The 13th Day

Photo by Julia Volk on

As the May month starts, there is a weird restlessness mode in me. The memories of last year pandemic and its aftermath on many of us comes rushing back. Memories – sometimes do take a back seat, but when required, comes rushing back.

It would be a year in May losing my father. They say time heals. It does but the remnant of grief remains. It never fully heals. And I think it should not. Grief reminds me of the loss but at the same time reminds me of what I had and how beautiful it was.

As I sit down in midst of my work, chaos in my head, peace in my heart, there is churn of different emotions running through me. I go back to the 13th day of the mourning. The 13th day is considered as the last day of mourning the loss and the family holds the ceremony, wherein certain rituals are performed. These as per the Hindu rites, is to help release the soul of the deceased for re-incarnation. What a circle of life!!!

I have vivid memories of the events that took place on that day. Rituals followed by serving lunch and dinner. Since it was the peak pandemic time, the ceremony was carried out in our house. In-spite of the difficult times, people invited had made their way to our house, to pay their respects to my father. It was a house full of people, chattering with bits of laughter now and then and the food. Exactly the way, my father would have wanted. He loved people, he loved long talks, enjoyed loud laughter and was a born foodie. The 13th day reflected his personality.

Why do I write this?
– To look back and remind myself that grief fades, never leaves fully but brings together pain and gratitude.
– To know that we as a family have been lucky – as our father was around us a major part of our life.
– A reminder that we all have to leave one day, and it would be key to celebrate life to its entirety.
– We are all a combination of love and hate, care and ego, gratitude and anger and more…. It’s a choice we all make, to know – what should fill us and flow out and what we need to place in the back burner.
– I believe life is a celebration as much as death is, both in its own unique way.


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