Wednesday, March 21, 2012
I called her Mami, just like my other cousins did, even though she's actually my mom's older sister. But since the beginning of time, I guess she became the motherly figure for all of us.
My mom had seven sisters and two brothers, and that makes our family really big..If you have watched My Big Fat Greek Wedding, well it's kinda similar with my family. We are really close with each other, nieces and aunts, cousins and even second cousins, grandma and grandkids, and so on..
Mami was one of the most popular aunts, because she could cook really well! Her famous soto sulung and puding karamel were always loved by everybody, especially when there was a family gathering. Unlike her other siblings, Mami never pursued high education or prestigious career. She didn't have PhD like my mom, or married a successful man like my other aunt, or worked in a fancy office. But she loved cooking so much and she could make beautiful dresses. My mom told me once that Mami even made twin dresses for both of them in only one day!
We always thought that even though her life was quite different than the rest of us, Mami always seemed content. She had four kids and five grandchildren, more than anybody else in the family.
So we were very happy when one of her daughters, the one who lives in the US, gave birth to a beautiful baby girl, and Mami was all ready to visit them with my uncle. We bid her goodbye, with lots of good wishes and promises to send pictures and stories. And off she went to the States.
But a week later, after receiving many pictures of them, we heard the news that Mami had to have a surgery because of a wound infection. But we thought it was a small surgery, and she's in good hands of the US medical facilities, so we just sent our prayers and not really worried about it.
That's why nobody ready for the news the following morning: Mami was gone. She never really recovered from the surgery. Just like that. She's taken away from us. We can't understand. Why? She didn't seem sick when she went to the US. She never gave any clue that she would never come back. It's a shocking news for all of us. And the beginning of our very emotional and long days.
Due to all permits and other stuff, Mami's remains arrived after two weeks of agony. It's a painful moment, when we opened her casket and saw her beautiful face, just as if she was sleeping and waiting to be awaken.
Until today, sometimes I still can't believe that Mami was gone. There's a giant hole inside my heart, and every time our family got together, there's something missing. A huge silence. A black hole. A realization that we're not gonna be together forever, the rest of us, and losing your dearest ones become a bitter reality that you need to accept.
On the other hand, this also made me realize how lucky I am, blessed with this family, where there's always a shoulder to cry on. Because when all you have is sorrow, there's nothing you can do except crying it out loud. So you will be ready to move on, and face your life. After all, the world keeps on spinning no matter what, as if there's nothing happened, there's no soul being missed and no hope being crushed. But you know that's not true. And your family knows that too.
we'll always love you mami. and your kindred spirit will always, always be in our heart. patiently to see you in heaven!