Have you ever made that ONE decision which just seemed to change EVERYTHING? Like…changed your entire life? Most of these life-altering decisions not only turn your life upside down, but also completely change others’ lives around you as well. Ever thought what might have been if this change hadn’t been made? I do. I do all the time.
I was seven when this life changing decision was made. Obviously, I wasn’t the one who made this decision (At the age of 7, I barely allowed to choose what clothes I wanted to wear to school, forget making life altering decisions.). It was my dad who made it.
His parents (my paternal grandparents) lived in India. My grandfather was a doctor and he had had a heart attack. In a few seconds, my entire world changed. I still remember bits and pieces of that scary night. At this point, we did not live in India. We lived in the States. I remember quietly sobbing in the back of the car in my “bumper seat” at one o’ clock as my dad rushed to the airport, my mom behind the wheel.
He returned after a week, looking weary and tired. My grandfather had thankfully survived, but he wasn’t doing too well. That’s when my dad decided to drop the bombshell. We would move to India to live with my grandparents.
As a child of 7 years, I loved going to my grandparents’ place (like any other child would). It was the one place that I was spoiled rotten, so as you can imagine, I was overjoyed on hearing this news. Before we knew it, I had said goodbye to my friends and favorite teacher, Mrs. Dunnigan, at school, sold our house, and were on a flight to India after just 2 months.
The next few weeks of my life had been the best that I can remember. I was ‘literally’ treated like a princess. All my relatives would hover around me as I miserably failed to speak a single sentence in Hindi and would laugh heartily at my very different accent. But after a month or so, I started missing it. I started missing everything! From my friends, to my school, to my neighbors, to my art classes (which I totally dreaded!) to the constant sand in my shoes from the beach (even though I used to find this quite irritating before). I would have given absolutely ANYTHING to go back.
I started going to my new school, made new friends and even somehow learnt how to speak, read and write Hindi (yep, it’s a MIRACLE. I agree.). I began a new life, but was never able to forget my old one. I constantly wondered what my friends back home were doing and whether they even remembered me.
To be honest, I still zone out sometimes (especially in History classes) and wonder what’s going on back home. To me, my old house will always be my home. Every single day while going to bed at night, I wonder what would’ve happened if my grandfather hadn’t had a heart attack. My life would have been COMPLETELY different. What if my dad hadn’t decided to move to India? What if…?