It's a huge hall where I am standing, so huge I feel lost. Why would someone make a hall like this her bedroom? It has two king-size beds and no other furniture. I see my mother sitting on one of the beds. Oh! It is actually Mummy's bedroom. No wonder. After all, she has to accommodate my twins too. But who are the two little girls sitting on the other bed? They are so beautiful! Just like Mummy. And the bright red frock makes them look like matriyoshkas.
"They are my twins", Mummy discloses.
Twins? How? When? You mean they are my sisters? But my logical mind refuses to believe this. Mum's uterus was taken out when she was 35. Then? Does that make five of us? Sisters younger to my kids? What will the world say? What the heck! Who cares about the world? If this is what Mummy wanted, she deserves it. And I love my sisters.
I wake up with a start. Oh, so that was just a dream? But the twins? What does it mean?
And the mobile beeps. Who could this be?
"Officially in labour," she sends a text. That's my childhood friend M, the one I write letters to, all the time, in my mind. And the letters never see the light of the day.
6.30 AM. I shouldn't be calling her up. Time to get to business. Wake up the kids... play music for them... tickle them... scream... shout... instruct... force milk down their throats and pack them off to school. Wow! That's one job accomplished. I am on the laptop now.
"There?" She pings.
But wasn't she in labour? In the hospital?
"Yes. Aren't you in the hospital? How are you feeling?"
(It's the BB generation Anu Singh. So what if you still carry that old-fashioned dying Nokia? I could actually be on Skype to see how she is doing in the labour!)
M: Yeah. In between contractions :)
A: I don't believe this!
M: All plugged in now
A: And how have you managed to chat?M: Would take time. By evening is what the doc says. Contractions are painful.
A: Long wait it will be. And yes, contractions are painful.
M: The in between phase is fine
A: The pain is called labour for no other reason! Where is Saurabh? Dreamt of Mom giving birth to twins :) girls... Wonder what it means :)M: Saurabh is outside with a few friends. Just had another contraction. I have also been having weird dreams.
M: More on the baby but guess it was the anxiety.
A: Must be. But don't worry. The girls in my dream wore red frocks and looked happy. :)
M: Good :) Am hungry now But guess they would not let me eat anything now
A: Ouch! Why?M: Stomach should be clear.
A: Oh! Then it's a long day for you.
A: Did they do an ultrasound? Baby's position fine?M: Am just going for one in a while
A: Ok. You want me to call? Is it BB that you chatting on?
I call. She doesn't take the call.
10 mins later.
M: Sorry had another contraction. Just fading.
A: You will be fine. I am right here. Buzz whenever you want. You want me to come to G'gaon?
M: No- its okay. Any which way they would not allow you in for long. My doctor sent my friend back
Silence. I call again in 10 mins. Conversation on the phone...
M: Another contraction. It's painful.
A: It is. Just a few hours. You will be fine. Think of mine. I had labour for 8 hours and then I was taken in for a C-sec.
M: Now stop giving me the horror stories. Doesn't make me any better.
A: The twins that I gave birth to are 5 now. Every moment of pain gets over. So will this be. Does that make you feel better?
M: Yes, that's the positive side of it.
A: How are you chatting?
M: All tied up to the bed with monitoring machines all over me. BB is difficult. Saurabh has gone down to get the I-pad. Then it will be easier.
A: Are you serious?
M: Listen, I am hanging up... Another bout of pain...
I don't hear from her for hours. My phone goes unanswered. And then there is a message in the afternoon: "Its a boy. Normal but instrument assisted. She has lost a lot of blood. Is not out yet but all is well."
I hope all is well. All will be, must be. Welcome to the Mommie's club which gives you an unrestricted entry to the house of scary roller-coaster rides. You will do fine though.
Meanwhile, I have deciphered the dream. The two girls are actually the two Bhabhis we brought in our family this year. May the son and the daughters, the boy and the girls bring immense happiness to the family they belong. Amen!