Jamaican Mommies by Shanoy Coombs: From Jamaica; for the world
As all of us who have ever loved and lost knows, its never easy saying goodbye. While I was caught up in the euphoria of Michael Jackson’s passing and subsequent memorial on July 7th, the pangs of death hit closer to home and claimed my beloved grandmother.
While she has lived a full life, it remains true that one can never truly be prepared for the hurt, turmoil and instability that death creates. I was further made to feel the grips of guilt mixed with shame as I kept postponing visits and I am now being slaughtered by the possibility of what could have been-had I made an earlier trip, made an earlier phone call, taken that day off from work for a visit and the possibility lingers…What could have been will never be known as I await the routine plunge of one who I have so loved, into the bowels of this earth.
I will continue to battle with my share of guilt and the lingering sense of hypocrisy at how much one is honored in death, even when they weren’t offered a minuscule portion of the post death tributes while they lived.
As my emotions rage, I quintessentially have willed myself to move beyond death and to treasure the memories-memories of a grandmother who loved until there was no more to give, the one who met us at her gate and welcomed us with open arms, then stood on her verandah waving, waving, waving until we could see no more….
Even now as tears fill my eyes, the memories bring a slight smile and in this my bittersweet moment, I know I truly hate death. With this sense of hatred, I wish beyond all things that for one more day, one more hour, one more minute, a mere second I could hold that hand, whisper my I Love yous and watch her drift peacefully off into eternal slumber. I hang on to the shred of hope that even though they never formally met, she would have seen the beautiful little girl I brought into this world and would have smiled at how much I, her little ‘Shauna’ had grown.
Death they say can be sweet release, but I guess that depends on who’s dead and who’s left to do the mourning, because at this moment, I refuse to say goodbye. I refuse just because goodbye is so final, so insignificant like the raindrop that gets lost in the pond or the stone that erodes and gets lost among the sands.
For this very reason, I wont say goodbye, but I’ll dedicate me time to slowing the flow of a bleeding heart, I’ll keep your memory alive, I’ll let my child know just who you are and I’ll take her to your home, so that if just by association she would have gotten a glimpse of who you are. Until then, I take life over death any day and somberly lean on the words of Ecclesiastes “Better a live Dog, than a dead Lion” RIP Adina Harris (aka Mum)