There is a pang in my heart that refuses to go away, try as I might. I don’t usually write sad stuff on my blog, but I think I will make an exception this time around.
My parents have been on my mind a lot, of late. Them, and my grandmother. There has been a spate of sadness, unpleasant incidents and bad health in their lives, and every time I hear of something like that involving them, it takes my sleep away for at least a couple of days.
Just last month, Amma had a severe pain in her shoulders that didn’t go away in spite of rest and OTC medication. ‘It’s nothing, it will go away,’ she kept saying each time I asked her about it over the phone. A lot of pestering later, she would reveal that she frequently did not sleep during the nights, as the pain kept her up. I had to literally shout at her and drive her to an orthopedist, who diagnosed her with ‘Frozen shoulder syndrome‘. A lot of medication and pain balms and physiotherapy and continued exercise later, she is now alright.
Then came Appa’s turn. Last week, he slipped on some wet earth near our house and fell, got up, only to fall again. Amma, who was walking ahead of him, came back when she found him missing and found him standing there, stunned. Luckily, his BP was checked and it came out to be normal. He did suffer a minor crack in his hip bone, which the doctor says will need a bit of bed-rest to heal. The obstinate man refused to be bed-ridden for more than 2 days, and has started going out on his several errands for a short while every day. Amma did not tell me of this till we returned from our Ooty trip, as she did not want us to feel sad.
The most recent incident involved Patti, the day before yesterday. In the midst of drinking her cup of afternoon tea, she suddenly lost consciousness, her body became cold and bathed in sweat, her neck hung and her mouth opened. She did not respond to Amma and Appa’s calls, and they thought they had lost her. A check by a nurse after 5 minutes (my parents are lucky to have a hospital right below their apartment) showed that her pulse and heartbeat were weakening. Apparently, she had got too hot in the sweater, shawl, scarf and socks that she was wearing and her BP had gone down. The nurse instructed my parents to remove all her woolen clothing and to put cold water compresses on her forehead. After a few minutes of that and a spoonful of sugar was placed in her mouth, she regained consciousness. My parents did not tell me about this till yesterday night so that I not get worried. I have been reassured, after a lot of needling my parents, that she is perfectly fine now and going about her daily chores easily.
Amma and Appa plan to come down to Bangalore to be with us for a while, and so, they insist that we do not come now to Ahmedabad. They have kept reassuring us that they will manage. Before they come, though, they want to sell off our house in Ahmedabad so that they can think of settling in Bangalore. Nothing has worked out on that front so far, and at this stage, all of us are worried about each other. I am worried about certain other things in my life too at the moment, which is causing them all the more concern.
Being away from your parents is a difficult deal. It is difficult to know that they are getting older by the day, passing through a rough patch, ailing, and not being able to do anything. I feel guilty. I am not at rest. I now dread the ringing of the phone. I miss my family. I do not know what to do.