A Dot Of Gratitude

A Dot Of Gratitude

Way back, when I was in contact with my teenage self, I remember coming across images of little children darkening the glossy pages in the magazines. No, they were not a bunch of juniors crowned in a reality show. Not models, not sponsored star kids, nor child prodigies either. Their faces bore meek simplicity and eyes in search of something. I attempted to decode those expressions, but, in vain.


As I grew up some more height and flesh, I chanced upon a few words either in italics or bold letters….words that described them as “ homeless, orphans, abandoned and illegitimate”. The last word did create a confusion in my mind and further briefed myself by referring to the dictionary. Although, I failed to attain clarity, the blankness in their expressions haunted me. I had to decipher the contents very soon, I thought.

Life progressed after graduation, pursued Management and resumed my professional career. The eyes did follow. Now, that I had some wisdom from this wide expanse of the Universe, the factual descriptions pertaining to the identity of those children became conspicuous. I could perceive an inner urge to contribute in some way. But how? I could not fathom! The desire, with time, nestled in my heart. I had free


dom, money, friends to unwind with but lacked a dot of something. I paused to ponder, to contemplate. WAS it LOVE that I was missing? A whirlpool of chaos battled within.


Then one fine day, as usually love came knocking. I lay open the windows and doors of my heart to receive it. My heart pounded almost crushing my thinking antennas…..my sensory appendages. The initial shock waves, I presumed. Marriage being the last stop on this curriculum of adulthood, I got desperate to settle down and be the proprietor of my family. Floating candles, comfy cushions, togetherness and freedom came as bounty. Gradually, with an ageing marriage, I succumbed to the daily chores that surrounded the periphery of relationships. Soon enough, I realized that the blank dot was behind me, like a shadow.

My son was born to stray me away. His well- being was my sole concer


n and I was blissfully participating in the regular marathons of family life. Cooking, cleaning and other engagements occupied me, leaving me stressed and worried.

After a couple of years, I sat down, having decided to start the discussion of the missing dot with my husband. I dreamt of a little girl…walking towards me, in anticipation. The entire episode of the conversation witnessed development as we registered online for ADOPTION. Meanwhile with the completion of formalities and documentation, I breathed relief and profound joy.

I recalled the conversation with my Late father-in-law, who was furious with the idea of adoption. “Are you hell bent in damaging my family name and heritage?”

My mother-in-law snapped… “Why, do you have any medical complications?


You can conceive, right?”


OH YES! I could afford to give birth. But what would happen to the dot, that was waiting? For sure, I could not desert her. By now, I had succeeded in reading through those blank stares and mystifying silence. She needed a home and blanket of warmth. A cozy hug and   meaningful life.

I waited eagerly, rubbishing off the negativity of the tongue twisters.

I waited in longing, in yearning.

I continued to work, but, every other day I sensed an inner call to QUIT!


“LAY IT OFF NOW”….my heart would sing off and on.

The adoption agency had reassured me – “ The minimum waiting period is 2 years.”

We had registered in mid 2015 and immediately new rules and guidelines were introduced by CARA (Central Adoption Resource Authority).

In the summer of 2016, I experienced a voice within to liberate myself from any ongoing confusion. It was an indication, a signal to quit from work. It gave me sleepless nights and anxiety.

I followed my heart and resigned, to the utter shock of my peers, colleagues,friends and management. IN the letter    I mentioned 31st August 2016 as my last working day.


Call what you may, imagine what you can. As I celebrated my birthday on 2nd August 2016, I was excited and ecstatic for something I had no idea of. On 3rd August 2016, after coming home from work, I found my father, husband and son glued to the television. As I opened my shoes and placed them on the rack, I heard my husband telling me –“ Well, there’s some important news for you. Go inside and check.” I didn’t bother much, perhaps I was exhausted. He joined me instantly and switched on the laptop.


A giant tide of happiness drenched my soul and heart. I broke down in inconsolable tears.

WE were instructed to choose a child according to the specifications. By now, my son had entered the room. WE hugged and kissed in celebration. Together, we clicked on the very first photograph… A LITTLE GIRL STARING… I identified the missing dot. WE confirmed our consent via mail.

I still could not believe my fortune. I was never spiritual in the conservative sense of the term. I don’t go to temples and crowded places of worship. To me, HUMANITY is the greatest religion. I find solace and tranquility in serving mankind in whatever little way. I grow, I learn, I derive, I dwell on life and the human kingdom. I had always loved children and fondly recall offering them chocolates and stuff on the way to bakeries and sweet shops. MUCH to my amazement, the shop owners would try to shoo away these children in rags, brushing past the glass entrance with naked bodies and hunger trapped in their flat inward bellies.

