A Haunting Memory
When we started this initiative we got a lot of mails saying people want to share their stories anonymously on the blog. So we start with this story where the victim is happy to be safe but the day has become a haunting memory for life
In her own words….
Its past 2 am and she lies awake..Try as she might,she cannot sleep.She is haunted by the memory of that day again.
It was a pleasant day,spent leisurely squabbling with her sister.The phone rings,the callers asks when her dad is expected home,she tells him..why should she not?She has known him for so many years. A little while later,the doorbell rings. She opens the door.Its him,the caller,smiling at her.She informs him that Dad is not due to arrive for another hour.He smiles and tells her,he has come to see her. After the formal questions of Chai-pani done with,he asks about her sister.Sister is taking a shower,it being a summery evening.She offers to call up her dad,he stops her by tugging her hand!Pulls her to a sitting position ,on the couch right next to her.She moves away..he moves towards her..still not letting go of her hand.She knows there is something wrong with the way he is squeezing her hand.
She manages to free her hand and rushes inside to call her sister..Sister is being a brat and refuses to come out.She goes out and sits on the single chair opposite to him,carrying on polite conversation,all the while her heart is beating so fast,she is sure its going to burst!
He beckons her again,this time with just a gesture of hands.Asks her to sit on his lap!!!She looks at him incredulously and says aloud”WHAT??” he shushes her.Now, she knows there is something positively wrong.Her heart is beating very scared.She goes and tells her sister to COME out THEN! Sister comes up with a better plan and comes out and announces that they have to go out. He tells her to let the sister go,while they can spend sometime catching up.This time she absolutely refuses. Seeing that he is not getting anywhere,he finally left.
She is feeling miserable.There was something so wrong in this whole situation.She is feeling guilty,like she might have encouraged him in some way.She doesn’t share it with her sister,still feeling guilty.But it was her baby sister..and she wanted to keep her safe. All she wants to do is climb into her Mumma’s lap and curl up into a ball and cry ..cry her heart out!But she couldn’t do that..coz mumma is not around anymore..it had been 6 months since they bade her the final goodbye.
She tells her sister to go out and play and she herself locks the main door and goes next door to her best friend’s house.The friend’s mom took one look at her face and knew something was wrong.She came and hugged her and asked her what it was..And the dam burst.There was no stopping her tears then.She cried and cried and told the entire episode to the friends mother..Her adopted Mother..The mother cried with her too,fuming at HIM and holding her all the time.How could she not, when she had promised Mumma before she left for the hospital,one last time, that she would take care of her GIRLS?
The Mother also scolded the girl-as to why didn’t she ask him to leave? Why did she open the door in the first place?
The girl replied-“How could I not?He is my dad’s friend and his daughter is my friend!”(This friend and the best friend are different individuals)
The Mother spoke to Dad and told him about this whole thing.Needless to say,the GIRLS were told never to open to door to anyone..even if it was an uncle!And they never heard from HIM.HE would even change his paths if he saw them.
And that night,as she lay in her bed..the images of that day played and replayed in her mind again and again.She tried to imagine different endings to the scene..but everything let her feeling cold.The thought of what would have happened if the sister wasn’t home,sent a chill up her spine.
She is woman now and has a daughter of her own.As she watched her beautiful baby sleep,she was filled with anger and remorse all at the same time.She vows to protect her baby,no matter what..she is going to prepare her baby,she is going to tell her about these predators,she is going to make sure her daughter is not naive like her!
As her eyes well up with tears,she scoots closer to her husband,who is instantly awake and asks her-“what’s the matter?” “remembering that day again..what if sis was not home”..Husband just holds her close,hugs her tight and repeats over and over in her ears,”you are safe,I am here with you”
Will this memory ever stop haunting her?I think NOT! But,she surely knows,that she is one of the lucky few..