Sia sat in the middle of her room with packed boxes surrounding her.
Her room was messy and her thoughts were clouded.
She felt a mix of emotions. She missed her mother and now she was going to miss this house too.
She had finally decided to move away since she couldn't live in her old house anymore. The memories of her dead mother were too much to take.
She wasn't planning on selling it though, She wanted to always keep it with her as a souvenir of her dead mother.
Sia got up and went to her mother's room.
It was as neat as a pin. Her bed was made, the curtains drawn. Not a thing was out of place.
Sia walked up to her mother's cupboard to pack some of her stuff to take with her. She would leave the rest of the room intact for the next time she'll come back, if she ever did.
As she rummaged through her cupboard she found an old, dusty red envelope addressed to her.
She opened it with excitement, forgetting all the blues that she had, carefully.
Inside was a letter Sia didn't expect to find.
I really wanted to be a mother my whole life. I wanted my own child because I knew I could do a better job than my parents did and then I'll have someone to love like no other. I wanted to prove to a lot of people that I could be the best mother this world had ever seen.
My husband always supported me in this decision.
We were married together for 19 years and a day wouldn't go when we didn't try to have kids. Both of us loved kids.
Life had other plans though. I was infertile and my husband did not like the idea of me undergoing an operation.
We wanted different things.
Our marriage started falling apart after this realization and we ended up getting a divorce.
I didn't hate life though.
I realized my true calling and my love for kids and I started volunteering at an orphanage.
While working there I found the love of my life, my daughter, you.
There was a lady, Riya.
She was poverty-stricken and did not have the financial conditions to be able to afford a child since she already had 3. They were already fighting to make ends meet.
She came to the orphanage seeking help. That is when I realized what I had to do.
I promised to take care of her child.
I fell in love with you even before you came into this world, even before I got to see you, even before I got to hold you in my arms.
The day Riya gave birth to you was the best day of my life.
Yes, I'm not your biological mother, but I haven't loved you any less.
The doctors handed you over to me as I had already taken care of the paperwork.
You were wrapped in a blanket, sleeping, snoring lightly, a cute smile plastered over your face. As I held you in my arms I was afraid of breaking you! You were such a small baby.
Riya bid her final goodbyes. She preferred to not have another look at you or she wouldn't be able to part ways.
I don't blame her. Sia, as I named you, turned out to be the most delightful baby I've ever seen. There's no way I could imagine myself ever leaving you, so I could some what understand what Riya had to go through.
But I guess it's destiny right?
We came back home and everyday I would put you to sleep by singing you a lullaby.
I think you started loving me too. After all, you wouldn't go in any body's arms but mine.
You grew up so fast!
Before I knew it, you started going to school. I was more nervous than you on your first day of school.
You used to calm me down, kiss my cheeks and bid me goodbyes till I was in sight.
We used to spend so much time together. I taught you everything I knew and you taught me many things too. You taught me how to live life. You made me so happy and so proud. You were such a good kid.
I remember how we used to stay up late at night watching movies.
You loved watching horror movies and even though I was frightened of ghosts I still watched them with you.
I remember going shopping with you every week. Trying on new outfits and then relaxing the entire day.
I remember the first time you baked a cake. To be honest, it tasted terrible but seeing you put in so many efforts into something made everything worth it.
I remember you buying yellow tights and being obsessed with them. You would wear them everywhere! You simply refused to take them off till they tore apart.
I remember you never had a thing for stuff toys or barbies. You always wanted either clothes or books for your birthdays or as gifts.
I had so much fun reading the stories to you before putting you to bed.
I remember you telling me what's trendy and what's not cool. You taught me how to click pictures, how to use social media.
You were the light of my life.
Then came high school and you became a teenager.
Like every other teenager, you also hated me for not letting you do what you wanted. You wanted to go out for parties, you wanted to stay out late and whatnot. You wanted to date guys who weren't good for you. You wanted to join the wrong friend groups. You blamed me for certain things and maybe I was a little overprotective.
I tried to be as understanding as possible but if you feel I limited you from achieving your dreams, or there are things you wish I had done differently, I'm very sorry for that.
After high school, came college.
The day you had to go ahead and leave me behind.
How did you grow up so fast? Just a little while back I held you in my arms and now you were all set to live by yourself in a hostel.
It was heartbreaking to see you move on without me but I guess that was necessary.
You needed to make your own decisions, make your own mistakes and learn from them.
I remember the first day you walked, the first day when you called me mom, your first crush, your first heartbreak, your first period, I remember everything as if it had happened yesterday.
Time flies fast though and i'll be honest, it isn't my best friend.
Raising you had been a challenge from day 1 but it never felt that way.
You always used to ask me about your dad and I never gave you any answers. I hope you have found them now. I'm sorry that I never opened up to you.
I've never been good at expressing love but in this letter, I put my heart open for you to see.
If you're reading this, there is a high possibility that I'm dead.
I know I promised to always be there for you but I'm sorry that cancer took me away.
If you've found this letter in my cupboard, if you look hard enough you'll find a brown box. In it are all our old memories. You'll find videos of you, your favourite things, etc.
You were the love, light, everything of my life and you always will be.
Sia now had tears in her eyes. She had no idea about the struggles that her mother had to face to raise her and yet she didn't leave any stone unturned.
She held the letter close to her heart and it felt like she was hugging her mother. Her mother never said much to her but today she felt her mother had compensated
As promised, she found an old brown box near the red envelope.
On opening it, Sia found the treasure she had been looking for, for her entire life.
In it, were pictures, videos, school shoes, bags, the first book she ever read, and her favourite yellow tights.
She went through those memories. Although her mother wasn't with her anymore, she had given her a gift that no one ever could. The gift of true love.
She kept the box back at its original place and with the letter in her hand, she got up.
She went to her room and placed the letter under her bed, since she spent most of her time there.
Once done, she dialed the real estate agent's number and told him that she didn't want to sell this house anymore.
She wanted to live here, with her mother or whatever was left of her.
Oxford dictionary defines love as An intense feeling of romantic attachment based on an attraction felt by one person for another; intense liking and concern for another person, typically combined with sexual passion.
But words cannot define what they had, because what they had was special.