that make life, LIFE.
It’s been exactly 27 days since my mum passed on. It’s been exactly two days when I finally cried, at night, alone and in my room. Because I miss her and accompanying that a sense of guilt because I feel I could have done better. I’m weird when it comes to grieving. I can cry, it isn’t that I can’t. I just don’t know how to cry until the emotions can’t fit inside me anymore and they spill out. Not something I would advice doing though. Suppressing emotions is really not what anyone should be aiming for.
I’ve always, mostly lived in my room. I’ve always been like that, since I can remember. Story books and day dreams were my companions when I was a child. Then came the years of “freedom” where I was constantly going out to parties, getting drunk and all that fun stuff while at university, while of course studying..of course. I cried then. Regular self-pity parties for a good cry. Total drama queen.
I came back home to Malaysia and went back to “living in my room”. Got married and kept on “living in my room”. Got separated and yep…”living in my room”. Not a total hermit tucked away in her cave, you understand. It just was. That’s who I am. And that’s how I was when I finally came back home after leaving my ex. That’s how I was when my mum was diagnosed with renal impairment. That’s how I was as she started to slowly deteriorate. That’s how I was because I don’t know…that’s how I am?
My friends know me better than my family does. I’d always said that and it still holds true when it comes to my parents. I never talked to them. I didn’t know how. I didn’t feel the need…I think. It wasn’t a bad relationship. It just was. I told them things I had to. I asked for things when I had to. I wished them happy birthday when it was their birthdays, I wished them happy anniversary when my mum reminded me it was her wedding anniversary (hehe), wished them Merry Christmas on Christmas and all that. I knew my mum loved her Estee Lauder products and she got them faithfully every Christmas as presents from her daughters. I just didn’t talk to my parents.
Even though during the last year or so when my mum wasn’t really her usual active self, even though she didn’t do much except watch her Tamil dramas on television till it was time for bed, she was physically present and for some reason even though she didn’t do much, I truly feel that she held the family together. It’s just something that I have been feeling since she left this earthly plane. I don’t know why, I just feel it.
I remember once when she fought with my dad and told him off for not allowing me to go out with some of my friends – because what would the neighbours think if they saw a BOY pick his daughter up from the house. This was in the late 90’s. Malaysians may not have been living on or in trees for a long, long time, but can’t really say about our mentality.
I’ve always been the “carer” in the family. Mainly for my mum. Since I was 16 when she came home from Australia…with shingles (herpes zoster). Then at various other times. I still remember her telling a close family friend how she did NOT like it when I took care of her. I was strict, she said. And I was, I guess. I wanted her to get well, so yea…I was kinda strict. No excuse, she needed to mobilize, she was going to mobilize 😛
I loved my mum, in my own silent way. I miss her too, in my own silent way. Sometimes, I feel that’s not enough. I feel that I should feel more, miss her more. But then I know that she wouldn’t want that. She wouldn’t want her daughters to wallow and instead live our lives the way she did.
I know her soul is free. I know with absolute confidence that the feeling I had of her having passed this lifetime with amazing flying colours was true. I know that her soul energy ascended with “lightning speed”. I know she is well, that her soul is in joy and peace. I know all this and it makes it a lot easier to deal with the loss of her physical self.
I’m posting the eulogy that my sister prepared. We struck a deal, she prepared it and I presented it.
Eulogy – 5th September 2017
Jeyavathy Velaiyutham (6/8/1938-3/9/2017)
Hello everyone, thank you for being here.
Today we celebrate the life of Jeyavathy Velayutham. Some know her as Vathana, others as Jeya but to me and my sister we know her as Amma. Born in Kuantan on the 6th August 1938, she was the youngest of seven siblings. As a young woman, she moved to Petaling Jaya with her mum and there she was, a stunning young woman who was looking out for new adventures in the city. And what an adventure she had, – my mum loved parties, she enjoyed being around people and she always had a smile and a friendly demeanour to others.
As a person, Jeyavathy had various roles, as daughter- she would always tell us about what amazing and loving parents she had, as wife – we saw how important it was to her to see my father before she left, even though she was struggling to breath on her last day here and even before that when her health was ailing, she always wanted to know where dad was, had he eaten etc. As for my sister and I, we would say we were very blessed, for we had the honour to call Jeyavathy Valayutham, Amma.
My mum always believed in helping others. One could say, we learned about kindness from my mother. She was very free with sharing, be it her fruit cake recipe or giving her time to others. We would see her always doing things for others. She always believed that kindness to others is and was very important.
She was one who always gave to us, always stood up for us and she was truly our protector. Simple with her words and big with her deeds.
One time, a friend of Amma’s shared this with us, she had told our mother, “Jeya, you do so much for others, God will surely bless you.” In response, Amma said, “I do these things because I hope others will do for my children and not for me. To me my children are my eyes.”
Today as we remember this amazing soul, my family seeks forgiveness for any of her trespasses against anyone.
Thank you, Jeyavathy Velayutham, dear sweet wife and mother, for being that silent rock in our lives. Priya and I, may have been your eyes but you are our heart. We will miss you so much but our hearts’ rejoices as your soul is set free and you are now in a space of love, joy and happiness. You are with God, the Father, Mother Mary and your beloved mother who you love so much. Till we meet again, do have a wonderful journey and lots of parties. Peace and love be yours forever.
My family and I thank each and every one of you who have been there for us and we thank all those who had added joy, love and colour in my mum’s life.
The peace and love of God be with you all. God Bless.