I received incredibly sad news today, Mi. Padma manni passed away. She developed some shivering, fever and was taken to the hospital. She was given medication and then, returned home to recover. Except she didn’t. She lay down to sleep and never woke up.
I know she had some chronic conditions that she was managing with medication. I met her in January this year when I went for Gopmama’s 80th birthday celebrations. We were together most of the time, catching up, gossiping, as she caught me up with the latest with all the family members. I recall, on my journey back home, spending time with her was one of the pleasanter memories of the trip.
And when I got the call to inform me she was no more, I felt very sad. I know she was not the favorite in the family but she was always nice to me. I know why she was not well-liked, but I could only think of how kind she had always been to me. And of course, there’s the big bias that she’s Kondumama’s wife, which will automatically forgive most of the things we did not like or the experiences that were not so pleasant with her. Nevertheless, my prevailing feeling was one of sadness. Death is so final, isn’t it?
It left me wondering who would take care of her stuff and all the things that go into taking care of when someone passes away suddenly. Someone who has been living alone for some time. When she told me this when we met in Jan I was surprised. And she explained why. Whatever mama left to provide for her after his untimely death could only last so long. She apparently sold her flat and moved to another town where rents were cheaper and she could make ends meet better.
The great thing was how happy and content she seemed. Her neighbors were kind to her and she was getting by reasonably comfortably. She never missed a family function, you know.
Sigh. It is just so surreal when we hear of family members passing away. Mama also told me another cousin, 92, had passed away. Well, I did not really know who that was but yes, sad nevertheless.
I couldn’t help smiling thinking back of all manni’s visits — when we were in Hyd and later in Mumbai. Then to our present home as well. Of course, more prominent were Kondu mama’s loving visits, never tiring of the long and rather tedious journeys he had to make to and fro.
I will never forget how kind both were – and that’s all I will remember. Not the times they drove us nuts. Because that’s how we’re wired as humans, aren’t we? That’s how we should be. Remember the good times. And allow the not so good to recede into the background and fade away.
And life goes on. Coffee helps, of course.