After some days, we were informed by CARA and the agency to visit our child. Everything seemed like a dream. On reaching the premises that housed abundant innocent lives, I soaked in the reality of the dim images that crossed my path many years back. Thereafter, a lady reached out to me and handed over a cute little girl with brown eyes. I readily fastened her with my warmth and love. The feeling was hysterical. I held my cheek close to hers and she chose to stay that way for a long time. The EARTH spinned, THE SUN shone, THE CLOUDS danced, MY WORLD was painted in hues of Rainbow colours. I held her with no intention of releasing her. She was to be the DOT OF GRATITUDE in my life.

I had lost control. I expressed my desire to see the other children and they obliged. AS soon as I looked at them bedded and cradled, still wearing a radiant smile, tears overflowed profusely.

On 3rd SEPTEMBER 2016, WE carried our dot of gratitude in the lively environment of our HOME. She basks in the playful slide of everlasting happiness in the company of her brother, father and mother. MY son, my soldier, has named her ZIVA. With time, she has grown to be a chirping bird, tweeting meaningless words and learning to live and love. We take pride in raising her with abundance.

I am delighted to have expressed my feelings of Gratitude.

TO the pages that I chanced upon.

TO the blankness that I understood.

TO  have nurtured the dot within.

TO have lived the dream.



My utmost gratitude to LIFE, NATURE and SOMEONE UP THERE, high above, to have bestowed on me the happiness of dots. TO my mother whom I lost to CANCER in 2013, for her blessings and love. ZIDAAN and ZIVA , constitute the connecting dots of love and continue to adorn the chapters of my life.

Shrabanti Ray
Shrabanti Ray

Shrabanti Ray is a teacher, trainer, facilitator, mentor, script writer, poet, thinker, and crafter, possessing about seven years of corporate experience and thirteen years in the educational sector. A progressive thinker who dwells on the art of life and the several strings of life that create music. Looking out of the window is a pastime that she relishes to seek an insight within. She believes in living life to the fullest as there is no second one.


Aparna Posted on1:00 pm - Sep 3, 2018

You have connected the dots and how! Gratitude to you for sharing!

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:04 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Thanks Aparna.
    I am grateful to life for having given me the opportunity to connect with the dots.

Meenakshi Raina Posted on1:15 pm - Sep 3, 2018

To adopt any destitute child is truly an appreciable and charitable thing, which only a magnanimous person can do.

Shrubs, salute to you & to your family for this incredible service towards humanity.

A brilliant and well woven write up on Gratitude.

You are an extraordinary noble soul. God bless you Shrubs.

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:14 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Meenakshi, I appreciate your kind thoughts about me and my family.
    Actually humans are supposed to extend their hands to support and care for each other.
    My actions are just a dot in this mammothness.

Falguni Shah Posted on2:28 pm - Sep 3, 2018

Excellent feelings penned in a beautiful write-up.
Respect for your guts to go against the society & make dreams come true of a lovely child
Girl you are very strong. Kudos to your courage!!
Hats off!!

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:18 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Yes. I am strong.
    Everyday , every moment assure yourself that you are strong.
    It will make you do things without hesitation.
    My humble gratitude.

Sriharsh Vaidya Posted on2:43 pm - Sep 3, 2018

Amazing Shrabanti… Your happiness and the sense of fulfillment you experienced with the arrival of Ziva in your life seemed vivid In your writing.. I believe Ziva is a lucky child to get a divine soul like you In the form of her mother..

Thank you so much for sharing your story of Gratitude..

God bless You and your Divine family ??????‍?‍?‍??‍?‍?‍?

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:22 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Must I admit that I am lucky to have her in my life.
    Thanks much for your acknowledgement.
    I sincerely remain grateful.
    Sriharsh…your encouraging words do uplift the mind.

Hiren Patel Posted on3:17 pm - Sep 3, 2018

This one is really Inspiring Shrabanti Mam. I respect you and Grateful to you for touching one life. I too Live with same philosophy of Humanity and Fortunate God has also blessed me with Strengths Through which We could serve education to many children Through our Institue.

I am able to relate with your Emotions. Thank You For taking such Inspiring Decisions!

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:26 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Well, Hiren , Humanity speaks the sweetest language and transcends above everything else.
    I wish you all the best in your pursuit of empowering others. Trust me, you are doing a tremendous job .
    I am only Shrabanti or Shrubs.
    Ma’am is a very heavy word for me.
    Thank you.

Neelam Posted on4:15 pm - Sep 3, 2018

Very beautiful sentiment. Loved your caring attitude. Noble cause and the strength you needed to make family members accept it.

    Shrabanti Ray
    Shrabanti Ray Posted on3:31 pm - Sep 4, 2018

    Neelam, where there is a will there is a way.
    Believe in your power to bring about a suitable change that wholeheartedlly supports a cause.
    Thank you so much for your thoughtful words. They create magic.

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