Monday, July 27, 2009


Sunday, July 29, 1979 (Henry is 42)

As she stands,

she stumbles toward me and says,


and is gone…


and I stand there on the beach,


staring at her slender footprints

in the fading light.

--From Time Traveler’s Wife

Mom passed away on July 29. 12 years ago. We were all there by her deathbed. But I was the only one who accompanied her to the morgue and the ambulance that brought us to the wake. The driver looked surprised when I said I was climbing aboard. What can I say, it was really hard to let go. I sat beside her body and held her icy hand which I knew I’d have to let go for the last time once the ambulance stops.

That was strange because I pushed her away from me all my life. When she had misunderstandings with Dad, I always sided with him. When she got impatient with Lolo, I always tell her to go easy on him. I always took Lolo’s side against hers. I didn’t believe her when she said I was a handsome bloke (I figured correctly that all mothers say that), or that I was talented. I didn’t seek her affection but she gave it to me without asking anything in return. When she offered to take me to Paris during the Bicentennial of Bastille Day, I even refused. I was pushing her away.

But for every triumph I have had, I knew it was only possible because she was praying for me every night. And when those small triumphs came I was not the one who cried-- It was her.

She died. And I couldn’t stop it. She died. And I couldn’t let go. I couldn’t let go when there was nothing to hold onto, when everything was too late.

“Sorry, I never told you.

All I’ve wanted to say…

Now you’ve flown away, so far away.”

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

aww very sweet. i am sure your lola has forgiven you and i am betting she has understood you all those times.

Letters to my kids about their childhood adventures

To Sage, Sabe, Sade & 3Stan

To Sage, Sabe, Sade & 3Stan