27 September 2020

That occasional moment of mirth

As listless as his life has become, we have been able to get his pain level down with all sorts of life support around him. That includes dialysis – which means he has to be heaved off to the dialysis center three times a week and then four hours later brought back. There is a fairly large support system of four people my brother has set up for him. That includes domestic help at home to give mom some respite, a couple of able bodied people to lift him and get him in the car and all that…

On his side, he is mostly sleeping and has gone very quiet. Does not talk as much and in those days when there is a 2-day gap between dialysis, he gets very fidgety and restless. But does not complain of any pain. And then, once in a while, when he gets a bout of normalcy, he gets stressed realizing all the support system set up around him. His biggest fear is that all that expenses will dry all our money dry and mom will not be able to buy food. Needless to say, he has no idea how much money he has or how much a kilogram of potato costs for that matter.

My brother is once again at this bedside this weekend. I look forward to that since that means I can see my dad thru Whatsapp video. He clearly looks like a much-stricken patient. The most painful part for me is when he keeps asking me when will I come to see him. Unlike a month back, he has lost his ability to understand the pandemic and that flights are not possible right now.

In the middle of all that, we did see a streak of his old humor though.

At one point, he asked me what was I up to. This was around 10 at night for me.

“Tomakey taaka pathabaar byabastha korchhi”.
(“Oh! I am fixing the system to send you money.”)

He knew immediately that I was making fun of him. You can see him laughing in the bottom left screen shot. After a good laugh, he sobered down for a second and then with that familiar mischievous countenance (see bottom right picture) shot his comeback..

“Byabastha-ta a-byabastha korle ki korey?”.
(“How did you break the system to begin with?”)

Even my brother was laughing so loud that he could not hold up the phone for me any more!!

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Posted September 27, 2020 by Rajib Roy in category "Family in India

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