“Your mom and I had only Rumpa (my eldest sister) then. We stopped on the way to Darjeeling in Tindharia because Rumpa wanted to puke*. The last time when your mom and I went travelling, we took a photo there. Two empty nesters remembering what it was like back in the day. I asked them (sisters) to frame that photo for me. So I can forever remember what it was like”

And I sat there listening to dad and all the memories they shared with much fondness. Was it a happy conversation? No. But to find happiness in every situation is probably as human as it is to err. Oh, the great human spirit and it’s magical ability to move on. To forget all that’s sad and to remember just the best part of it all and etch it in stone!

We lost our mom to Parkinson’s last Sunday and we find solace in the fact that she had a long beautiful life where she was loved, valued, treasured, wanted and cherished every single moment. And now that she is gone, we miss her terribly but strangely, whenever we speak of her, we end up laughing. She was one funny mama!

As a matter of fact, here she was probably telling dad, “why are you folding your hands like your mom is seeing? Wrap it around no” Hahahaha, she was a legend. She was one LEGEND. She was strict when we were young but as we grew up, she became funnier by the minute. And I know for a fact that she will be happy that we are discussing her with such warmth in our heart and not doing, nyaka-kanna- as she would say. And in an ideal world, I would celebrate her with chitol mach but truth is, no matter how prepared you are – you are never quite prepared for the death of a loved one, let alone your own mother. I spoke to her at 10:21, she was gone to granny and her brother at 1:30. The shock was too much for me to even process. And for days, nothing inspired me. At all.

Because all the things I take solace in, the things I find joy in was her doing.

From planting gladiolus every monsoon to figuring out what new recipe is in the latest “Sanonda” and trying to replicating Tarla Dalal in the kitchen. Haha, and then learning how to make “piling” bhaji {Basically a mix of everything in the fridge. Ofcourse, how can I forget oggling at her oil colour palette, learning the difference between cognac and brown. Mom was the one who got me into colours. And it all seemed so pointless that I wondered if what I do is even worth doing because eventually, you’re born out of ashes and to ashes you shall return.

I felt like a sea at storm.

And I constantly wondered if this feeling of void, of nothingness is ever going to leave.

A few people I spoke to, told me to give it time. That slowly the raw throbbing pain will heal and what will be left is a beautiful scar which will remind you of only the good times. Seemed frivolous then, but 5 days into it, I realize that perhaps that is the natural course of things. Today, I find it in me to write about her and the memories we have created over years, without breaking down probably because she taught us to be strong. Or probably because time truly stitches the wound within with an iridescent fabric gauge that not only mends it but also lets the light that seep through fill you with happiness. If not heal.

I also thought a lot before penning all this down. Because essentially, I talk about decor here. And you’d probably not like this bit, specially given the times. But my intention of penning this here is not to make you sad. Rather to tell you that we are doing fine. And you will do fine. And slowly, we will all eventually remember the best bits and forget the hardships we had to go through.

I have chosen happiness. So should you. Because mom would have liked that

Rukmini

6 thoughts on “Moving on & carving happy memories in stone”

  1. The thing about death is, one isn’t ever the same after it… when someone dies a part of you goes with the person but a bigger part of that person stays back in some way or the other… its not going to be easy but never estimate this crazy human ability of moving on

      1. Absolutely, and after a decade I heard someone use “nyka kanna” :p I’m not going to say stay strong and all that shit. Dont be strong, you’re not supposed to be, something I learnt last year that its important to cry and process and somehow make sense of it all. And its okay to breakdown.

  2. Hi Rukmini. I had tears in my eyes while reading this. I lost my father 3 weeks back..though he was sick for sometime..I just couldn’t believe when he was gone..my brother called me at 10 to make me speak to him, I missed his call..and by 10.30 he was gone..I never got my last call. I miss him a lot..and I don’t know when this pain will go..waiting for time to heal . Sending you lots of hugs and prayers.

    1. Hi Neha! I understand and I feel you and we are in this together. Let the grief take its course. Try and remember the happy times. That’s all there is in our control

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