She was beautiful, adorable – my little darling daughter. Her father was the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) in a reputed hospital. When the child was born he had said, ‘Bring her to the hospital for a checkup when she turns two.’ He wanted to conduct a normal checkup. He wanted to make sure that everything is all right with our daughter. After her birth, I loved her, pampered her, adored her. She was my baby. She had beautiful curly black hair, blue eyes, and beautiful nose. Her smiles and giggles and the touch of her soft body would take me out of this world. I believed I was the luckiest mom in the world.
When she was two years old I took her to her father in the hospital.
One look at her and he said, ‘Hmm, looks like she is not well. I shall conduct a detailed check up on her. Admit her into the hospital.’
And my little baby became a patient in the third year of her life. He didn’t tell me what her illness was. Instead he said, ‘You may go now. I shall keep you informed about her progress.’
I returned home with the hope she would be all right in a few days and that I would be able to hold her in my hands and kiss and cuddle her again.
There was no news about my dear daughter for a few days. No moment passed without my thinking about her. How is she? Is she being looked after well in the hospital? Her father is the CMO, all right, but being so busy with several other matters he may not be able to spend enough time for her. Will the other hospital staff take good care of her? I started getting more and more worried. One day, having failed to hear from the doctor for several days, I called him up and enquired about the progress of our daughter.
He said, ‘She is in the ICU. But don’t worry I am taking good care of her.’
Still he didn’t bother to tell me what was wrong with her. And I didn’t have the wisdom or courage to ask him, too. He always knew better than me.
Another couple of weeks, and I became impatient. I wanted to know what had happened to my daughter. I visited the hospital.
Her father said, ‘She has been in ventilator since last week. But don’t worry, she will be all right, I am taking good care of her.’
I was shocked. My daughter had apparently no illness when I first took her to him and now, after two months of being in the hospital she is in the ventilator! I felt quite uneasy though I wanted to believe that he knows what is best for her, being her father as well as an expert and experienced doctor.
I was really confused and worried. I wondered, ‘What’s happening to my darling daughter?’
When I was leaving, he told me, ‘See, you don’t have to come every now and then to the hospital to enquire about your daughter. I know what is best for her. And I will look after her. I shall myself let you know when she is healthy and ready to be taken home’, thus shutting down my chances of visiting the hospital again to enquire about my daughter.
Days passed. I was becoming mad. My daughter was suffering from some unknown and very serious illness. How much is she suffering, the two-year old? I sit here helpless, not even able to see and look after her. Though I had started doubting the intentions of her father of late, I could not do anything. Another week passed, a month, two more months. No news of my daughter. I stopped doing anything that a woman would do in normal circumstances. But this is not normal situation. I forgot all about sleep. I stopped taking food. How was my daughter doing? Is she still in the ventilator? Or has she been shifted to the ICU or a room?
Of late I even began to doubt, ‘Is she alive at all? Has her father killed her since the child was a girl?’
Six months had passed since I had first taken her to the hospital. One day I thought, ‘Enough is enough’. I once again went to the hospital and met with her father. He repeated what he had said earlier, that he would take good care of her. It looked like he was annoyed too due to my persistence. I lost all control.
I shouted at him, ‘What the hell do you think you are doing? Keeping my daughter in the ventilator for more than four months! If she is that much ill and suffering for so long and if there is no hope of her being cured, why don’t you pull the plug and let her have a peaceful end rather than forcing her to continue suffering?’
I had lost my senses completely. I didn’t know what I was yelling at him.
‘Sure’, he said and the next moment went inside.
Hey, where is he going? What did he mean by ‘sure’? Is he going to … Oh, God! What did I do? What did I do? My poor baby!
He came back in a minute.
He coolly said, ‘Yes, I have pulled the plug. Come tomorrow and collect her body.’
And he murmured, ‘The illegitimate b...h.’
I was struck by a lightening. The earth had suddenly parted way and I was falling down to the bottomless end.
I don’t know for how long I remained in that stance. Then I went home silently.
I kept a bottle of poison handy. I took a piece of paper, and wrote my suicide note.
To the CEO:
You have rejected the project proposal that I had prepared with your approval and on your suggestion without assigning any reasons. The proposal, as you will appreciate, had been lying on your table awaiting your approval for more than six months. It is now clear that you have lost trust in my work. I, therefore, hereby tender my resignation.
This story is based on the concept that any story, poem, paper, book, project proposal, or anything else that one creates/generates is one’s own baby. When such thing is thrown into the waste basket, it is equal to killing that baby.