It is that day of the year again. The day the reminds me of what I have lost.
Not that it needs reminding. I remember it every day. And yet, yet, I have managed to live on. I have managed to smile and laugh and dream. There is not a day when I don't grieve, but I have coped, have moved on.
Have I really?
I remember the time when I lost. I felt as if my being was shattered in thousand pieces, with each sinew of mine shredded. As if every nerve of mine sat up on its haunches and let out a piercing yell of pain. And then, sat down with its head down and wept and wept and wept. And then, when the flood of tears abated, I came back to consciousness, and saw that I was still whole. My fingers were intact, my hair was still in place, my stomach still growled with hunger - all of this while the sinews inside were still facing the skies and continuing to bawl with a deafening sound. My hurt self was angry, sad, desolate and in throes of despair, but my living self wanted to move, eat, defecate and yes, even smile. I hated myself that day. Hated myself for being a part of my living self, and hated being a part of my hurt self.
And then came the others. Others who came because they heard of my loss, and wanted to comfort me. I looked at them, and told them about my yelling and screaming sinews. But they wanted me to think about food, about what to wear for the funeral, about how I wanted to dress her. They wanted me to be one with them. But I wanted to go with her. I wasn't for the world. My world was gone, did they not know that? And yet, they persisted. They put food in front of me. My stomach growled and kicked me. I gave in, and ate a morsel of food, and then another, and then another and then a whole meal. My stomach smiled. The others who brought me food smiled too. The sound from my sinews raised its level, and wanted to be heard again. I started to tell the others, but they hurried on, not meeting my eyes, and distracting me by telling me about the funeral. I realized then, they don't want me to tell them about my anger and hurt and desolation.
I remember saying that I wanted to see her. They said I could not. She was taken away to the mortuary, they said. They then pushed me home. Home to where her bed was, her clothes, her pillows and her toys. And the pain returned thousand fold. I could not bear it. I wanted to die as I yelled again. There was no one to hear me. They could not bear to be with me, I think. They could not even look at me in the face, afraid to see the hurt bawling out. They were not with me. Would never be. They perhaps had hurts of their own, and my hurt and loss reminded them of their own.
Days passed and I was left with myself. The hurt self and the self that was living. The only way the living self could live was by ignoring the other self. By letting her cry, letting her beat her head against the wall, letting her tear herself down. I hated myself being the living self on days. Those days I would starve the living self. And on other days, my hurt self would come out and bawl. She would take me near railway tracks and invite me to try coming between the wheels and the tracks. She would make me want to drown myself in the sea and make me walk along the shore for hours, waiting for the tide to come in and claim me. How can you live and eat without her, she would ask me. I had no answers. Often times I agreed with her. The others cheered the living one, and ignored the hurt one. I began to hide the hurt one from others, she really had no other companion than me, so why bother having her out with others, I reasoned.
Its been years now. My hurt self lies crumpled within me, lurking behind every smile of mine. I have chosen to hide her, but she is a huge part of me. She comes out and stares at me from mirrors, and when watching a very young baby, thwacks her head against the wall.
But on days like today, I let her come out in the open, and grieve and be angry. Angry at the so called Gods, angry at doctors, angry at everyone who could have helped her baby, but did not. And sad for her baby, who got nothing, nothing from the world. Nothing but pain and illness. On days like today, I allow myself the luxury of becoming one with my hurt self, and suspend living for a while.
Tomorrow, however, is another day. She will have to hide again. No one, not even myself, can bear to be with her. She needs care and comfort, but I can't give it to her - I simply don't have the amount she needs.