I have lost count of how many times I have badgered my mother to tell me the story of how I was born. It is such a crucial part of our being, to create the memories we don’t remember with our imagination. We want to know it all: what was she doing when she went into labor? Who all went to the hospital with her? What was she feeling? How it all panned out? I love that story.

But there are parts of it that have stuck with me even long after my mother is done telling me the tale. It is the part about how my elder sister, just 14 then, had been the one to take my mother to the hospital because my dad wasn’t home, how she shuffled between my ward and my mother’s when both of us became critical.

These are my favorite parts. Because I think that is where it started for her, and unknowingly that is when it started for me. For her, it was like experiencing sisterhood and motherhood for the first time; for me, I had met my first ever best friend.

adolescence, we start drifting apart. Only to reach out again when we start growing up, because we would rather learn about growing up from someone who helped us write our first words. 


It is a growing process for both of us. It’s not even funny how different we both are even as we are so similar. We both will kill for moti choor ladoo and a good chinese meal, but I can’t cry to save my life and it takes her two kind words for the waterworks to start; we both love the same kind of music, and yet she will never go to a club with me; she finds it hard to talk to people and I can go up to strangers & make friends in a heartbeat, and yet we both hate the same kind of people. 

When I quit my job last year without a new job in my bag, everyone said I was crazy. It was my sister who reassured me that even if I were to do it, I will be fine. After she told me I was crazy, of course. She made sure I knew that she had my back, and that no matter how much I travel and blow my savings off she will make sure I don’t have to beg on the streets of Goa, or Kerala, or wherever I went. 

Because that’s the thing: she might not get me all the time, she may not appreciate my choices, but she always makes an effort to understand. She will always go that extra mile, and she will always have my back. And isn’t that exactly the kind of love we keep looking for everywhere?