There are few people in the world who love you unconditionally. There are even fewer people who are capable of such honest and unwavering love. My family and I were lucky to have one of these people in our lives: My uncle R, who lost his battle with brain cancer yesterday. His diagnosis came suddenly, and he was given just 3 months to live. But he surprised all of us, including his doctors, by making it five more years; a true testament to the faith and resilience that he and my aunt shared.

He always held a special place in my heart because he was there on the day I was born, and was there for me every day since. He even kept the same tattered old picture of me in his wallet for the better part of three decades. I distinctly remember him waking me up early one morning to tell me the exciting news that I had a new baby sister. Very fitting, as he became an integral part of our childhood. He and my aunt never had children, but treated their nieces and nephews as their own. In some ways, it was like having another parent around, but as any doting uncle or aunt will tell you, there’s a special bond there because it’s all of the fun and none of the scolding and reprimanding that comes with parenthood. In fact, I cannot recall a single time that he ever uttered a harsh word towards us, nor did he ever tell us that he was too busy to play with us. My sister fondly recalls playing “horse,” a game that simply required him to carry her around the house on his back, which he was always happy to do. I remember playing a million rounds of the card game Memory with him. I also remember that he would never just let me just win – I had to earn it! He also had one of the most inquisitive minds that I have ever come across. My cousins and I used to joke that if any of us left a school textbook out, we would come back to find him reading it! But out of a treasure trove of many, I think my favorite memory of all, and the way that I always picture him in my head, is the way he would laugh! There was just something pure and unabashed about his wild laugh where you could just tell how happy he was. And that is how I would always like to remember him.

8 Comments on “Memories…”

  1. What a beautiful tribute. May those wonderful memories always be with you! Prayers and thoguhts are with you. ❤

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