It’s been raining all day long. Rain, Monday, October- ah, my Grandmother is coaxed from the abyss of my heart.
It’s a bit of a shock to realise, that this will be the very first October, in all our lives, that we will not be celebrating Popo’s birthday, with her.
Popo would have been 99 years old this month!
On one of my last visits, the sky darkened too quickly. She told me to leave, insisting as she always did, walking to her front gate, watching me get into my car.
Hujan, she said. Ia akan hujan. (Rain, it is going to rain.)
I can still hear her voice, see her smiling back at me, her hand waving. I hope I never forget.
My chest is so tight, and the pain is a fallen bird, beating broken wings, somewhere beneath my ribs.
My grandmother understands sorrow. She is familiar with loss. She knows heartache.
I can tell her everything. She spoke Malay and she spoke English. I never hid anything from her, because my grandmother always bothered to listen. And when she was done listening? She offered her thoughts candidly. She never held back. She simply spoke, the language of love.