One night after bath, my rambunctious seven years old daughter jumped next to me and invited me to play cat’s cradle with her.
“Cool, honey. I played this when I was little.” I was bewildered to find some thing from my childhood, half world around and thirty decades later my daughter would enjoy.
“You meant you played this in China?” She was surprised.
“Ya. And I’m pretty good at it.” I skillfully showed her few ‘movements’.
“Mom, you are good.” My seven years old was impressed, and shouting to her brother, “K, you’ve got to see it. Mom knows how to play cat’s cradle!” Her face was gleaming,
“Mom, do it slowly, please. Show that to me again.”
She giggled to bed at curfew time. “Good night Mom. It was so fun!”
“Good night, love. Have a sweet dream.” We kissed.
“Mom, let’s do it again.” Then, she questioned, “Mom, did your Mom play this with you when you were young?” I felt a knot in my throat. Luckily the lights were out so she won’t see my red nose and teary eyes.
“Not really, love.” I smoothed her hair that were spreading out on her pillow. Would she understand that at her age, I didn’t have a mother?
“Didn’t she love you?” She asked innocently.
I wished and pretended that my mother loved me.
“Of course!” But then, did I really know?
I lost in my own thought long after every one had gone to sleep. I envy her entitlement, of which I would generously provide to no end. Because I decided to bring them to this world; I ought to see them to strengthen their feathers (to grow).
I could not bring myself to talk about my mother and I had never questioned her decision to suicide. It was a fact and I lived with it. I secretly licked my wound and quietly swallowed my tears. She had always occupied a very special corner in my heart, almost too holy that I was seldom to visit. I was afraid as if too intensely gaze would melt her fragile image away. I had this anger and the sense of abandonment. It’s so profound, that it was almost humiliating. For my own sense of comfort, I chose to believe that Mom had loved me. But then, on the same token, how could she commit suicide, left me alone? This believe had been diminishing ever since I had become a mother. My daughter’s childish timbre had finally brought me to face the reality, to confront it. The moment of truth was she was selfish.