by Sheanah Wright
(West Des Moines, Iowa, United States)
My sister, brother, and I are Filipinos. My father had died of lung cancer and my mother was left alone to take care of us. Sure, she got help from her sister who had married an American and is now living in the States but it wasn’t long when my brother would be off to college and my sister and I would be heading to high school. It seemed more reasonable that our Aunt should just adopt us so we could live in the States and have a better education.
I remember the last time I saw my mom. My aunt and uncle from the States had come to Manila to finalize the adoption. It was a few days before we were going to have our last interview to see if the adoption was a success. Nights before the day, all of us-- my aunt, uncle, siblings, and mom—would practice over and over again the right words to say if the interviewers were to ask a question. It was crucial that we give the right answers.
Later on, my mom had to leave--- for some legal stuff that I didn’t understand then. I was 9 at the time. I saw her pull her small suitcase outside the room of the hotel we were staying at. I did not come with her down the lobby. I did not even give her a proper goodbye, or a hug, or a kiss. I knew that I would see her again.
We had the interview and it was a success. We were going to the States! I felt excited and dread. I would not be able to see my mom. We telephoned her and my sister and I sang her favorite song—our ‘theme’ song.
I cried all the tears in me.