Her body is still warm. Less than an hour has passed since she embraced her everlasting peace. The witching hour rain a drizzling rhythm. The only other sound sterile monitors chirping feeding the surrounding sleeplessness of those dearest belonging to our beloved departed. Her skin is clean smooth and soft to touch. A snapshot of youth in this final moment. The grey haired crown almost invisible. All we see is the child she once was long ago. Seconds slipped away at the speed of light. One last kiss. Lips to forehead. Children to mother.
My mom passed away suddenly not so long ago. A generations’ old family blood curse cast a long shadow. I dreamed of a white cat, refused to mention it because she believed it was bad luck. A bone marrow biopsy revealed her fate – blood cancer so aggressive her life expectancy was days. Two days to say goodbye, to watch her slip away. Death in the early morning hours. Devastated – an understatement – seeing her stillness. Her face peaceful – the most in years etched there.
We each kissed her forehead to say our last goodbye before they took her away. No time for eulogy words to leak out, commit my darkness to paper. The million thoughts of what next, what did we do now. A week in auto-pilot sorting through things, organizing her funeral, talking to her friends — folk unseen since childhood. She was loved by others – strangely reassuring – who had a hole in their heart, too.
We talked a lot during her final hours about our collective history. Stories of her, stories of us. We talked in the days afterwards about how we would honor her memory as we reminisced about the journeys of our lives.
About the author
Cristina Archer is a writer (speculative fiction/poetry/life) publishing on medium, aspiring photographer, wig collector and founder of Méchant Publishing.