I have known Naveen for over a decade – and when I think of the journey he made at work, he was the epitome of determination, grace when faced with difficult moments, a sense of humour that was so touching and warm, and he just made me laugh with his one-liners.
All of this he did in life and, as if this was not enough, in death he fills me with a sense of awe in how much he was loved and appreciated. The adjectives people are using to describe the impact he had are just so consistent. They talk of the deep admiration for who he was, his wonderful heart, his work ethic, his sense of humour and above all, his warmth and the ever smiling face. And in the final analysis, this “maketh a person.” What tugs my heart is that his son will not grow up having him as a living role model – and his wife will miss the kindness, love and friendship that she fully deserves. We will do what we can to help and support them. They will always be part of the Elevar family – as he always will be.
I (and we) pushed him hard to make sure he achieved everything he was truly capable of. I think he knew that or at least, I hope he knew that. But personally, I think, I was foolish in not completely appreciating how much he was pushing me. Gosh he was subversive – he got into the weeds of our personalities and quietly changed us, so much more elegant than what I am capable of.
And so this is no typical void in the face of death. This is the void one feels when a part of you no longer exists – and you mourn not just the loss of someone you love, but the loss of some part of yourself. Let everything that was wonderful about Naveen pulse through you – that is the best way to fill that void.
We have lost a friend, a partner, a colleague – and we have no damn option but to embrace the pain and come out of it stronger.