They say that time heals all wounds. That could indeed be true. But what also rings true is the fact that although wounds might heal, they leave scars. Some of these scars do fade away with time but some stubbornly refuse to be ignored and remain a painful reminder of their fateful cause.
It’s been a year now since the untimely demise of my mainini Florence and although the hours have turned into days, the days into months and now the months into a full year without her presence in the land of the living – I still haven’t reconciled myself to the fact that she is gone.
I’ve always said my memory is as good as that of a woman in her seventies suffering from a myriad of mental degenerative diseases, but surprisingly, I remember the last conversation that I had with Florence the night before she took her leave.
I don’t remember exactly what time we started talking, what I still remember is that it was early evening and I had just come home from work. I was tired and feeling sleep. My intention was to finish cooking supper as quickly as possible and go to bed, but when she apped me saying my propic looked beautiful. My spirits were raised and I responded with a quick thank you. She then asked me to help her change her profile picture and immediately sent me several of her pictures to select from. I chose the picture that I liked best from amongst the ones she sent me but it wasnt the one she liked…in the end she settled on the one that she liked…
She then said that she was feeling tired and needed to go to sleep. “I love you” she said… “I love you too” …I responded… both of unaware that that would be the last time we would ever talk.
I remember the tears flowing down my cheeks as I said my final goodbye to my mainini… My heart was heavy but not heavier than my mind which was weighed down with all the regret that I felt.
All I could think about was all I could have done whilst she was still alive to show her that I loved her that I hadn’t done. I felt guilt and remorse and kept wishing it was all a day dream and that she would answer the message I had sent her after learning she was gone.
….I now can sleep through the night without dreaming of her alive…
….I now can go through the day without looking expectantly at my phone with the hopes of receiving a message from her…
Life has gone back to being as normal as it possibly can…but things have changed. In her leaving the land of the living, she gave me one of the best lessons that she could have ever taught me. To live. To embrace the present and the presence of those I love by being present in my life and hence theirs.
In her last year alive- her status often read Live, Laugh, Love. and now I realise that short though her life might have been, my mummy lived. She asserted her presence on earth and lived life on earth stubbornly in the way that she wanted. She was fire. No not a rebel- not breaking rules. But making her own rules. Even in her last hours – she knew what she wanted and did so reggardless of the opinions I might have had.
She laughed. Loud and hard. With a defiant shake of the head and boisterous clapping of her hands. My mummy never missed a good laugh.
She loved. Never once did I doubt her love for me or her love for those around her. Even in her moments of pain and weakness. She would always find time to make my day better through kind words delivered straight to my inbox. Words that always came without fail each and every Sunday- even though some of them were ignored and did not get a response.
I’m sad that she is gone… but I have vowed to live, laugh and love in honour of her memory… wherever she is right now…I hope she knows that she is loved and will never be forgotten.