I just had my dinner. It was Sunday evening; so I prepared a special dish for dinner. Two varieties of curry with paneer and vegetables along with Indian bread ‘roti’ nicely greased with butter over it. I and my family were just talking casually about some series and I received a call from my cousin. After the call, I didn’t know how to react and, as I lost sense of time and place. My cousin just gave me the saddest news of my life. My dearest uncle passed away due to cardiac arrest. A small description about bonding between me and my late uncle. We were very close and were more like buddies; not less than partners in crime when it came to food. He was my inspiration and always motivated me to grow in life and face any challenge with courage. He taught me to believe in myself. He was my stress buster and my only place to go when I felt sad and broken. Looking at him smile used to cheer me from whatever emotions I was going through at that moment.
I hung up the call and gathered courage and reached uncle’s house. There, I saw him lying motionless on the bed. The doctor just wrote a death certificate and left. For me, it was like I am dreaming and in a while, I will wake and see my uncle alive. But the reality was a reality. He was no more. He was gone. He left for good on his immortal journey. I didn’t know should I praise him at that time for what kind of human he was or should I let my heart cry out and be sad thinking he is gone forever. Facing the reality and accepting it was the biggest challenge for me. I was just recollecting every single moment spent with him. Very last moment was so fresh; as I had met his previous week. He was so healthy and active. We had snacks together and were chatting so happily. I never thought it was our last time together. If I had known I wouldn’t have left him.
The reality of birth and death. No one can ever predict death. Nobody knows how much time more they have to live. We all would have lost someone in family or someone known or someone close to us. Accepting and moving in life is what is expected when we try to talk about grief. But that’s not easy. Everything needs its amount of time; to accept; overcome grief and move on. No words can explain exactly what we feel after losing someone. All we can do is pretend to be normal. Pretend that we have moved on. But in reality how much true it is? For me, it’s not.
I still hope and wish that I had some more time to spend with my uncle. I have so many things to share with him; I want so many things to learn from him; I have so many doubts to be cleared; I constant need his motivation and advice on taking decisions; I have many new varieties of food to be cooked and eaten together; I have many more birthdays to be celebrated with him; I have many more places left to visit with him; to go for long family vacations, and the list goes on. Now I am left with memories and never going to be fulfilled the wish of meeting him again.
Is grieving normally or not? It’s a very natural process in every living being. Even animals grieve when they lose their family members. We shouldn’t force ourselves to come out of the grieving period. It will take its own time. Whenever you are grieving or meet someone who has lost someone; don’t immediately try to use this statement ‘ I know how it feels ‘. Nobody knows what they are going through. All we can do is let them be how they feel. People lose their appetite and sleep after they enter into the grieving period; some for some time and some for longer. People also tend to lose track of time. People also start losing interest in daily life activities.
Everything depends upon the kind of attachment they had with the departed soul. During this period other family members are supposed to be supportive and help that person to pass these phases and get them out of it without actually forcing them. No one can prepare oneself to face this reality of death. Everyone fears losing their loved ones to death. But also we all know one who takes birth has to die; what all do not know is how much time we are left with to spend with our dear ones. People go away only their memories are left behind and a wish in heart ‘ I wish I had more time to spend with you’.
Sejal Davey Counselor and Coach (Special educator, parenting,child and career)