Today I Bathed in the Ganges

Tuni at Rest.

Tuni at Rest.

Today I bathed in the Ganges.  Tuni Harrison died on the 14th of August 2013.  She had heart surgery the day before, but her heart gave out.  Today, three days after her death, Bijoy and I went to the river, with a Priest, and gave rites to send her on her journey.  We offered clothes, food, milk, flowers, incense, and so many prayers.  And then we immersed ourselves in the river three times, and pushed water out into the river three times, and I cried because I want her journey to be wonderful while I also want her back in my arms.  I accept, but I am bereft.  Even as I send her off to be with the Gods, I also call for her to come back soon.  I’ll be looking for her.  I will always be looking for her.  When she came into my life I felt as if I’d always been looking for her.  When she died I felt that I’d lost someone I’d always known.

Souls sang to my heart,

The winds taking them afar,

My nestlings flourished.

Yes this is true.  My children, my nestlings, flourished.  And when they were grown, I went looking for where the winds had taken the others.  Tuni came home to me, and now she is gone… Like a little God, she came and filled our hearts, and the hearts of so many around the world, and then she left….. with the slightest smile on her sleeping face.

I am raw.  My life is raw.  I am immersed, as if in the Ganges.  Tuni came for a purpose, a light and a gift, but I think we are only at the beginning of her impact in our lives.

In the days ahead I will write and post pictures of the last seven days.  It was just a week ago that I took her for an evaluation and the doctors decided we could not wait for surgery as her blue spells were increasing, and medication was not helping.  Here at Shishur Sevay we arranged for an oxygen concentrator and bought a pulse oxymeter.  It was frightening when she would turn blue, and cry and then go limp…..

Today I bathed in the Ganges.

Coming out from the Ganges

6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Susan Toler Rogers
    Aug 17, 2013 @ 17:53:52

    This is an incredible piece of writing, Michelle. I feel as I am with you. God bless you. As a mother who has lost a child, I grieve with you. I was fortunate to have 22 years with Aaron. I think in many ways loosing a baby would be more sorrowful because of all the dreams for her that you never have the opportunity to witness.


  2. Cathy Reed
    Aug 17, 2013 @ 19:33:42

    I pray for peace and settling for your heart and soul. The work you do touches so many lives and for a little time Tuni knew what the joy of having a mother to hold her, cuddle with her and give her the love she missed. Tuni was a blessing even if only for a short time. May God give you the peace, strength, and courage to continue to bring joy and light to the children you serve.

    Cathy and Shruthi Reed


  3. zoozig aka lorraine dusky
    Aug 17, 2013 @ 19:37:55

    We salute you from the other side of the world. God bless, Michelle.


  4. John Millen
    Aug 17, 2013 @ 23:18:37

    Oh Michelle


  5. Ann Fleming
    Aug 18, 2013 @ 06:36:32

    We met you, and Tuni, with the TIES program in January 2013 – Michelle our hearts go out to you and to all at Shishur Sevay. She was a beautiful child.


  6. Dipak Basu
    Aug 20, 2013 @ 09:45:24

    Oh, Michelle, what can we say that would give you a vision of peace and a closure? Your big heart will surely know how to deal with the loss and achieve healing. We can share your sorrow but we didn’t hold her to our bosom. Let me just quote the last four lines from Shri Aurobindo’s epic poem “Savitri”:-
    “…In silver peace, possessed her luminous reign.
    She brooded through her stillness on a thought
    Deep-guarded by her mystic folds of light,
    And in her bosom nursed a greater dawn.”


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August 2013
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