Friday, April 3, 2015

Shadows in my room

I am a child, a five year old child. I get scared by the shadows in my room. My mama takes me by the hand and tells me that there is nothing to be scared of. I don't believe her. She says there are no monsters here. I cannot agree with her. I feel that there is a giant behind the curtain and a witch underneath the bed. Despite mama's soothing words, I feel antsy whenever the lights are turned off. I keep the night light turned on. It helps little as it creates looming lurking shadows everywhere.

I grow up in years. I stop fearing the dark. I hold my grandpa's hands and walk down the streets at night to watch ram-leela (stage performance of the story of the great epic Ramayan). There are kids around me, there is chatter everywhere. Minutes pass, sometimes hours as we watch the saga of Rama and Ravana. Night seems to be fun. Stars twinkle above in the mighty sky, winking at me. They are my friends in the dark. They smile at me every night. When I reach home, my room welcomes me. Dim night light becomes my ally as I play with my fingers to make shadow-puppets on the wall. I make the shadows grow big and small. I giggle. It is fun to play with the dark and light.

Years pass. I am a grown-up now. My mama is often scared of the dark now. She insists that I be home before darkness falls. I can understand her fears. There are unseen shadows outside, with dark, infernal thoughts. I return home before my mama wastes herself with worry. Shadows in my room remain friendly, filling my world with the much-needed solace a tiring day has failed to provide. 

I grow more in years, get married, become a mom. I see my baby crawling into the dark rooms fearlessly. As he grows up, he faces my friend shadows which he finds dreadful. I comfort him as my mama used to when I was little. He gradually realizes there is nothing to be scared of but still wants to have the night light switched on. I do that as I have a feeling of deja vu. I have been there, done that.

I empathize with him. I try to tell him there is nothing to be scared of in the dark. But I am scared now. When his dad is not around, when the house is so quiet. I wonder why the lights on the earth have made the stars above disappear. I miss their amicable twinkle. From outside I hear sounds that nobody seems to be making. I see shadows that are diabolical. I try to find peace in the shadows in my room. They help me forget the gloomy world outside, for sometime.

I am afraid of the dark. But I do not want to share my fears with my child. I tell him to be brave and fearless. We make shadow puppets. The night passes. He sleeps. I stay awake till I am too tired to worry. Tomorrow will be another day, another dawn.

This post is a part of Write Over the Weekend, an initiative for Indian Bloggers by BlogAdda.

Wow Badge for the prompt 'Are you afraid of the dark?'


  1. I had similar thoughts to write on this theme...
    However, the early bird gets the worm...

    Nice and well written...

    1. thanks Uday....go ahead and post yours...each has a different style and choice of words....would love to read how you put your thoughts together.....

  2. So relatable and true, dear! You have expressed the relationship that we have with lights and darkness beautifully :)