Nani left us on this very day. How many years ago it was, I cannot remember. Not because it’s been such a long time. No, it’s only been a few years. Five, I think. Or is it just four. Calculation by order of events tells me it’s definitely more than three. The mind does not register. I’ll have to be reminded. Just as I had to be reminded what date it was today. And the year before. Last year, I wept from the guilt… How could I forget?! Today, I wept from the confusion in my head.
Problem is, I don’t forget. No, I have a razor-sharp memory that rarely allows me to forget dates, incidents, conversations. But here is a date that clearly doesn’t seem to register in my head. Possibly why I woke up confused and disoriented… I had no idea what day or date it was. Having been reminded, I was, not unexpectedly, sad, till it turned to confusion when I tried to recollect some memories of my favourite person ever. And what I drew was a huge blank.
Now, this scared me! Because it was like massive chunks had gone missing from my life. All my summer holidays, the two years I lived with her while Dadda was posted to remoteness, the innumerable times she visited us, my college years and after when I spent every weekend with her, everything was a blank. I can recall when we met, but I have no idea what happened then. Nothing. What did she cook? I think she fed me a lot, just as all grannies are wont to do. What did we talk about? We must’ve hugged and talked a lot, we’re just that kind of a family. All I could recollect was that we’d been thick as thieves, and that The Mother often complained about how Nani’d been more of a mother to me than she’d been to her, and how I was more Nani’s daughter than hers. But how??? What was it that prompted her to say that?
Weirdo’s explanation to this bizarre type of amnesia was that I’d come to terms with the loss, and that this was my way of accepting that Nani’s gone…just blocking it all out. I’m not so sure. Objectively looking at it, to me, it seems more like a case of denial…she was never there, so where could she go???!!! But inside me, I know that’s not true either. Because she was there. And she loved me, and I loved her back like I’ve never loved anybody else. And a part of me, even though I’m too disoriented right now to tell which part, will always be with her.
This one’s for you, Nani, because I know in my heart that you were the most beautiful person ever. I hope you’re spreading your beauty and warmth wherever you are, and gladdening more hearts, just as you did mine.