Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Sepia Leaves

Author: Amandeep Sandhu
Published: 2008
Publisher: Rupa & Co.
Amazon Link : Click Here

A true account of author's childhood days in Rourkela, though it is classified as fiction, the reason being as the author says in his blog "the time line of the story is not entirely real and I merged some characters while, in other places, I created more than one character from one person".

The protagonist Appu's mother is suffering from schizophrenia and is not in a position to provide proper motherly care to him . Due to her illness her behavior is abnormal most of the time and generally very violent towards her husband i.e. Appu's father.

The book is a very moving account of how the father and son handle this problem in a very stoic manner with a great sense of fortitude and calm acceptance of the situation.

The part which touched me most is where Appu distressed at the condition of his mother and the pains he has to endure in his dysfunctional family asks his father "Why has God created misery ?"

The following reply from his father finds a permanent place in Appu's heart and mind. And so it would to sensitive readers and inspire them to face their problems courageously.

"If we believe that God created the world then he did not create happiness for some and misery for others. We all have happiness and misery.....Yes, some people have greater misery, but that is because God wants people to find ways of fighting it. And when they fight it even their happiness is greater. If everything were easy, if it was just nice and happy, if you had not experienced misery, you may not have the capacity to enjoy happiness.
By making life difficult, God is trying to teach you something. In life some people move ahead and some are left behind. The ones who get ahead do not come from easy circumstances, they rise above their difficulties. Their troubles shape them, teach them and push them to rise above others.
I understand that you feel things are unfair for us. That is not the case. There are always worse situations. God is trying to teach us something. We should try and listen...I believe in this. Grow up and you will find your own beliefs. However, see your difficulties as a test to become a stronger person...Beyond that I do not know"

A must read for everyone and especially those who have to deal with cases of schizophrenia in their family.

1 comment:

Aman said...

Thank you Gopinath, I stumbled upon your review of Sepia Leaves. I will link it from my web site as well. Regards, Aman

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