Sitting in my wedding mandap near a man who was about to be my husband in next few minutes and through next few rituals of putting sindoor and mangalsutra (Indian pearls symbolizing a wedded woman) in my neck, my mind and eyes were moreover towards a man sitting behind panditji and was trying to hide his eyes full of tears and face full of fears from me. Well in the entire marriage hall, except those two eyes, everyone was waiting for the young man to put sindoor in my head and declare us as married couple, but for that man happening of that one ritual was almost the last step when he was about to lose all his rights over me officially before the whole society. That moment was almost like giving blood to somebody else to save his life, knowing that blood is yours and you will have to give it.
That man was the same person to whom I called ‘Papa‘ for the first time nearly 24 years ago. And believe me that was the moment when I actually realized the meaning and emotions of a Father. His face was transparently showing mixed emotions of happiness, winning, completion of a big responsibility added with fear for my future. Though after some days I asked him the reason of his tears on the golden day of my marriage, he just answered, ‘you will not understand it right now’ and then moved silently from there, leaving my question unanswered and me as a curious girl seeking for the answer.
After few years, we were sitting at my home with an addition to our family, my little boy. He was playing happily with his naanu and me with my husband were just enjoying that moment. Meanwhile one of our neighbors came to drop their child for few hours at our home. As all the kids, my son too left playing with papa and started playing with the other kid. After some time both the kids started fighting for a cute teddy bear, and the other kid started crying for that toy. I tried my best to convince my son to give the toy to the other kid because I didn’t want him to cry as he was my responsibility. Finally, my son gave the toy to him and came on my lap and cried a lot. Once the whole room got silenced by the kids crying, my father said, ‘I can understand his pain of giving his own asset to somebody else‘. That statement described me all his feelings of that day.
Being very honest, this relation of a daughter and a father, unlike other relations is indescribable because it is just full of emotions and there is no space for words. This is not just one instance of my life which made me realize and live this beautiful relation, in fact, there are several other moments which either I lived or my father lived, and description of such instances to others still makes us live those moments. Be it holding me for the first time in his hands, or making me speak for the first time, or listening the word papa for the first time from me, or playing games with me while driving his bike, or watching me getting graduate, or getting awards from the ministries or balancing my married life with my golden career or seeing me as a mother, all these make my father lives his childhood.
I have heard many people saying that xyz girl is almost like her mother, many people said the same for me too, and I too felt very happy that time, but when somebody says that “she is same as her father”, no reason, that statement gives me immense pleasure and proud.
Reading my this story many of you might be thinking that your father is very tough and strict and so on. In that case, today, please trust on my one statement blindly, ‘Every father is same as a coconut, hard from outside but softest from inside’.
With the joy of living these many beautiful moments again through this article, ‘I heartily wish my father and all the fathers A very Happy Fathers Day‘. Love you lots Papa.
By: Himani Joshi