Sorry about the terrible illustration. Happy Mother’s Day. A story about my mother.
My Amma is a poochakanni. She has light, beautiful eyes. None of us, her three children, got her ‘cat eyes’. Ours are various shades of dark brown. I tell her, she plotted with her favourite god, Guruvayoorappan (Krishna from her hometown), so she could be the special one with strikingly beautiful eyes. She doesn’t even bother engaging.
Amma was a feisty young girl who instilled fear in her uncles and when she intervened they’d give up alcohol. She was a peacemaker when her uncles and aunts were warring, spoke up for her elder sister and protected her younger brother. But in school, the boys who she could otherwise pick up verbal fights with and win, knew how to annoy her. Everywhere she went, she would be greeted with meoooows. She hated it. To stick out with her eyes. As she walked to school and back, she would be teased relentlessly, “Aye Poochakanni” “meow” “meooooow” “meoooooooooow”. She could do nothing but seethe in anger.
Anyway, many years later, when Amma was pregnant, she prayed to Guruvayoorappan. She asked for a healthy baby, a baby who’d grow up to do great things, and most importantly a baby without her light eyes. She didn’t want the baby to grow up to face the troubles that she had to. Little did she know her babies would have loved her light eyes. She never asked them but prayed and he gave in. THRICE. None of us got her beautiful eyes. I actually look exactly like her, I even have her wavy hair and her nose which I don’t like at all but not her beautiful eyes!
I now know she has a special account with Guruvayoorappan. I don’t pray but she prays a lot and she prays for everyone. In my twenties when I was always in love with some fellow who was never going to give me another look, I’d outsource my prayers to Amma and then ask her, “What did you pray for?’. She wouldn’t answer, on pestering, she would say, “I prayed that God show you the right way!” “Oh no! I don’t want God’s right way, I want my way, what if his and mine don’t match? Pray like you did about the eyes.” She just wouldn’t say anything.
Last week, she was in Guruvayoor and told me that she went to the temple. I told her about new happy developments at work. She was thrilled and said, “I just prayed about it and also that you go to Europe soon.” “Yay! Finally my mother knows that my way is the right way!”