This is where the thrill begins. Join Krishang and Kritika in their journey of perfectly imperfect love.
Here is all about Kritika in her own words.
Kritika….in words of Kritika
Sa Re Ga Ma Pa Dha Ni Sa….
My fingers trace through the most valued possession of mine, my harmonium and my voice echo in the silence of the dawn. I sit cross legged in the balcony attached to the bedroom on my mustard color mattress at this hour when the fateful night is about to bid adieu to another hopeful day. My eyes involuntarily give in to the outside world as I close them to take in the profound sensations throughout my body as if, each and every cell is reverberating with the rendition and lips curve into the most contented smile when my voice correctly aligns with the chord. The room clock strikes 4 AM in the morning, the time for my daily dose, my riyaz. During the two hour course of the morning ritual, I hear the merry chirping of the birds conversing good morning wishes to each other; the dogs barking at the end of the street, racing with the morning athletes; the pigeon’s ‘gutar-goo’ which sounded like two mature individuals talking secretly so that the children don’t hear; it seemed that the nature was singing the chorus to my song. Music is my caffeine to kick start the day! As the Sun’s rays engulf me in their warmth just as a mother embraces her child, I am ready, ready to face today! Nature is a miracle if we are able to feel it!
If music is the starter and the sweet dish, teaching satiates me like the main course. A dream made its way into reality when I was appointed as a lecturer in the premier commerce institute of the country.
Teaching is not a profession but a relief, my get away from the world of politics and hypocrisy. I feel secure, confined to the four walls of my classroom looking into those innocent harmless eyes, not bitten by the ‘money’ virus yet (an epidemic in the corporate world) ; well some have managed to join the league already, others will in years to come as they grow or rather decay from being humans to being mere money minting machines devoid of a heart to love and a brain to think! Another reason for me being here is to put a drop of change in the vast ocean filled with impurities; a task as possible as making the man on the death bed come to life; but there was still hope! Hope is the mantra that got me through the worst time of my life; well the worst till now in the span of 25 years.
My childhood memories are filled with the playful laughter and carefree smile of a happy go lucky girl who was cocooned in the loving embrace of her parents, shielded in the protective atmosphere of a joint family and brought up under the guidance of my teachers who gave the necessary push to my interest in academics in the formative years. Anything to everything was perfect, though I never realized this then. “Not a big deal”; I had told my mother when she preached me and Kabira ( my personal troublemaker at home, my younger brother, Kabir) to thank God for something as routine as eating food( I had laughed it out then ), “ Mummy, why so senti ?, my life is as normal as everyone else’s, I’ll thank Him when something extraordinary happens.”, I had told her. Only if I had known it then that it is extraordinary in itself to receive an ordinary life! I had taken my life for granted and it only took a second for life to turn the tables on me.
March 11, 2009, the date is imprinted in my mind and the happenings stamped in my memory. A phone call that I had reluctantly picked up, lazy to leave the comfort of my bed and a phone call, after which I had hardly slept peacefully in the comfort of my bed.
“Ye jinka phone hai unka Attari chowk par accident hua hai. Unki body ko Gangaram hospital lekar gaye hain;” I remember the words clearly.
( the person to whom this phone belongs has met with an accident near the Attari Chowk. His body has been taken to Lilavati hospital)
“Pata nahi sir koi bol nahi raha hai”; the person on the other side of the phone had told someone.
“Did he just say Body?” , I had replayed his words but he had cut the line till I could have asked.
Everything had went blank for me. I had struggled for my breath.
“ This can’t happen, no this can’t….”, I had muttered silent assurances to myself
and then to my broken mother in the car on our way to the hospital to see my father, to whom the phone belonged.
While we were trying to come to terms with what happened, destiny threw its final ball that hit me so hard that I lost the very balance required to sustain life, faith. The gullible teenager developed into a suspicious young woman finding it difficult to trust the world anymore.
Mr Rakesh Gupta, my father’s dearest friend and also his Chartered accountant. After the tragedy, the same person messed up a big time with my father’s accounts and properties. Of course, we helped him in his outright generous endeavor by supplying him with all the necessary information. He was family after all!
Family! What can you expect from an outsider when your own people, instead of attending to your wounds, stab you from the back. That’s exactly what they did!
Huh, for that heartless piece of paper, that does make the pockets bulky but a person, hollow. ‘Paisa’ , the villain in most of the lives was in mine too!
After the death of my grandmother within an year of my father’s demise, we were completely out casted by our so called joint family in every way possible.
