I woke up that morning sighing to myself as I slung my towel over my shoulder, heading towards the bathroom. I come out after  5 minutes, having about the fastest shower I have ever had in life, annoyance plastered all over my face.

” Can’t anyone call a plumber to fix the clogged bathroom or do we have to wait in hopes that Santa will get it fixed this Christmas?”, I asked sarcastically. I was smart enough never to direct my question to anyone specific but she got the message that it was indirectly aimed at her. Silently staring at the bread loaf, she continued sipping her coffee.

That afternoon, I went to have a nap and as I laid on my bed, the sound of tools, water gushing and the suction pump was too loud to be ignored. “She wants to be a plumber now instead of just hiring one,” I thought to myself with a smirk as I continued my interrupted nap.

Waking up after about an hour, I was greeted by Damian’s angry face as I walked out of my room. “Isn’t there anything at all for lunch?,” he asked and I shrugged in reply. We sat on the couch and laughed at the joke made by the comedian on the television, forgetting hunger. It took us awhile to realize the dishes being set out on the dining table as she silently left to the room, inviting us for meal with a smile on her way.

Provided the hunger we felt, we ate to our hearts content. An easy, simple meal that brought about a burp of satisfaction. She joined us for the meal too. Not long after I did the dishes and we comfortably settled on the couch again, Alia returned home from college. She had the sourest face no one could possibly overlook  which none of us decided to question on.

Just like every other day, she walked straight to her room, set her bag on the floor but that day, she did not launch herself on the bed. Instead, she stomped right out, blocking the television from any of our views. With her hands on her hips imitating that of a grumpy grandmother,  Alia asked, “Everyone has begun shopping for Christmas, can I know when are we going to start ours? We technically have another six days before Christmas!”

Damian and I preserved the silence we felt was golden while Alia chose to stare at her. She heard but chose not to react.

That evening, before we got into the car, I saw her dig out the crumpled notes from inside the small wooden box. I walked off before she realized my presence. Approaching the car, Damian, Alia and I kept our fingers crossed. Just as we expected, the car wouldn’t start but being used to it, she remained calm, opened the front bonnet and meddled with the parts of the car while a little smoke was visible. We watched as she sat in the car again and twisted the key in the holder.

After a few low rumbles, the car could start, we got in and left. Three tiring hours later, we left the mall, at least a bag on each of our hands, none on hers. It hit me that either one of us three wouldn’t be holding a bag now if at all she had hired a plumber earlier that morning.

The sound of the door banging brought me back to reality as I turned to see Damian and Alia barge in the room, rushing to my side.Her hand was weakly gripping mine as she offered us her best smile even if it was obviously a weak one on her freckled face. “Ma…”, I said as a tear rolled down my cheek. She was everything we expected to be. A plumber, chef, driver, mechanic or even a banker. Today, all I want to be is a doctor to be able to relieve the look of pain in her eyes that left us all feeling handicapped but as much as I want to… I can’t.

I smirked at myself as I recalled, she never once uttered those two words every time I wanted her to be somebody just to please me.




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