A Quest on Overdrive … :)

An eccentric rambler on life's lessons and mercies, found and lost… :)

Dearest Daughter…

36 Comments

Today I am at a loss for words.

You know how much I would go on and on to you, about not ever letting yourself feel any less, no matter what anyone says, than boys. To Be a Girl, and yet be Equal. I would talk endlessly on how not to take flak from them.

I loved dressing you up. Remember, how I would go ga ga over clothes, for there is so muchmore by way of choice for girls, than boys. And I would watch you with such pride.

I was also terrified all the while. Never let anyone, especially strangers or acquaintances pick you up, hug you or try and make you sit on their lap. No sireee, not at all. I told you about that too, you remember? Your solemn face, and your brothers’ too, as you listened, and did like wise. The good touch and the bad touch.

I told you how just believing in yourself, would get you the world, and its mother in law! I meant that, and I still do.

I watched, I listened, and worried. But you see, I did have faith in you. You could never go astray anywhere, with the values we built together, you and I and your brothers.

I insisted you play cricket with the boys. That you learn to play rough, just like them, while playing football. That you never sniffle and come with girlish whines. That you go out and be just like them. I knew I was doing right, I know I did right, for is not ours the best land in the world where you can be yourself? Not a boy, or a girl, but you!

But, that is why too, I insisted you learn self defence. For I know you, I have faith and trust in you, but I cannot say the same for a multitude of lecherous limbs out there in the big world.

And today, as you lie bruised and hurt, not just your body, but your spirit, what words can I say to console you? The lecherousness of the world took you by surprise, did it not? The passion of their misguided, misogynistic, moralistic, mad, mad, mad manic clammy notion fair took your breath away did it not?

I am sorry, my dearest. Not for them, but for this land, and her daughters who still have to face the demons we failed to vanquish with our Preamble. For this land, that spoke of Respect to Women, but listened to tenets to suppress them. For you, who had your illusions shattered when he pulled at your clothes and hit you on the head!

But I shall not let this be. And you shall join me. Today and tomorrow we shall go out again, and tell them, and the impotent public and the law of the land, that we matter. We will live, as equal citizens, as worthy women, with the core values of care, concern, respect and humanity. For is that not all we need? To be human? To serve that which is in all of us. The self same divinity, that you have, and he forgot he had, but borrowed an Uttama Purusha’s name to indulge in the lowest of crimes!

I shall not let it be. And you, being my daughter, will not either. I know you will pluck that courage again, from the ground where it lay briefly bleeding and battered, and we shall again, pit our might against a morality that is not one at all. Against injustice.

Come, my daughter, it is time. Let us pledge to bring back honour, and courage.

It is time. We must step out, and face the demons.

It has been done before, and it shall be, again. The Mahishasuras of Ignorance and Opression shall be overcome. Only this time we are Shakti. We.

Yours, always

Your Mother

26 January, 2009

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Author: Usha Pisharody

A rambler, pretends to be a teacher, loves to dream, and go on Quixotic Quests in the Realm of Romance With Life...

36 thoughts on “Dearest Daughter…

  1. Thank you ….for all that you have expressed in a letter that’s love,courage ,hope and guidance….and also thank you for all that’s left unsaid….the way you understood..
    I love you too…this mother who sees so much and says even more….and makes me understand things I ought to…and makes me remember that which I had forgotten…ma would love to meet this mother someday….another who understands…

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  2. great article…..
    could feel the pain….

    as i said in hitchwriters post,
    may those who pillage or misbehave in the name of religion rot in deepest corners of HELL……

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  3. If there is one word of advice I can give your daughter, and to you, it would be to be strong. And be passionate about what you believe in. And to keep on working towards attaining what is rightfully yours, the liberty to be and to do anything you choose to do. Because you have the power to change society for the better. And because you can.

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  4. Vibes… I feel vibes resonating from that.

    Beautiful, as ever. 🙂

    Peace.

