For me, every day was a grandparent’s day.
I used to call my grandparents “Jeje, Maa.”
And my world used to revolve around them.
They were my first friends; probably we were best of buddies.
Both my parents were working professionals.
So I used to spend maximum time with them.
Maa had the most mesmerizing cooking skills. She was able to sprinkle magic in every dish she cooked and, till my memories went down, had never allowed me in the kitchen.
When I used to come back from school, Jeje was there to greet me with his warm welcome, and Maa, with her ready-made dish, always kept on shouting, “go directly to the washroom and then to the dining table.
She was a little stricter than Jeje.
Jeje was my crime partner; there was no punishment even if I slew someone; in the eyes of Jeje, it’s not a crime as I was the criminal.
Both Jeje and Maa always used to take my side no matter what others said.
Whenever my mother and I fought, Jeje always came for my support.
We had plucked many mangoes, Malabar plums, guava from our garden together, and the thief never got cut in front of my mother.
When there was a power cut, we used to go to our terrace, and I always chose the favorite corner of our hammock under the carpet of stars, and Jeje used to open his sack of stories.
And from the stories of Lord Jagannath and the temple mysteries to his own knitted ghost stories. He used to narrate everything to me so that my ears used to stick to it like glue.
At that time, I used to listen to those stories very passionately; as a child, I was more fascinated. Later on, I realized that those are not just stories, but his faith as the mysteries of Lord Jagannath is still there, and no one had ever explained satisfactorily why these things are still happening.
My achievements were their pride, and they used to announce to everyone that I got this trophy for that competition; I got that rank in my class.
Both my grandparents had spoiled me with their love in a good way.
When I grew up, in each stage, I met new friends, colleagues, met the love of my life.
And life got a bit stuck up into the world of busyness.
In this process, I forgot that my best buddies are also growing; they also need time. They are not well equipped with technology as we are today. We need to have a lot of patience to deal with them.
When I got my job, I bought a smartwatch for Jeje and a lovely saree for Maa.
But it didn’t excite them much.
I had my Durga puja vacation, so I stayed with them and realized what matters to them is my time, patience, and care.
They were not only growing with their respective age but also shrinking in strength, and not only physically but mentally as well. They need moral support. They don’t need expensive gifts. They need their best buddies back. The way I grew up with their mental and emotional support, they need that too.
Now sitting with their empty armchair, gulping a cup of tea. I can’t even explain in words how empty Iam feeling inside without them. How badly Iam missing those relief hugs, those comforting words, and their complaints.
No one is here now; they left me a year back, and Iam left behind with all their memories.
“Childhood is a beautiful world that is never stored or kept for a long time, yet its precious memories can be recollected forever, and grandparents are the ones who make our memories more valuable.”