A small twitch in my eye upsets the routine of my life.
|One winter morning, I awoke from a dreamless sleep. It was the dawn of yet another mundane day in my life just like the earlier one. I sat on the bed bleary eyed and thought of the monotonous day ahead. Then, with great effort I hauled myself to the bathroom.
Looking in the mirror at my puffy face, I sighed and said, "Let the transformation begin!" I thought how good it would be to pick up a face of choice from a box and say, 'This is the face I want to apply today'. I peered at my image closely. Hey! Wait a minute. What was that? Below my right eye, there was a faint throbbing. It was a twitch. I rubbed my fingers on it wishing it away, but it continued on its merry note. Without giving much thought to it, I began to ready myself for the day ahead.
My wife noticed it while I was drying my hair and said it was a sign of good luck. Slightly cheered by that thought I dressed hurriedly. On reaching office, I stepped into the packed lift and found myself face to face with a guy who I saw everyday. He gave me an amused look. Could it be that he wanted to break ice and strike a conversation, I wondered?
Walking to my desk, I settled in for the day. Later that morning one of my colleagues came over. She peered closely at my face and said, "Hey you have got a twitch". I made an incoherent remark, that it was a temporary thing and was sure to go away at some point. Throughout the day, colleagues dropped in or met me near the water dispenser and had to make some comment about it. It grated on my nerves having to sound apologetic. But I brushed them aside and consoled myself that it would be gone the next day.
When I reached home that evening, my two year old son touched his finger near my eye and made gurgling sounds. I didn't mind him touching my eyes every now and then. At least he was distracted and daddy had become some sort of an entertainment. I went to bed with lingering thoughts of disfigured eyes.
The next morning I headed straight to the mirror anxious to see whether the twitch had disappeared. But there it was in its full glory, twitching. To my consternation, it had gained a slight momentum too. I imagined all the comments I would get that day, about people wondering with amazement that it still continued.
That evening my friends offered me unsolicited advice about how to get rid of it. One of them suggested dipping the affected part in scalding hot water. Someone said apply a mixture of strange herbs. Another suggested applying Tabasco sauce as it contained the right ingredients to stop the twitch! I heard them out patiently.
The third day I was sure it would be gone. But to my dismay, it was there taunting me with its presence. What had started as a small throb was turning into a nightmare.
"Day 4!" one of my colleagues said with a twinkle in his eye. Wow, a counter! A little aberration was becoming quite an amusement. That night I dreamed that the twitch had become an earthquake and was uprooting my face from my body. I woke up in a cold sweat. What if this never stopped!
The next day I decided to consult a doctor. He was a sour faced man who looked like he needed a long vacation. He gave me an 'are-you-kidding-me?' look, like he had better problems to solve. He made a great show of turning my face from side to side and peering at my eye closely. His breath smelled funny - onions and coffee? He dismissed me with an advise that it will go away eventually. I hurriedly put distance between us as I wanted to get away far from the sickeningly sweet smell.
The fifth and sixth day passed with more stares and queries. People, who otherwise ignored me, were now giving me smiles and knowing looks. Yeah I was turning out to be some sort of a freak. Some people intentionally pointed out the twitch so they could watch me squirm. As it is, fun is lacking in many people's lives and I was making up for some of it.
The seventh day my desperation increased. I thought of putting some masking tape on it and applying skin color to hide it. I perished the thought as soon as I envisioned myself as an Egyptian Mummy.
I resigned myself to fate on the eighth and had almost forgotten about it. I was listlessly brushing my teeth when I became aware that my eye was no longer twitching. Like Archimedes I wanted to run out of the bathroom shouting "Eureka!" What came out instead were choking words from my foaming mouth announcing to my wife that it was gone. A wave of relief swept my entire being. I stopped at the local donut store wanting to celebrate the exit of my unwelcome guest.
Passing round the sugary rings to my colleagues, I proudly displayed my face sans any twitch. As we were wolfing down the donuts, my colleague in her sanguine voice, foxed me with her question, "What will you do if it visits again?"
I was about to eat the donut when I froze midway, my mouth open.