Mom hardly ever answered her cellphones. Most of the time I had to call my dad’s phone, ask if she was with him, and ask if I could talk to her. Usually she wouldn’t hear it ring and would just decide to check it at night, which was when she would reply to all the messages. Sometimes I’d check it for her, and even send replies for her because she’d be too lazy to do it.

When she was admitted to the ICU, a lot of people were shocked. Her friends were stumbling to contact us and to find time to visit her. I was left with the task of keeping both her cellphones and talk to most of her friends who had questions about her condition and when they could visit. After a while I got so stressed and sick that I accidentally left them on the counter by the stairs, and someone took one of her cellphones (the one everyone was trying to contact). Back then I didn’t think anyone would even think of taking anything she owned — she was in the hospital for f’s sake, what kind of a twisted person would do that? So because I was so sick, stressed, and tired, I left them and figured I’d check them again in the morning. ‘Til now I feel totally guilty. It was the one that I chose for her when she had difficulty understanding the phones that she borrowed from my adoptive sister. I wanted to keep that one; if I didn’t have it, then at least one of us would have it: a totally stupid keepsake, but a keepsake nonetheless.

Sorry mom, I didn’t mean to.

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