“I first met my wife Zarin, when I was 20 years old at a wedding in Gujarat. Our parents were friends, but bumped into each other after years and introduced us. It was love at first sight — I still remember how she sweetly said, ‘hello’ to me. We were friends, but within a few weeks, I asked her father for permission to court her. I made it clear that I had no intention of marriage until I finished my education – a statement that impressed him. He gave me permission to his daughter, car and car keys!
Those were the days — I would bunk my Engineering classes and wait outside her college for her. Once her father dropped her off and was a safe distance away, the two of us would go off in the other direction! We went to the cinema, quaint cafes and endlessly long walks — we even spent a lot of time at each other’s homes because we were family friends. So many times, while our fathers were sipping on Hennessy, the two of us would slip out and spend time with each other.
We were married at 24 and being a Marine Engineer I had to leave shortly after for the sea, but to tell you the truth that’s what kept it exciting — every time I returned, it was like love at first sight all over again! We had 3 beautiful children, but in 2013 our lives changed.
Zarin was diagnosed with Thyroid Cancer. She fought hard and beat it, but by 2015 the cancer returned, at stage four in her colon. I forgot the sea and stayed with her, to help her beat it again. From 31 radiations to 4 chemo sessions, she was a really fighter, but by 2016 the doctor said the cancer had spread to her brain and she had 3 months to live.
Now my goal had shifted to giving her the happiest, best 3 months of her life. I spent every moment with her —I cleaned, fed and bathed her. I had become so good at her care, that sometimes I performed tasks that even the doctors weren’t equipped to perform.
I lost my Zarin on December 11th, 2016. She was in the ICU but it wasn’t the doctors that found her in her peace — It was me. We’d promised each other that in her last moments, we would be alone; just us and that’s how it was — I think she chose that time to make it happen. Even when she was so ill, she looked out for me, her hand always reaching out to keep me close. My son says I still sleep that way, with one hand out — maybe it’s just habit.
The night she left us, I stayed by her often asking her ‘to stop joking if she was upto her usual pranks’ but I never got a reply.
After my Zarin, I’ve decided to live my life, the way we once planned to, after our kids were grown up. I’m back at sea and aspire to experiment, see new things and enjoy my years.
The way I see it — I can sit and reminisce over our 36 years and feel bad for myself. But then all her suffering will be of no use. To grieve her endlessly is selfish. To give up on our dreams after she’s gone, is selfish. But to live out my days, in her celebration, to make all our dreams come true, to be happy that she is at peace and smiling down at me…now that’s love.”
“I first met my wife Zarin, when I was 20 years old at a wedding in Gujarat. Our parents were friends, but bumped into…
Story By – Humans of Bombay
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