September 27th

My childhood was summed in one sentence from a manga.

"My world is a place where all of my loved ones live. If they're not there, my world simply not exists."

My youth was me, living half a life, because my world crumbled bits by bits before it finally perishes on one fateful afternoon of September 27th, 2002.

It's been 14 years. 14 years of mom not beside me. Where all those times go? I thought it was just yesterday I feel safe and close, hugged in my mom's arms. But by the next second, I feel empty, because she's not here anymore. She's been gone. For 14 years.

They say you might forget the people, but you'll never forget how they made you feel. I'd say it's half true.

Because I remember every inch of mom. Up to this day.

How can I forget? She's my mom. Even though I shut myself from the whole world, she's the only one who bravely, persistently barging in, intruding. She never took no from her daughter. She knew I need someone but too consumed by my own thoughts of people's perception about me thus put up a great wall. Afraid of intimacy.

Probably she's the one who ever tried. And succeed.

Mom was a hairdresser and makeup artist in a salon. She once opened a salon herself but it didn't last for more than two years. She's back working for others again afterward. Mom's clients always said she has magic hands. She's talented. She knows how to accentuate people's features and flaunt it to their best. Her clients came from all over the place. From west to east. From bosses to stay at home moms. She's not a certified MUA but she's acknowledged in places. She's my pride.

I used to sit on the corner of the room when she did client's makeup. She's always so talkative. All smiles and laughter. Making people feel comfortable which make them trust mom to do her best to them. Her people skill is A+. She made people open up about their insecurities and worked her way around the edges, giving them their best look ever.

Every morning when I put on my makeup, I remember her. Her smile when she puts blush on, her gleaming eyes while applying lipstick. I often wonder how fun would it be when we give each other a makeover, or maybe just doing each other's makeup. Probably she'll yell at me WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO YOUR EYEBROWS KID??? But at the end, she'll fill them in. Maybe kiss my cheek afterward.

I can only imagine how lovely it would be.

I don't want to forget how she made me happy. The only kind of happiness only she could give me. The acceptance. The love. The warmth of her hugs. Her endless strokes of hand on my head at night. The cheek kisses whenever she came home from work. That lovely expression on her face when she cooks. When she's doing client's makeup. When she cut my hair. When she did the house chores. She always smiles. That happy smile. Lovely and beautiful. Beaming light. So bright. My childhood was often a blur but I remember her smile. Which is the warmest. Light of my life.

Even the silly things, I don't want to forget them. How her cooking tastes like. All her favorite food. Her favorite drink. She is persistent, trying to make me eat or drink something I know I wouldn't like. And now I eat them all just because I know it'd make her happy up there. Seeing me.

I wish I could say how much I love her back in the day. How much I'd happily trade place so she's the one alive today. Not a single day passed without me wishing I could go back to the faithful day so that I could hug and kiss her just one. more. time. But probably it's the sense of guilt and grief who will make me remember her the most. Of how I wasted all the time not loving her much, not appreciating her enough, when they're all I supposed to do. My only task as a daughter, up to this day.

Miss you lots, Mom. I'm going to cry all night long but I'll be fine. "We have what we have when we have it."

Born again, still your daughter. Love you.

Also, because Mateo is a bae. And his words hit home. 

* She gave me the ring years ago before she passed away. Now it's my cherished treasure and I bring it everywhere. It's slightly bigger than my fingers so I rarely wear it.
** I don't know how to write a happy kind of tribute. Because usually I cry halfway writing it and it ended up being emo-sobfest. I'm so sorry.
*** This has undergone three revisions in order not to be emo-sobfest. But maybe I killed the mood halfway. Hah. But I'm happy with it. The whole post now sounds bittersweet which is just the way I want to remember her.
*** Faust ©Arechan. Read it on Line Webtoon

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