I’ve associated you with so many memories of tears and anger that it’s been almost forever since I’ve thought of any good memories with you. It’s shameful, I guess, that for all you’ve done for me in my 21 years of existence should be distilled into few bad memories, so tonight I will try to associate every bad memory of you with really good ones.
- That Halloween when we were going out, and I insisted that we leave bags of treats out for kids who were trick-and-treating in the neighborhood. How precocious I was then, ordering you about as a 7-year-old. But you understood, you smiled at me and packed little bags of snacks with a note inviting kids to take them. Most were left behind, probably by kids who either didn’t see or didn’t care to take, but in that moment you chose to be kind and indulge me. I can only hope to be this gracious as a mother.
- In the moments you cried and held me after caning me because you let your anger carry you away (it’s okay mummy you were always impulsive in your anger), and you apologized and held me like I would disappear into thin air.
- Every time I spoke about a dish during the week – mummy, I really love dumplings, mummy remember that time when you made that omelet?- and the dish would mysteriously appear during dinner on the weekends, where you spent an entire afternoon slaving away in the hot, stuffy kitchen.
- The generous, genial smile when you gave us permission to order more food when we were out. (Almost always coupled with the phrase “mummy likes it when you all are happy”)
- That time in JC when I told you about my friend, envy thinly (and unconsciously) garbed as admiration. But you saw through my supposed adoration and told me that I was enough, that I didn’t have to feel about myself this way. I was lucky the room was dark because at that moment my eyes had filled with many, many tears and I had to slip out of the room, suppressing a sob.
Many, many happy memories with you. I love you mummy, happy belated birthday.