Today’s guest post is a short story brought to you by Saba. Thanks, Saba!
Light sunny morning during the winter days, the greenery around me was smiling, but a little reluctantly. The chill in the air was bothering them, as it was bothering us all! I was all sweaty running along the lines of the corner of the park losing away my calories. Gosh! I am still some pounds over the regular weight. I’ll have to cut out the size of those coffee cups too. But, the stress level that’s always up, doesn’t let me decrease them. The vacation plans I had, have gone down the drain yet again. The huge piling up of bills making it impossible for me to get some money aside for traveling. Sigh! It’s all work again this year. And living all alone adds up to the misery more. The thought of having someone care for me engulfed me deeply. The longing I have for that motherly figure increased. Mum, it would have been great if you would have been here with me. I wish I could fly backward, to the years of carelessness, the years of glory. Strange, but destiny played a great joke with humans with the greatest tragedy, it never allows them to relieve their memories again, never allows them to sneak into their past ever.
These thoughts were making me tired, I thought I should rest for a while. I rested my head on the hard seat of the park and didn’t know when dozed off!
“Hey, you!” Somebody shook me fiercely, “How can you sleep in a busy park? You ain’t a child anymore!” The stranger with a long beard and grey hair, thin as a stick with wide fierce eyes stared me back.
“I wish I could be!” I murmured and started tracing my steps towards home.
“Hey listen! what did you just say? you want to be a child once again?”
I stared at him intently, “I want to be, but you know what, destiny never takes a U-turn!” I sighed.
“For sure it doesn’t but blessings are counted and wishes do come true!” he said. I smiled sadly and turn to go.
The stranger shouted back, “Remember girl, wishes do come true and blessings bear fruits.” I nodded and went back home, as it is I was late to office. Now I will have to rush fast and finish out my freshening up and breakfast soon.
“Sarah! Come, dear, your breakfast is ready!” came the voice from downstairs.
Mom? I was shocked! How can mom come back, she was dead since two years. This is unbelievable. I rushed downstairs, oh yes! Oh my God! I clasped the stairs so that I couldn’t fall down.
“Mom?” I called up slowly.
“Yes dear, come down and finish your breakfast. Or are you still longing to quarrel with me for any other issues?”
I blinked, went back upwards in a total panic state.
Date, let’s check today’s date, I went towards the calendar, it was 31st March 2012! Means I have actually traveled back to a time, 6 years back, time actually crawled behind, or rather fled behind? Unbelievable! I went to the mirror and automatically my hand went to my wide opened mouth. There stared a 15-year-old Sarah at me, the one with some pimples on her face and wide curious eyes. Was that stranger some kind of a magician who made time travel back for me? Hunh!
Whatever, now I am a 15-year-old teenager with an IQ of 21 and experience of all the tough times. Great! Could life have been weirder?
“Sarah, if you don’t want to have anything, you can say that plainly. You don’t need to behave like a strange human running from one place to another. It’s OK, I’ll clear the table away.” Mom looked sad when she said this.
I ran towards her and gave her a long hug. I missed her, God, I missed her like mad.
“It’s strange you know, yesterday you were angry at me because I came to your high school results dressed like an old-fashioned aunt and talked in broken English and today, you are hugging me as if I am just out of my grave!” She asked with watery eyes and oh, so near she was to the reality.
I then recalled all the times when I had always spoken to her with arrogance, made her felt so downtrodden. Insulted her in front of my friends and gave them a chance to laugh at her on her face. Just because my father was now a successful businessman and used to send me loads of pocket money and mum was just a rejected divorced wife of his. He couldn’t care more for her anyways. She was just kept as a nanny to look after his beloved daughter. All those money on my account and the ATM card to make use of that income as I liked on this small age went to my head and made me an arrogant brat.
Tears of shame went down on my cheeks. “I am sorry mum. Would you believe me if I could tell you I am sorry and I have learned my lesson of life? Would you accept the fact that overnight I have turned in to an adult who knows what hurting her mother is and how painful and lonely staying away from you would be?” She looked at me puzzled, surely thinking what went into my head now. But, Oh, she was a mother and loved me so much.
She said, “It’s OK dear! I believe you. It’s never too late to say sorry and never too early to learn your lesson from life. Come, let’s have your breakfast.” We went down and the breakfast on the table made me count all those calories automatically.
“Oh! I couldn’t have all that without my Fitbit.” I squeaked.
“Fit what? What’s that now?” And then I remembered, six years down the lane, these calorie counting bands never existed. I went ahead gaining those extra calories. I have six years to burn those calories after all.
The landline phone was screaming on its top voice. I pressed the pillow more fiercely on my ears. God! When are those days coming when these will rarely exist? Gosh! I was already wishing to be an adult again. No, I have got a chance to relive my teen days, I am not going to waste it just like I before did. I will relive them fully, at their best.
“Sarah, it’s your friend asking for another weekend out with them. What do you want to do?”
