Growing up, Mom used to tell us stories to while away the boring hours. She would tell us stories of puteri raja (princess) and orang bunian (fey folks) and a myriad of other stories that would not only entertain but leaves us with moral lessons of what it means to be good and honorable.
Mom had a wealth of stories up her sleeves. Most of them handed down by her grandmother, told to her when she was a little girl trying to fill her boring hours.
But despite the wonderful collection of stories that she told us, there is one story I wish that she would have shared with us. Her story. The one she wanted to write always, but never did.
The Meandering River.
This tale that mom labored on in her mind, she never shared nor wrote. Although I knew she wanted to consign it on paper innumerable times.
Mom's Meandering River to us, only means that it's time to take her to the psychiatrist to increase her medicine dosage because about the only time she busied herself with her 'book' was when she was suffering a relapse of a schizophrenia.
What I do know about the book she wanted to write was that it would tell us the story of her life. How she grew up, became a wife and mother and her aspirations throughout that journey.
I would have loved to have known the story that she never shared with anyone.
Mom wasn't much of a talker. She was more of a listener. Which makes perfect sense I suppose because she married a talker. If they were both a talker their marriage would have been a disaster. No. The talker in the family is definitely Dad. Mom more often than not, just listened. She was a fantastic listener.
But still, when she did talk, it was always worth listening.
Mom, like dad had a brilliant way with words. Words were her trade if she ever had any. Before Mom needed glasses to read, she was a voracious reader. She loved her books. Which is where she got her love for words in the first place.
Books were her constant companion. When there were no one around to keep her company, books replaced the people that weren't around her.
My sister Along, got a double dose of love of reading from Mom and Dad.
But Mom shaped the kind of books that Along would grew up to love. When she was young, she would ransack Mom's collection of books and read them.
In between the books that Mom read and the stories that were told to her as a young girl, we never lacked for entertaining stories growing up.
I miss the stories that only Mom could tell. Mom's tale now reside only in our memory bank.