Friday, February 28, 2014

Remembering Jhaiji: A Tribute to Her Life

Jhaiji & Sapna, 2011
It's been six weeks since I have posted here, only because so much has happened - both wonderful and awful - that the whirlwind has been difficult to process. This post is one of the latter - the unforeseen, cruel, preventable death of my grandmother.

On Tuesday, the 7th of January, Jhaiji went into the hospital because her hips wouldn't move and she couldn't walk. She was supposed to be in the care of the NHS, waiting for a hip replacement surgery. Instead, on Monday, January 13th, she had a massive stroke, caused by the lack of monitoring of warforin, a routine drug that  she was taking to prevent a stroke. She was in a coma, and even then, they "made a mistake" and "forgot" to give her the electrolytes they promised they would to help her recover. 

I was stuck in Canada at the time, as I had submitted my passport to the British agency in Toronto to process my work visa.

She wavered from critical to stable to gone in the middle of the night of Friday, January 17th.

A friend described this level of medical negligence as "driving blindfolded".

I will not pretend to be a medical expert, nor a lawyer, but I have consulted friends that are both and it seems that the gross negligence on the part of the NHS is unforgivable.  We will annihilate the doctors that did this, but for today, this post is about her memory.


Dear Jhaiji,

You left this world much too soon for me,
You would have been 86 today.
A shared near-birthday with my dear friend Stephanie,
who would have been 30, the day before your 86th birthday

I - 

Hope somehow, your souls meet.
Imagine there is a beautiful party in an alternate universe, commemorating the lives you led
Believe there is something, though no one knows what, that comes after this life

Love the thought that you are not in pain in your new place, so I choose to believe that.

You - 

Lived an amazing, international life, 
So many stories, so many memories -  I never asked; you
May be reunited with Bauji, of whom my only memory
Is a smiling man, teaching a six-year-old me to tell time with 

Mars bars as a prize.

I - 

Regret not making more effort to visit,
Wish I had spent more time learning about your life
Feel fury towards the doctors; though Vengeance and Shock
are soldiers with no power,  fury with no fire.

Jhaiji & Sapna (1987 or 1988, I think!)
You - 

Will forever be a memory
Engraved in my mind and heart
Will forever be with me,
Even though we are apart.


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