Mom was cremated today. As a Christian having such a strong Buddhist mom, the battle between faith and hope in my mind is quite overwhelming. But I believe mom is already at a higher place, beyond the clouds, amongst the holies, and safe in the hands of God.
Took a short nap when I reached home, after doing another round of laundry. I think I am beginning to like this laundry thing. Woke up and noticed my siblings were looking for treasures around the house. While cousin is still around, we want to let her see which of mom’s stuff is for her. Not that we are looking to distribute her stuff so soon but cousin will be leaving tonight and she is the only person who knows my mom’s unspoken will.
Mom is a fan of jade, typical Chinese. She has actually bought a lot of jade bracelet, one for all of our ‘partners’. She showed my sister all the jade bracelets a while back, and my sis said we all wouldn’t like it. I mean, who in the world likes old fashioned jade bracelet in this era.
“Lei mo lei ngo la, ngo jong yi mai bei hui dei. Jo gei lim” was mom’s reply to sis.
(Don’t care la. I like to buy for them, it’s for remembrance)
There’s actually one for sis, my soon-to-be-wife, my bro’s future wife, all my cousins and a few extras which we will give to her good temple friends. ... Mom wants to be remembered by everyone.
“Oh, these are for your children,” cousin pointed at 2 jade pendants, and handed them to me. My children? ... Mom wants her grandchildren to know her.
“This is for your wife,” cousin pointed at a very beautiful diamond pendant. “To be given to her during the tea ceremony”. ... Mom wants to be remembered during that moment.
“Oh, I think your mom wants to use this to make a baju kebaya, don’t know for who, can’t recall,” cousin pointed at some fabrics. I held it up, felt like silk. My sis never mentioned anything about wanting a baju kebaya. Then, it hit me. I vaguely recall Julia telling me that she would like to have a kebaya and I made a “passing comment” to my mom about it. Mom remembers every single word I said.
As cousin continued to identify which is for who, I realised mom really had it all planned out. Mom really does know she is going to leave us. And most importantly, I believe mom does not want to be forgotten, mom wants to be remembered. And mom did all she could to be stay in our memories. For those with deceased parents… do you remember their date of demise?
I think being forgotten was one of mom’s greatest fears. Cousin said mom disagreed with me going to China to work early last year. I think mom was really afraid that I will forget about her. Of course, that is not true. But mom, in her simple mind, she just want to be close to her children.
Cousin also said that night that mom actually called her at 12am the day I left for China, mom couldn’t sleep. She was worried, not knowing whether I will be able to find my way in China since I do not speak a word of Mandarin then. Also, she was afraid that I will not have enough to eat, no blanket… ya’ know, that kinda thing.
Mom is just so… mom.
Knowing all these really make my heart breaks into a million pieces which will take some time to recover. And knowing that I could have done something made it worse. I want to find out who is that Chinese sen-sei that diagnosed my mom, to which mom didn’t inform us. I want to find out what exactly was said to mom, and wonder mom did any follow up. I think I should do that to be in peace with myself. Otherwise, I will never be able to let this go.
Wish me luck.
P/S: About starting new blog for my mom, I think I will do away with that for now, already quite taxing with one blog. I will put it all in a “book - A 2nd chance with mom”, regardless of whether it will get published or not.