My 13 year old daughter came up to me this Sunday morning as we were about to leave for the final ritual. She showed me, on iTunes, a new song “Dusk till Dawn” by Zayn ( for the uninitiated, he is the guy who came out of One Direction). I was seeing her in this mood for the first time in the last one month. She paved me for this segue to understand how I was recovering from bereavement.
On the 13th of Sept , in an unusual book store ( generally I ignore this book shop) close to a boarding gate hidden behind couple of books was this book “ The Path “. This was a period of bereavement for us. The path was the way to recover . I opened the book to see this interesting quote and that made me go through the first 3 chapters quickly:
It is not that the ” way broadens humans ” it is that ” humans broaden the way ” – Confucius.
I came across two men in particular who definitely broadened my way. These two men were participating in the rituals and supporting and helping each other in every moment. It came as a shock to me when I heard that both them had lost their young sons a few years back. May be, this was their path of recovering by participating in this moment of grief and supporting us . I met so many people who had a lot of courage to share their sad stories. Every person had a story of sadness to share and it made me accept that we all have our quotas of setbacks. Surely I started discovering the way forward with this acceptance.
Why do we follow rituals ? We had 4th day , 16th day and final ritual, last Sunday. Rituals made me think how we are embracing the new reality and also it is a coping mechanism. With moist eyes, heavy heart and shaky hands we completed all the rituals. At the end of the rituals the priest makes it a point to say that we imagine him and pray for his soul to get salvation. A ritual allows you to construct a new reality. A reality of awareness. The awareness that we need to prepare ourselves and live our life with the new reality.
Finally the path breakers came in the form of people whose thoughts , actions & words helped us reshape this path of recovery. My school friends Praveen , Anish and Monali through calls and numerous other WA messages . The vibrant TILT team of Ian , Kavitha Sandhya with their words and messages and numerous other TILTians through their messages in WA and FB. My engineering mates Sreekanth , Rejath , Sunil , Unni through their calls and sharing , our neighbours Col Nair, Neeraj , Rajanand and my cousin Ashok who reached out to me for all the support. I would like to thank my professional colleagues and all our relatives who helped us and supported us. Also I was happy to see the messages on FB through my blog which was a tribute. All the people who reached out to us via different platforms and meeting us in person , we as a family owe a debt of gratitude and it had tremendously helped us where we are today. In other words you all helped us in our new creation of reality.
These path breakers showed us how to break this new path from Dusk to Dawn.
We completed our final ritual and on our way back dropped by our uncle’s house for a cup of tea. My daughter decided to capture the “beauty of the day” as it was unfolding.