Today is the day. The final day. The day your loved ones will get to see you for the last time.
I woke up abruptly this morning aunty at around 3am. I don’t know why I woke up. It certainly wasn’t for midnight toilet visits. I looked at my phone and the date read as twenty-first of July. It sounded familiar in my head. But I wasn’t sure what was going on today. I ransacked my brain and finally determined that today was no one’s birthday. I gave up and went back to sleep.
At about a little over 8am, I checked my phone again while at work to be sure I wasn’t missing anything. You see it was bugging my mind that I was forgetting something important. And there I saw it, the reminder for your funeral service.
I am not able to attend your funeral and I didn’t attempt to ask for permission from work. I am sure I would have gotten it. I don’t just want to let you down one last time. I feel like I have done enough. Maybe I am chicken-hearted. Maybe I am not brave. But I cannot see your husband yet. I cannot see you lying there in that cold, hard, beautifully decorated wood, dead. I cannot see your shrunken body. I cannot watch your child call out mummy during the funeral procession. I cannot hear them sing “fading away, like the stars of the morning”.
I am afraid I will let out too much tears. So I prefer to just throw myself into work.
Work was stressful today aunty. I worked like a robot just to keep my mind occupied. I worked until my body started aching me. I feel nauseous and feverish and still it didn’t work. I closed at 5:15pm only to get back to the thoughts I thought I had escaped from.
Has it only been a month and three weeks since your passing? I still feel it you know, like it was last week. Time and time again my mind flashes back. Wondering how your son is doing? Wondering how your husband is doing? Oh aunty, you are so selfish! You couldn’t just hold on a bit? I know you were in so much pain but really couldn’t you just hold on? Do you have any idea what your husband looks like now? I fear he might follow suit. It was only six years of marriage of which the past one year was a nightmare. He loved you. I know he did. I mean who will not love you.
I’m sorry aunty. I didn’t mean to shout at you. I’m transferring aggression now, yeah.
Your desk at father’s office; it was empty the last time I went there. Please come back and sit there. I miss you. I miss hearing your voice. I miss your smile. I miss the brown coat you always wore. When I am passing by your house, I wouldn’t occasionally bump into you again. Maybe I should have made an attempt to go. Maybe I should have just braved it all. Maybe I should have been stronger instead of crying salty tears in my room alone.
The thought of a heavenly miracle then gave me hope even when I knew that scientifically you were nearing the end. I guess now it appears that I just wanted to hold on to something.
The sun has set.
The curtain has been drawn.
A chapter of life is closed.
The grave has been filled up with sand.
The slab has been set.
Here lies the body of a woman who I loved and was loved by everyone else.