Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Something to keep me, like from life..

For once, I think it’s worth my time to get serious about something: writing, health, books or perhaps yoga for a simpler start.  Anything. Just SOMETHING! It all seems pointless though. But more necessary than ever. Mom left behind in me, apart from, of course a LOT of other tormented things, astonishing amounts of empty spaces in my mind. Really, my God! For days after her passing away, I sat through those hollowness of hours in complete disbelief, wondering ‘Oh God, what am I going to do with all the time everyday for the rest of my life?’ And it’s driving me crazy!  It’s still a clueless feeling for me because for more than 31 years, I’m simply used to living around her - sending all my thoughts her way, cracking every single morning with her, calling her up around 3:00 AM to ask her if she still had in her cupboard a favorite kurta of mine that I probably used during my high school year (of course, she did), going over memories of the good and the bad days we had had, collecting souvenirs to later gift her from my travelling to let’s say, an artless Amish county by the suburbs, getting mad at her for not watching a movie I loved, quarreling my way thru’ all the frustrating moments when I just couldn’t get her to agree with me(on a lot of things),  laughing stupid about some random, really old holiday memory, crying our heart out thru’ her initial days of diagnosis, hoping against the darkest odds that we would make it, sharing every tiny little secret of life, dark or funny, trying to create small spasms of happiness, as little as it might have been, as much as we could, whenever it was possible– my God! It’s unbelievable the way my entire life axised  around this lady. 
Sometimes I pick up the phone, dial her number and let it ring a couple of times before I end the call. It has never happened that I called and she never picked up. I won’t let any reality disturb that feeling. Nothing ever.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Cancer and other disasters of life..

I think one side effect of cancer is really underrated – the aftermath it leaves on the family watching their loved one losing it all in the battle. I mean, losing it all – health, happiness, hope and hair. I remember when they put those kinky wires all around mom several times a week, she would muster her petite, left over portions of energy up to ask, ‘so how long should I keep my hands steady?’ The nurse would smile and offer her reassurance a.k.a sympathy, saying ‘until we get the medicine in, not long.’ Things constantly beeped around her or threw some random numbers. Sometimes the doctor took pity and decided to skip a test or two. He would look at us and fake it, ‘she’s fine for now.’ We would nod, faking it back. Those days, I saw a lot of her hair up close. Mostly because she lay facing the wall, most of the day. It was growing back from the last chemo. Many little spirals that resembled Fusili, they curled up and snuggled all around her little head now, like every strand there was trying its luck at every chance left to fight back to life. I have a feeling her hair really loved her back, the only thing about her body that cancer could not really conquer. 
But in the end, it’s a war we were going to lose. It’s a meaningless war. It’s a meaningless disease.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

I need a little more room here..

Mind is the trickiest place ever to be in – volatile, wild, deranged, vast, hazy, aggressive, strong, maternal, disordered, fertile, combative, stupid, strong, courageous, fierce, weak, generous, vulnerable, funny, vague, capable, romantic, fearless and of course, incredibly a lot more. It is all yours, so completely, no one else can ever be there with you in that place, sightseeing.  It’s your own big empire. You run it. Nobody cares if it is pretty or gawky. No one is ever gonna come, take a look at it and say ‘That’s a nice place you have in here.’ What you wanna make it into is a choice you make, make, make and make again, every single day of your life.

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Time up..

You know people say, ‘Get back to life. Look you have a future.’ It’s like you are given a small window of time to mourn the loss, to miss the life you used to have, to cry or whatever and when the time is up, you have to turn your stuff in, whether you’re finished or not and move on, like the exams we had in school. But in a way, they are right. Someone needs to cap the time off your hands and firmly show you where the exit is. You are never going to be done otherwise. You are never going to stop crying. You are never going to stop missing. You are never going to stop wishing that life were different.

Friday, August 16, 2013

The story in between.

When you lose something so big from your life is when your true grit comes under real test. Not only does it leave you depleted of your strength and hope and happiness, it simply throws you into an ocean of uncertainty without making an allowance for the fact that you don’t even know how to swim. But I guess that’s life. It’s full of nothing but tough, grueling, amazing uncertainties; it’s always going to be that way. It always was.
So when it does happen and when we do get flung by its power, what do we do? Learn to swim? Try and stay afloat? Try to hold on to anything that might keep us from drowning? Cry for a lifeboat? Or do we simply surrender to the invincible force of the tide and let our soul fall away? I think all these options require courage and an incredible amount of human effort (except for maybe the last one where you let yourself drown, but even that takes courage; no effort perhaps).  If you are lucky, a lifeboat might just cross by. But the irony of life usually is that the lifeboat is moving in the opposite direction and does not hear you.
The kind of place I feel I am caught up in right now after mom left is pretty much bang on.  It’s the exact feeling of trying to hold my head above the water, gasping every breath, constantly getting pulled by the undercurrent. When I think of it, it’s astonishing that life would work under such a sadistic sense of humor. On one hand, I mean, I was losing this person who simply meant EVERYTHING to me (in every definition of the word ‘everything’). I knew I was losing her and that I couldn't do anything to stop that and on the other, I had this new person, basically a newborn and practically still a stranger to me, who smiled at me in wonder while I wept in despair. It was like life’s way of telling me ‘you can’t have it all, baby.’ But I wanted it all. I was not asking for the moon and the sun to show up at the same time. I just wanted my mom. I wanted her by my side as I was entering the big world of motherhood myself. I wanted her with me on that ride. Just a regular, simple, amorous, dhal rice-eating family, that’s all I wanted. I thought that was every individual’s fundamental need.
I thought that’s what everyone had. I thought that’s the way life worked – to be a child, to grow up, to make your choices, to build your future and all along the way, your parents were going to be there for you, watching your back, holding you from behind, taking care of you, loving you like no other and aliveBIG MISTAKE !


Thursday, August 15, 2013

A little shy of six hundred words, about thousand days later - that's not terrible. No.

 I think I am going to write. For a while. For a few days. I don’t know how long. I don’t know if I can sustain the thought of it for long. I haven’t written in two years. Probably more. Not even many emails.
It's like, things look different. Those smaller things of life that mattered and made it all beautiful – summer, friends, birthdays, a roll of canoli in a baker’s case, a stranger’s smile, surprises, cappuccino, sunshine, purple leaves in fall, a kiss, a gift box on the table, that one phone call, a baby’s touch, a spoonful of ganache - I don’t know if I can love them the way I used to. I miss those days. The only experience I believe I can honestly write about now is possibly how it feels to live in a world without mom. It’s perhaps going to be a sad blog. Maybe forever. Or maybe until one day, I just decide to become reformed or have the energy to write about the newborn in my life. But I will write. 
In every sense, I just need to get myself to one end of that string I’m looking for. The right side. The good side.  Really, what is there to lose?
So, the way people resolve to go to gym to get into better shape, I am choosing to use this space to get into better shape – a happier shape. It’ll be like a regimen for a random number of days. Like a few odd days of finding my way through writing again.  Who knows? There is a chance I might dig out something from here – some piece of my soul – lost, yet to be found. In life, there is a least bit of chance for everything.
But this is a good start. At least, I am able to write.
It should mean something good.
As you become more clear about who you really are, you'll be better able to decide what is best for you - the first time around.  – Oprah Winfrey.
Day 1.