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Tuesday, August 17, 2010

RIP Pappa Ajoba

For all of you who don't know what "Ajoba" means, it means "grandfather" in my language. My mother's father, whom I called "Pappa Ajoba" died last year from cancer.

When I went to India this summer, I went to a memorial ceremony for my Pappa Ajoba. It was exactly one year (Hindu year, not the 365-day one) since he died. In my culture, we believe that it takes a spirit one year of cleansing to be reborn as another person. We were having a ceremony to acknowledge that Pappa Ajoba's spirit has finally moved on.

When we got the call saying that he had died, I couldn't cry. My sister cried buckets, but I didn't. And I don't know why. Surely I should have cried, right? I feel guilty for not shedding a single tear. Maybe it's just because it hasn't hit me yet. It didn't sem possible for a person to be alive for one second and then just be a corpse, a shell of their former self the next. But it is possible. I mean, it happens everyday. Every second, right?

I suppose Death isn't that scary though. I know it's morbid, but I'm actually curious about what happens when a person dies. Is the white light real? Do you hear voices from your past? Does your life really pass before your eyes in fast forward? And what about after you take the Big Step? An afterlife? Heaven? Hell? Or just nothingness? Does everything just end there? Go blank? Maybe we humans have just added romance to death. We needed something to...spice it up or we just couldn't care if someone died. At least not as much. I know that sounds cynical, but it's true, right? We always need something interesting attached to everything, or we just don't care. Or maybe we do. Just not enough.


  1. Hey ravenquill...This is munboy from fiction factor. Sorry to hear about your pappa. My stepdad (who was basically my dad since I'm not close to my real dad at all) passed away from lung cancer on Sept 28th last year. It's not an easy thing to see, this wasting illness. It's cool that you got to go to India around the time his spirit was to be cleansed. I was lucky enough to travel across country to be with my dad before he passed and again after he did. I know its not an easy thing. My heart goes out.

  2. Hi,

    Thanks for the sympathy. I'm sorry for your loss, ass well. I guess it's just part of life...