I stand by the kitchen picture window, furiously chopping the cabbage. Laddu clings to my feet, crying piteously. Snot runs from her nose, her lips quiver and eyes are brimming with tears. One more piece to go I remind myself and focus at the task on hand. I glance up to see Ammu and Pattu stand at the picnic table and lick, yes lick something off the wooden surface. Aghast, I open the window and shout at them.
The crying at my feet gets louder and more piteous. I shovel the last of the cabbage bits into the pan and tidy up as best I can. Hefting Laddu to my hip, I set the pan on the stove and look out the window again. The twins are on all fours crawling through the grass. I suspect I should be looking at it in wonder, watching them enjoy their childhood with abandon, but all I can think of is dirt at their elbows and the smell of mulch they will drag in. I give up saying anything and gingerly place Laddu on the ground. She takes to crying with gusto.
I despair. There are three dishes on the stove needing attention. I am positive at least one twin is ingesting material I will disapprove of. Bending down to pick Laddu again, I notice clumps of hair, spills from the kitchen all dotting the floor of my kitchen.
I am overwhelmed. By holding it all together. Week after week. For one insane moment, I consider leaving the crying child on the floor, the twins in the backyard and slamming the door behind me. I sigh and turn the gas down to simmer. Picking Laddu up, I walk to the sofa. I sit down, hold Laddu to my bosom and sob against her.
Sometimes you think amidst the mayhem of the everyday grind, there will be moments that will make it all worth it. Well! Sometimes there are none.