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Remembering Mum: A Journey Through Loss and Love

 

As I sat quietly on the second row of pews in the church last Sunday, surrounded by the whispers of a sermon dedicated to celebrating Mothering Sunday, memories of my late dear mother flooded my thoughts. Every word spoken echoed the love and sacrifices she made, and I couldn’t help but feel the weight of her absence.

Looking around, I saw a sea of faces, telling its own story. Some faces bore the weight of loss, like mine. Others radiated happiness, their mothers still alive and well. And then there were those with solemn expressions, perhaps carrying the burden of complicated relationships or absent mothers. I saw my own face with my inner eyes.  I was sad. Tears were wetting my eyes from time to time.

My thoughts drifted to a pathetic story my eldest sister told me about my early childhood the night before. on the eve of the Mothering Sunday being Saturday. We sat in front of our compound chatting with members of our family. Many beautiful stories were told about our late mum. Being the last in the family, I had nothing to contribute because I did not know who she was, since I lost her very early.

My elder sister recalled the first sickness I had as a baby few weeks after my birth. Dad was away for work at that moment. Mum was at home with the children and me, baby Sylvia. Suddenly, I became sick. Mum ran around to provide possible care. Baby Sylvia could not play, she could not eat or put on her usual smiles. Her siblings could not eat. They all sat mournfully, looking at me and our weeping mum. Mum cried her eyes out. Luckily, dad came back from work and provided some money for medication which helped to relieve me a little. But in the night, despite the efforts, I grew sicker. Mum never slept a second, consumed by worry.

Dad woke up to find mum weeping beside baby Sylvia’s cot, ‘will she die? Am I going to lose her?’, mum was saying in tears. Very early in the morning, dad provided some money and mum took me to the hospital. There was no available transport due to heavy rain the previous night. As a result, mum carried me and trekked to the hospital where I was treated. The image of my mum, tears streaming down her face as she carried me through the rain to the hospital, pierced my heart. “You did all this for me, mum, and yet you’re not here to see who I’ve become,” I whispered inwardly.

Many others in the church, I realized, carried similar burdens of loss and longing. As the sermon stirred those raw emotions, tears flowed freely. You see such people in the church at such moment gazing at a particular spot in the alter without blinking while the sermon or beautiful melody dedicated to good mothers are presented. Right inside their hearts, they are weeping.

In my mind’s eye, I pictured myself at my mother’s graveside, offering flowers as a token of my love and gratitude. If only she was here to see the life I’ve made for myself. If only I could repay her for the sacrifices she made, like trekking through the rain to save my life.

After the service, I sought solace in the arms of loved ones who had supported me through the years. I visited the babies I once held dear, now a reminder of the innocence and purity of motherly love.

To those who still have their mothers, I urge you: cherish them, and appreciate them. Reflect on the nine months they carried you, the countless sacrifices they’ve made. For when they’re gone, nothing—not even the love of a spouse—can fill the void they leave behind.

Motherhood is a bond like no other, a love that transcends words. Today, I honor my mother’s memory, and I implore you all to do the same.

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