Amma is coming home today.
My Amma, my favorite…
Amma, with her big red bindi and colorful silks, her matching jhumkas and tinkling anklets. My grandfather loved to see her that way and so did we. After he passed away Amma continued wearing the big red bindi, afterall that’s how my grandfather loved her isn’t it? But wonder why everyone else was unhappy…she gave in, I never saw her again with the big red bindi. She cried that day, I cried too.
Amma loved to talk, she was a treasure trove of stories. She had a story for every occasion. A master story teller, she made even the most mundane things come to life. We all listened to her enthralled, the life of a party…I remember our evenings, full of adda and laughter. But then the stories became repetitive, her memory failing her slowly. Our roles reversed, so what if she didn’t have any stories to tell, I regaled her with new stories and she listened enraptured! But wonder why everyone else was bored…they avoided her company. She went into a shell, but then there were days when she would tell me and the plants, in our balcony, a story from her past, her eyes twinkled and so did mine.
Amma was the bedrock of the family, after all her life revolved around her family. Any time of the day or night, in sickness and health, in happiness and distress, Amma was always there for everyone. But wonder why everyone else was too busy when she needed them. Her kidney gave up and do did her family. She was sent to the old age home, she assured me that’s what she wanted, smiling through her tears.
Amma has come home today, one final time, before she is taken for the cremation. She looks serene, finally she is at peace. I smile, I am happy for her. But I wonder why everyone else is grieving…why now?