A mother and child were out on a night stroll, arms linked and conversing softly.
“Ma, do you think I’m meant to be great like how people expected me to be?” asked the girl.
“I think you are meant to be you, and that in itself is greatness enough,” came the reply.
“Well, you’re meant to say that. You’re my mother,” the child acquiesced.
A few seconds of silence passed as they walked through the streets that were used to be teeming with life even at night but are now still and vacated except for the two.
The girl, fully aware of what this walk was, continued to ask with the curiosity of the child she once was. “Ma, how come the stars are the brightest I’ve ever seen them today? Is it because you’re here?”
“Hmm. That maybe so,” the mother replied calmly.
The girl, now at the edge of adulthood, was about to let it go when the mother spoke again. “Sometimes, when you are at war with yourself, when you fail to see why things have happened, why this has happened, the universe allows you a moment of peace. It comes in many forms, and for you, it is a last walk with me.”
The girl kept quiet, afraid that the moment will be taken from her as quick as her mother was by her illness. The mother then continued, “But you also need to accept it. I am gone, and I offer you nothing but this walk to remember me by. To remember that it has brought you peace, this tranquility you crave but cannot achieve because you refuse to accept what has happened.”
The girl, taking the statement as a goodbye, refused to meet the conversation halfway. “But how? The universe doesn’t know how I feel, or what I am. That’s not how it works.”
A gentle smile came from the mother. “Nobody knows how, but it is a gift you need to accept.” They are nearing the end of their walk, the girl knows. She is aware of the sun coming up, and of the tone of farewell from her mother’s voice.
“I may not have seen you grow into the age you are today, but I know you will be you. Nothing else matters. And when you are lost, or craves the warmth of a mother, remember this walk, this moment of peace, of the quiet you seek.”
And as the two took the last few steps, the girl wakes from her dream with the bittersweet feeling of meeting a loved one again just to say goodbye. But she also wakes with peace, and the hope that the gift given to her will lead towards acceptance.