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  5. the love from a mom’s heart oozes out in a very briantly in this post…

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  6. Meg, I began writing something in response to what was happening around, but I did not want it to be another observation. Deleted a couple of drafts, and then after the write I posted on the other blog, this just came spontaneously. This is the only way to be, I guess for me!!! I do wish more than ever, for a daughter, but that seemingly hollow feeling is less, after the couple I have found here, 🙂 🙂 Thank you for you, and for the way you continue to give sustenance to this mother 🙂

    Ajit, I know, I did read that. Damn them all, as you say, for they are the lowest form of life on Earth! Thank you for voicing your perspective too!

    Sagarone, Thank you for the strength of the advice, and the reassurance that comes from knowing how it must be. While the daughters I have are those I have acquired along the way, :), especially from the children at school, and the lovely young ones I have met in the virtual world, I do not feel any less about the pain they feel, and their mothers would! Being passionate about doing what one believes in is the key to living, and that is what each year I share with all the children who pass out! God Bless them all! Especially with the strength and courage to face the harshness of reality! But they will, for they can! Thank you so very much!

    Karthik, thank you!

    Rakesh, thank you for the visit and for the way you look at this post.

    ***
    REf: A Quest, Daughter Dear
    (Somehow I cannot post a reply on my other blog, A Quest. Do excuse me, while I do a bit of trouble shooting there. Many thanks to all who had responded to it!)
    ***

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  7. A Doubt:

    Is the comment form, embedded below post working on your blogs? Mine shows the space, but refuses to accept any from there!

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  8. OMG!!!!!!!I *HEART* this post!!!!
    I am so, so proud of you Usha Pisharody!

    After 36 or 48 hours of feeling so miserable and hopeless this post, no YOU made me smile again. (maybe I over reacted but it really came as a troubling … disturbing, shock)

    Yes that’s the way to go!!!! Let’s react to this Ravana Sena with strength and by holding hands and with petitions and with open letters to Renuka Chaudhury … but NOT with feeling sad or hopeless.
    THANK YOU!!!!

    Me going forward with a similar response 🙂

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  9. Touching words Usha.

    Really shocked by all that is happening. I wonder why down the ages, society and men have found the need to curtail woman’s freedom, muzzle them, oppress them, deny them freedom, do not let them be themselves in their own right, keep them subservient… What makes them do it?? What are they afraid of??

    Woman as mother is revered and that too if we stick to ‘their’ norms of motherhood, the sati savitri Nirupa Roy like suffering saint. These people cannot accept any other form of woman, the independent one who dresses differently, drinks or dances. As if it is any of their business.

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  10. Whoa! What a way to start the day!!! Makes me feel proud of being a girl and to know you. All hail daughters!
    Gave me Goosebumps 🙂

    Thanks for posting this 🙂

    Hugs 🙂

    (BTW, still in awe of your poem on daughters on the other blog :-
    ))

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  11. it works for me….

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  12. While all the other posts and the actual news made me scream in frustration, here is one beautiful write-up that made me cry.
    Hats off to you and your thoughts! I know that, when I get married and have a daughter, I’ll do exactly this, for this is what my Mom-Dad did for me.
    Keep writing! And I just blogrolled you. How couldn’t I, after this gem of a blog entry?

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  13. Its painful to say the least.
    Wake up my country !

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  14. Embedded form is not working

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  15. Wow..What was a great aricle..Indeed heartfelt..

    We should take it with atmost concern that people are trying to make India a Saudi or Afghan..If we don’t react,they will be on top of us..

    Good day Usha..I have been following your posts sine a few days..Yup i came here thru IHM’s blog 🙂

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  16. Hey I had left a comment here!!!

    Just came back again to rant .. Karnataka CM, BS Yeddiyurappa says, ” No one should allow goons to take the law into their own hands.”
    Now, where is the question of taking any laws in their own hands?

    This enlightened CM is either unaware of the law or he is personally against women going to pubs and sitting with men?!
    Next they will say the it’s against the culture for women to wear any clothing but Indian clothing and they must stop going to pubs.

