for begetting a second daughter when they aspired for a son.
So it was a mixed feeling for my mother that I have a recollection of even today. A feeling of love or gratitude for caring for a daughter who was sick, frail and weak during her infancey and a feeling of anger that she still could laugh at my looks and finally the name they gave me -Kaloo-substantiated the second feeling.
I have not written anything about my father till now, but what I remember about him, is that he really cared for me. Though I feel that, looking back at him today, I find myself again filled with mixed feelings for him as well. He always addressed me as Saroj Singh. By adding Singh instad of the official version of “Kumai” he made me feel like a man. Was it his frustration at having sired another daughter when he waited for a son? But thankgod all these questions never raised their poisonous head during my childhood and I really loved him for making me what I am today.
I find that during early childhood, I developed a tough exterior as compared to my elder sisterwho was the apple of everyone’s eye whereas I was a son to my fahter that he really wanted to have. This tough exterior hid inside a weak little girl who was scared of her fraility, her looks and her weakness as a girl.
See how useful this self analysis has been as I have been able to find some answer to my persona that has started troubling me at this age when I am 49. Even today behind the so called striong womabn resides a young girl, still unsure of herself. When my colleagues comment upon me that I am the only woman employee who has the guts to take abny challenge and question the wrongs of the power that be, I realise that it is the tough exterior of SAROJ SINGH–a masculine persona –at work. But is it the real ME?????