It’s raining,It’s pouring,
The old man is snoring ——-
Mini was laughing and waking up Prabhakar ,” Grandpa you always sleep after listening to this rhyme.” “I am not sleeping , I just closed my eyes for a moment.” Prabhakar was enjoying his retired life fully with his grand children.He had declined every job offer after his retirement to be with them.
     Anupama ,his wife wanted him to continue working.She knew that his dominating nature could spell doom in their otherwise calm domestic life.
                 Dr.Prabhakar had been a strict father to the point of becoming rather ruthless. Anupama had to intervene to protect children from his wrath .Luckily She was an affectionate  person. Her love  and encouragement groomed the children  into mature human beings.But Prabhakar always took the credit.
       Scenario had totally changed now.Very things that irritated Prabhakar as a father tickled him as a grand father.He loved and enjoyed everything Mini and Roma did.
     Anjali didn’t like her children being spoiled — that is what she thought her father-in -law was doing .She had an altercation with her husband almost everyday.She dared not oppose Prabhakar openly, but her defiance was obvious enough.
      Anupama could see the trouble brewing. She didn’t blame her daughter-in-law.She knew that everyone wants to groom children one’s own way .She also  knew that her husband didn’t mean any harm.”Where had he  hidden that much of love?”she wondered.
        That day children kept playing with him till late. Anjali called them but they ignored. She came bursting out of room and dragged them inside ,”Why don’t you listen to me?” She kept grumbling and decided there and then to move out “ I can live in a rented accommodation ,can’t allow my children to be spoiled. You can stay with your parents if you like,”she blurted out to her husband.Ajay tried to reason with her.Prabhakar stood there aghast thinking what wrong he had done.Hapless Ajay turned to his mother, who was crying silently.” Go Ajay,” she said quietly.
      Almost a month went by. Prabhakar’s life had come to a standstill.He didn’t talk much. Most of the time he sat in his rocking chair staring listlessly .Ajay visited twice or thrice ,he wouldn’t talk to him.
    Empty nest haunted Anupama as well. But she was much more worried about her husband.Slowly he was diving into depression.
         Anupama remembered his friend ,Dr. Chopra . Perhaps he could help! She called him.”Why didn’t you tell me earlier?I can’t let my friend suffer like this.””Nobody can understand the pain and humiliation parents suffer when their children desert them.” thought Anupama.” It’s only as a last resort they talk about it.”
        After much persuasion,  Dr. Chopra convinced him to join his hospital.
      Early next morning he got ready to go . Tears filled up his eyes as he accidentally said,”Alexa play on the nursery rhymes.”as he entered the living room. “O . K “ said Alexa and started with:-
It’s raining,It’s pouring,
The old man is snoring———-.


Photo By: Mathias Konrath


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