    Such talk is dangerous because such rules go on becoming more and more restrictive. People should be allowed to choose, because when we start empowering these people to make rules for how we should live our lives sooner or later they start dictating us, by then it may be too late.
    Have you seen how more and more schools have salwar kurtas in uniform in India? When we were young we wore skirts or trousers during winters. There are no such rules for men…
    Their man (looking like a creep) on TV said, the girl were behaving against the norms of decency …

    I am just MAD.

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  17. It is a beautiful post. Your anger and trauma are well-evident, yet I like the optimistic and courageous attitude you ahve. It is inspiring.

    http://alchemistpoonam.worpdress.com

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  18. Just today, my grandmother (coolest one in town) saw this thing on the news and looked at me and said.. I wonder if I should have just taught you to be submissive. Life then would have been easier for you..

    She explained to me that it always hurts more when you know that what is going is wrong. If you didnt then you wouldnt be bothered by it.. Ignorance is bliss. But here, knowledge plus the urge to do something frustrates us..

    Quickly she added.. If there wasnt any frustration, there would be any change.

    Subtly hinting that I must voice my opinion on this and not stay quiet..

    I saw a lot of blogs writing about it..But I wonder what can be done and how?

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  19. Wonderfully well written! We as a people ought to be ashamed of who we are and what we do, especially in the light of incidents in Mangalore over the past couple of days!

    And, what honour are you talking about that we pledge to being about? Please be realistic…..this nation is lost and can never regain its glory….we are thieves, rapists, illiterates and above all hippocrates…… add some more and even then that wouldn’t be enough!

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  20. Nice timely letter to your daughter. Sadly, there will be many mothers telling various things to their daughters. Hope you moms and your daughters be courageous and that better sense prevails and fanatics keep their fanaticism within the confined walls of themselves and their own lives.

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  21. For each of you who empathize and have taken time out to share in the write and its notions… a heartful of thanks.

    Thank you. Wl come back a little later 🙂

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  22. I’m speechless,Usha!This post really made me choke with emotions!
    Suffice would it be to say you spoken for all the mothers who have fears and aspirations for their daughters!
    What is going on in our motherland at this point in time makes me cringe at her future.But after reading this post,you certainly have instilled some hope in me.
    Thank you so very much for such a moving post.

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  23. I was filled with sheer rage on watching the events on TV which took place at Mangalore and Nasik where some unknown out fit using Ram’s name and Raj Thakerey’s goons respectively were running amok. Just two months back these goons had all gone underground, don’t know for what reason. I think the way our citzens showed angger against Mumbai carnage similar crusade has to lauched against such acts of mindless violence. Our administration has to be woken up to act against these home made Talibanis.

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  24. As a daughter, and hopefully as the mother of a daughter some day , all I want to say to you –

    THANK YOU.

    From the bottom of my heart

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  25. :)..I felt like it was my mother saying it all to me 🙂

    You shall never cease to have that effect 🙂

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  26. IHM, thanks enormously for perking up and for a stunning post; the way to fight them is to get them to in some way feel the shame of it all, deep inside! And with relentless “offers” like the one you have spoken about, you can be sure they will finally learn to refuse. Till then, they are “refuse”, as far as I am concerned!

    Shail, just this evening, night actually, on Times Now, Arnab tried to pinpoint and pin down the Ram Sena Natl Gen SEc.. a Vinay, asking him if he would say those 40 men were hooligans. He refused to answer. On persistent and relentless questioning [Arnab excels there!!] he said, would you believe..NO. There it is! They will still defend their right to say how a woman should appear and where she can go and what she can do!! Creeeps!!!
    Thank you for your response and adding to what is there in the post! Thanks a ton!

    Rini, thank you:) It fills me so much to hear it again, from you. Thanks… !

    Ajit… 🙂 good! And I hope the surge goes on!

    Surbhi, thank you for those wonderfully warm and empathetic words. Also for the promise that you daughter when you have one, will be just as special as you 🙂 Thanks for blogrolling too!

    Dhiren, indeed, Wake up my country! At least now!! Thanks for those pertinent thoughts and words!

    nimis540, thank you for droppin in and sharing those words on the write! I do hope that we do not allow these elements to take it the Taliban way. WE cannot. We must not!