Series of events led us to vacating the ancestral house and moving into the staff quarters, a two bedroom house provided as a perquisite of my mother’s service as junior accountant. The house equaled the living room of the old one but our mutual love was enough to supersede any limitation of money and space, for our hearts were clean and conscience pure, in words of my mom. We didn’t have too much in our pockets but had enough to eat, drink, survive and most importantly educate. My father, being a reputed service man himself had dreamt of good education for his children and I made sure to not to disappoint him on that!
I also started taking tuitions to support Kabir in his formative years, and soon teaching became my passion. Not to forget, I found the much needed solace in music that I had been learning since childhood but realized its value in my life when I stood all alone.
Though the pain has lessened over time, but the scars seem to be permanently inscribed in the reins of my memory. There are times when I am haunted by the thoughts of losing my mom or bhai to ….., when I pray anxiously to not to show me a day when I see my mother’s world break apart or that fearful look in the eyes of my brother, when I am guilty of being a tough egoistic teenager to my father when he was alive, when I am doubtful of everyone out there, when I want to shrug the heavy potli of responsibility off my shoulders and just kneel down to vent it all out, when I want to be loved, to be pampered (Though I am, by my mother but I ensure not to strain her enough to pamper me for there is already a manly looking little baby at home, Kabir and of course, as much as I hate to say it, she is growing old.).
Death of loved ones, betrayal, losing the teenage years to earn bread for a family, happens, people have greater problems! Yes, they do, far greater than what I have gone through and I can’t but feel fortunate for not being one of them. This has given me the courage and confidence to belittle my own problems and move on. Honestly, I have moved on, I have. I smile, I laugh, I hang out with friends(my two best friends, mostly), I dance(rarely, but when I am in mood, I do), I sing ( oh, I love this part) as if nothing happened. People call me a strong girl.
But then there are two worlds altogether as far as humans are concerned, the inner and the outer one. The outer world is a curtain to the inner turmoil, a not so happy place for most of us, not for me as well.
Time has passed, pain has subsided, events forgotten but the void remains. A deep emptiness which cannot be expressed. I don’t remember what led to it but I have felt it for years now and accepted it as a part of me. My smile seems a mere attempt to stretch my cheek muscles for the heart seems least interested. My laughter is a sound without a feeling of an expansion in the chest( Sometimes I think, should I visit a psychiatrist?) . I socialize for the name sake of it, otherwise I am good alone than among those sugar coated words and masked faces of concern. Rationally speaking, I should not put everyone in that category but as hard as I try, my doubts take over the better of me for my experiences speak greater than my own conscience.
The reason is enough to believe that I have made no thick friends, other than of course , Shivali and Saumya, the cartoons in my otherwise black and white life. My chaddi- buddies since school and forever!
After school, when most of the kids develop into the college going chicks or stud guys, I grew fat, put on specs and looked like the khadoos aunty on the campus who does not like to mingle. I was more into the libraries, hiding behind those pages than in the cafes, night clubs or lover points. But, I have always felt that music is my compensation to whatever I have missed, if I have. When I sing, my wavering mind comes to a halt and the thoughts seem to disappear as I allow my voice to dance with the notes. Nature is another retreat for any gloomy day and if it rains, my day is made!
Well, there is another tension hovering over my mind since last few days. My mother is after me to find a deserving groom for myself. And why would she think that I am the deserving lady for the deserving groom? I look nowhere close to those chirpy, fashionable, pro Honey Singh, perfect figure girls who are the dream of every bachelor out there. On the contrary, I am heavy( well, fat is the word), I prefer wearing traditional( mostly because it suits my body type, but I tell people that I don’t like western much,shhhhh…), I put on the ear pods to listen to the Lata Mangeshkar classics or Jagjit Singh Ghazals ( something which people of my age use to doze off when sleeps seems far away) and lastly, my idea of love is far from being sexually attracted, infact that’s the last on the list( my two best friends seem hell worried on this part). It is not that I am waiting for a man to love me, my mom loves me, my brother does and so do my friends. And I love them back, a lot, but, deep down, there is a feeling that I am missing out on something, something really special. Love or something else, I have no idea.
It is not that I have not thought about my partner to be but, my idea of him is too abstract to be true. It is just that the intensity of my pains doubled the intensity of my imagination of someone who would crush the pain in his hands and throw it off my mind and body.
Before I replay the perfect guy story in my mind and then curse myself for wasting my time over something that is far from reality, let me sleep. Early to bed, early to rise, oh my god, if I ever marry someone, he would think he had married a grandma behind a young face. Why doesn’t mom understand?