This is a story about my mom. She is 68 years old now. I have a very special note about my mom, that she had found her life back at the age of 60 -it was 56 exactly.
Yes, the age of 60 was like a second life for my mom. The boundary between ‘first life’ and ‘second life’ for Mom was when my dad passed away 12 years ago, when Mom was at 56. It was a moment that split her life in two.
While Mom lived alongside of Dad, and all together with her four children who are grown up now, she really played the role as a mother to her children and as a wife so devoted to her husband. Not a working mom, just a pure housewife. In the time that was not so complex as it is now, Mom was really in the ‘comfort zone’ performing her supporting role. The role of Dad was very dominant. He was the locomotive of our family all that time. It was more than enough for Mom and her young kids just to ‘enjoy’ the position as wagons following wherever the locomotive led to.
Well, you can guess what it brought about then. Mom’s instinct as deputy to head of the family was not well honed. Less challenges she experienced. As long as Dad was around, it was no big deal for her. The constant decision maker was on the front line. Mom just played the role as an ‘advisor’.
Everything changed for Mom when Dad passed away on December 21, 2005. Yes, just one day before Indonesian Mother’s Day and the day after Mom celebrated her 56th birthday. What an aggrieved birthday present for her. That day was also the turning point of Mom’s life. The passing of Dad made her tumble down. Like a chick lost its mother. The shoulder to lean on for decades had gone. Half Mom’s breath had gone. Understandably, as a housewife, Mom spent most of her days at home, babysitting her children, and waiting for her husband to come home from work.
For some time after the passing of Dad, Mom seemed to put away her feet from the ground. She was not ready to take over the role as head of the family replacing Dad. All her grown-up children who were married –almost all of them- had to leave Mom alone. Luckily, my eldest sister was living in Mom’s house accompanying her.
Mom turned withdrawn and often cried in vain. She even fell sick and had to stay at hospital for two weeks. Even though we -Mom’s children- always stood by her side to give her moral support, it was undeniable that Mom was very devastated that she had to get the fact Dad had gone. We just did not want her to mourn for it. That’s not good.
But God loves Mom. Slowly but surely a way to rise was open. Year after year, Mom’s grandchildren were born in this world. She was no longer lonely. Her overactive grandchildren seemed to give her no room to continue crying over. Yes, Mom had got her feet back on the ground. Sunshine turned warm saying hello. Moreover, the quality of physical, social, and spiritual of Mom increased as well. Mom turned out to knowing what to do. She found her life back.
On one occasion, she once said to me, “I am grateful to see Dad pass so quickly without ever seeing him suffer longer with his disease. If only until now your dad were still given a chance to live but he must bear the burden of the disease which gets worse, I believe that all of us won’t have the heart seeing his suffer”.
Mom, you are now the only one we have. As we have you get older, we will always pray that you will always be blessed with health. Pray for us too that we will always be virtuous children who keep praying for Dad and you, Mom…