In loving memory of my dear Dad…
This year, on 8th January 2014, I leave behind the naughty forties and turn a respectable fifty, but that’s not why this date is so dear to me; there is a deeper and more profound reason for the same. My father chose to leave this world on my birthday four years ago, and for a very long time I blamed myself for his death. My dear friend Alka helped me understand and cope with it. She said, “Your father loved you so much that he chose your birthday as his going away date; he was the first one to call you up on the morning of your birthday. He wished you, and told you how happy you had made him, showered his love and blessings on you before saying goodbye. Your bond with your father has become stronger; he has proved to you that you were his favorite child by choosing your birthday as his last date.”
I wanted to believe her so much, and I did, but it took me a long time to get over this blow to my heart and soul. For the first couple of years after losing him, I didn’t celebrate my birthday but the unconditional love and support of my family and friends was like a soothing balm on my bruised and battered heart. My dad was big on celebrating birthdays at the stroke of the midnight hour, and that is what we did last year. My mom fed me the first bite of the gooey chocolate cake and wished me a happy birthday, my nieces and nephews and their respective parents added to my already bulging form by feeding me a piece of cake each 🙂
I would like to believe that my dad was smiling while watching the midnight birthday celebrations and blessing me like he had always done for the last 40 odd years. This year we are celebrating his life along with my stepping into the fantastic fifties 🙂
Amidst all the smiles and lighthearted banter, lies a fragile heart, whole on the outside but with multiple cracks in its core. Each day strengthens my resolve to be brave and face life’s challenges with a smile, which I do, but sometimes the smile slips off and lays bare my bereft heart, for all the world to see.
Sulekha aka Lucks