- Posted December 9, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
2013: Your greatest moment
The most memorable day in my life.
I came from College after appearing my Physics paper. It was going to be almost evening. I came to Aunties’ house where I used to stay. I was surprised to see her serious which was not in her nature.
She saw me and just started crying. I was thinking that she would ask me on examination and then would go on throwing advices on how I should be serious on academics, how I should learn to take care of myself and so on. I was confused with her behavior. My mouth shut, only I could say “stop crying please. What has happened?”
Her reply was also quite unexpected. She said me to go home first. My examination was not yet over, and she was telling me to immediately go home. I sat on the stool kept near her and informed her about the situation. She was adamant and she was sobbing. After few minutes, she informed me about my mother which probably she was not willing to divulge. My father had already come to Bolangir(My town of stay)after doing all rituals of my mother and he had proceeded home telling her to send me since I was the eldest son. My younger brother of 8 years was with him along with my mom’s mother. She had gone to my father’s place to take care of her ailing daughter.
I could not believe myself. I could not believe her. To add, she said, “She cooked all food for you and waited for you till she passed away “.My body and mind both were blank. Simply I could not digest. Suddenly to verify how much correct she was, I walked on to the Taxi Stand from where my father hired a Taxi (Cab) to home. It was dark and no one was there. Still, my inner sense was telling me, she was there. She was supposed to be suffering from Cancer and the mark could be seen from her face, head.
From there, I went to the District Hospital where she was admitted before. It was night. I went through all the beds, saw all the rooms. She was not there. I felt hopeless. I did not know what to do next. She waited for me after cooking foods of my choice and her telling everyone present in the house that her son was coming “was not palatable. My mind was doing overtime. I smoked a cigarette. At the age of 15,that was the first puff. I did not bother. Head was slightly reeling. I did not know why I felt her presence every where I could see. Something, omnipresent.
It was almost 9 and the town was starting to sleep. Barring the street lights, no one was there. A thought came to my mind. I took the cycle with me and started riding to our village which was around 30 KM away. It was night all the way, jungles, thick bushes all the way. I went on and on, my mind was busy and I took no notice of the lonely, vacant path. I did not know where from the energy came, but I was riding as fast as I could.
I did not know the time. The darkness was still there. When I reached my village, I did not know. Everyone in the home, my two uncle’s family and their children, father,my brother ….all were crying. It was so loud and clear. I gazed at them. It is my nature to cry if I find someone crying. But I was deaf and dumb that time. I was trying to cry. But I could not. I was just silent. I went to touch every Elder’s feet (mark of respect on arrival or departure), but I was surprised at their crying when I touched their feet which always had been some loud blessings showered on me.
I was asked to go to a room. It was empty and I was alone. A Deep was glowing at one side of the room .and there was plenty of ghee (oil) in it. The light was dim and I was given a plastic mat to sleep. My mind was blank and I was not tired.
The sound at the door brought me to senses. One of my uncle was there at the door with a Purohit (who prays to the God on behalf of us in the temple).They said me to go to the pond. In our village, there is a pond around 1/2 kilometers away, surrounded by large number of mango trees and a Shiva temple. All funeral rites are performed there. I did not know earlier.
I was asked to take a bath. My Shirt ,paint were removed and after bath I put on a Dhoti (cloth) in a typical Brahmin style. My uncle and Purohitji helped me to do that. It requires a trick so that a portion will go between the legs backwards to the spines. Afater bath, I was said to sit kneel down near a holy Basil (Tulsi-botanical name-Ocimum_tenuiflorum).The Purohit started mantras (chanting slokas) and every now and then ,I had to get into the pond and had to take bath. I do not remember now how many a time I took bath.I never knew cooking. But I had to prepare food for the holy soul. I was doing everything he said like a machine. A stage came; it appeared to me as if she (my mom) was there in the tiny leaves of herb eagerly waiting for her food.
I realized the fact .She was no more. It was Maagha Shukla Pakhya Chaturdashi (14th day of Maagha Fullmoon-Maagha begins with Sun’s entry to Capricorn and it is usually 10th month of the Gregorian year).
It was an auspicious day in Hindu Religion. She left on this day and I was left alone.