Monday, December 29, 2008

Grappling with guilt

At times I feel helpless...never know how to react to someone when they tell me their loved one passed away..
Its tough . The other person is hurting, no amount of what we say is going to change the way they feel. We cannot replace their lost one...each one has his place on this earth, and only they can give it value. Niether you nor I can fill that shoe.
When you know a person, whoever he is connected to makes us feel connected. I might never have met the person, nor might I meet him ever...but still we hurt.
How do we take our minds of the guilt, when thoughts come echoing back to us. " Could I have helped?"
"If I had just given him more money, maybe he could have used it? " ( but were we to know how soon it would be needed.
" If only I had met up and had lunch together"
So many ifs...but there is only one answer...
it didn't happen...and thats why we are asking the if?

Why do we get so ridden with such guilt. It can be stifling at times.
My driver's father passed away today. And i'm sitting here chewed up with guilt. If only I hadn't asked him to come this morning to take my son for his early morning practice., maybe he would have gotten those extra few hours with him.
But I really didn't know he would go away without recovering, and neither did my driver tell me. Each time I asked of his dad, he would say , he was on the way to recovering.
Was I being too presumptious?
Was I too selfish??
God!! this can be killing.

It’s funny how death changes ones perspective to thinking. Life, an energy dome, fails to teach us half the things that an event like a death can…

22 comments:

~nm said...

I think I can imagine what you are feeling right now.

But at the same time I feel that destiny has a big role to play in our lives whether we accept it or not.

So stop feeling guilty.

--xh-- said...

if only we could know the future! if the driver know that his father will not recover, he will surely not have come.. and if you didn't ask him to come, he might have gone out for something else... death sneaks in, and predicting the time he strikes is next to impossible.. the best thing we can do to lessen the grief is to lend our ears and listen with our heart...
and go easy on you... it is not your fault, and you never know what happens...
guilt is cancer of mind... try to get free from the shackles of it...

Compassion Unlimitted said...

Acceptance of Death as the inevitable is most diff thing.and when guilt adds to it, it compounds it.Did we do enough ? Then we realise,Enough is never enough.
Easier said than done,dont feel guilty about your drivers fathers death.While one could pray for the departed soul,destiny is what you cant stop
TC
CU

Rambler said...

its amazing how death can affect is, somehow its seems to bring out things which we could have done to avoid it, resulting in guilt many a times..may be its the way we treat death, and its cruelty..a lot of my thoughts on the subject changed after I read the book "Tibetan art of living and death"

the stygian sailor said...

thats a sad thing to happen.
but let me tell you, it is not in our hands. people are going to die, some before their time and some way beyond. we cant do much for those who ve died. a few hours before or after, your driver's father would have still died. don't waste your guilt on it. the season is one of joy and revelry. why waste it?

Mama - Mia said...

well death comes just like that... always.

even when you know someone is on deathbed, the actual death still takes time to come to terms with...

its not your fault, just destiny.

c'est la vie is all one can say even for death

abha

Ziah said...

I know the feeling... Death is one event that makes us realize that our actions and our deeds are irreversible. It is after all, one life?

Pavi!!!! said...

I'm so sorry for the driver. May his father rest in peace.

But Prats...u dont feel guilty abt it..u know that if u had the slightest idea tht his father was in that state..u wldn't have asked ur driver to come rite?
There are something we have no control over..thts life.

Shruti said...

ow :( 'if only'.. these ifs and buts.. and could haves.. if only it could make a difference na?
..
came to wish u a happy new year.. have a great year ahead, Prats!

Tys on Ice said...

feel it...its a good thing. It shows that you are still a good human being. Would have been concerned if you had explained it away.

Joy said...

I understand what you are saying. Death gives us sense of perception. It shakes us and makes us realize lot of things in the life happening are still good though we spend half the time cribbing about the same.

Take care and May the new Year bring peace, joy and happiness to you.

Prats said...

Thank you everyone...somehow sharing my feelings here with all of you made me feel a whole lot better...and of course though the nagging thoughts will remain...at least I 'll know I did somewhere help him out...

ceedy said...

Yes agree and realize what you are saying - but I beleive in karma - and those "if" if they had to happen and you were supposed to be involved would have happened...

N I hope Maa B+ already knows abput it :)

Shaili said...

erm im sorry abt tht...

think of them as I say,
they're not dead, they're just away! :)

Ps said...

Don't feel guilty.
Its pre ordained and nothing can predict it or change it.
Cheers
preeti

Preethi said...

Something for you at my blog

Sumana said...

Your last sentence speaks a whole lot. Very true, after i have come back, I have been attending a lot more funerals mostly very close relatives, whom i had spent my youth with and later did not get a chance to be in continuous touch. It not only saddens and speaks about the reality of our life but also leaves us with a question "why do we fight for silly things in this life, when all you do is leave everything and reach his abode."

Sujatha said...

Prats, you could not have known. If you had known he'd die that day and you'd made him come anyway, the it's ok to feel guilty. But ironically, if you did make him do that you would not feel guilty at all! I think we can only function with what information we have at the moment. Can't think back and wonder if we should have acted differently.

And from the perspective of someone who has been at the receiving end of sympathy, I can vouch for the fact that just hearing, "I'm sorry for your loss" goes a long way.

Take care and hugs.

Cuckoo said...

I think I know what you were feeling then.

But you couldn't have done anything if the real situation wasn't conveyed to you.

So, don't feel guilty. It wasn't your fault.

ceedy said...

I thought you were just grappling with guilt....not actually guilty

have you been barred from writing?

Keshi said...

This one made me all teary Prats!

:(

I cant say anymore..Im sorry.

Keshi.

Prats said...

thanks guys....reinforced my faith in the power of friends...
will be back soon with a post....trying to break through the brain fog...