The morning was a beautiful one.
Birds were chirping, and the surroundings were fresh and verdant, from the overnight rain. There was an unusual calm about the morning.
New beginnings. Fresh confessions. A different look at the life lead so far. A question mark on one’s identity, one’s existence, one’s roots.
It was tough for Renee. It would have been tough for any thirteen year old. She didn’t know how to react to the truth, that was just revealed to her by the people, whom she had known as “Maa” and “Baba”, for practically all her life.
Should she be sad??
Should she angry??
Should she be mad??
What, after all, was an appropriate reaction??
Her thirteen year old mind went all haywire. . .
For sure, she loved Preet and Parineeti. She loved them to bits. They were all she had. For sure, they had given her all the love and affection that a child deserves. But this harsh truth, that she was not ‘theirs’, just couldn’t sink in.
Quietly, from somewhere, ‘gratefulness’ had crept into her heart. Into the relationship. She, in her heart, was grateful to them, for saving her life that evening. She was grateful to them for giving her a home, an identity. Everything that Renee could claim to be today, was given to her by Preet and Parineeti.
Quietly, from somewhere, many questions had crept into her heart.
Was she born to unmarried, careless teenagers??
Was she born to poor parents who couldn’t provide for her, and hence had left her to be killed by vehicles, on the National Highway???
Who was she???
This quest for her the discovery of her roots was making her restless. But, going back to Gangtok was not a feasible solution. She wouldn’t find anything there. The incident had occured thirteen years back. She felt as if she had been suddenly air-dropped into the middle of the Pacific Ocean , with no compass, with no sense of direction, and she had to make it home from there.
But what, after all, was ‘home’? What was her destination??
For sure, she could find her roots, or make the best attempt to do so. Maybe if she tried to, she could find her roots. But, what would she do then?? Where would she be headed next??
Or, was she wrong to try to discover her roots??? What did it matter who her real, biological parents were??? They didn’t care for her. Now, why should she???
The questions were many, and the perspectives were often over-lapping and inter-twined. Surely, it was too much thinking to do for a thirteen year old. She needed some time, and she needed some solitude. . .