Friday, January 22, 2016

My year ended and started on a sad note

 2016 started on a sad note for me. The man I loved the most in the world, my superman, my childhood and adult hero: My dad - Motilal Chhabria, passed away on 4th January. He was hospitalized on the night of 27th December. From 28th December onwards it was a stressful time for my family. The new medicines that dad was taking for his heart (he had undergone a bypass in May 2008) weren’t suiting him. Dad had become very frail. His immunity had also come down and he developed a stomach infection. By the time we landed up in the hospital, he had become very weak. Two days later he developed jaundice. His cardiologist was very positive that Dad would recover, but dad proved the doctor wrong. Dad decided that it was time for him to wave goodbye to his medicines and his family.

Dad was not just a self-made man, he was also a well-connected person. He hated anyone doing anything for him. If someone helped him in some way, dad wouldn’t rest until he had returned the favour. Though he was the youngest in his family, everyone came to him for help. He never turned anyone away without doing something for them. Without letting us know, dad would send food to orphanages, clothes for the deserted children, fans for old age homes, he would contribute for the construction of temples.

He always carried packets of biscuits and chocolates, which he distributed to everyone. Slowly, one by one, all these stories are emerging. People dad helped are revealing how he helped them: getting someone’s daughter admission in school/college, getting someone’s son a job, helping another person get medical help, helping another person during his daughter’s marriage.

Dad was always on the move, helping others, taking care of his million and one social service activities. He used to always tell me “I want to go doing the things I always did in life. I want to go with my boots on.” And that’s the way it was.

The pujas (prayer ceremonies) started for him on 11th January and ended on 18th January. Our house was swamped with relatives and visitors and there were innumerable phone calls to answer. This is a difficult time for my mom, brother, sister and me. Actually for the entire extended family. 

It’s not easy losing a parent. Dad has left a huge void in all our lives.  We have suffered a irreversible and irreplaceable loss. Dad enriched not just our lives but also the lives of all the people he was acquainted with. The only thing we are clinging on to are dad’s favourite words, “The show must go on." In this case, "Life must go on."

Sometimes I wonder where do our loved ones go? Do we meet them in the afterlife?


  1. I'm sorry you lost your father! He sounds like an incredibly generous man. That we should all aspire to be so giving and caring.
    I do believe we meet our loved ones again when we die.
    Prayers for you and your family.

  2. I am so sorry for your loss. It's clear from this post that your father's memory will live on, not just in you but in the many people he helped. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Please take care....

  3. I am sure it was good to have such a great father whose social activities were recollected so fondly by many. RIP.

    Destination Infinity

  4. Even when you're prepared, losing a parent is not easy. But it is so heart-warming to hear others talk about what an impact our parent had on their lives. When my parents died, I appreciated learning a different side to them that I didn't necessarily know. You obviously had a wonderful dad who will be missed by many.

  5. It is not an easy thing to lose a parent, but the memories you and those around you have to share will be a treasure all of your lives. You and your family are in my thoughts, Rachna.

  6. Your father was obviously a good man and he'll be missed.
    Do I think we'll meet again in the afterlife? My last words to my father after he died were "I'll see you again someday." So, I guess I do believe we'll meet again.

  7. My sincerest condolences, Rachna. I will keep you and your family in my prayers:)

  8. Deepest sympathies, Rachna. The depth of your loss touched me as I, too, lost a parent recently, my mom on Dec. 23. 'Enriched' is such a good word--it's so neat to hear your father's life enriched the lives of many others. Seeds were planted that will take root and grow from the kind of man he was. Sending you caring thoughts and prayers for comfort in your time of loss.

  9. Sincere condolences, Rachna! May God give you strength to bear the loss!

  10. Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry, Rachna. I lost my father a few years ago and I can relate to what you are going through. My condolences to you and all of your family.
    The pictures are wonderful and it's obvious your dad was a special man. I hope we will both see our fathers again in the afterlife.
    Hugs to you.

  11. Your dad sounds like a wonderful man. I'm so sorry for your loss, Rachna. I also lost someone I love very much at the end of last year. It was the most awful time of my life. I have to believe that we meet our loved ones again. Prayers to you.
    Ninja Girl

  12. I am so sorry for your loss, Rachna. I understand what you're going through because I lost my younger brother in October. It's hard to deal with losing the people we love.

  13. I am so sorry for your loss, Rachna. Your dad sounds like he was a fantastic person. He certainly devoted himself to the things that count in a life, and I can see his values are reflected in your own. My prayers go to you and your family.

  14. Hi, Rachna,

    So sorry to hear about the loss of your dad.. But his kindnesses will live on forever! He's touched so many and therefore his spirit will live on within them.

    Yes, I totally believe in an afterlife and that we will someday be reacquainted with our loved ones... Maybe even before me move on to our next life.. How often do you come across a person who you feel you've know forever... perhaps you have....