Oct 07, 2015
The last time my phone beeped with ‘mommy’ calling was on 22nd October 2012. She had a habit of calling me every morning, afternoon & evening. We would talk for a minute or two each time. Sometimes she would call me continuously, if I didn't answer.
She was the one who called, always. She thought something went wrong with me, I pacified her and told her that there was no electricity, and I couldn’t sleep.
I told her I was bored and missing home. That was it, she broke down and started crying, asking me to come home as it had been five months since I saw her last. I was not the most expressive daughter, so the fact that I said that I was missing home made her cry.
The moment I hung up my phone’s battery died, and I couldn’t charge it. The next morning, I couldn’t get over my thought from the previous night, I felt I had committed a sin.
Around afternoon, I started worrying that I need to call my mother otherwise she would panic, considering my phone was off all day. I used a neighbour's phone to call her. I called her again and again, no answer.
That moment I got a call from my brother, he was crying, and I knew something had gone horribly wrong. He told me I had to take the next flight and come back to Punjab, and that mother had met with an accident, she was in a coma.
The phone beeped with a message. I opened it. It was from Airtel. 17 missed calls from my mother. Till today, three years later, those 17 missed calls haunt me. What would she have wanted to say, that she called me 17 times?
I resent myself for never expressing how much I loved her, what she meant to me, how I would give my life thousand times over just to hear that warm voice again, to hug her, to hear her call me “beta”.