All the worlds a stage… and the curtains are closing

Posted By on May 9, 2011

It didn’t seem so long ago when my mother was about my age and I was 9, Jing Wen’s age, and changing my little brother’s diapers when my mom worked in the sweatshop that promised us food and shelter.

I thought of this as I watched my mother waving goodbye to me from the curb of the Portland Airport after a week long visit. “Take care of the children.” She chimed in Cantonese. “Take care of yourself. Be well. I’ll see you next time.”

When she was still standing in my kitchen, I remembered she said something, more to herself than to me, that still leaves my heart aching bitter sweetly. She said, “The show is almost over now… take a last look at the players before the curtain closes.”

Whether she said it to me or not, I took it to heart. I basked in her light as much as I could while she was here. Remembering every sigh of her breath, every line on her face and every word she said (and everything she meant by them).

So when she was waving goodbye to me. What I heard was something I never heard as a child, but took years of ear training to recognize, and it was this: “I love you, my dear sweet daughter. I love you.”

About The Author

I am a Chinese-American mother of three boys, parenting with the traditions worth keeping from the East and West. I continue to learn new ways of raising a family and myself.

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