Terminally ill

May 7, 2016

Hassan and I have been friends for ever. We have grown, fought and laughed together. These are the streets where we rode our first bikes. Those are the shops from where we bought our first candies. A lot of time has gone by. We went to different colleges and our jobs took us to different cities. But we never lost touch. Whenever we got a chance to meet up we did. Distances have only made our friendship stronger. Miles indeed have made journeys ever so more worth looking forward to.
All of it has changed since last summer, a dark gloomy mist seems to have settled in. Our houses are 4 blocks apart. But now it’s a tough walk. Toughest sometimes. Disease changes people. I remember when he first fainted right in front of me, i got scared but then as usual made fun of him later that he could not take the sun anymore. As these incidences grew more frequent we all got worried. The diagnosis was heart breaking, i will never forget the blank eyes that had a million questions when the doctor told him. What next, how much time, is there any hope, what about the new car i just bought last month, should I sell it, perhaps i should quit my job, live it out here?. I did not know what to tell him. No one spoke a word on the way back home. Uncle dropped the key twice while opening the door. Didn’t say anything just got his arm around Hassan’s shoulder and patted. Almost saying, you be strong son, we are in this together. Aunty wiped her tears quickly and said should I get some tea for everyone. I saw uncle and aunty sharing a silent long look, one reassuring the other, he nodded after she asked again. Tea didn’t taste the same, it never did ever since.
We all visit Hassan often now, try to take his mind off it, try to be as normal as we could. Sometimes i even manage to make him laugh. He has always enjoyed life and lived it fully but now he seems to treasure the moments even more. All three of them go for long walks now, uncle has started finding time for movies and anuty recently bought another cookbook. Hassan’s loves a good movie with a tasty meal.Tragedy brings us all so close. Nobody gets worried about the future any more, they all seem to take each day in stride. We play cards, tell stories from work and have dinners together. We are trying to fill as much life as we can in every passing day.
It is strange how quickly we forget that we are also not going to be here forever. Time is running out for all of us. If that doesn’t make us value the moments nothing can. As i see each one in their family being strong for the others i wonder by does it take a tragedy like Hassans’s for us to do that too. Why do we get lost in daily routines and matters that look so trivial in the face of death. Why do we stop living. Yes their sorrow is immense and their loss is going to be unfathomable, But today they have decided to not worry about it. can’t we too, and yes my friend is terminally ill, but then, aren’t we all.
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