My mother died on Wednesday. It’s weird to be saying this. It’s strange to be thinking about it. It’s too surreal for my mind to accept.
I never met my mother. Well of course, that’s wrong. We met at the hospital on my birthday. Sadly, I will never know what happened that day. Did she hold me for a moment, or was I just hustled away? I do know she took the time to name me, but I’ll never know how or why.
For the past thirteen years I’ve known a bit about my mom, but only a few small details. Her name, where she lives, and most important, that she has another daughter.
During all those years I’ve only seen a handful of pictures.
During all those years I kept her secret and the vow I made to not tell her family I existed.
During all those years I kept my distance and just carried on.
My promise ended on May 11 when I accidentally blew her cover.
Now everyone knows. And now Sandra is gone.
Some place in my brain won’t accept this.
Some place in my mind must think it’s unfair.
Some place in my heart is broken.
Today I read her obituary, heard all about her life and even saw some old pictures. Snapshots of Sandra when she was a young woman. A glimmer of the woman I met in the hospital that day.
For fourteen days I was Cheryl Lee Third. I was Sandra Third’s daughter.
Today I’m Tricia Barker.
No matter what, I will forever be Sandra Third’s little girl.