It is said that grief doesn’t shrink over time, we grow around it. We may try everything we possibly can to escape the loneliness that comes with losing a loved one. However, the void remains. Life keeps us on our toes, momentarily distracts us, but there are days and occasions that jolt us back to reality. Today is one such day for me; Mom’s birthday. I don’t miss her more today, no. It’s the fact that I can’t bake a cake for her to cut, treat her with her favourite food, and wish her in person that pinches me more. Writing a letter and sending it out to the universe is the best I can think of right now.
I’ve gone back and forth innumerable times trying to figure out what I should write to you in this letter. There are many things I want to share and even more that I want to know. First things first, how are you? How is heaven treating you? Is it worth all the hype? Do women really flaunt those flashy clothes, jewellery and people speak in poetic Hindi there? I bet your social afterlife is as thriving as it was here or is it more? I can never imagine you lying low, anywhere! 🙂
Here’s a quick update from my side. Next week A Jr will be a teenager, but you already know that right? Your elephant’s memory was our backup for every birthday and anniversary, after all. Angel is going to be seven this year. (I know, she’s a big girl already!) I don’t say it aloud (should I?) but the best decision of my life was marrying the guy of your choice. Despite my mood swings and occassional outbursts A loves me and cares for me a lot. Fire and water was the perfect metaphor you picked for us!
Daddy shuttles between our home, mine and S’s as per his mood and wish. He is softened around the edges now and is incredibly calm and collected. Amusingly, his life is a lot more happening than ours. He works out for at least 30 minutes every day, has a good social circle, and is always up for an adventure. Also, he has become an enterprising cook and makes idlis, paneer, parathas, and whatnot. With you gone, he feels more responsible towards us. I wish he didn’t. Shouldn’t it be the other way round? S is the younger one but is more matured and evolved than me. Our conversations are filled with advice, concern, and also reprimands, mostly from his side. Daddy and he have my back all the time.
Finally, let’s talk about me in my letter! I’ve spent most of my life trying to get your approval and being a good enough daughter to you. I don’t know if I was one. Right now though, I’m everything you wanted me to be. I lost weight, am working from home to be with the kids and writing professionally. We booked our home after you left (you would love it!) but I know your blessings are with us. This is my island of happiness and my favourite corner in the world.
Can I be absolutely honest? I’m outgoing, brash and content for the world but that couldn’t be farther removed from the truth. I’ve learnt to live without you, yes, but nothing can fill the dark hollow I feel within me. I watch all the things moms do for their daughters in helpless despair and can’t help feeling a sharp stab of envy. The line ‘bagair maa ki bachchi’, hurtful sympathy in peoples’ eyes and fake pretence of camaraderie mercilessly gnaw at me. I didn’t ask for and don’t deserve them.
I restrain myself from sharing my wounds with anyone though. Daddy has his own devils to face, A won’t understand and S is just as broken as me. Grief is personal, sometimes out of force. Sad, isn’t it? My tears are shed and wiped out in solitude, like now. There’s a lump in my throat and I can hear my heart pounding in my ears. Please don’t be upset. It’s natural, isn’t it? How else can I release these pent up emotions?
I long to hear my kids say Nani. A Jr has fond memories of you but your presence is sorely missed in Angel’s life. She knows you only from your pictures and videos. I wish you could’ve spent more time with them, spoilt them and taught them a thing or two. Alas! 🙁
I can go on and on, you know I talk too much. I’m wrapping up this letter with the assurance that we all love and miss you a lot. Life and time are the biggest healers and we’re still learning.
Happy Birthday, Mamma! Hope you’re happy and at peace, wherever you are!
Lots of love,
This post is a part of Blogchatter Half Marathon
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