Last Call

in The Ink Well5 months ago

This is my entry for nonfiction prompt #4: OVERCOMING OBSTACLES



November 4th, 2011.

My eyes were as restless as the erratic beating in my chest. I couldn’t explain the peculiar emotion enveloping my squeamish heart then. My hands were icy and trembling when I grabbed my phone to make a call.

I dialed my sister’s number to check on our mother, who was in the hospital. The long ringing sound coming from the other end of the line brought an agonizing feeling, tormenting me to the core. Until finally…

“Hello?” my shaky voice betrayed me. “How’s Mama?” I asked, trying my best not to sound like a crybaby because I had been missing my family.

“She just woke up,” Daisy said.

“Can I talk to her?”

As I waited for her response, excitement filled my heart. I couldn’t wait to tell Mama how much I loved her, and that I’ll see her soon. Because during the time she was hospitalized, I was away, working in a different province to send myself to college since our family couldn’t afford it.

“Mama ate wants to talk to you.” I heard Daisy speak. And then there was silence before she dropped the bomb. “Ate—” (A-te is the term we use in the Philippines to address older sisters.)


"She doesn't want to talk to you."

“But why?”

“I don’t know.”

“It’s okay. Just put the phone on her ears. I’ll just say something.”


“Sorry,” Daisy spoke again. “She’s pushing away the phone. She doesn’t want to talk to you.”

My heart sank to my stomach. I could hear a loud crash of my heart being torn to bits. I broke down in tears. My knees buckled as if my femur had turned into soggy noodles.

“It’s—it’s okay. Please tell her I love her. Tell her I have passed my second-semester exams. I’m going home soon. Tell her to get well, and happy birthday in advance.”

When the call ended, I clutched my left chest, trying to find a heartbeat. Pain and sadness choked me, depriving me of oxygen.
Overthinking flooded my mind.

‘Why didn’t she talk to me?’

‘Is she mad because I didn’t go home as soon as she told me so?’

‘Did I hurt her that much?’

‘Did she think I don’t care about her?’

I wanted to explain that I can’t go home ASAP because I don’t have the money yet, but she didn’t give me a chance.

I spent two nights blaming myself for not complying with my mother’s wish for me to go home. I spent two nights crying myself to sleep, thinking that I was a worthless daughter. And such torment had gotten worst when I received a call from Daisy on the sixth of November, a day before Mama’s birthday.

“Ate—Mama’s gone.”

My world collapsed!

Mama died without talking to me. She died without me by her side. I wasn’t given the chance to tell her how much I love her. The last time I told her those words was when I was eleven.

To cut the long story short, my mother’s passing, though painful as hell, didn’t hinder me from achieving her dream for me—to be an educator. I took the education course in college because it was what she wanted for me. I graduated, hoping she was there walking with me while I was receiving my diploma.

I didn’t let the pain of losing my mother hinder me to keep moving, although it incapacitated me for a while.

In the end, I just forced myself into believing that the reason why she didn’t want to talk to me then was because she didn’t want to be the reason for me to get distracted with my studies, just so I could stop hating myself for not being by her side.

I still miss her at this very moment.


Oh, my LORD, that’s the most heartbreaking story I’ve ever read. Oh, my goodness dear girl, that was too awful. Parents can be so hard on you, especially when they think they’re doing the right thing. Hugs and hugs 🤗💕😘❤️❤️💕🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗🤗

Thank you for the hugs 😊

Oh, this ripped my heart right out, @idlemind! That must have been so hard to handle, when your mother passed away. At least you told your sister to pass on your love and birthday wishes. I'm sure she knew how much you loved her, and she certainly loved you with all her heart too. You're amazing for finding your inner strength and moving forward with your studies and your life. I'm sure she is still with you in some way.

I need to find the courage to keep going because I'm the eldest. I have to show my siblings that I'm strong.

That makes total sense! I think there is always a lot on the shoulders of the oldest child in the family.

That's true.

Your word pierces our hearts’ with sadness. This piece is so heartbreaking, it’s so devastating and yet we are so glad that you survived. We’re so glad that you could justify your mother’s actions and react in a positive manner. Sometimes patents are impossibly difficult to understand, what we’ve got to know is that they usually do things with our best interests in their hearts.

Their reasons are beyond comprehensible, but I know that whatever she was thinking that time was still for my greater good. It just hurts.

💪😊😎🌈🤙 Glad to see u posting again after your recent troubles.. just keep swimming..


Thanks! I just wish my account won't get hacked again, or my efforts are gonna go to waste.

Just be like Frodo with your keys..


Yeah! This time I'll make sure my keys are safe. 😊