I jumped on my bed and went down to answer and accept the offer. After all, I wanted to relive my life the best way.
“Wait, don’t accept it now,” Mum said. I took the phone from her and declined the offer sadly and faced my mum asking why she didn’t let me go. “It’s good to enjoy Sarah, but you should start saving too. It’s going to be soon when all these money that you get are going to stop coming and you are going to be on your own. Do you want to go bankrupt then? Do you want your bills piled up high and you barely surviving with bread and butter? Start saving, this isn’t going to snatch you your happiness of life, rather it would divide the same for you. So that you may get your share of happiness timely.” those words were said before.
I remembered very well. In the same manner, the same situation. Then, I had scolded her, packed up and fled with my ATM card. Now, I know it’s a chance for me to improve my life. A message from my sweet mother in the grave to me to make me know her advice were and are a gem, to be treasured. Hence, I started saving and started rectifying my previous mistakes.
Days of carelessness followed, but my studies were now a matter of first priority for me. I wanted to become a better candidate for my post. I enjoyed hanging around with friends, playing that loud music while I did the laundry and helped mum. Even she was shocked at the change, but I knew what dealing with laundry alone is. Spent lots of time talking to her, listening to her tales of my toddlerhood and laughed along with her.
She was ill, so much I thought instead of four years later, she may be leaving me now. The thought started clutching my heart. No! I couldn’t let her go so fast. I will force her to stay with me more. I don’t want her to go ever. Thus, I was beside her each moment. Every minute, every second. I never left her side. Once, she was so much burning with fever, she passed out her pee on her clothes and was quite embarrassed about it. My thoughts raged back and brought back the same scene of years back to life, the arrogant girl as I was, still, that day seeing her so much in misery, I cleaned her, washed and changed her and told her it’s OK, but all that was done so dryly.
But still, she clasped my hand and put her another hand on my head, “My baby, I am so sorry for being such a nuisance. But today what you have done for me, no child does for her parent without making them feel embarrassed. Thank you so much and may God give you whatever you wish for. May the angels be with you when you are stuck in a serious situation in life, my child.” She was saying those words with tears on her cheeks and face.
I was standing there recollecting that moment again and cleaned up her again, the same way I did before and she slept peacefully. I stood staring at her with my thoughts jumbled. Some going back to six years before and staring at her tear filled face and some at present taking in her loving personality inside me, knowing soon after some time I’ll be alone again, with all my problems to face, I’ll be again mature.
“Hey, you! Didn’t I tell you not to fall in sleep at a park?” I blinked the same stranger stared back at me with the same freaky large eyes. And I was still in my morning tracksuit with a Fitbit on my wrist. I gazed at him like a fool, open-mouthed and with a kaleidoscope of thoughts on my mind. Oh, maybe I slept hard and dreamt. Dreamt of all those moments I could have spent lovingly with mum, of all those advice I could have followed that would have left my life easier than it was today, of all those things I could have done so that my life would have guilt-free today. Sigh! Destiny never takes a U-turn Sarah, come let’s go back in the living real world. I stood and started walking back.
“You going again?” The stranger asked from behind.
“Did I go before too?” I was so puzzled.
“You thought you were dreaming. Isn’t it?”
This puzzled me even more. “Wasn’t I?” I inquired.
“Maybe, but your destiny took u-turn you see! You wished to go back to time again and you were given that chance. It’s good to know you changed your destiny for better. Not all get that chance, and even if they do, not all take it seriously.”
“You mean I actually went back in time and rectified my mistakes?” I asked with amazement.
“For a month, yes! You went back in time and relieved your moments.” He answered.
“But it’s impossible. I was just dreaming. It’s impractical. Life doesn’t go back in time!”
“Yes, life doesn’t reverse back in time and destiny never takes a U-turn. But, remember I told you, wishes do come true and blessings get answered.”
“But who blessed me such hugely that the blessing changed the rule of the universe? What kind of blessing that was that changed the course of destiny, of time?” I was so curious.
He smiled calmly. “A mother! The most loving person on earth. When she wishes something for her child deeply, it’s accepted. Her words of bringing your wish come true forced the destiny to change its course, it forced the time to retaliate back and give you the second chance in life.”
And then I remembered my mum saying, “Thank you so much and may God give you whatever you wish for.”
He looked at me and started walking in the opposite direction knowing very well that now I knew the answers to my questions.
“Hey, but who are you? I have never seen you before here.” I screamed towards him.
He turned, smiled and pointed his finger towards the sky. Then came the answer to my this question too, “May the angels be with you when you are stuck in a serious situation in life, my child”.
I stood there perplexed, watching him go. I somehow felt relieved now, I wasn’t alone anymore. The blessings of my mum were with me, I know the rectification of my mistakes will play as a life saver for me now. I am among those lucky ones who get a chance to rewrite their destiny twice, for whom destiny took a U-turn!