Monthly Archives: June 2011

Notes: There’s No More Simbah

2008: Simbah and Boni

Simbah, a Javanese word for grandparents, that’s how I called my grandmother. Simbah was a wonderful 89 years old woman, who was so healthy and active, but she just died last Friday at 9:24 AM and there’s no more Simbah. 


It was 5 AM on Friday morning, my sister’s dog, Koin, found her foaming and bleeding in her bed and he was barking loudly as if he was asking for some help.

It was 5 AM on Friday morning, my dad, who was in the kitchen at that time, found it odd that Koin was barking so loud but Simbah did not give any respond. It was really unusual, therefore he checked what was going on.

How surprised he was to find his mother foaming and bleeding unconsciously in the bed. My dad tried to move quickly, looked for some help and called the ambulance to take her to the hospital. He hoped that the doctor could save her life. Unfortunately, nobody could help her, she passed away two hours later because of inflamed blood vessels in her brain. It was very shocking that she’s just gone because she has never suffered from any illness.

And she’s gone. She’s gone without the last word to anybody on that Friday morning. She’s just gone. She’s gone peacefully with a smile in her face at 9:24 AM and there’s no Simbah.


Despite the fact that sometimes we had arguments over silly things but I do really love her so much. I spent my childhood with her and she acted like my mother. She feed me, help me to change my uniform as I was a little girl, bought me some gift, gave me some money and also said ‘Goodbye’ before I went to school.

I still vividly remember the day when she took me to school by becak or andhong when I was a kindergarden student, I also remember that every morning she always fed me while I was doing my homework, even I was a senior high school student (I don’t feel ashamed to tell you this). She always asked me what I wanted to eat for breakfast or lunch and she would get everything for me.

Simbah was also the one who always opened the door for me whenever I got home late (literarily late 4 AM in the morning) and she always asked me whether I had money on my pocket or not. If not, she always gave me some money. She was indeed a wonderful yet a strong woman. And now, she is just gone. There is no more her. There’s no more Simbah.

There will be no her to say ‘Selamat pagi’ (Good morning), there will be no her to ask me when will I go back home to Yogya and there will be no her on my big day… on my wedding day in September because she is just gone. I just simply cannot believe that she is gone while last sunday, Edward and I had lunch with her and she was in the good shape. But now there is no more her. No more her in my life.

I know, I should not be so upset like this and face the reality because I always tell myself that there is always a new beginning and there is always an end. This is an end for Simbah, she has finished her duty in this world for 89 years. She must be happy out there.

Alm. Reinera Sumartin H

I will say Simbah is an extremely wonderful, charm yet strong woman, physically and personally. Despite the fact she was a single mother, she has been successfully raising her three children, she has been able  to see all her 12 grandchildren grown up, she has seen her 15 great grandchildren, she has seen one great great grandson and she lived healthy until in the age of 89. It was really blessing for her.

I always remember what Simbah always said whenever one of her friend passed away one by one, she always said ‘I’m going to be the next’. Sometimes, I got annoyed when she said that because we never know when we are going to die and I am terrified with the feeling of losing someone that I really love. I just do not know on how I will respond and it makes me so upset.


Simbah had a big family who loves her and will always remember her as a strong, healthy, friendly and charming old woman, who speaks Dutch and English very well. She also has many friends and neighbors who will always remember her as a 89 strong and healthy woman.

We are all losing her. Even my friends felt the same way. Many of my friends have a memory about her.

Candra, one of my close friends when I was junior high school, for instance. She told me that she always remembers when my simbah singing Edelweiss song back to early 2000. Gemma, another my good friend from junior high school, told me that she also always remember Simbah as a good grandmother for me.

Adit, one of my cousin, was always asked ‘Mamamu piye?’ (‘How is your mother doing?’) and she was always mistaken him with his uncle; Noki, another a good friend of mine, was always asked the same question ‘Ini siapa? Sekolah di mana sekarang? (‘Who are you? Where do you study now?’).

And there is no more her, who will sing a Dutch song in my parent little house in Brontokusuman, Yogyakarta. There is no more her to joke around at the house. Oh Simbah… I will miss your presence very much. I will always miss you. You are a wonderful

Dear Simbah,

Although sometimes we have a big argument, but we both realize how much we love each other. I feel my heart broken and I feel so empty now. Losing you is really a big loss for me, my family  because you have been with us since my dad, your son, built this family in 1979.

You have seen and felt all the bitter sweet memories with us and I just want to say how much I love you. I really want to send you a prayer but I do not know anymore how I should do it because I feel so empty when I try it.

However, I believe that you hear me now and I just want to say thank you very much for all the good things that you have done to me and my family. I also want to say sorry for all the bad things that I might have done to you and made you feel so upset about it.

Now, when I leave my parents’s house, there will be no more you who will say ‘Please say hello to Edward and I hope everything will be fine with you’. You are not going to hug me or give me cross in my forehead anymore before I leave because there is no more you. I just want to say I love you very much. May you rest in peace.

One lesson for me is

You never know when you will loose somebody that you really love. Therefore, it is very important that we have to be nice to each other whether we love or like them or not because we do not want to sit with regret when everything is too late. Their sentence might be the last sentence.

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