On Absence

Dear Kiddo,

I’m writing this on a bus which, mile by mile, is taking me far away from you. Excuse the overdramatics.That’s the separation anxiety talking. In my mind, I’m already picturing out the monstrous tantrums you’re gona’ pull out – the hairs you’re going to be pulling, the faces you’re going to slap, the food you’re going to toss. In truth, you’re probably going to have a milder fit than what I pictured out you having. You will whine at the fact that you will not have a breast ready at your convenience. And will be even more aware of that fact at bedtime when you’ve already realized I’m gone. Other times, your world will go on revolving.

Mine will not.

You see, mothers like to think they’re needed. That’s why there will always be that niggling guilt chewing at their consciences everytime they leave, even for just a day. We are afraid that when we’re gone you might need us for some reason, and we won’t be there. Or worse, that in our absence you discover you didn’t need us that much in the first place after all.

When you reach pre-school, sit near the windows, will you? No doubt I shall be one of those nail-biting slobs on the panes, crying a river, lost like a lovelorn puppy. Don’t be embarrassed.

I like writing with movement, I discover. I wish for my thoughts to mirror its pace- fast and flowing- and it surprisingly does.

I sit cramped between a rickety old man who doses off on the window ledge and a mother carrying her child. I miss you already.


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