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Dealing with Death
Is this what it was supposed to feel like? The crushing sadness that comes from knowing someone died. The strong determination that comes with knowing the deceased wouldn't want you crying? I was beginning to think so.
Mothers. Good for justabout anything. Skinned your knee? Go tell mom, she'll get you a band-aid. Learned to read? Go tell mom, she'll sit and listen to you. First A on a test? Go tell mom, she'll take you out for dinner. First boyfriend? Go tell mom, she'll cry, but then warn you about what 'boys truly want'. Fallen in love? Go tell mom, she'll cry again, and then give you 'the talk'. Got your heart broken? Go tell mom, she'll get the ice-cream and sappy movies.
But what are you supposed to do if you lost your mom? Is she simply wasn't there for you anymor. Wasn't there for you when you needed her the most? I had absolutely no idea.
Why? Why did it seem that out of every mother out in this world mine was the one chosen? Chosen to go live with 'our holy Father in Heaven' as the priest so joyfully told us as we stood next to the casket. Families all came up with flowers to throw onto it before it was burried in the ground, with nothing but dirt and insects for companions.
It all started with the flowers. When mom leanred she had cancer at first she was indifferent. Mom seemed to believe that as long as you were happy and smiled everyday nothing could happen to you. The sad thing, mom smiled right to the very end. When I was around ten years old mom and I used to walk around, looking at flowers everywhere. Sometimes she would even take me to a flower shop just to look around and smell them. She was obsessed with them, and for some reason couldn't grow a single flower to save her life, literally. She jokingly told me that she wanted every kind of flower in the world at her funeral, not thinking that seven years later I would be standing here, watching it come true.
She fought the cancer for seven years, smiling the entire time. Even when her hair fell out and she went around bald so people stared at her. She would just smile and nod before walking away, head held high. Even when she was throwing up so badly in the bathroom that she couldn't eat anything for days without fear of seeing it again. She always found a way to make a joke out of things, to make me smile and giggle, which in turn made her smile.
I had thought, once I was old enough to actually understand what was going on, that she was going to pull throuhg and survive like so many others had. And it had appeared that she would, until suddenly she wasn't.
I remember the day so clearly, the day she died. I had walked into the hospital, so happy that mom was finally going to be able to come home. For seventeen I was an extreme mommy's girl and couldn't stand it when other people my age talked bad about their mothers. When I had got to her room she had looked paler then normal, and dad was clutching her hand, with what looked like tears in his eyes. It was one thing for a girl to cry, but when a man, supposed to be so tough, breaks down into tears I loose it. Even if I don't know the man. It's surprising in a bad way, considering it takes a lot to make me even tear up. When I had asked what was going on dad had explained kindly, like he was talking to a little kid though, that mom was very sick and was staying in the hospital for a little while longer. Maybe it was the fact that whenever I was around dad treated me like a five year old. Or that he was constantly hogging mom, always telling me to just go home and get some rest, things would be better latter and he'd call. But I just blew up that day when he told me to leave, screaming at him like my life depended on it, and at the moment it felt like it did. Unfortunantely it was the ending of my mothers life. She had a seizure while I stood there screaming, and by the time the doctors came it was already too late.
Dad reached out and tried to put his arm around me, reminding me of where I was. I stepped out of it, truly angry at him. If it wasn't my yelling that had basically made mom's grave I could've been screaming at him again, but it wasn't right to do that at a funeral anyway.
He threw me a pained look, but I ignored it, closing my eyes and trying to remember a happier time, when mom didn't have cancer. It was no use, my memory only stretched back as far as ten year's ago, when it all started. They say to remember the happier times, but what if you don't have any happy times to remember?
As a kid I never got the chance to rough house with my mom, or to take walks to the park on a sunny day. We never built sand castles at the beach, or snowmen in our front yard.
Snow. It was snowing now. How ironic was it that mom died three day's before Christmas. That the holiday she loved the most just so happened to be just around the time her ending came.
I was dressed in a long black dress, it was plain, the only color were my red converse, which mom had made dad buy for me when I turned sixteen. My long black hair, something I inherited from mom, was done and covering my steely gray eyes, another trait from mom. I loved the color black dearly, but there was something about seeing a crowd of people, all wearing black at the same time that put me on edge, or maybe it was just the reason they were wearing it.
When the survice finally ended I turned and, without a word to my father, started running. I pulled my long dress and trench coat up so I could run quicker. Running had always been an escape for me. It felt like I was flying, finally able to leave all my demons behind.
I kept running, ignoring the strange looks I was getting from the few passing walkers. As I continued running I didn't know where exactly I was going, until finally I reached the park.
Mom hadn't been able to take me to the park, often. In fact she only took me once, to a small little creek that was surrounded with amazingly colorful flowers. That was what had drawn her in at first, the water had drawn me.
I finally reached my home away from home. In the winter it looked almost more magical than it did in the fall, my favorite time here.
All the flower's were dead, but the tree's that made a canopy over the entire meadow, as I liked to think of it, looked amazing. Snow drifted down onto the now frozen creek.
I was enchanted and walked closer, peering over the bank and looking at the frozen water, all trapped within it's own confinment.
Suddenly someone cleared their throat, making me jump and loose my footing. I tumbled over the bank, surprisingly steep even though the creek wasn't much. Luckily I managed to grab the side of the frozen earth before I plumented to my cold death.
I scrambled, trying to find a foot hold, when I finally did I realized that it wasn't much and wouldn't hold for long.
" Oh I'm so sorry." Someone whispered above me. I glanced up, confused and worried about my life. It was surprising how much I had wanted to die early, at the funeral, but when a chance for death presented itself to me I shyed away.
I found myself staring into a pair of amazing green eyes, with little golden flecks in them. Amusment and worry, two emotions I never thought I'd see together, were clear in his eyes.
" Oh, why is that?" I asked, at a lost of breath from my situation.
He stuck a hand out and latched onto my own.
" Because I made you fall." He answered as he pulled me up slowly. I collasped on the ground gratefully, breathing heavily like I had just run a marathon.
The boy, looking to be around my own age, sat down on the cold ground next to me. I noticed that he had a head of very curly brown hair, it was shaggy and almost went past his ears. His face was tanned, and I didn't recognize him.
"I'm Toby." He said, glancing down at me before he looked away quickly, suddenly shy.
I smiled timidly. "Hi. I'm Amelia." I said, sitting up and pulling my knees up and pulling my dress down over them along with my trench coat.
He glanced down at my shoes, looking strange with my choice of clothing, and broke out in laughter. It was contagious.
Soon we were both rolling on the frozen ground, holding our stomachs in laughter.
After maybe five minutes I sat up again, not knowing why we had even started laughing in the first place.
Out of no where he started asking me random question's about myself, so we played twenty question's in my meadow, until the sun went down and the moon came up.
Somehow I had managed to completely skirt around the subject of my newly dead mother, that is, until he mentioned that his mother was a breast cancer surviver.
I broke down in tears. And before I could blink I was in his arms, the place I suddenly knew I was meant to be.
Sobbing I told him my story, the whole truth. He rubbed my back soothing and comforted me like my father never would.
As one by one the stars appeared we lay and held each other in the meadow, all tears gone now.
"It's going to be okay." He whispered, kissing my forehead.
"Is it?" I asked, glancing up at his face, his eyes shinning with truth and another emotion I wasn't ready to face yet.
" Yes. It's going to be alright."