If you have been through a bad phase in life, things will certainly haunt you down… Not once or twice, but, constantly. I had this one fixated thought in my mind, i.e. “You never go through the same pain or pleasure repetitively.” Yet, I was completely wrong. Maybe, I was too young to understand the saying, “Life offers you your needs, not the wants.” All in all, life became my best teacher and I was learning the new lessons day by day. I stayed strong and tough while growing up with my only hope of experiencing the happiness in the moments.
08 February, 2004, Sunday it was. I boarded the flight with my aunt. I had this feeling of fear in my heart… I was very afraid to step back to my birth city. I don’t know why I was distressed throughout this current phase of my life. In the next 3 hours, I stepped to my grandpa’s house. “You must be tired. Go and take shower, change your clothes…” Grandpa said. “Where is uncle?” I enquired. “He is sleeping in his room”, Grandpa replied. “But, why we are here? (We were at the new house)”, I shot another question. “Son, I will answer all your questions after a while… before that, freshen up yourself” saying this, grandpa leaves the room.
Finally, I met my uncle. He was lying on a bed. I went near to his bed. He looked at me and smiled. I was unaware about his health condition. At the age of 11, I hardly knew what flaws or lows life was showing me. He spoke slowly in a very soft voice, “How are you my son?” “I’m fine… and you?” I replied. “I’m also good.” He mumbled. “But, you are not looking well and why you are sounding so low? What happened to you? When you will be fine?” I babbled untimely. Grandpa was looking at me with an upset look. Other family members were sitting outside. “You need to be stronger and tough now. Lots of things are coming your way to crush you… to shatter you… and I know, you will stand still for longer” uncle said all this with a hope. “You will be fine, I know” I whispered.
Monday… Tuesday… Wednesday… 3 days passed. I spent all these days with my uncle. I saw him. He was in pain. He was waiting for his last breathe. His eyes had no hopes left. The charm on his face I saw years back… it was not there anymore. Every time he saw me… he used to smile. “He wanted to see me happy.”
12 February, 2004, Thursday… 8:00 AM.
I was sitting beside my uncle’s bed. He took my hand and said, “It’s time for me to leave… You take care of yourself… and never get worried about anything… I will be always there with you… also, look after papa.” I had tears in my eyes… didn’t know what to say… no words were coming out. “You are not going anywhere” I said in broken words.
“Papa, I need to take shower… take me to the washroom” uncle said. “I won’t take you… You can’t go” Grandpa replied. “Papa, please let me go. I don’t want you to wash my body after my death” Uncle said. I helped Grandpa in taking uncle to the washroom. Uncle took shower and left his body around 8:15 Am. I witnessed his death. I was unable to fight with this phase of life. As, I was not a strong child. Death of my uncle was a nightmare for me.
3 months passed in deep darkness. No playing, no outing, no school… me and my dark room. That’s what I had in my life for next 3 months.
To be continued…
PS: Whatever happens… happens for a reason. And, the reason is there for 3 things, i.e., learning, understanding and experiencing.