    IHM, I wonder if you watched Times Now this evening. There was an interview with one of the girls, and then with a BJP, Congress and (drum roll!) Ram Sena Gen. SEc. a Vinay… who said (drum roll thundering!!] we condemn the act, it was criminal…blah blah blah… and then finally [as I have said in reply to shail] that no those 40 men are NOT hooligans!!! AAAaaaaaarrrrrrggghhhh!!!!!!!

    Poonam Sharma, thank you for those good words for the write, and the writer:) Shall certainly drop by at your space .. :)Thank you for the concern for them too!

    R.V., your grandmother is a wise woman… truly a cool one to have understood the nuances and niceties of the point she was trying to make. Kudos to her! And yes, I do feel youshould take the hint… and while we may not be able to make Earth shattering changes in the Nation, we can influence the immediate surrounding, and hope it ripples out. Never let go an opportunity to speak up, or against, or just assert yourself. Things taken in small amounts, and done in little bits, go a long way:) My two paise on what we could do, perhaps 🙂

    Rakesh, yes, the reality is bitter, and nauseating.. but nothing is ever lost, till we give up in futility. We shouldn’t. maybe not find the honour and glory of yore, but perhaps a little redemption and find humaneness again? Thank you for the kind words too!

    Gopinath, I hope too. Thank you for these uplifting words:
    Hope you moms and your daughters be courageous and that better sense prevails and fanatics keep their fanaticism within the confined walls of themselves and their own lives. I pray, I do pray, and I will in my own way work towards it!

    Deeps, we were all rendered both helpless and speechless, as we watched it happening on television! The urge to smash something, especially their heads has not quietened within even now! But the moment we give into the fear they hope to ingrain in us, they win. We simply cannot let that happen. Stay firm, stay grounded, stay focussed, and be you!

    Balvinder, when, but when will that admin. wake up? What more will it take to shove them? That is the biggest worry. Will it be too late for sanity by then. Which is why we cannot depend upon them, but aaam aadmi has to step in and acquire that strength and assume responsibility. It is gone beyond the scope of law as far as I see it!! Thank you for your words and your perspective.

    Chandni, honoured. Thank youfor those words. If it has touched you, it is worth it! Thank you too, for the faith I find again and again, in making sure our daughters will be taken care of, and will take care!

    Aruna, 🙂 🙂 that is a touching thing to say too! Thanks a ton!!!

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  27. Its just posts like yours that show us hopes. India needs us to go forward and actually pull it out from not one but many levels of inhuman corruptions.

    This post is so humanitarian and rich in your usual literary prowess.

    Admiring and yes inspiring too.

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  28. Soumya, thank you for the way you read it too!
    Thanks a ton!

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  29. Ah! as always am late..such a tender yet affirming way of inspiring! Thank you 🙂

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  30. A very heartrending post. Thank you for this. I was sick watching news and seeing pictures of some watching onto as the girls were getting beaten up.

    We need to stand up against it. I don’t know how. I hope we have more mothers like you. Strong and sensible!

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  31. beautiful..inspiring post! I hope I can be as strong and sensible as you…

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  32. You almost made me cry.
    My heart went out to my daughter, and to all the daughters who get hurt in such ugly scenes.

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  33. Sashu, thank you dear one!

    Solilo, thanks for adding your voice too! Very heartening!

    Imp’s Mom, when we need to be, we can. I just hope it does not come to that though! Thank you for the wonderfully warm words!

    Mampi, as I write in this reply today, it feels more depressing now that those goons have been let out of Jail. Can you imaging what is likely to happen a couple of weeks from now, on Valentine’s Day! Indeed, it really was heart rending watching those visuals.
    Thank you for the good words, and for connecting to the write. Thanks so much1

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  34. I’ve always wanted to know what my mother was thinking…always…might it be that she’s thinking this way too?
    Thank you ma’am for this lovely piece

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  35. Vrinda, thank you too 🙂

    Like

  36. Pingback: For Meggie… | A Quest on Overdrive ... :)

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