I woke up from a disturbing dream, and felt sad to the core of my heart. The dream was sweet and nostalgic; I was listening to my mother as she was talking about the good old days, when we lived in Joypahar. We were playing Uno, over a cup of milky Cha, a few Nabisco biscuits, and talking up a storm.
Within my dream, I realized, I was in the midst of a dream, and that soon I would wake up and the moment would be over. I tried to tell my Mom, but the moment was so joyous, that I couldn’t bring myself to reveal what I already knew as the truth.
I wanted us to remain happy, just like that moment, just with that cup of milky cha, over that game of cards, raising “gopshop” to a whole different level.
I am certain, we all have those moments, where everything just feels right; the lighting is right, the temperature, the mood, the music, and most importantly, the people you love, and care about. These are precious times, times to cherish, sip like a good wine – just before you know that these come to an end.
Recently, my Aunt and Uncle came to visit us from Dhaka, for a weekend. We sipped a wonderful cup of latte while walking around Harvard Square, on a sunny fall morning; took a swan boat tour on the Boston Commons lake, and discovered the magic of bonsai at the Harvard Arboretum.
I had that same feeling; I knew these few days are precious – and we took it all in the best possible Bangalee way – food, music, adda! I am grateful for these three days I got with these two wonderful people, who make me happy, every time I see them.
Over the last thirty years, as I have left religion, something else has been on my mind about these joyous moments, old and new.
Major world religions talk about the gift of reincarnation or afterlife. So therein lies this possibility of heaven (and hell). There is a small chance, they remind us, of meeting those people we love, in life after death.
However, in my non-religious views, and the lack of confidence in heavenly interactions, I feel deeply saddened by the fact that I will never, ever see my mother again – not in this lifetime, or another. She will never remind me to walk straight, or eat slowly, or ask me about how we are doing; what I had with her, is done.
I know I cannot wind back time.
But another really conflicting thought enters my consciousness. I am thinking of my beautiful daughters, my sister, or Matthew – those that surround me with love today.
Every night when I kiss Shania goodnight on her forehead – or when Daiyaan is visiting us and we have samosas together, while arguing about this or that, these moments are also limited and they too shall come to an end.
After this life, I will not see any of these loved ones again. This churns me inside and out. Suddenly every second feels so much more precious. There is so much beauty on this earth – and I have so much to be thankful for – that I really don’t want this life to end.
I realize that every moment is precious with our loved ones. This time cannot be repeated – and it cannot be reincarnated. It is, what it is; it is all about NOW. And I have only responsibility – to make it as joyous, for myself and for them.
It’s a cloudy, drizzly Sunday here in Cambridge. Shania has a sinus thing going this weekend. We decide to stay in and just chill around the house. We have left-over Italian and watch a Disney movie together. We toast some samosas, and make hot tea, to keep us company.
At the end of the movie, Shania thanks me, for being lazy today and just hanging out with her. I am grateful to her, for reminding me, at this moment, at this point of completeness.