A couple weeks ago, my brother-in-law, Atul, passed away due to his illness leaving both sides of the families devastated. Although we were fighting against all the odds, we all had so much hope that Atul would make it given his positive attitude and great will power. He had the will to survive and had so many reasons to live for. I can’t emphasize enough how much we prayed, people who had never met Atul were praying for him, but nothing worked, absolutely NOTHING!
Life is too short. I realize this now more than ever. So many times we put our lives on hold for this or that or fear or the time isn't right, but NO MORE!!! Watching someone you love endure so much pain to merely survive has forever changed the way I perceive life. Through all of his pain and suffering, he still managed to say things like, "thank you," "please," "I'm so blessed," "I've lived a good life," because that's just the type of person he was. Despite his rapidly deteriorating health, I will never forget how incredibly grateful he was towards the end of his life which left the rest of us feeling humbled. It makes you think twice before complaining about petty things, such as, "rainy days" and "train delays."
Hummingbird Cake (full fat)… this was the last cake I ever baked for Atul (and he loved it) - Sept 2012
Death is an inevitable part of life, a harsh reality that makes you question your own mortality. It makes you question your own purpose in life. Are you on the right path? How could you live your life differently? What would you do different if you were only given 5 more years to live? I guarantee "most" of us would make immediate changes, but fear generally gets the best of us. The sooner we can all realize that life can change in the blink of an eye, the sooner we can all learn to live in the moment, and live our life in a way it was intended to be lived, one with purpose and one with love. For now, do things that make you happy, love, give back, figure out your purpose, and enjoy the journey because the show must go on, I know Atul would not have wanted it any other way.
Ocean City, NJ - despite all the places he traveled around the world, "A's" favorite family vacation was the OC!
Wherever you are, I know you are in a much better place looking down at your wife and kids. As the darkness begins to unfold at some point I know it will be you leading the way for them into the light. Although you are no longer physically with us, you will forever remain in our hearts and your spirit will always be felt. Thank you for coming into our lives and enriching all of us. You were an amazing person that showed us all how to live life to the fullest and give back to others. Your list of accomplishments inspire me to settle for nothing less but the best, and I’m sure you influenced many others along the way. You will always be remembered for your crazy dance moves and your contagious smile. I’ll always think of you when I bite into an Animal Style Grilled Cheese In-n-Out Burger while sipping your favorite drink - Strawberry Milkshake. If heaven is anything like I would imagine it to be, I'm sure you have access to plenty of In-n-Out burgers, amazing cupcakes, and delicious martinis! You were God sent, taken away from us way before your time was up, our angel in heaven! If I had to do it all over again, I would still pick you to be my brother-in-law, or rather, my brother from another mother!
Honey & family!