A lot of things in life are unfair. At seven, its unfair when your sister doesn’t have to help clean the bedroom. At thirteen, its unfair that you can’t go to a birthday party when all the other kids are. At seventeen, its unfair that all your friends can drive, but you can’t.
In retrospect, these things don’t really matter. What really matters, is family. So, the most unfair thing in life is losing someone close to you. I know what its like to lose someone and so do many other people, such as Matthew Logelin. Matt is the author of the memoir titled, “Two Kisses for Maddy”. If you get a chance I would highly recommend reading it.
It is about the emotional rollercoaster of a man whose child was born pre-mature and less than 24 hours later, his wife passes without ever having held her child. It is a truly inspirational story of how a single dad raised his daughter while trying to cope with a tragic loss.
Much of his book really hit home for me in the sense that my mother was taken from us while my sister was so young. Rayah was only four when our mother passed. She didn’t get a chance to really know her and I feel as though the only memories she will have are the ones we tell her.
It’s so unfair that I got to spend 19 years with her and I was able to grow up with a mother in my life. My sister doesn’t have that constant mother figure in her life. She is having to grow without our mother’s love and support.
Rayah understands that our mother is in heaven now and she has been coping in a way that I will never know or experience. I couldn’t imagine being in Elementary school and having to explain to my classmates that my mom is gone or what it feels like not being a part of the Mother’s Day projects.
When she was younger, I don’t think the concept of death was really there yet. She didn’t know and still doesn’t completely know the social etiquette when discussing death. That was usually clear when her and I were out in public alone together. There was one instance when Rayah and I were at a mall…she was about five.
A sales rep promoting a hair straightener asked if he could use it on me. With time to kill I said ok. In the process of doing my hair the sales rep asked Rayah, “Doesn’t your mommy’s hair look so pretty?”
Rayah replied, “My mommy’s dead. This is my sissy.” She said it so matter of fact that it hurt my heart hearing it…and embarrassed the sales rep who didn’t speak another word until we left.
The older she gets, the more questions she asks. She has asked me about my mother’s “skeleton”being buried. I had to explain to an 8-year-old about why there were no bones in our mother’s grave because we instead cremated her. Looking at her face while I tried to explain it to her almost made me burst into tears.
Questions like this are really tough for me, but I know that she needs an answer. She wants to understand and know who her mother is and I want to give her that, no matter how hard it is for me.
Yes, I think about all the things in my life where mom won’t be here, but Rayah hasn’t had our mom for anything passed the age of four.
My mom should have been taking her to her first day of Kindergarten. Signing her up for a sport and watching her team win games. Helping her with her first big project in school. All of these things in Rayah’s life should have had my mother in it.
I know what joy it brings to a child’s life to have her mother and if I could, I would trade all the days I had with her, just so Rayah could have them.