'My mother - tribute of a yearning son' , written by Subhrajyoti Parida is a great book, because of the simple fact that he narrated the deepest of the emotion and the elements of life in the simplest of manner. This is a book that I would always love to keep by my side and also gift to anyone who is in need. Subhrajyoti has very simply shared the story of his mother, how bravely she fought cancer in her last time and how the family stood by her side. To make things even more comprehensible, he has given a brief overview about the nature of the cancer his mother was suffering from, so that the reader is at the same level comprehending where the story is going. You might also want to read about cancers here.
Subhrajyoti parida has not only covered just the story portion but also many other aspects like, the family bonding, the morals, the culture, the uncertainty of life as well as the Hindu culture and Hindu traditions associated with death, funeral and post-funeral rituals. He has also explained how are certain traditions followed and what is their significance.
The uncertainty of life as expressed in the sudden demise of Subhrajyoti's aunt also makes us realise that there is no known time of death in one's life and we must spend as much we can, into building our relationships stronger and bonded with love. Each moment so lived should be atleast satisfactory, so that when we meet our end, we have life lived well.
There is another aspect of life that Subhrajyoti captures well in the story; the aspeCt of maturity, not just by age or thoughts but that of time and life. As the time matures, life gives us ample space to understand birth as well as death, conveying a message that can be held as an eternal truth that everything that is born is to die too, everything that starts is to end too. And as we age, our mind creates a balance of life between the truths of birth and death. This balance is not easily created when we are of tender age. There is a huge proportion of unbalance, when losses happen before maturity i.e. when one is too young. Another type of unbalance is created when a person looses a dear one or a partner when one is too old. At that stage when one needs his/her beloved the most, life ends them in a weird state of loneliness where everyone is around but the person is still struggling alone. The former state of the child is like an infant who hasn't learnt to walk and loses his legs. Sooner or later he gradually learns to walk with the help of artificial support system. The latter is like someone who lost his legs in a long time, the state of being handicapped. Hence, a lot in life depends on the maturity of time.
I can completely relate to the story with my life's story but I could not refrain myself from comparison. Although my mother suffered a different illness but there was a gradual loss. I lost a bit of my mother everyday. I was a child with too much faith on God and too much sensitivity. At my school going age, I lacked the calm and composed behaviour and my mother's loss terribly broke my heart. I think that if I had read this book back then, i might have imbibed some calmness and some understanding of the eternal truths of life. Therefore, i feel i would certainly recommend this book to anyone who is in need, so that they can prepare themselves for their losses and can gather strength to cope up with life.
There were little truths about life and living that could not be overlooked and they do cross your mind if you are musing while reading and spend a good amount of time in soaking in the story, but i think some philosophical elements were lacking and author could have added those elements for quick readers.
Coming to the culture and traditions, the author has very beautifully described the arya samaj as well as the brahma kumaris. He has also described how the rituals were done under the systematic guidance of his elders and the emotional turmoil he was facing, be it about keeping the ashes or staying up for the funeral till the end or the last bhoj for the mother. I liked how the author explained the significance of everything, which adds to the serenity of the culture and reflects upon the rich spiritual knowledge that is passed on from one generation to another, even today.
There is yet another thing that i could not help but notice. A doctor, even though designated a person with a noble profession, gets cursed even for his/her best efforts, and mainly when lives are lost. Part of it i agree is attributed to malpractice but the rest of it is also attributed as a routine. Almost every person who walks in to a doctor's clinic or hospital, curses him/her for all the pain is caused to the patient, ignoring the facts that , firstly, patient is mostly responsible for ill health (except in certain cases.), and secondly, doctors are not Gods. They cannot bypass death. But the doctors are still cursed for all the pain they cause and i am happy to see that subhrajroti captured this delicate aspect as well.
And at last the ultimate feelin that a person's essence always remains in you. how can u ever detach yourself from that person? I would like to state a statement from the movie "Collateral beauty" here, that we must make sure that we understand the collateral beauty of it all. And reading Subhrajyoti's story, i would again say the same statement - 'We must make sure that we understand the collateral beauty of it all'.
I cannot comment about the design and make of the book , since i have had the honour of reading only the eBook version of this amazing book. The eBook is sectioned well. I liked the previous cover better. The language is very much comprehensible. Price of the book is also comfortable for all kinds of people, both student and working class. In the end you will find beautiful poems dedicated to mothers, motherland as well as mother nature. This book is definitely worth it. I superloved this book.
My rating: 4.3/5
My favourite verses/portions of the story:
"I realized at that time that my life will no longer remain as it was before. Equations will change"
"How could I emotionally disassociate myself from my departed mom?"
"I have too learned to handle the emotional turbulence due to mom's sudden and unexpected demise in this past one year. I can now valiantly fight against them and come out victorious."
"Life without you, mom, is difficult
Life without you, mom, is painful
Life without you, mom, has unfillable void
Yet, i am sure, i can make it as you always wised,
For I am your dear son, in flesh and blood..."
"जननी जन्मभूमश्चि स्वर्गादपगिरीयसी "
(Mother and motherland are dearer than paradise.)
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Subhrajyoti Parida is a graduate in Mechanical Engg. from Indira Gandhi Institute of Technology, Odisha and holds a Post Graduate degree in Industrial Engg. from National Institute of Industrial Engg. (NITIE), Mumbai, specializing in Supply Chain & Operations Management and is an APICS Certified Supply Chain Professional (CSCP). Currently, he is employed in Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL) and residing in Bangalore. He basically hails from the temple city of Bhubaneswar, Odisha.
When not managing supply chain, he loves spending time in poetry, photography, traveling, and of course, spending quality time with his sweet wife & his family.
Dr. Prerna Singla
Founder & Editor-in-chief - Hall of Poets
Author : "The Crown of Sekhmet", “The Bible of Marriage”
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