To pull another hand into the light.

Dare to reach out your hand into the darkness, to pull another hand into the light wrote Norman Rice. Around the ides of March 2003, I did dare do so. It was not a little hand but two beautiful eyes that defied all the burns and bandages and met mine. It was love at first sight, a love that has withstood a decade and a half beating all odds.

The reason I remembered this quote today is because someone shared a story with me, one that may not have a happy ending as the odds are against it. It is the tale of two boys whose father was murdered and whose mother was found to be part of the conspiracy and jailed. Some family friend decided, for reasons better known to him, to sponsor a sound education for the boys. A gesture to be lauded if it had been taken to its logical end but for some reason the hand once held out has been withdrawn leaving the young boys in the lurch. It seems that the decision is final though I pray for a miracle.

I wonder what made that family friend commit to help the boys and 'dare' to reach out his hand into the darkness of the two little children? Was it the 'right' thing to do at that moment? Was it to get the kudos of the entourage? Was it momentary hubris that dwindled when realisation dawned? realisation that the commitment was long term and a tad expensive. Who knows. The reality is that the had that reached out that fateful day to pull these gentle souls into the light is now the hand that will push them back into darkness. It is not easy to walk the talk.

When Utpal walked into my heart, I knew it was till death do us part. At that moment it all seemed so simple. We would nurse the child back to health and ensure that his family was cared for. Another case of hubris! We humans like playing God never realising that it is He and not us who pens the script. The plan that I made went crashing in no time and I could hear the Gods laughing. They had other plans.

As time went by, the script unfolded and obstacles appeared at every corner, but then when you reach out your hand you have no option but to hold on to it and never let go. Utpal and I have weathered many storms and know that there are more to come. This middle age love is put to the test time and again in  unimaginable ways but is also incredibly rewarding.

The child is now a teenager and new challenges are in sight. We will meet them head on. At this moment the critical issue is how to style the hair so that the scars are concealed. This led us to the hair stylist yesterday and we found a solution. The lad went back to school with a smile and a bottle of hair gel that the kind school has allowed him to use. You see when the wind blows then his scars are for all to see, even the girls! I can see what awaits me.