My mother was there for me all the years. Since my father’s death on February 13th 2000, she was the only one who really was, until the day she died December 7th last year. There was a time, a very dark time in my life, when nobody else believed in me. She was my entire support system; her alone. When I cleaned up, she knew from day one that it was for keeps. She was the only one who believed me at first, and I’m glad that she lived long enough to be there for the first five years of my sobriety. But it’s hard without her.
Josh: Night granny.
Mom: Night Josh, sleep tight.
Josh You too.
I heard those words every night since December 2015, and every night I play them back in my head, just like I can still hear that fateful call from December 7th when she told me they were going to try draining the fluid from her lungs, just two hours before the procedure went wrong and her life ended. From the moment I found out something was wrong until the day of her death, only two weeks had passed, and I remain shocked, I remain in this state where it feels like she isn’t supposed to be gone.
She would have turned 71 on June 7th earlier this month, and I still can’t stop thinking of her.
Then I think of my son, Josh… he doesn’t have the love and support of his mother, not like I did. I’m not going to be around forever, and I worry about how he will cope when I die.
Aishah, Josh’s sister, misses her too. After she and her mother stayed with us briefly last year, I called them every night to say goodnight, and most nights she asked to speak to “granny”. At only five years old, she had surprisingly deep conversations with my mother, asking her how she was and what she did that day, and telling mom what she had been doing. She too cried when she hard my mother died.
Megan and Aishah moved back here earlier this year, and often when I take Aishah to school, she talks about my mother, telling me how granny would walk with her and feed the birds outside, about the jersey granny knitted for her, and other things, some of which I didn’t even know about, often saying, “I wish granny was still alive.” So do I child, so do I.