Like all good parents, mine were trying to protect me......They never let on my mother was dying.......
I could almost feel the blood pulsing through my veins as I hurried to answer the door. Maybe Today, I thought longingly There they stood the motley crew that was my friends, adorned with a colorful array of oversize towels; smelling of sunshine and coconut, they were smiling ear to ear …beckoning me to join them. .
Seeing no sign of mama, I tiptoed out on the porch in my bare feet; inhaling the sweet scent of summer. “I just have to finish the dishes”, I said, wringing a dishtowel anxiously in my hands, “but I’ll meet you there, okay?” They all nodded, and as usual, I pretended not to see their sympathetic glances. Inwardly my heart began to sink. In truth, none of us believed I would actually make it to the pool. “See ya soon!” I called out with a pasted on smile, as they scurried to gather their bikes, and then, in silent envy I watched as they and pedaled into the glorious sunshine….
“But Mama”, I protested as I finished up the dishes, “ You've gotta let me go…. You promised I could go out today”.
“Oh honey”, mama sighed wearily, “I know this is hard on you…but, I’m so tired. You know I need your help.”
“Tired?” I snapped bitterly, blinking back my tears, “How do you think I feel being locked up in the house like a prisoner every day?!” Her stricken look didn't stop the venomous words from spewing from my lips….I was selfish, and angry, and all I wanted to do was hurt her.
Would I acted differently that day had I know the truth? I guess I'll never know. What I do know is.....46 years later......these words still haunt me......