It has taken me more than a month to gather strength and pen my thoughts about the eventual truth that we all know about, but are too scared to face, till circumstances force us to look it in the eyes.
How do you bid farewell to people whom you have known your entire life! Words are not enough to put a lifetime of memories on paper. It has been a difficult and trying winter for me, as I look back and reflect on the times that I spent with those who have now merged with the eternal.
The first to go was the one with whom I was connected for more than my life on this mortal earth – 9 months or so more. Yes, she was my mother. There are myriad memories, but the uppermost in my mind are those of her possessive protection – which was never stifling – and the bridge that she was between us children and our father. I took her love for granted, hoping that my gestures were enough to convey my love.
The next to go was my maternal uncle, my mother’s younger brother. I do not know what his feelings were as he might have held me in his arms when I was born. He would have been only a 17 year old young boy at the time. In fact, I also never felt the urge to ask him about the emotions that might be going through his heart at the time. The reason was simple – he never treated me as a child. We spoke as equals. He made me feel special without overtly talking about it. Now we will talk no more.
The last was someone who I met 25 years ago – not a lifetime, but no less also. We met professionally, lived in the same complex and developed a healthy regard for each other. Our children grew up together. Our younger daughters developed a friendship that would be the envy of all. We moved on, but spoke occasionally. Every time that we spoke or on the rare times that we met, he would ask me to come home to reminisce about our times together over a glass of wine. That never happened.
Now there are unsaid thoughts and a regret that I should have made efforts to be more communicative. The three deaths have also brought home the fact that our time on the planet is limited, and there is a lot to be done, a lot to be said to dear ones. There would never be enough time; but I can try.
I do not know if there is a supreme being in the other realm who would judge me. I only hope that when I close my eyes, I do so with a satisfaction that I tried my best.
Au revoir my dear ones… Till we meet again… This time we will talk… And do the things that we wanted to do together.