A story about a family who lose their son to cancer.


Silence hugged her tight , as she leaned against the pillow under her arms. Tears seemed to be a frequent affair under her beautiful yet now swollen eyes.

She stared at the red painted ceiling , at the fan dangling lightly from it and a bitter patch where the paint had worn off right around the corner, caught her attention. She couldn’t quite understand why but it gave her a sense of calm,  the ceiling  with its patch of worn off paint.

Hunger struck her. It was 2 weeks since it visited her last. She got off the bed , as pale as the walls of her room , and let her rubbery legs guide her to the kitchen. The path she followed to it was lonely as her mom was off at work. ‘Work took her mind off her brother’ she had said to Latika before she left.

Both the mother and the daughter had been through a lot , cried and sobbed, had screamed and dropped. The last couple of months hadn’t been kind to the Singh family .

Latika had recently lost her brother to cancer a terrible 4 days back. But it had been 7 months since the Singh family shared Raman’s fight against cancer. The hope in the first month was tremendous and the smiles had reasons to push away the tears.

But as the months went by, the life was strangled out of their optimism. Seeing their child’s condition become worse day by day had robbed them of all perspective.

The doctors went on from patient to patient, with not much emotional obligation towards Raman’s devilish disease. There was only so much that they could do and only so much Raman could bear.

Latika’s mother was a single mom, having lost her husband a few years post their marriage, she learned to pick herself up after being shattered against the floor, against her dreams and wishes. She knew she had two lives depending on her. Two beautiful faces who needed her, as she had once needed her supporting husband. And she was not going to deprive them of the support that she had been deprived of.

Raising her beautiful daughter to a tender age of 16 and her son to a bullish age of 13, she was struck down by God’s command, that of taking away her son. He was found to have lung cancer.

It may be foolish to say, that it was hard for the mother and the sister, losing their boy to the demonic wish of god. But that was their truth, and it wouldn’t be rightly said any other way.

Latika opened the refrigerator door and picked for herself an apple which she would now carry back to her room. Where she would cry and remember how her brother was fond of apples while she savours one.

Before she could notice, she found herself staring back at the ceiling. The rough patch with the paint off it , had once again caught her sight. Distracted her from the tears she had let go of and ones she was about to let go. Maybe it reminded her of herself, of how life had taken some colours away from her. But somewhere she knew that whether she wanted or not, time would heal her pain if not the scar of the tragedy.

Staring at the patch she told herself something. She would now pick herself up after being shattered against the floor, against her dreams and wishes. She knew she had a life depending on her. A beautiful mother who needed her. And she was not going to deprive her of the support that she had been deprived of, twice.  She would now look after her mother.

This was now her drive in life and she wouldn’t let any command of god change that.