MotherYour secret glare makes me mournfully walk
Around you like a blind bluejayand never hold on.
As if your color is awkward
As if the foliage of your white clothis a cold gleam of briar roses.And yet,
Since you have promised me
A wet temperament in life
I will not suffocate in dizzy tears.
I will not mourn for you any more. ( I know
You died a long time ago ).
Sharon Ignes (c.1988)
If mother was alive, she could have been fifty-six years old today. She could have been a doting grandmother to my little son Gabby. She could be the office worker happy and content with her day job, and lugging me at my childish insistence to her workplace on Saturday mornings where I would make a mess of her table and typewriter. She could be the shy teen writing poetry in her unruffled world of dreamers and young loves. She could be that little kid bowling over her first red balloon outside the cathedral after a sunday mass....
I never really knew my mother well except in the last few months of her life. My impression of her was that she was a shy but good-natured person. She kept going in her silent ways in spite of the debilitating effects of her cancer, never as much complaining as only trying to put up a brave front to keep us from worrying and feeling her pain, both physical and emotional.
I remember once sleeping beside her in her sickbed and waking up to the soft touch of her hand on my fingers. I felt like a little baby for the first time, and realized that must be how she felt when I first met her in the hospital room after the endless anticipation and pain in trying to ease me out into the world. There was only boundless love in her eyes. But there were tears welling up, too, and a weak smile. I somehow feel responsible for her demise. I know that she would have wanted to live and see all her children grow. Were it not for me and my brothers, could she have met a more providential destiny?
Life is an ephemeral glimpse of what can be had if we made choices, but sadly the day of our departing is not something we can choose nor plan. Twenty years is a long time for me to get over the pain of losing a person closest to my heart, but the regret of not knowing her thoughts, her fears, her dreams---cuts the deepest.
I miss her today more than ever.