“To lose a child is to lose a piece of yourself.” – Dr. Burton Grebin… Truer words were never spoken. I lost my daughter to another man… she fell in love! I know I should be happy for her, I truly am but then when I saw her walk the aisle to marry her would-be husband, I felt such grief that I cried the entire wedding ceremony and I thank God I was at the back of the chapel and only my sisters Ruby, Pearl and sister-in-law Erlinda were beside me to see me break down. It was the third most gut-wrenching experience I have had in my entire life. The first was when my father passed away. Second when I lost my mother and this… She isn’t my biological daughter because she’s my older sister Hope’s daughter, whom I took care of when she was just an infant until she was 6 years old then I had to leave for another country to work so I left her with her siblings under the care of my sister Pearl.
Aisha wrote letters while I was away, they were funny and honest and I used to yearn for her child-like handwritten letters so I kept them til this day and read and re-read them sometimes bringing tears to my eyes and sometimes I laugh because of its innocence. When I came back she was already 12 years old and on her 5th grade and I thank GOD the closeness was still there despite the years of separation. I continued taking care of her education until she was on her third year of high school then she had to go to my sister Pearl on her senior year. Then the teen years came and that feeling of disconnect is beginning to surface… I guess this is inevitable? I don’t think so… maybe its because she was staying at my sister Pearl’s place on her senior year… then she again moved to my other sister Ruth’s place because she was on her first year of college at a nearby university so to save money on transportation she moved to Ruth’s place. Then when she was about to finish the first semester of her first year in college, she
began modeling for clothes, perfumes, even Coppertone sunscreens. I was so touched when she suddenly showed up one time in my office to give me a pair of earrings saying… “I wanted to give you something from my first pay”… and of course I cried again. I could still remember that day like it was yesterday. Then she worked at the place where my sister Ruth worked and that’s where she met Paul her future husband.
I suddenly thought of her that’s why I wrote this piece about Aisha Hope… because I miss her even if she’s just a phone call away, or just a text message away… she’s now staying with her husband, trying her best to build a home and with a baby on the way! Thank GOD! I pray you and Paul will have a wonderful family and life together “Bok” (my nickname for Aisha) and I pray to GOD to grant you all that you wished for in life… just know that I will always be your Tita (Aunt), waiting in the wings ready for you if ever you need anything – advice, moral support, material support, etc. I love you so dear…
“Having a little girl has been like following an old treasure map with the important paths torn away.” – Heather Gudenkauf, author The Weight of Silence.