In Loving Memory


The sun shone brightly when I woke up, and a line of its glorious ray seeped across my room through a crack between the curtains. Outside, the sky was clear and untroubled.

A beautiful day, indeed. 

A day too beautiful and serene there was just no telling that it could be flawed. And it offended and pained me to the core of my bones that such tranquility was only far too short before the rest of the day was slathered with mourning and sorrow.

Though it was one bright and brilliant day, I wish it would have never come.

When my grandma from my mum’s side departed five years ago, I remember I was the one who broke the news to my other siblings since I was the only one who was present at the Emergency Room apart from my parents, uncles and aunties. On the other end of the phone, I could almost see my sister stand still, speechless. Tears choked all utterances.

Yesterday, I eventually had my share of being on the receiving end.

It was hard to grasp all the words coming out from my aunt’s mouth over her frantic and incontrollable sobbing. But they were intelligible enough for me to realize that my grandma from my dad’s side, who had been residing in Indonesia, and whom I last met five years ago had been called to rest for eternity. She collapsed three days prior and was admitted to one of the local hospitals and temporarily regained consciousness. Thus, it was hard to comprehend the phrase “She’s gone” when we all had been under the impression that she was all okay.

But nothing was harder than seeing my dad collapse in resignation.

The passing of my grandma reached me before every else in my family. When I was too overwhelmed to utter a single word, I handed the phone over to my mum who later broke down irrepressibly, a part of her was still disbelieving. The last time I saw her weep just as heartbreaking was when her own mum departed and she went ballistic and paced the hospital floor akin a raging child who had been told that she could not get her doll back.  

It was during this time, when my mum was crying over the phone conversation that my dad arrived, and he immediately knew the rest of the story without having us explaining.

All my life, my dad has been the pillar of strength in our household. He has always been the one whom we can always depend on for words of comfort. He has always been the calmest in calamities, the strongest to come out of storms and the one who can always fix the broken for us.

Yesterday, however, he was the broken one and none of us knew just how to fix him.

Like the rest of my family, the last time my dad saw my grandma was when she came over here for my sister’s wedding. That was five years ago. Although he never openly expressed, deep down we knew he always wanted to pay his parents a visit, but his perpetual commitments over here constantly constrained him.

And it could have been that - an irredeemable regret - that turned off the power button in him and left him lifeless for the rest of the day.

It killed me to see my dad that way, but I learned one great lesson.

Dear grandma, you might never knew this, but I have always said to myself that once I have owned a stable job and earned enough, I would go every step of the way to pay you and granddad a visit. A visit on behalf of my parents, particularly my dad. If by any chance this could reach to you somewhere up there, I just want to let you know that dad would glow with indescribable happiness whenever he talked to you on the phone. And that longing in his eyes. Thank you, thank you and thank you for giving me one amazing dad, a tribute to none other but you. I truly hope he has been just as amazing a son to you.

We already miss you so very much.

“Every soul shall have a taste of death; in the end to Us shall ye be brought back” – Al-‘Ankabut, 29:57, The Holy Quran.


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Anonymous said...

My condolences to you and your family...

Aziz said...

Thank you for the thoughts, V ;)