The Dead Dreams

” Just go away, I don’t want to see your face ever again , you wretched woman. I’m sure dad left you , because he knew you were some kind of monster.I’ll kill you, don’t ever come near me. I hate you. Just go away.” Saying this he threw a knife at me.

Ahana came running towards me, “Mom, let’s go. Some other time Mom. Please.Let’s go.”

I loved him. I loved my husband. Avnish why do you hate me so much ,son?

I still remember the day when I gave birth to Avnish – he resembled his father.He resembled Mayank in every manner. Mayank had suddenly gone missing one week before my delivery date was due Mayank went missing. I tried searching him everywhere.He was no where. Even the police complaints never helped. I was so helpless.With Ahana on my side, I knew I had to handle everything. Somewhere in some corner of my mind I had hopes that Mayank would be back. He never came back. He could never come back. One month later with Avnish and Ahana I was left alone.

That evening , when I received a call to confirm the body of Mayank.My world was torn into bits, this cannot be Mayank.I was just hoping it was – which was not true.When I saw his body all I could see was him. The cops said it was likely to be a case of suicide. Why would Mayank commit suicide, he was so happy? There was nothing that he was worried about or sad about. We didn’t even have debts. Everything was perfect. Why Mayank , why?

Things changed drastically with my life. I knew I had to raise my newly born Avnish and my 3 year old Ahana. I promised myself I would never ever hurt my kids.I will make them someone Mayank will be proud of.Where did I go wrong? What made my son hate me so much, that he tried to kill me? What made him go to a mental asylum? Why did someone I love hate me so much?

It always hurt Ahana to see her mom cry because of her brother. It always hurt to see how much Avnish loved Mom. And clouded by his anger for his mom, he tried to kill her. Seeing her only brother in a mental asylum never made her happy. It killed her. But she knew she had to remain strong for her brother.It was for him, for her dad . She always knew her dad unlike Avnish.

But mom in her promise to keep dad proud never understood ,what Avnish really wanted. He was special.He was gifted.Why did you not see that mom.

Avnish- when he was born he was so cute, just like everyone else. I still remember how I adored him. He was someone I enjoyed teasing, but I was protective also. I used to catch him, playing with dirt – i used to blackmail him, “Mummaaaa….”.. He used to be “Sssshhh, I’ll do whatever you say.”

Times passed. This was the year 2007, when his board exams were approaching.Annu had Science. He never wanted to do anything with science. I used to help him with his studies. He trusted me way too much.When the results were out , he passed with flying colors. He was an amazing artist. He wanted to be an artist.But mom, she seldom saw it. She had decided that he will be an engineer- just like others.He had to choose science stream in his 11th standard, but he hated the idea of it.He wanted to take up arts. Mom never understood him – or should I say she never wanted to understand him .

She gave her ultimatum, “You’re going to do what I say, that’s it !!”

He did what he was asked to do, but after the 12th board exams, he decided he wants to go to an art school.
Mom was paranoid ” What do you mean, art school. Focus on your entrance exams. I want you to get through JEE.That’s it no more arguments.”

Annu tried to convince her and before we knew what was happening “Not a word!!” and then BANG!!!!.Before I knew anything, Mom slapped him. His glasses fell on the floor . His fair cheeks became reddish, tears flowing from his eyes.He just ran to his room.”

Turning towards me, “Explain it to him , Ahana. He is meant to be a great engineer.Why is he wasting his life.What will he get by being an engineer. Imagine , his worth once he clears his engineering!! He will be earning so much, beta.You’re his elder sister.Talk to him.!!!

When I saw him , he was drinking!! If mom found out , she will kill him – well not literally but then things would be messed up.I closed the door.

I hugged him ” Annu, don’t cry. Mom means the best for you. She won’t do anything to hurt you. Please understand Annu. You wanna become an artist right.You can. But for her can’t you be an engineer.Just 4 years Annu, just for 4 years you do it.After this you do whatever you want. Please Annu. For my sake.”

He burst out” Di!!! Why should I do something I hate.I hate Mom ,Di. I just hate her. I can’t stand her.She’s such a wicked witch.She is using us. I’m sure dad committed suicide because of her.I’m sure. She’s so… ”

He burst out. I knew his anger would reduce some day.One fine day.

Things changed. He couldn’t however clear his JEE, but he cleared his CET and COMED-K. He got into one of the premiere institutes in Bangalore . Mom was happy he was able to get done with his tantrums , and he got into engineering.

But all I knew that, he wasn’t happy. He had started hating Mom. He stopped speaking to her. I asked her if she were hurt” Ahana, sometimes when you are doing something good to someone you love you will have to be a bad person in their eyes.My son will thank me one day.He will !!”

I saw Avnish as a very frustrated person.He started throwing all the frustration he had on his painting. And he was one heck of an artist.Without going to an art school, he was such a magnificent artist. I wanted to see him happy. I spoke to a friend of mine , who ran an art gallery. I showed her Avnish’s paintings, she was so impressed that she wanted to display those paintings in her gallery. I gave this surprise news to Avnish – he couldn’t contain his excitement” Really di, I love you a lot!!! Thanks a ton. I won’t let you down.”

And he didn’t. His paintings were truly a masterpiece. But as they say, all goods things have an end!!
This was the time when he had his placements, mom wanted him to focus on his GRE and apply for MS.She found out this and everything was screwed.
She slapped me. I raised my voice in front of her- ” Mom, all his life he has always been doing what you wanted him to do. Today he does something he likes and I support him you have a problem with that.You know what your problem is , you’re not happy with your life. That’s why you tend to find problem with everyone who is happy.You cannot see him happy.I think Annu is right. You killed Dad!!.”

Before my mom could say anything ,my brother threw a vase at her head.He tried to kill her.Fortunately it missed the target . He quickly grabbed a knife which was lying on the dinner table. I run towards him, before he killed mom. I tried to calm him down, but this time he was out of control. Mom called the hospital.

Doctors tested him with Paranoia. They said it was dangerous to leave him alone . He was immediatly admitted to the asylum. Things grew worse. Slowly slowly his mental health started deteriorating.He started imagining things which never existed.He started talking to his paintings.He believed his paintings speak to him. The doctors were trying their best. But he was so aggressive. He wouldn’t listen to anything.

The doctors diagnosed him with Paranoid Schizophrenia. He was too dangerous. He was always engrossed in his paintings.

I hate seeing him like this. I just hate mom. I hate how mom did this to him.

Sadly I never saw things from her point. And she never did from his point.

That day there was just uncomfortable silence between the two of us. It was all over. I had packed my bags and was about to leave the home , when I received a call from Hospital.” Hello, yeah. What? When? Annu wouldn’t?”Before I knew anything , I ran over. I rushed to hospital with Mom.

The doctors showed his body. Annu wouldn’t die. He could never give up.

Mom asked Dr.Ahuja” How did you let this happen , how could he kill himself? How did you let him do it? I’m going to sue you!”

I couldn’t hold back,” No , they didn’t kill him. You did. I wish you weren’t so selfish. I wish you saw what he wanted. Dad would be proud of him , had he been alive. Dad would have been proud had he been an artist. But you killed him. Just as you killed Dad. It’s over. You and I are no longer going to be ever seeing each other again.Just like Avnish died, you too shall die a miserable death. You won’t have anyone.You’re a loner.That’s what you deserve to be.”