Yamuna is fasting today for long life, prosperity, and trouble free life of her sons and grandsons. Some women in some region of rural Bihar fast to get a male child too, if they don’t have one. Naturally, the modern liberal women will oppose the fast with gender-bias. But I am sure in rural India in particular they can’t bring any change.
My mother (photo above) was not very religious according to traditional perception. Later on, she was having poor health too and stopped fasts that were to be observed manytimes in a year in our family. But she continued to have the rigorous fast on Jiyutiya. I was the only male child. She did all she could do to see that I get everything in life she thought is the symbol of rich and successful man. And she died as satisfied mother seeing her son as successful executive in big corporate firm with all amenities available.
I think back and come to realize that I didn’t do much for her. My father was very sick for long time. He did get all our attentions. But perhaps in turn my mother got neglected.
On this day, I just remember her and feel sorry about whatever I couldn’t do for her. I wish she could excuse me from wherever she is.
PS: Yamuna broke her fast at 9.30 AM on September 15. Naturally, at this age the whole system must be getting upset. She doesn’t take even water, as is the practice. However, as I have observed she sleeps well when she fasts. As a part of the rituals, there is a story telling also. The stories are about the origin of the fast, its benefits when observed rightly, and problems if any deviation occurs because of human weaknesses.
But one thing more! For each child, one or sometimes two Jiyutiyas are worn. You can see them in the photograph of Yamuna, my wife. It is the modern one obtained last year from Patna courtesy Biva, my brother’s wife. Earlier one was lost in a burglary in 2003 here at our residence in Noida.