If the phone rings incessantly these days, I pause a bit; and gather myself before I answer the phone… I have been to two cremations and a burial over last month! I ask myself, “Am I getting old?” is there a generation before me whose time has come to leave this earth. But yesterday I attended a burial of one of good friend’s sister who was young! So I guess the last thirty days has reminded me about our mortality and I am reminded of the quote – “I cannot predict the future, I cannot change the past, I have just this moment… I will live it like my last.”
Death was something we never spoke in my house growing up? But my father being a police officer, death was a passing conversation he would have on the phone or walkie talkie usually reference using IPC 302/303 (Indian Penal Code Section 302. Punishment for murder). Therefore when he left abruptly in the middle of the night awakened by a phone call from the police station or control room, I used to correlate it to something bad had just happened.
My first lesson on the fragile nature of life, was when I was in 5th standard. We were living in the police officers colony on Mysore road and one day my dad woke up in the wee hours of the morning, but this time he did not go to the police station; he went next door. Sub-Inspector Sunil Kumar our next-door neighbor was stabbed to death while he was apprehending a criminal in Cantonment Railway station. This was the first time I had a lesson that on mortality. My dad sat me down and explained to me what had happened and why doctors could not bring him back to life.
I sat again last evening with two of my good friends talking about life and how to make the most of it. By the time the evening was over, I realized… I want to be there for my family, friends and for that matter anyone. Because I care!