Candles, Diyas and Family!
Being a Bengali family, Durga Puja has always got more focus and priority than Diwali in the family. But, somehow I never felt it. Durga Puja surely brings extreme joy and pleasure but, it doesn’t do more than Diwali does for me. After all these years, I can assume the reason. For over the years of my childhood, I never lived without my family. We’ve been the ‘joint family’ always, so naturally I didn’t felt what it means to be getting together or meeting the family in Pujas, for I never felt that void, the feeling to be away from the family.
Just after Durga Puja, comes Diwali and for me, it was the feeling everyone felt during Durga Puja. Diwali was the time when we went for my maternal grandparents’ house for the subsequent event, Bhai Phonta, where a sister makes a mark with sandalwood paste on the forehead of her brother wishing for his success and good life. This occasion brought me that enjoyment and ecstasy that Durga Puja failed to bring me. My maternal aunt, uncle, cousins, parents, sister all were there. Since then, Diwali had become my most favourite festival in terms of enjoyment.
The first thing I remember about Diwali is my maternal grandfather. Every year, before we reached, he used to stock up two bags of crackers (noiseless, as I am afraid of crackers that make dreadful noise) one for me and the other for my sister. We lit candles and diyas and decorated the house, not even an inch was spared. My grandparents’ small house became a palace of lights.
I have some friends there; actually they’ve now become an extended family. We used to light diyas and fire crackers together. It was fun. Our activities included making rangolis with diyas. We used to make several designs and patters with the diyas. Later, we used to dance and sing and made the night our very own cultural night. While writing this, talking about the past, my eyes couldn’t stop but seep out. One can surely relate to me. It only happens when you’re in extreme joy.
For me, Diwali has always been about my family, to meet my maternal grandparents, to light candles, decorate the house and finding happiness in every trivial thing, like my grandfather's smile when he watches us arrive, like my cousin’s happiness-lit eyes when he finds us around. This is not only about making yourself happy, it’s about how you make your family happy. For a family-person like me, it means a lot to be around the family, to make them happy. I think Diwali is all about that, making others happy, lighting the hearts and keep the darkness away.
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This post is written for the Indiblogger Happy Hours programme. Topic was Diwali- a time for family!