Will You Remember?

As I lay my daughter down, I think to myself.
Will she remember me?

If something bad were to happen, I wonder.
Will she remember me?

Will she remember that she smiled each night?
As my lips matched her cheeks for a kiss?

Will she remember that I made her laugh?
Saying silly words of nonsense?

Will she remember how deep my love is?
Even if she grows out of remembering me?

These are some things that I think to myself.
As a new mother who has experienced death.

I know that my own mother wondered.
If I would remember these things about her.

Death taught me the value in mindful contemplation.
Wondering about these important things.

My daughter is small still, my sweet baby girl.
One day I will give her a sibling.

I pray for my children and think to myself.
Will my children remember me?

Will they remember that I loved their father?
Who made me feel so seen?

That he completely transformed my life with love.
And that they are here because of that.

Of course they will remember these things.
I write poems just in case.

This poem and my other attempts in writing.
Left behind so that they can remember.

Presently they are too young to know.
The magnitude of the feelings that I feel.

My wish is to grow old right beside them.
So that I can keep writing about these magnificent feelings.

Stories of how I look forward to each morning.
With my daughter’s raspy voice saying “Mama” to me.

She may not remember her second birthday celebration.
That became wrapped up in pandemic quarantine.

We have social media photo albums these days.
For me to remind her that it had happened.

A simple photo with Mom and Dad by her side.
To celebrate her birthday milestone.

It has been nearly a decade since my first Instagram post.
I often wondered what time would do to these photos.

Would time see our online memories deleted?
Or will these photographs made public outlast us?

Will my children enjoy the photographs that I took?
Of the cities that we explored together before them?

Photographs of our adventures in Toronto and more.
Memories made before they even existed.

I have friends on social media who are no longer alive.
Yet their photographs remain there, time-stamped to remember.

It is up to us whether we will remember.
The reasons that we took those photographs for.

I logged into my old Instagram account today.
It had photos of Mom when she was still alive.

I laughed at the captions and wondered to myself.
How I could have managed to say such silly things.

Back when my mind was not filled with grief.
But instead the troubles of mundane life.

Looking at them I realized the power of time.
And what it really means to remember.

Before when I saw Mom in photographs, I’d cry.
Because it hurt way too much to remember.

Now when I see her in photographs, I smile.
The scar left by grief now smoothly healed over.

It hurts more now to stifle the memories.
Than it does to allow them to flow freely.

That took much effort to master, though.
And some days they still bring on the tears.

Last night I connected with Mom.
I asked her to see what it would be like.

To have her still with me, now.
Or to have her meet my daughter in person.

In my mind I could see her in my kitchen.
Standing with my daughter hugging her legs.

The same way that I used to embrace her.
Each day when returning from school.

Tears flowed down my cheeks as I saw this.
My heart fighting the “what ifs” once more.

This is the tricky part, I must warn you.
Grief again wants to slam shut the door.

I let that dream vision consume me.
I took in the sweet smell of Mom’s old perfume.

The next morning I woke up and hurried off to work.
Catching a whiff of that same perfume on my way out.

It took me aback the strong scent that consumed me.
And as quickly as it came it was gone.

No body or perfume bottle around as the culprit.
The residue of a loving memory made real.

These little moments remind me that I must not forget.
And that persistence has activated new features.

Like clairvoyance and all of those things.
That I was told was just all make-believe.

They ask me why I do not predict the lottery.
They ask why I do not manifest riches.

They do not realize I have won the lottery.
That this sight has made me the richest.

What is money and power and those things?
When the most important person in your life has died?

I only wanted one thing from obtaining clairvoyance.
The ability to re-connect with my deceased loved ones.

I made a pact with myself that fateful day.
Giving myself the darkest ultimatum.

My rational mind screaming so loudly.
Resolved to die if unable to find proof.

Nothing else mattered in the early hours.
My intent was to save my own life.

To think of the alternative was too hard to bear.
And if nothingness were true I would end it.

Clairvoyance was the lottery that I sought after.
Third-eye sight more valuable than material offerings.

One of Mom’s favorite pastimes was reading.
She loved an author called Danielle Steele.

We would always be gifting her books to read.
And she would read until she fell asleep.

My goal is to make the NY Times Bestselling List.
So that I can broadcast her love to the world.

I inherited her love for reading and writing.
And use these gifts in honor of her.

So that one day when my time comes up.
My daughter can flip through the pages.

To see what had shaped the mother she had.
Should she ever start to forget.

So that I don’t have to worry so much.
Whether or not she will remember.

Kaila A. Notto

Copyright © The Mindful Millwright 2020. All Rights Reserved.

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