She grew quiet, quieter with every passing day. And then one day, she became quiet forever.
I did not cry. I felt bad, but I did not cry.
In fact, I was relieved because she was now relieved. Of all the pain, suffering and discomfort!
I knew this day would come, and then I’ll have no option but to face it. However, for some reason, I always shushed this thought.
This day came. After twenty five years of happiness, it was there.
Cries and sobs were in the air. But I could only see her sleeping in peace after days, or weeks, or may be months of soreness she had suffered.
It had become an unsaid rule for me to visit her twice a day – before I left for my workplace and after returning. I observed that she now disliked all the stuff she loved doing – watching Baba Ramdev on TV, chitchatting with kids in the family, eating sweets secretly and walking around the house. She no more ate or responded to us, despite our efforts. She refused to talk or eat. I noticed how paler and bleaker she had grown, how skinny and skeletal she looked.
But he…he sat beside her all this while, striking conversations with her, so unlike him. He fed her food and medicines. When she used to stay asleep for a little more time than usual, he checked her heartbeat to ensure she was still with him.
Even on that day.
I can’t recall a moment when he was not by her side. May be he knew what was coming. Unfortunately, it came. None of us wanted it to come, but it had to, and it did.
Now that she is in peace, his tired arms don’t seem to find just the right job for them.
I still visit her room only to find her bed empty. She still smiles back at me from that framed picture and I instantly know that she’s there.
— Just the memories remain. And those memories give us strength to move on. —-