Its after many days that Anu finds time to come to me. She looks tired, her full figure a little more rounder, her eyes deep in sadness. I wait for Anu to open up.I know she will.She always does.
Anu looks longingly at a vacant spot and tells me in how she finds it difficult to keep her self strong. I listen and she tells me of her struggle to keep herself motivated,to keep the work going, to keep the fun going, to keep up the smile. She complains of the burden of earning and tending to the family.It’s difficult,she confesses. We sit together in silence.
I seek these sanctuaries of rejuvenation in the garden that I tend to, in the cooking that I do, in the music that I listen to but then there are times when the struggle to keep up is all consuming, draining my resolve, questioning my belief in the self and then I lie on the sofa for hours together flitting through numerous stories of exploitation that the television brings to my home,checking face book a hundred times a day ,liking and un-liking photographs and news items which have nothing to do with me..but in that sense, what has anything to do with me at all?
Isn’t life a lonely journey from the first breath to the last? Are we not each of us alone? What can groups and friends and family and relatives do?
It’s not usual to hear such depressing stuff from my dear friend. I grow restless and offer to make us a cup of coffee. She likes it light and sugarless and I am all for sugar. It gives me some reprieve from her constant cribbing.
I am wondering why my evening is being spoiled by such soul -searching when I have found my bliss in channel searching. I admit my love and respect for her ability to cope the way she does and I tell her of my admiration for her. Many people I know,think highly of Anu. Her many talents and her pleasant demeanor win her admirers easily. Then why complain, I ask her pointedly.
There’s one thing about the complaint mongers. They expect a sympathetic ear always as if they are the only ones troubled in the world. My change of tone sends that message across to Anu. She gets up in a huff and goes home. I go back to my channel surfing comfort zone. Each to his own.