I laid my eyes the first time I held you.
Your eyes were closed. Your mouth slightly ajar suckling the air, making an almost inaudible sound. As if you are talking to me. That scent from you. That little limb movements here and there. And with that little tongue you trying to put out, was one of the loveliest thing I've seen.
We brought cousin sister up over the years.
Aunt dropped by once in a while to see her. Sometimes, would bring her home for a little of that mother-daughter time. Some years later, Aunt left to The States to make a living due to some problems she's facing here. She is not leaving her daughter. She will be back to get her when the time is right. She promised. And we know she would. Over the years, Aunt called back every other day to check on her. Recently, web chats.
After all these years she's been living with us, she's no more a niece, she's no more a cousin. She was more like a daughter, and sister to us. She was here for more than half of my life. Carved a quarter of my parents'. Two-third of Bro's. To my friends, she's always "... my sister...". To them, it's always "... your sister...".
Barely 40cm in length cuddled up, three kilos or so when she was brought here. As fragile and soft as any babies Mother had babysit before. The difference is, she was brought home a few-day-old.
Seeing her getting her vision. Sitting up on her own. Speaking her first word. Smiling. Giggling. Crawling. Clumsily balancing her first step. Running. Crying. Joking, teasing, and laughing at everything under the sun. I honestly couldn't describe how I feel.
Every moment of seeing her growing up is magical. Yet, very frustrating.
Studies used to be good. She was one of the top in her class during Primary. If not the school. Come Secondary, her results dropped year by year, to one of the top in her class, backward. We start to wonder. Was it the syllabus? Was it the crowd she mixed with? Or was it you were overly pampered by us?
What had gotten in you? Turning from a sweet innocent girl, to a disrespectful brat. From good to bad, and now, to worst. You started lying. Speaking rudely. Yelling. Cheating. Getting away from punishments. By tricking us into your sweet elaborate stories. Skipping classes. Skipping school. Smoking. Stealing money. Sneaking out at night. Sneaking out the cars.
We didn't bring you up like this!
Was it my parents fault? Was it your parents fault? Or was it my fault? Of not doing enough to stop my parents and Aunt for pampering you too much? Of not doing enough to refrain them from giving you too much? Was it?
Over, and over again, you disappoint us. Over, and over again, we let it go. For so many times you claimed you regretted what you have did, but as that many times you turn your back on us. One after another, you still hasn't change.
You are at its worst now. Up to a point, I even thought you are best changed if something really bad would have happened to you. A big one that you'll really regret it for the rest of your life. I know I shouldn't. I cried myself for thinking like this. I'm not suppose to cloud my mind. I couldn't help it. It was all at the back of my head. I don't know which is true anymore. I'm confused. I'm hurt. I'm lost. And I seriously don't hope you are digging your own grave for that.
Sooner or later, she will have to leave us. But I'm not expecting it to be like this.
A decision has to be made. For your own good. To start a new leaf in life. Over a discussion between Aunt, the husband, and us, you will have to go. Tomorrow, we are sending her off to the father. A decision that is as hard to make as letting go. As deeply cut and painful like a blunt rusty knife digging the open wound.
For that much we have poured our love, for that much we have wept.
Closing a seventeen years chapter isn't easy for us.