My Dear Reha,

It hurts to let go. But there are times in life when it hurts more to hold on.

Your ‘Meethi Ma’ is no more ! It is as real as the fact that your ‘Meethi Ma’ is everywhere, in every corner, for all times. She is in our soul, in our breath…..She is a part of us……….which we would not let go…….

It was 27th June, 2015. Remember ? Just hours before She left us.
‘Sandhya ka Velaa ‘ as She would always tell, is not the time to sleep. She was sitting on Her bed, eyes looking straight, expressionless into the vacuum towards the setting of the sun through the front window.

I am sitting right there writing to you.

Many such evenings we had spent together laughing, fighting, talking, sipping tea and eating pakoras. But it was different that day. She was unable to speak. In fact She had stopped talking a day earlier. We all knew that the worst could happen anytime. But the fear of the unknown had engulfed us. We were not talking anymore among ourselves. Endless silence, secret weeping and mechanical movements.

She was not told that the doctors had put Her in palliative care….off medicine, no treatment, just keep the fingers crossed and wait for the inevitable to happen. She kept asking me as to why, She kept telling me the physical issues of the hardness of the belly and swelling of the feet. She was very positive till the day before, when She finally told me, Luck, I think I will not recover.

Suddenly you told me, ‘pops, Mom wants to know where are you’. She must have told you by Her gesture or movement of the eyes. I was sitting right beside Her . I came around and hugged Her. My head was on Her lap and without looking at me, She gave me that final soft kiss by whispering a thin puff of air from Her trembling lips. I could know she recognised me . She was conscious and in full control of Her mental faculties. I told Her in a controlled and calm voice, look we are meeting You there, someday across the sky pointing my index finger towards the horizon where the sun had melted leaving behind the redness of various colours. This is the best send off I could give You. See, Geeta, Sushil, Picky, Sushma Di, Bhabhi, Sukoon, Reha, Nitish , Meena, Me, all are here…….!

I think She understood what I had meant when She gave a smile to you because you were in front. Finally She called for Meena and when you told Mom that it was Bua’s birthday next day, She gave Her last ‘happy returns of the day’ smile to Bua.

That night you had laid your bed on the floor in our bed room. Mom , you and I were together……..for the last time……

Crying is not criminal. The only thing you need is a shoulder. We will share it.