Nanna – my graceful grandmother

Written By

Fatima Asra

Nanna - my graceful grandmother Loading

No magical water to,

wash away the indelible impressions.

No magical knife to,

kill the immortal emotions.

No magical tonic to,

mitigate the severe lubb-dupp sigh.

Bundles of memories and miles to go.


Manal is dreaming with open eyes. She is in a whirlpool of Nanna’s memories. Her smile, her love, her anger, her scolding; everything was so adorable.

Manal shared a very lovely relationship with her vivacious grandmother. She had spent her childhood in Nanna’s home and had seen every aspect of Nanna’s persona. Glowing white skin, light brown hair, sparkling eyes, confident and agile. She was a beauty with brains. Nanna was a very graceful, beautiful and intelligent She was also a headstrong lady with immense willpower. Any problem, any pain, she would always stand confident and smiling. Nanna was full of life: she used to enjoy every moment, she was a kid with kids. Nanna was a philanthropist. She didn’t running any NGO or something, but she was a wonderful human being who wanted to help all needy and poor. She was always busy in solving problems of almost everyone in the locality. At the same time, she was very straightforward and blunt too but that’s the way she was, hard from outside and soft from inside.

Gradually, Manal grew up in Nanna’s home. After school, Nanna and Manal used to talk, do gardening together. At times, Manal was very upset with Nanna because she was always scolding Manal or her mother. But as a matter of fact, she loved Manal’s mother and her kids the most but didn’t show it as often. She had a heart of gold and everybody understood that, that’s her style. Nanna could not even imagine a minute without Manal’s mother and her three kids. They became her habit in a way.

Manal could clearly understand her pain when she used to miss her sons who were working abroad. And suddenly Manal would ask Nanna, “How about Maggi and tea?” and Nanna would say, ”Why not?” Countless wonderful afternoons were spent watching old movies of Nanna’s choice along with Maggi and tea.

A few years later, Manal got married and went abroad. Nanna prayed for her beautiful life and showered blessings before sending her off. This is the most difficult time of any girl’s life; it is a kind of mixed feeling that every girl experiences. A spoonful of joy, a spoonful of pain. But never did Manal realize, that she is parting from her Nanna forever. After some time, Manal came to know about Nanna’s bad health, but she was very confident that Nanna would overcome it like a true warrior like every other time. Manal was expecting so she could not visit Nanna. After a few months, Manal was blessed with a baby boy. Manal desperately wanted to take him to Nanna for blessings. But, before she could do that, Nanna passed on. Manal was heartbroken; she never expected this as she was not informed about the severity of Nanna’s health. She had not seen Nanna after her marriage and now she won’t be able to see her ever. This thought was giving a chill down her spine every second.

A few weeks later, when Manal visited Nanna’s home with a restless mind, she was searching her everywhere. Despite knowing everything, she still believed that Nanna is there. A gush of air would take her to childhood time every now and then.

She was the only one in family who could not see Nanna for one last time. For the world Manal was a normal person; she was talking, smiling, visiting people, attending parties. But inside, there was a huge war going on between her heart and mind as she didn’t want to accept the fact that Nanna was not there. She used to do shopping for Nanna and then hide it as people would find it weird.

There was a vacuum inside her and at that time Manal’s diary would read something like this:

How do we accept?

How do we bear?

How do we forget?

How do we live after the death of our loved ones?

How do we manage to live without them when we could not imagine a minute without them?

How does the lump in our throat dissolves?

How come the tears stop rolling down?

How do we start enjoying this life?

How do we start smiling and laughing?

The love ceases, or patience embodies?


Where does the love go?

From where does the patience come?


Ah! I want to hitch my wagon to a star and make my sweet world immortal and high with joy I would fly.

else, before any loved ones of mine, I pray to Lord that I shall die.


Manal was becoming very negative from inside. One fine day she had a dream. Almighty was directly in conversation with Manal. He said “Child, since you are so disturbed, for your peace of mind, I am giving Nanna to you for one week. Be with your Nanna and then bid farewell to her.” Manal saw that Manal along with her mother and aunts was at Nanna’s home with Nanna. Manal was talking to Nanna, she could touch her feel her sleep on her lap and even had Maggi and tea with her. Life with Nanna had returned to normal.

It was a lucid dream. It was the most unforgettable experience; the experience was so vivid that Manal could never distinguish it from reality. Next morning, when she woke up, she had found peace. Her diary would read like this:


“Negotiation of true happiness is not easy, but I did it. I feel that sunshine is more beautiful and everything around is extremely gorgeous. The joy is, as if I am receiving manna from heaven. I have experienced eternal happiness today that has given divine rhythm to my heart. The feeling is beyond explanation. It’s like salvation before death. Now Nanna, my adorable grandmother is just a thought away. I meet her just by closing my eyes and she is all around me.

And, all that she wants is, to see me HAPPY.’’




My Name is Fatima Asra. I work as Marketing Specialist in Dubai. Vagabond at mind and a free bird at heart. A paranoid mum of a little boy, who can stay awake whole night thinking what to send in lunchbox tomorrow that my little monster would love to eat. A young at heart mother who refuses to enter 30’s, feels like a 16-year-old and claims to stay a teen at heart forever. Pursued working when son started going school. When at work misses her son when at home misses her work. My confused heart is asking me to get back to my passion for writing. Use to write for ‘Times of India’ when at school/college. I always had a flair for writing and was very passionate about it. Now thinking about it from a new perspective.

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