i woke up to the sound of my mother receiving a phonecall in the early morning. their room is on the opposite side of the house but for some reason my whole body jolted awake. in the next moment i hear a cry outloud, mournful in it’s tone. a conversation continues. instantly, i get a bad feeling. but it can’t be. she was going to at least open her eyes one more time before the end.

‘weilam is sleeping, she can’t come to the phone’ instantly i jump out of bed. hurriedly putting on trousers and a dressing gown i run over as fast as i can. she must have gotten worse, i needed to see her again in case the end was near. as i enter the room i see my mother with red rimmed eyes shaking her head at me.

‘she’s gone’

approaching the bed slowly i see my grandma lying shrunken in her hospital bed.

i remember the pain she was in, the confusion she felt. how quickly she deteriorated within weeks. my heart aches when i remember her crying across the phone for my mother to return to hong kong, when she begged to leave. my heart breaks when i remember flashes of the month just passed, her eyes closed, her haggard breathing and her swollen hands.

over a day later i scan through the pictures in my phone and come across one of me holding her hand and smiling into the camera. the reality of it all finally hits. another family member lost within the space of a few months. the tears begin to well up and a stream flows forth.

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