I came across this article about a year ago and until now it still pumps those tears out of me. Surely, my life would be wrecked should my wife leave me behind…broken-hearted for a lost love, overwhelmed with another shoe to fill. Like the author I will not know where to start as well. There may be flaws in the way the article was written but what the heck the emotion carried by each word covers everything!
4 years ago, an accident took my beloved away and very often I wonder, how does my wife, who is now in the heavenly realm, feel right now? She must be feeling extremely sad for leaving a husband who is incapable of taking care of the house and the kid. ‘cos that is the exact feeling that I have, as I feel that I have failed to provide for the physical and emotional needs of my child, and failed to be the dad and mom for my child.
There was one particular day, when I had an emergency at work. Hence, I had to leave home whilst my child was still sleeping. So thinking that there was still rice leftovers, I hastily cooked an egg and left after informing my sleepy child. With the double role, I am often exhausted at work as well as when I am home. So after a long day, I came home, totally drained of all energy. So with just a brief hug and kiss for my child, I went straight into the room, skipping dinner. However, when I jumped into my bed with intention of just having a well-deserved sleep, all i heard and felt was broken porcelain and warm liquid! I flipped open my blanket, and there lies the source of the ‘problem’… a broken bowl with instant noodles and a mess on the bed sheet and blanket! Boy, was I mad! I was so furious that I took a clothes hanger, charged straight at my child who was happily playing with his toy, and give him a good spanking! He merely cried but not asking for mercy, except a short explanation:
“Dad, I was hungry and there wasn’t anymore leftover rice. But you were not back yet, hence I wanted to cook some instant noodles. But I remembered you reminding me not to touch or use the gas stove without any adults around, hence I turned on the shower and used the hot water from the bathroom to cook the noodles. One is for you and the other is for me. However, I was afraid that the noodles will turn cold, so I hid it under the blanket to keep it warm till you return. But I forgot to remind you ‘cos I was playing with my toys…I am sorry Dad…”
At that moment, tears were starting to run down my cheeks…but I didn’t want my son to see his dad crying so I dashed into the bathroom and cried with the shower head on to mask my cries. After that episode, I went towards my son to give him a tight hug and applied medication on him, while coaxing him to sleep. Then, it was time to clear up the mess on the bed. When everything was done and well past midnight, I passed by my son’s room, and saw that he was still crying, not from the pain on his little buttock, but from looking at the photograph of his beloved mommy. However, not so long ago, I hit my boy again, with much regret. This time, is kindergarten teacher called, informing me of my son’s absence from school. I took off early from work and went home, expecting him to explain. But he wasn’t to be found, so I went around our house, calling out his name and eventually found him outside a stationery shop, happily playing computer games. I was fuming, brought him home and whacked the hell out of him. He did not retaliate, except to say, ‘I am sorry, Dad’. But after much probing, I realized that it was a ‘Talent Show’ organized by his school and the invitation was for every student’s mommy. And that was the reason for his absence as he has no mommy…..
Few days after the caning, my son came home to tell me, the kindergarten has recently taught him how to read and write. Since then, he has kept to himself and stayed in his room to practise his writing, which I am sure, would make my wife proud, if she was still around. ‘cos he makes me proud too!
Time passed by very quickly, and soon another year has passed. It’s winter, and its Christmas time. Everywhere the christmas spirit is in every passer-by…Christmas carols and frantic shoppers….but alas, my son got into another trouble. When I was about to knock off from the day’s work, the post office called. Due to the peak season, the post master was also on an edgy mood. He called to tell me that my son has attempted to post several letters with no addressee. Although I did make a promise never to hit my son again, I couldn’t help but to hit him as I feel that this child of mine is really beyond control. Once again, as before, he apologized, ‘ I’m sorry, Dad’ and no additional reason to explain. I pushed him towards a corner, went to the post office to collect the letters with no addressee and came home, and angrily questioned my son on his prank, during this time of the year.
His answer, amidst his sobbing, was : The letters were for Mommy. My eyes grew teary, but I tried to control my emotions and continued to ask him: ” But why did u post so many letters, at one time?” My son’s reply was: ” I have been writing to mommy for a long time, but each time I reached out for the post box, it was too high for me, hence I was not able to post the letters. But recently, when I went back to the post box, I could reach it and I dropped the letters all at once…” After hearing this, I was lost. Lost at not knowing what to do nor what to say…. I told him, ” Son, mommy is in the heavenly kingdom, so in future, if you have anything to tell her, just burn the letter and it will reach mommy. My son, on hearing this, was much pacified and calmed, and soon after, he was sleeping soundly. On promising that I will burn the letters on his behalf, I brought the letters outside, but couldn’t help opening the letter before they turn to ash. And one of the letters broke my heart….
I miss you so much! Today, there was a ‘Talent Show’ in school, and the school invited all mothers for the show. But you are not around, so I did not want to participate as well. I did not tell Dad about it as I was afraid that Dad would start to cry and miss you all over again. Dad went around looking for me, but in order to hide my sadness, I sat in front of the computer and started playing games at one of the shops. Dad was furious, and he couldn’t help it but scolded and hit me, but I did not tell him the real reason. Mommy, everyday I see Dad missing you and whenever he thinks of you, he is so sad and often hide and cry in his room. I think we both miss you very very much. Too much for our own good I think. But Mommy, I am starting to forget your face. Can you please appear in my dreams so that I can see your face and remember you? I heard that if you fall asleep with the photograph of the person whom you miss, you will see the person in your dreams. But mommy, why haven’t you appear?
After reading the letter, I can’t stop sobbing. ‘cos I can never replace the irreplaceable gap left behind by my wife….