Friday, January 16, 2009

The art of letting go

-By Swetha Amit

He swam furiously through the unusually hazy waters looking frantically for Leonard-his one and only son. He flapped his fins, each which depicted an unmistakable anxiety as his search grew vigorous with every passing moment.

Never could he leave his little one alone, he thought as a puzzled octopus sleepily looked at him in bemusement. “Has anyone seen Leo”, he asked every passer-by as they shook their heads in amazement. Darcy will never learn they thought. Laughter and squeals were soon heard in the vicinity. It seemed to come from the amusement coral park nearby as he turned sharply in that direction. There he was-dear old Leo, his nine year old son who was found in the company of his fellow mates-the sea horse and the notorious turtle.

Embarrassment followed suit along with the pursuit of a sound scolding for wandering off carelessly as Leo hung his head. Partly due to being treated like a baby in front of his ‘mature’ pals and partly due to the severe reprimand by an overprotective parent. A rather subdued boy whale followed his father back home just in time for supper cooked by his liberal minded mother. The surly look didn’t cease to surprise her as she shook her head in exasperation at the staunchness of her obstinate husband. When will he learn to let go?

Leo was still accompanied with to school, when the rest of his counterparts were turning independent, ready to face the harsh realities in due course of time. Curfews were drawn as a heavy scowl implanted on Darcy’s broad forehead when the time permit was exceeded. Persistent on knowing his whereabouts, constant monitoring began to drive the young one almost in despair as he became the laughing stock in Reef town. Years rolled by as Leo grew up to be a fine whale that was confident of weathering storms. And yet his father’s voice kept echoing in his head telling him to watch out for those ‘human trap’. A careless shrug was all that was in response to parental pressure as conversations with the latter grew minimal much to his dad’s dismay.

Darcy often ruminated over those fond days when his little one fell sick miserably and how he nursed him back to health running helter-skelter for medicines. Was this really his son who seemed to want him no longer? His friends and the manly tryst seemed his new world altogether. Here he was aging quickly yet gracefully and his son showed no sign of affiliation. On the contrary, it was irritation and heated arguments that surmounted tension in those otherwise chill blue waters.

“Are you ok honey?” The sudden disruption to his thoughts startled him as he turned towards his wife holding a plate of grilled oysters. A deep conversation followed as thoughts and ideas were exchanged rapidly. His wife lent a sympathetic yet firm ear as he received a dressing down that he last remembered of having gotten it as a little lad in his school days. Where did he go wrong? Was it a crime to have been concerned for fear of losing his only child? True those streaks of possessiveness were displayed many a time. He failed to understand his wife’s casual attitude and yet it was that which won over her son ultimately. As a parent wasn’t he performing his rightful duty of protecting his young one? The more he moved closer to his son, the farther away he preferred to move with feeble excuses and a quick brush of ‘things to do’.

While being protective, it was essential to maintain the strict line so as not surpass the boundary which would land one into the territory of over protectiveness and a stifling zone. Keeping a moderate vigilance would enable the young ones to respect their parents more than resulting in fear and resentment. Relationships he realized were like fine sand dunes. The harder one tries to keep it in their palm, the more it tends to find loopholes to slip away. The free flowing stance of those slippery particles depicted that of ‘no expectations’ which enhanced and weaved relationships into a bundle of joy instead of a burden. Accepting growth and change in others proves to be essential to win over respect in the bargain. The failure of which will result in more distance being created and gradual loss of self respect. It was important to retain the moderate line as extremity would end up in bizarre conditions of frost bites or sun burns. Any rapport be it a parent-child, husband-wife, siblings, friends need space and time in order to grow in a healthy way. Confinement of space would only end up in soreness and a droopy state of the relationship.

‘Why didn’t he realize this sooner’, thought Darcy? Or had he in his subconscious level and refused to accept it? Had he being living in denial all the while even when his son was growing up? And here he was lying in regret of having lost his son.

“Oh no” It isn’t too late assured his wife. “Give it a chance and he will come around.”

That night when Leo came home it was a different ambience that greeted him. And it certainly wasn’t due to the aroma of oyster shells or those coral lights that were newly purchased. He was pleasantly surprised to see a ‘cool’ dad with a different approach who would soon find his way as a new found friend to have those ‘man to man’ talks occasionally.

The trick was slowly working as days flew by. Darcy was more than delighted as he felt a heavy weight off his shoulders during his evening swim around Reef town. Only this time there weren’t petrified pangs of a ruffled parent but that of an old wise whale getting his timely exercise and treasuring his new art-that of letting go.
Written for



Blogger KParthasarathi said...

How true and wonderful a message you have weaved in this story.This is not about whales only but applies with stronger force to protective parents imposing their wishes on their wards only to witness disconcerting outcomes.
Sweta,it is a marvellous story ably told.I envy you for your skill.

9:53 PM  
Blogger Ayesha Parveen said...

A beautiful story with a great message. Thanks and best wishes, Swetha.

10:26 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

@KP:Thanks a lot.:-)
You are right. Such things apply to humans mainly as one sees in a day to day life with several relationships. I have tried to inculcate it into a whale family and hope I was able to do justice to it.

9:03 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

@Ayesha: Thanks for your encouraging comments as always.God Bless.:-)

9:04 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Comments on MSN:
kundan - usa on 1/22/2009 3:33:59 AM
Very true

6:24 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Latha - Chennai on 1/22/2009 8:25:48 AM
A beautiful story. letting go is eventual, though difficult. if parents realise this, they can share a beautiful relationship with their children.

7:13 PM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

Bobby Sakariah - Jeddah on 1/22/2009 4:06:42 PM
Nice story.

10:05 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

jahnavi - hyderabad on 1/22/2009 11:28:51 PM
Good thought for todays parents and all other relationships that need some air to breathe

10:24 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

pratap - bangalore on 1/23/2009 12:28:07 PM
Well written article.Thought provoking. can't be restricted just to parents alone.Its applicable to any relation between two persons.should enlighten those over protective/possessive parents,friends,siblings & life partners.

12:40 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

chef - dubai on 1/23/2009 4:54:58 PM
CASTISM the evil in my society i did let go a 8yr relationship a good article indeed

5:57 AM  
Blogger Whirlwind said...

khurshid - lucknow on 1/24/2009 7:06:34 PM
good,thought provoking n a fact which v dont realize..... thank u v much for reminding....i shall take care

9:40 AM  
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