Typical day in high school, walking home from school, saying good bye to the friends for the weekend, looking forward to sleeping late and waking up late. Reading books and staying on the phone for hours are just typical teenage norms. Knowing that after 2 years I have finished High School, in Asia we finish High School at 16. Then off to University, I even started to dream of having my own car. Mom told me she will buy me one so I could take her to work then I go to school. Ahh, that sounds bliss. My father works overseas and comes home periodically, I never really knew my father as he was always away.
After University then maybe a good work in a known company, boyfriend, husband then kids. There is a summary of a teenager growing to an adult life. Shouldn’t it be? We’ll it wasn’t for me. The day that had changed my life forever was on new years day when my mother gave in to cardiac arrest and died at 40. I was 14 and my brother was 11. We were left to a father that we barely know and to our grand parents who are ageing. Then my vicious journey began. My father left overseas after 2 months, he can’t bear the pain. I was too young to comfort my brother, I guess my grand mother and aunts did all the consoling. I cannot remember. I was still trying to get a glimpse of what happened then. I can’t see anything with the tears in my eyes.
I had to fight, and fight I did. I fought the hopeful notion that all was a gag and my mom will walk pass the door anytime. alive. Fought the child in me and grew up from 14 to 40. I had to learn to be an adult the hard way. God was and is with me because I could not see how I would have survived without Him. Every struggle I had, every lost way, I look for my mom and she wasn’t there. She never will be.
Before her final arrest, she was awake and was speaking to us, she said to me “You know, I was not taken yet because He knows you and your brother still needs me.” and she smiled but after a few hours she took her last breath. This is still painful to me and it feels like yesterday when I think about it. That is why I don’t. I try to remember the good times but there were so few. I had so many regrets, I should’ve kissed her every night before I go to sleep since I was a child (as if by premonition, I started kissing her at night when I turned 13), I should’ve been a nicer daughter (smart is all I have ever been but never nice) and I should’ve helped her more, I should’ve …, I should’ve…,
Too late, sigh, go ahead, that is all I could do. I changed. This tragedy changed me.
What changed in me since then? I grab every chance I get, to say what I feel, to express what I really want to do and think, to kiss in gratitude and love, to cry and comment specially to the ones I love as I don’t want to have regrets anymore. It took years to get to this stage, decades actually.
I am definitely stronger than I used to be. If given the choice I don’t mind not being this strong as long as I have my mother. This is why my attribution is always with mothers as it is the only way I could pay homage to the person I could’ve kissed and hugged more.
Life it indeed too short, we don’t live that long to experience all what life has to offer, learn from me. Take a look around, see if you are neglecting someone and kiss her/him before its too late.