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My Mom, My Teacher

By RK Rishikesh Sinha, New Delhi

Today is Mother’s Day. With weeks of ‘continuously’ (don’t read ‘continually’, I mean it) working on a professional project (today happens to be the day of submission) my state is such that my brain has stopped working, my body has stopped taking up instructions from the central nervous system -- I am sitting and pushing myself (as if today is an Endurance Test Day) only to add a stuff here.

Thanks to Prabal Atreya’s article on his mother, Ritwick Sinha’s poem, which has rejuvenated me, inspired me to sit and write ‘something’ about my mom. (I will not write more, reason – an article is nothing to describe about my mom’s sacrifice and labour).

What Prabal and Ritwick’s words have done for me in giving me the boost, at this condition, I promise, million dollars wouldn’t have pushed me as much!

My mom has always cherished a dream that her son should study in an English medium central school. That is the reason that I being born in a village didn’t attend school there though students of my age had started attending school. I didn’t go to nearby school.

My school was my mom, my teacher was my mom. She used to teach me subjects like English and Mathematics at home. I still remember the rhymes of English (Baba Black Sheep, Jack and Jill) and the abacus lessons in Mathematics that she taught me. My mom didn’t know Hindi; she assured that I should also learn Hindi, she sent me to learn the subject from Bina Di of Baromoni.

However, after much struggle and persuasion on her part, I with the court’s directive was directly admitted to Class II in the Kendriya Vidyalaya Panchgram, Assam. Such was her teaching that I was in much better position than my friends who had come passing pre-school and Class I. I remember she didn’t sleep whole night on the first day of my school journey.

Her struggle didn’t end with me. Likewise she tried hard single-handedly, fighting with the bureaucracy and red-tapesism, to get my two brothers admitted in the KVs.

If I ever fulfilled her dream in my long academic career starting with her lessons, it was after 8 years, when I came second in Class IX, KV Srinagar, when she saw me taking my report card from my school Principal in the full glare of students and parents. She cried seeing me handshaking with my Principal.

Today, my mom didn’t know the project on which I have been working for long; I have copyedited a Computer Science dictionary, I am the person who has taken the final call – what is correct and what is not, and what should be published and what not; within months the book will be published, and it will be in the public domain—in the libraries.

Mom, your lessons are still relevant

Jack and Jill went up the hill
To fetch a pail of water.
Jack fell down and broke his crown
And Jill came tumbling after.

(Thanks again Prabal and Ritwick giving me the push, I am going to sleep like a log:)


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