Does it ever bother you that perhaps you're in the wrong body? Has it ever occurred to you that perhaps you're probably born into the wrong time period? Or maybe, you just feel like you don't belong anywhere? Or at least, the place you belong is not where you are right now? I don't know about many other people, but these thoughts always emerge in my mind. Well, of course, it'd always occur to me. I'm always being ignored. No one talks to me. I'm practically invisible. I still go around doing whatever I need to do. Chores, homework, part-time job, you name it. When someone does notice me, they get scared. They run away from me. I know I'm a horrible sight but, do I really look that bad? Maybe it's because the students here at this new school isn't used to having someone like me around? Maybe. Hm, well, I had only moved here a few weeks ago. It's really not such a big surprise. But that's just the students. The teachers and adults in general also ignore me. They don't call on me when I raise my hand and my parents don't take care of me. Well, I've gotten used to being forgotten. So I've gotten used to taking care of myself. A few days ago, my parents are taking a trip back to my hometown. I overheard their conversation, saying how they're going to the cemetery to visit a grave today. It's probably my grandfather's grave. His death anniversary is coming up and I know my parents do not have the time to visit the grave on that certain day. I wonder if they're taking me? I bet I'm supposed to stay home like usual. It's fine, really. Being alone isn't that bad sometimes. You get to do, eat, drink, play whatever you want. You also get to sleep whenever you want, which is probably the best advantage there is. Sometimes though, I really want a snuggle buddy. My mother's pillow is sufficient enough, but sometimes I need just a bit more. I miss my mother's hugs and my father's comforting words. They never do anything with me anymore. This change was so sudden... Too sudden, really. But it's okay, I've gotten used to it. Now, no time to start complaining again, got to get to the car. Just because my parents didn't tell me to get in, doesn't mean I can't come along and visit my grandfather's grave.
The care ride was long and agonizingly quiet. My parents didn't even turn on the radio. My mother had prepared a basket full of pastries that I love to eat and my father had bought a bouquet of white lilies, red poppies, fragrant sweetpeas, and bright fresh yellow zenias. I can't quite see from this angle but it looks like there's a carnation somewhere in there too. The bouquet was absolutely gorgeous and it was enormous. It took up one of the entire back seats. The wrapping paper was very adorable. Cream pink, frosting sky-blue, light lavender, and silver bordered white. It's so beautiful; I bet my mother picked the paper.
I follow my parents into the cemetery, not saying a word. Apparently they didn't mind me coming along. Maybe they even kind of wanted me to come along? I'm not sure. The cemetery is actually quite spacious and very well kept. I remember it being constructed just a few years ago, so obviously there wouldn't be that many "residents". There are a few stone paths leading to various places in the cemetery and I can see a small pergola up the small slope and benches scattered around and along the paths. My parents headed up the path that lead towards the small roman styled pavilion but then, when they reached a fork in the path, they took a left instead of going straight up. I guess they weren't going to the pavilion. I followed them down the dusty pathway they gradually narrowed down to a certain point where we had to walk single file. My father took the lead while holding the bouquet and my mother cradled the basket of sweets and I just tagged along. Nice family image I guess. My father then slowed down in front of a grave with angel wings etched onto its surface. There was an engraved heart in between the two wings and below it was an abnormally long epitaph.
To our wonderful angel:
We wish you had enjoyed your short life. We wonder if we had failed as parents? Did we upset you? We are sorry. We just want to say, "We're sorry." But it's too late isn't it? We didn't see it. But now we do, and now we know it's too late. Too late for apologies. Too late to mend things. But please understand that we love you. We hope you sleep well. You are always going to be remembered. Every single day. We hope your heart will be healed during your eternal stay in heaven. We love you. We miss you.
Mom and Dad
That feeling of shock. The moment in time where nothing makes sense. That moment when realization just slams itself right into your chest. That crushing pain of realization that you are dead. Actually, none of you will ever experience this feeling. But at least some of you will come close. The realization that your dying is similar to the feeling I'm experiencing now. How could I have forgotten? Such an important moment of my life was forgotten because I didn't want to believe in it. Now I understand why the students and teachers and other people ignored me. They can't see me. Even if there are a few exceptions here and there, it doesn't make a difference. I'm dead. It no longer matters what I died from and why I died. What matters is that I need to speak with my parents one more time. I run up in between the tombstone and my parents and scream as loudly as I can. I wave my hands wildly and jump around. But they can't see me. My mother lowers the basket of sweets in my feet. Yes, in my feet. My father then lays down the gorgeous bouquet in front of the basket. Then, another surge of realization swept through me. Lilies for purity. Poppies for eternal sleep. Yellow zenias for daily remembrance. Sweetpeas for farewells. Carnations for healing. The entire bouquet was an epitaph. Ha, my father was always good with symbolism. I felt the slight burn in my nose as I began to tear up. The tears rolled down my face and landed with a soft plop on the basket that was in my feet. Just a spray of the teardrop landed on the petals of the lilies. Suddenly, I heard my parents gasp. I quickly focused my gaze at them. They were staring at me with an unfathomable expression on the faces. I stared into their eyes and they stared back into mine. They could see me. I let out a whimper and I cried out their titles, "Mommy. Daddy." I wailed in front of them and collapsed on the earth. What happened next made all my emotions explode from my heart. My parents both embraced me and cried along with me. The three of us wailed on and on until all of us had seemingly dried out. My parents withdrew themselves and sat in front of me and I leaned in to embrace them this time. "Thank you. I love you both. Goodbye." That was all I needed to say. Just when I thought my mother couldn't cry anymore, she just crumpled up and sobbed uncontrollably. My father hugged her gently to comfort her, but when he looked up, he had the most longing expression on his face. It then occurred to me that I'm probably not visible anymore. It's okay. I've already said what I needed to say. I smiled down at my parents. I love you. Thank you.