There were white roses everywhere. There were lilies too, exactly the kind I liked.
My aunt passed away last night, and I went to pay my respects for the last time this afternoon. She was the one who took care of me as a child, and as far as I remembered, the closest of all the aunts I had. She was bubbly and smiley, and the room was always full of jokes and laughter whenever she was around.
At first I thought it'd be okay. It's been so long since I last saw her, and felt guilty because I did not pay her a visit in years, even though I knew she was battling her disease. I thought I'd always have the time. But when I saw her photograph in the morgue today, and said my prayers and went to see her one final time, it surprised me that I felt choked up. It was a quiet grief, not the gut-wrenching, loud-sobs kind of grief, because it was reserved for closer family members. But just as I felt it I knew that pang, the emotion I felt when my aunt's mother - my grand aunt, passed away from the same disease a few years back. I remembered her kindness, her smile, the red envelopes she saved for me each Chinese New Year's day, and how I wrote a tribute for her in my blog too. It was more like regret, and sadness that I could not see her again, that I was not a better niece, and that I'd miss her from time to time, and remember this feeling when I think of her in the future.
I have no other words to express my feelings, other than my aunt was, and is a great person. She'd been there as I grew up, and I was sad not to see her at my own wedding, and that I would never get to be in hers. I would like to watch her grow old, see her during every Chinese New Year celebration, and be with her for a long time.
Farewell, and may you sit beside our Father, and be safe, and happy, watching all of us from above. Amen.
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