I Climbed it

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Ibn E Rukmini

Some of my fondest memories revolve around my father. A man of 75 years, he is quite a life learner even now. Needless to say he was my first liberal influence. However, Politically I don't agree with him on most issues. Well over the years I have realised my politics is different from my family's. But my father truly 'loves' me...of whatever I understand of that word...he stretches himself to accomodate me...and he tries to understand me. I am indebted to him for that.

We have been fellow travellers. He has taught me to appreciate life, love and my work. He has taught me to do away with guilt of all sorts.

Last night baba, suvojit and I decided to drink some feni with guava juice. Suvo and baba have diabetes and I have perennial plans of losing weight... but we were together and that called for a celebration.

Feni hits fast. So I asked my father what did he think of me?? Little daughter seeking baba's approval:)

Baba said "Besh Mei"..."quite a girl"
"...but sometimes you harm yourself with quick decisions"

I was curious. So I prodded.

" I would have had a grand daughter"

I held Suvojit's hand and whispered- "he is drunk"

"She would have old mammu??"

He calls me Mammu.

I was drunk but I could still sense a lump in my throat.

"She would have been 9...aa aa ten"

For next few minutes I could see my father trying to figure out how old his grand daughter would have been now had she lived. Whether she would have been older than some of my nieces and nephews or younger to all of them. And then he talked about how beautiful this little angel was.

"Khoob sundor chilo. Eito shundor. Eito haalka...kintu koto bhaari"

So light but so heavy.

And for the first time I realised he had a name for his grand daughter.Yasmin. He didn't think of a hindu name. Clearly out of his love for Parvez. I couldn't tell him Parvez had named his daughter Nova.

I stayed awake late thinking my daughter who breathed only for 15 minutes outside my womb... and nine months inside me...has a story...and two names...


  1. Very touching, thanks for sharing. I know how hard it would have been to type this through to the end. Though, i cannot claim to feel the loss, i can understand the feeling. In a way, it's a good medium to get these feelings out.
    I'm truly sorry for your loss. The biggest burden in life is for a parent is to bear their child's death, and justify their own existence past the incident. There are things we can't control, and it's good that it happened that early in her life. The longer she would have been with you, the more harder it would have become.
    I recall the reaction of my grandmother so vividly, though it has been 21 years since. My uncle, 30 years of age, who just got married only 5 months before, suddenly passed away one day with a very brief stint of illness (Cerebral Meningitis). He loved us all, so very much, we still miss him and more often than we would like to, a simple question keeps creeping back in...."What would Pappu Chacha do, in this situation?"

  2. I'm at loss of words. As someone who was a witness to the entire sequence of events, i know how painful it was then and even now to come to terms with such harsh realties of life.

    It would not have been easy to pen down these feelings, but at times it helps to give our grief some sort of outlet.

    We all are dwarfs before that giant - DESTINY. At least, this is what my experiences have taught me. Life moves on and so do we, with emotional wounds buried within our souls.

  3. Rukmini: you are always admired for being a fighter and making your way on your own terms out of the thing called LIFE.
    It's upto us whether we want to carry it as a burden on our shoulders and move on or to keep it with us and move on.
    You get more admiration from me as you opt for the later one.

  4. I know strength of ur personality,i.e i always appreciate you but after knowing this i just admire u, being a mother i cannot imagine for a moment, during imagination my body shivers, so can imagine how difficult it would hav been but we all are with u-seema

  5. at a loss for words...
    "Eito haalka...kintu koto bhaari"
    cheers to u for writing it so beautifully.
    more power to ur pen!

  6. Read this last night.... couldn't sleep for a long time.

    All I want to day is I love you. Thanks for being in my life :-0