It’s been two months since I posted a story here. It’s not that I have not been writing, but for some reason, I couldn’t get my thoughts together and couldn’t seem to find enough time to sit in front of my laptop and just write like I normally would. My head’s always full of ideas to write about, especially when I’m on the road, and a number of articles have already piled up in my drafts folder waiting to be finished.
It’s been two months that I have not done much except clean the house, take care of some errands, worry about the budget, get sick and recover (right, as if I have planned on being ill!), and reminisce the past.
It’s been two months of both busy and idle living. My late mother‘s birthday and second death anniversary came and went too. As both dates neared, I experienced deep sadness. Wishing she’s still alive, dreaming I could still embrace and kiss her, yearning to hear her voice… If only I could be with her for one more day, when she’s still alive and well.
I remember the last few months she was with us. My children and I were spending the summer at my parents’ home and we’d all sleep together in one room with my mother. In the middle of the night, she’d wake up writhing in pain. And all I could do was leave the room, weep, and pray. No pain reliever could seem to take away the pain she was feeling then. And if I hugged her, it would only cause her more pain. That was the only time I knew that hugging someone could actually cause pain. Literally.
A few more days and we finally found out that she had pancreatic cancer, stage 4, and would be very lucky if she lived for three more months.
Cancer. And my beloved mother’s death. These were the two things that have been eating me up the past couple of months. It’s been two years, but I just realized that it still pains me so much. Without realizing it, I guess I’ve been adept at concealing pain from everyone else, only crying when I’m alone.
When I was a child, my constant prayer was to die first before any of my parents did. Of course, God did not grant that. How could He when I have two little girls relying solely on me to make it out in this world? But still, I question God. Why her? Why my mother when there are so many bad people out there? Murderers, rapists, kidnappers, carnappers, terrorists, thieves,… the list is endless.
I guess the only consolation was knowing that my mother had touched so many people’s lives. I’ve never seen such a huge funeral as hers, that is, of an ordinary citizen. Fourteen vehicles–both private cars and passenger jeepneys as well as tricycles full of people–came to bury her and every night, the funeral home was crowded. During her wake, it felt like the guests were the family members and we, her children, were the visitors. We had to console them, especially her close friends, who wept each day that they would come to her wake.
Tomorrow, my eldest child is turning eight. It’s going to be another important family celebration where my mother would both be remembered and missed once again. She was both of my daughters’ first nanny, as well as my nieces and nephews’. There’s no doubt how much she loved them. In fact, I think she’s the only person who could probably love my children more than I do. I just know that she’d be willing to lay down her life for them just as she would for me, her own daughter.
I miss my mother so much, but I know I just have to move on now. Tomorrow’s a big day for my own little family, at least, and I’d like every aspect of it to be a celebration. My mother would have wanted to be there and she’d definitely be proud of her little baby, too, if she was alive. To do that, I have to do better now and stop chasing after the past that would never change, but could only haunt and pain me if I let it do so.