I no longer see the mirror shelf lined up with your array of kaajal pencils. Your room stays unusually clean. We miss being constantly pestered. Those times when you drop by for a few days? They are the most terrible, because after you are gone we don’t even have the task of waiting for you on our minds.
They say when your daughter is married you lose her to someone else. How is this any different? We barely get to see you or talk to you all that much, at least not like earlier days. I feel like we have already married you off to your independence. Although this sounds like complaining, I really am not complaining – because I was the one who always wanted you to have everything I didn’t. I wanted you to be armed for all battles that you may never have to face. I wanted you to be that daughter, who knows she can kick ass – and does. When I see glimpses of that in you, trust me sweetheart, there’s no prouder soul.
I sometimes feel I have lost the right to tell you things, to give you advice – not because you’re too independent or too old for it but because I think I have already told you everything I absolutely had to, and in some way or the other you have absorbed it and it reflects in the person you are today. By the way, you will never be too old for anything you have to ask of me, please know that.
You know those times when you are confused? When you are overanalysing things, there’s a weird pleasure I get then, watching you mull over and over till you can no longer think sensibly, not because I like to see you like that, but because I was never spoiled for choices like you are. And I worked damn hard to make that possible for you. My definition of success when I was your age would probably have been only slightly above your worst choice or failure today.
Have you noticed your father and I have stopped asking you that many questions? Does that mean we have stopped worrying? Absolutely and most certainly not. In fact, we worry more now since we don’t know a lot of what’s going on in your life. But what we have started doing, is having a little (a lot) more faith in you, just like we have realized it is high time we let you make your own mistakes.
DO NOT for a moment think we have forgotten you. How can we? You are forever a part of us. We love you more than we ever did – because today is what we wanted for you ever since you took your first step. We might be as conservative as one can get in India in certain matters, we may even impose a 10 p.m. curfew but trust us dear, nothing gives us more joy than seeing you on your own, elbowing your way into the crowd, so you can beat it.