Raju’s mother was a simple woman. She slaved away in a factory all day so she could send her son to a good school. Her husband had died when their boy was just two years old. As a result, she was always struggling to make ends meet. The poor lady hoped that her son would get a good job when he grew older.
Akshay was the only son of an affluent couple. Raju was Akshay’s best friend in school. Akshay’s mother was a beautiful lady who was always dressed in expensive saris. Raju often found himself envying his friend for his majestic house, the unlimited pocket money and, of course, his good-looking mother.
An important function was to be held in the boys’ school. All the parents were invited. The boys were handed invitation cards for their parents. Ashamed of his mother’s plain appearance, Raju decided to not tell her about the event; he didn’t give her the invitation.
The big day arrived. Raju and Akshay were neatly dressed in their uniforms. They took their duties as volunteers seriously, for they were the hosts that evening.
Suddenly, Raju turned and caught sight of his mother. He was horrified to see her amidst that well-dressed, sophisticated gathering. When she spotted Raju, she rushed over to him. ‘I made it, my dear,’ she said. ‘The foreman at the factory told me that his wife was attending the school function. So, I asked for time off, too.’
Raju’s friends, who were standing nearby, overheard them. They asked him who this lady was.
‘Oh, it’s my previous nanny,’ he said matter-of-factly. Although deeply hurt, Raju’s mother said nothing.
A few months later, Raju’s mother was called away to nurse her sick sister, Raju’s aunt. As a good friend, Akshay invited Raju to stay over until his mother returned. Excited at the prospect of staying in a big mansion, Raju readily agreed. However, he was in for a shock. The moment he got there, he realized things weren’t as good as he had expected.
Akshay’s mother was actually a very busy lady. She had a lot of functions and dinners to attend. She hardly spent any time with Akshay. Even with Raju, she was anything but welcoming. That beautifully dressed lady seemed to have time for everyone except her son.
Akshay was a neglected child; he had been raised by servants. His parents showered him with money and toys, but very little love, which is what the boy actually craved. In fact, Raju found that Akshay seemed somewhat ashamed of his mother. It was at this point that his own mother’s thought occurred to Raju. How different she was from Akshay’s mother! He recalled how she doted on him. He could share anything with his mother. She was always there for her son. Wasn’t caring and sharing what families were all about?
When Raju’s mother returned from her sister’s place, she found a changed boy, one who was kind and considerate. He even seemed proud of her. She was, well, surprised! But it’s just you and I who know the true story, don’t we?
…now that you’re here
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As fond of writing a good story as he is of reading one, Pravin is one of the most promising writers at Ameya. He can be contacted at email@example.com.