Sunday, December 19, 2010

A sad story

My grandfather recently passed away. He was a wonderful, amazing, loving, generous and kind man who lived a very full life, and is greatly missed by his wife, two children, four grandchildren and countless friends.

I hadn't seen my grandfather in seven years, and I had booked a flight to Singapore for December 23. I was so excited about finally seeing Grandpa. Then I woke up in the middle of the night on November 22, crying and thinking about him (he'd been sick with two types of cancer for months and had a heart attack the day before). I found out a few hours later that he died around that time. He had passed away about one month before I was supposed to see him. I was looking forward to it so much. My mother was about six hours away from landing in Singapore when he went.

I think the most tragic thing about it all was that I sent my grandfather lots of emails, with the last few about how much I loved him and missed him, and it would all be okay because I was going to see him in a few weeks' time. I later found out that he had never read these emails because he was in the hospital, and this left me so heartbroken.

I now understand why (some) people are religious. It's easy as an atheist to laugh, and say some people are cowards for crafting a heavily detailed story of the afterlife where everyone gets together and you can play with your childhood dog and drink tea with your relatives. It's a nice little fairytale where everyone gets their happy ending and we can all be together forever. Or that there's an elevator in the sky and we all float about the clouds in white chiffon gowns, happy as clowns. Times like this I wish I could be a Christian and be comforted even though I know I'll never be able to see my grandfather ever again.

Apologies for this being a sad post, but sometimes life really fucking sucks.

RIP Tan Bee Chuan, 27 January 1926 to 22 November 2010.