Draped mostly in a cotton saree, wearing a low bun, she looked like just another old lady with a village connection. She was 72 and still strong, even as her mind was so clouded.
My grandmother practically raised me. She looked after me. She taught me how to feed, how to bathe, told me bedtime stories, put me to sleep. She was my angel. Like every other tamil old lady, she was obsessed with coconut oil and was never tired of the tantrums about how me and my sisters never oiled our hair daily.
Although her words alone could never capture her essence, i recall them often. Two days before she died, she said “you’re my life. I’m here only for you. You are my baby”
As a child i would pray : “please god, never let my grandma die. I need her… Please…”
Eventually i recognised the inevitability of death and my prayers changed : “god, i know grandma will die someday. But please, don’t let it happen until I’m atleast 30 years old.”
Little did i know that she’d leave so soon. She spent the last two months of her life with me. It was just me and her. I took care of her, she took care of me. I cooked and did all the household chores. I used to wash her clothes with so much love thinking of all the times she was there for me and no matter how much i do for her, it’s never really enough. Never. We were so happy together.
It was the 21st of july i lost her. Nobody would have expected that, even in the wildest of dreams, not even her. She was quivering with chest pain. She was in my arms while i saw her soul slowly leave her body. I felt numb. I didn’t cry, i didn’t shout….just felt numb. It’s been two months now and i still can’t digest the fact that she’s no more. When i saw the rituals getting done on her dead body, when she was finally prepared to be taken, that is when all the pain came rushing in. I cried like i never cried before. The pain of loosing someone special and dear to you is soul sabotaging. I cried for what felt like forever. She was a part of me, a second mother, whose memories are never going to fade away.
Her footprints in my life are permanent and i will miss her till my last breath. She visits me in my dreams every single night. And i promise to her that i will become a successful, humble, caring and a virtuous person that she raised me to become, for her.
Thanks for reading.