There are no formalities or secrets between us. And, I think that’s the greatest success of our relationship. I have never felt the need to hide anything from my life because you always let me be. You have always placed your trust in me and my capabilities without mincing words where I can improve.
Even writing a letter to you seems awkward and too formal, considering our relationship. We argue, we fight, we listen, we seek the best for each other.
I still remember how Mum and you worked as a team. While you wrote my speeches and essays, Mum trained me to speak for competitions. Winning was a cake-walk thanks to the incredible support system at home.
This early onset of training got me exposed to the world of words. It exposed me to impressive speeches written by you. When I look at the old tattered speech notes that I have safely conserved today, I marvel at the depth of each of your writings. I am not sure if my writing ability is a testimony of my genes or the early exposure to influential books, discussions and writings.
I’m not sure if you know this. But, as far as my memory goes, the first book that I took a fancy to was Archie Comics. I think I was around 6 years then. You bought those comics for me and when you saw I loved reading them; you bought some more.
When you noticed I had a leaning towards books, you started buying me classics such as The Black Beauty story, Little Women, Oliver Twist and more. Somewhere while reading these gifted authors, I wished I were like one of them someday. Someday, my book would be a thing of joy relished by others. That was where the dream to become an author all began.
I remember when I had exhausted reading all the books that you had bought for me; I started checking your collection one day. And my first pick was a Sidney Sheldon. I was 11 years old then. When you had learnt of this, you smiled and asked me how was it. When I said that I liked the book, I had complete access to your collection as well.
Like in other areas of my life, there were no taboos or restrictions with reading as well. I know of homes where Archie Comics were prohibited until a certain age. You bought me all kinds of books and let me choose what I enjoyed reading and what I didn’t. This exposed me to all kinds of writing styles, genres, and thought processes. It taught me to appreciate the diversity of minds.
Dada, thank you for the gift of reading, writing and free thinking.
Lots of Love,