My dear Acha,
Remembering you today.
I’m at my son’s house. The grandson you never saw.
You visited us only once to see me in my new role as an Army medical officer, wife and mother-to-be. You took great pride in your firstborn donning the uniform. That brought me untold happiness.
The next trip was to be on the joyous occasion of my firstborn. Amma arrived, but without you. You had met with an accident and were hospitalised, I was told.
I was blessed with a son after a complicated pregnancy and a long wait of 5 years. I wanted to share this joy with you but being posted in a remote place, no telephone was available.
As soon as I was fit, I wrote to you enclosing my son’s picture. It was then that I was told the unbearable truth that you had actually left us forever.
A tragic irreplaceable loss.
I never got to say goodbye. It was a shock that I took a long time to recover from. Also, a lack of closure as I never got to see you. I never did any last rites. It was only when I came home much later that the reality hit me.
Your smile would never greet me. Your unique sense of wry humour would never make me smile. You would never hold your grandson in your arms. You would never relax on my balcony. You would no longer silently support all the decisions I would take.
I saw my mother, the strongest woman I know, bear the loss stoically, but her life, more than any of us, had changed. Forever.
I miss you at every milestone. You deserved so much. But when it was time to relax after life’s responsibilities, you had to leave.
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