I always carry the ring you gave me. But I can’t wear it anymore. Of late I tend to forget where I’ve kept it. Like yesterday I went out for a short evening walk; suddenly while crossing the road – the one where we’d first met – my legs froze; I don’t know why but I had a strong urge to see the ring right on the spot. Meena was there with me. She kept telling me not to stop in the middle of the road. I heard all – the grating clamour, the horns, her shout – everything, but I was lost wondering where the ring was.
Remember that summer – the last summer – we spent together? All I can recollect is me crying and cursing my destiny and you, being mad at me for that. You hated it whenever I said you were my life and corrected me saying you were only a part of it. How different we were! You were too practical and I, too far from it.
Then one day you left. I was 29. Though not very young, yet very naive. With practically no knowledge of the real, harsh world. I had nothing to fall back on. Whoever I turned to, asked me who I was mourning, who you were, why your leaving pained me so much. I couldn’t fathom why it was so difficult for them to stomach. Was it just because we were not married?
Oh, in fact I tend to forget a lot of things lately. Yesterday I took my post-lunch medicine twice. Can you believe what I have turned into? Meena got really worried. But I laughed my head off. I feel bad for her. She takes care of me like I’m her own. I wish I could tell her all this 69-year-old is doing now is count her days…before she meets her life again.
I’ve spent forty long years without you. Your death broke me no end. But it taught me to live without needing a pillar to prop against or hide behind.
I feel tired already. I should stop writing and hit the bed now. Doctor says this disease is slowly feeding on my memory. Hence this diary. Oh I forgot, today the ring fit my finger perfectly. Strange, right? I have lost more weight. Still it did. Seems like some miracle has transpired. And I have a hunch that another might be on its way. I’m dying, I know. And the wait has been really long…really very long. Is it possible that tonight it finally would be over?
Written by Chirasree Bose