When Maybe Never Comes.

Week 24: A story that ends on a cliffhanger.

In the hours before, I thought it would be all right. I thought she’d be okay. I thought she’d wake up; she’d make a recovery and go home. I didn’t know that the last time I’d see her alive and well was in the summer of 2015. I didn’t know that the last time I saw her smile, was the last time I’d ever see that in person. She’s gone and she’ll never come back. And it’s not fair.

Life is short people say. It is and it’s not at the same time. I suppose she had plans that day. She’d be home when her daughter came back from school. Maybe they’d cook dinner or watch a film. She’d listen to her daughter talk about her day; they’d laugh and poke fun at each other. Maybe she was worrying about work the next day, or what she’d wear to the family’s next gathering. Maybe she was finally happy after a stressful week. Maybe work had been getting to her. Maybe she was going to call her youngest sister.

All of these are maybes.

Death doesn’t wait. It didn’t let my aunt go. It took her away. And now all we have left are her belongings, her pictures and the memories we have, stored away, precious and treasured. This week’s prompt was for a story with a cliffhanger, life ends on a cliffhanger, don’t you think? I’ll never know what she’d plan to do the next time we saw her. I’ll never know what she thought of her daughter’s birthday. My mother will never be able to speak to her sister again. After it happened, my mother’s other sister called and I was telling my mother to come answer the phone, and my brother, out of habit replied, ‘which auntie?’

He sobbed for what seemed like hours after that.

Life is a continual cliffhanger, you never know what’ll happen next and hardly anything ends. Things are left unfinished, forgotten and dismissed. Problems are not solved and more questions arise. We are left wanting more, thinking and driving ourselves insane with nagging and taunting voices in our heads.

I’ll never be able to say, thank you to her, for always caring, for always asking how I was doing, for how studying was going, for how my friends were. She always took the time to talk to me, to make me laugh; she was a crazy dancer and never failed to make us smile. There is a hole left in the family.

It’ll never be filled again.

There’s your cliffhanger. Not knowing what could have been, wishing for what you thought would happen and hating what did happen, knowing that the future is a dismal mess of colours.

Ones I’ll never be able to clean up.

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