Hemange Koul

“I want to have the chocolate” Reema said to her sister Rabhiya as we were waiting for the school bus to come. It was Feb 1996 and it was raining very heavily. Due to the heavy rains the school bus did not turn up for the second shift , so Reema and Ribhaya decided to leave for home. They had enough fare for two people to go by matador. I and my cousin saw them crossing the road and leaving in the matador for home. Reema being the younger one was pleading Rabhiya for chocolate. Rabhiya loved her so much that she couldn’t refuse. Rabhiya to the conductor “please let us know when our stop comes”. After some time ” Child, come fast. Here comes your stop”. They got off quickly as they didn’t want to get held up in the matador. Both of them went to a shop and got a chocolate for themselves. While Reema was paying shopkeeper the amount for the chocolate, Rabhiya crossed the road. ” Didi m scared to cross the road alone. Please come and take me with you” Reema said. As it was raining very heavily Rabhiya could not see the matador coming from the other side of the road and she was hit. For Reema everything felt like moving in a slow motion as if everything came to a standstill, the matador stopped and all she could hear is screaming voices.

People came and helped but to Reema everything seemed like a bad dream. She was still in a shock and not able to digest the fact that something like this actually happened.Rabhiya was taken to the hospital and their parents reached soon. They took rabhiya in their arms and cried while embracing her. After few hours Reema’s mom came and hugged her and said ” Rabhiya is no more”. The only thoughts crossing Reema’s mind ” If only i hadn’t ask her to fetch me, she would have been alive”. She couldn’t stop crying as the guilt gawned her.She couldn’t forgive herself for the same and was afraid that everyone would hate her.

After few days they went to prison to visit the matador driver who killed Rabhiya. He was crying for forgiveness. Reema’s mother was very calm and she refused to blame the driver for Rabhiya’s death.After we got to know the entire story. I and my cousin also cried a lot as we knew Rabhiya well. But one question that lurked my mind that i asked Reema few days later ” how was your mom so calm and why did you leave the driver?” To this she replied that my mom told me ” He did not do it on purpose. No matter how big the pain is, forgiveness is sometimes the best medicine. It was an accident and it was the best answer to it. And you know when i saw my mother so calm i told her the entire story. She hugged me and told me that it was not my fault. I cried and so did they. Though my road to recovery is slow but now finally i m at peace. :)”

Reema’s parents did so because they wanted to teach her that inspite of all the pain there is only one way to deal with things that is forgiveness. Forgiveness sometimes can be so difficult to navigate that we may even find ourselves not wanting to forgive others for the wrongs they have done against us. We feel comforted by keeping that person ransom for what they have done. We want them to feel what we feel and hurt like we are hurt. But that is not the solution. One should learn to forgive. Forgiving someone is the best medicine you can ever give yourself, and its the only way you can bring about growth and peace in your life.