Three Indian-Australians share personal accounts of losing their loved ones in India during the devastating second wave of COVID.
This year marks a solemn Mother’s Day for me, having lost my mother-in-law last year and my mother this past week to COVID.
My mother had gotten her first dose of the vaccine. But she fell sick nonetheless and spent almost two weeks in the hospital. However, we weren’t too concerned because she was stable, eating normally, and seeming fine. Eventually, she was even discharged from the COVID ward to join the other patients.
Within 24 hours, my mother’s condition deteriorated and she passed away. It was a shock, to say the least. None of the family could attend the funeral, and my 60-year-old father sat with my mother’s body for five hours at the crematorium, waiting to say goodbye.
It’s terrifying in circumstances like this to see how you can have money, but no resources when it matters. I feel helpless sitting here.
The family continues to be worried as my brother, 32, now fights COVID in the hospital. His pregnant wife, expecting their second child, is understandably shaken. It’s taken me over a week to be able to talk about any of this out loud.
People got complacent in India and it’s more important than ever now to stay at home, take precautions, and get both doses of the vaccine. Leadership declared victory far too early and fatal decisions were made. It’s heart-breaking.
It’s been a horror week. We’ve seen six deaths in our family in Delhi, all in the span of one week.
One of these has been an elderly aunt, and the rest have been of middle age.
My aunt had been fine, although she reported feeling lethargic. She’s had weak lungs though for a while. Took a COVID test as a precaution. It came back positive. She showed no fever or any other symptoms, and simply collapsed on the third day.
As for my cousins, they had all been relatively unwell. They each coped at home for a while, and then went through the struggle of finding a hospital in panic. For some it was too late and they could not even get to hospital.
It’s a sad time in my family. I’ve lost both my sisters to COVID. My older sister died last year, she was 74. She spent four days in hospital. We lost my second sister this week, she was 69. She was in hospital for twelve days. Both never came home from hospital.
If we were caught unawares the first time round, why didn’t we prepare for the second wave?
The concern is now for my brother’s family, all of them currently down with COVID. They are being cared for at home.
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