Once the all encompassing sorrow recedes after a major loss, the wave of grief leaves behind little memories, which, like little pebbles, scratch open the scabs of the wound for some slow seepage of intense pain.
Little things like the absence of a daily wsapp message to ma “ki korcho?” (What are you doing?) And her unchanging response “TV dekhchi.” (Watching tv).
Little things like the urge to tell them about moments I loved or moments that made me sad.
Little things like something I read or a piece of music that all three of us listened to when I was young.
Little things about Sahana or Ryan. Things that only they would care about other than us.
Little things like opening up Facebook and checking if baba was active. If he was active, I knew he was well. The day after he contacted Covid, he went active on Facebook for a while. I turned to Sean and said, “He must be feeling better, he is posting on Facebook.”
Little things like checking when wsapp was last seen by ma.
Little things like teasing ma about timing my phone calls according to Rani Rashmoni’s show times on television.
Little things like planning our Kolkata trip.
Little things like connecting to the hotel wifi wherever we traveled and letting them know we have arrived wherever we were supposed to arrive. “Pouche gechi.” (We have arrived). And their response, “khub enjoy korish. Chobi tulish dekhbo.” (Enjoy a lot. Take a lot of pictures for us to see).
I realized these little things even more on our recent trip where the two anxious people thousands of miles away who waited for that message of arrival are waiting no more. My cousin sister, however, said, “I will be waiting. Write to me when you arrive.” So I wrote to her.
Little things like the constant realization that neither of them are physically there any more – living their life, showering me and mine with love.
Little things (not a little thing, this keeps me up at night) like I could not say goodbye when they left.