Monday, July 21, 2014

Grief

Three years ago we lost a friend. Well two for me as only through the sheer will power of sweet hubs, no one, and I mean NO ONE told me anything until a year later. You see I was 8 months pregnant and in my state, it was not the right time to tell me. And of course, during the whole next year since I was the only one who had ever been pregnant in the history of the world, I was so self-absorbed in my own journey that I barely gave my friend, my sick friend, an ocean away, any thought accept for cursory questions about his well being and getting vague mumbles and averted eyes in response.  I never picked up on anything. I was drowning in motherhood and all that mattered, was me. Honestly, I lost you years before you actually went . The last few times we met,  you weren't the fiercely intelligent, witty, sardonic sullen goblin who could insult someone without them even knowing it. What was there instead was a husk. A beaten, bent husk in such unbearable pain.. I'm so sorry meray dost, I never understood that.

I'm angry and ashamed. Angry at you and angry at me. Angry at you that you couldn't hold on for just a little longer, to let this cloud pass to see what was waiting for you beyond that mountain. I'm angry at my self that I never understood just how insurmountable that mountain was. I am mostly angry myself that the last words I spoke to you were harsh when what I should have said was that I loved you dost, hang in there. We will hold your hand. Instead,  I sprouted science at you. Because that's what I do when I cannot handle 'emotion' and I was a bitch. If only I understood that last smile and last time we talked on the phone when you called to say good-bye. Why did I not tell you how much you meant to us? I did not because I was a pregnant, hormonal bitch who thought the world needed to revolve around me. I was so angry at you for ruining my perfect vacation plans. I was so mad. This is my regret and guilt that I carry with me always.

I'm angry that my child will only know you through anecdotes and half stories with no context. A footnote. An abstract ideal and not a real person. You were supposed to be his favourite chachoo. You who would encourage my children do to the things I explicitly forbade. Not because you wanted to indulge then but because you knew it would piss the hell out me. You who planned to have your future son marry my future daughter and then move into my basement and hatch nefarious plots to annoy me.  I am sad that there are still times when I hear something deliciously wicked and my first thought is that you would love this. I miss our conversations over endless cappuccinos. I miss your insane requests for chai at odd hours. I just miss you.

So I grieve by not knowing how to grieve. Grief is a strange beast. It's palpable and real and consumes your mind and body. It's the sudden quickening of the heartbeat in the middle of the night. It's the heaviness in your chest. It's the hot unbidden tears streaming down your face when you hear a song in the bus while hoping desperately that your extra large sunglasses hide the puffy eyes. It's also the clear eyed, square jawed numbness when retreating into your mind is the only relief. It's sharing and over sharing. Talking and not talking. A teacher and a tormentor. It's gut wrenching,raw, personal and it's mine! 

It confounds me. The bloody thing is an insidious little bastard. It burrows deep into your soul until it becomes a part of you. A festering sore that gnaws away relentlessly and rears its head at unexpected times . In happy moments, a voice will whisper your name and I see you and miss you terribly. You embody my grief , buddy. When I cry in sorrow for myself, for the world, for all the innocent lives cut short, I think of you and weep again. I weep for you in my moments of solitude, in the middle of the night, on buses when all my walls are down and all the regulations melt away. When there are no expectations on me and off me. Silently and quietly and then I write and delete. I write and delete in my mind all the thing I want to say to you, so many things. So forgive me meray dost, I failed you. 

People say that the grief  lessens when you let go of the hurt, the anger and the shame but I don't think I can. That's my last tenuous link to you and if I lose that,  it almost feels like you will be gone all over again and forever. And that my friend, is unbearable.