Still Counting


You can always count on Mama Liza to have Hawaiian Host Caramacs in her fridge. They would be as hard as a rock from sitting in the fridge for so long and you checked if you chipped a tooth once you bit into it, but it was stored there so that it wouldn’t melt into the tray from the Kalihi heat or so the ants won’t get to it. Every time we went to Kam IV Road, those chocolates would always be there. No wonder I have a sweet tooth.

You can always count on Mama Liza for a lot of the simple things that brought joy in our lives like the perfect porch for my cousins and I to perform Spice Up Your Life or the best pillows for an afternoon nap. There was a season when my sister and I would visit Mama Liza almost every other day and swore to each other that we wouldn’t take a nap during our time there because if we did the rest of our day would be unproductive with the same to-do list as yesterday. Well, needless to say, we took a nap that one day, and the next, and the day after that one. Fifteen years later I’m pretty sure we still have yet to finish our to-do list. Oh well. I regret nothing. #norAgrets.

You can always count on Mama Liza to be such a subtle comedian. It always took a while for me to catch what Mama said, did, or sang because the only part I caught onto was her mischievous chuckle that shook her to the core. Whether I knew what she said or not I laughed anyway because it’s Mama Liza. Simple as that. When she laughed everyone laughed. It’s good for the soul.

You can count on her to lift your spirits, share encouragement, and to love unconditionally no matter what. I was crying the other night from missing her so much. In a conversation I was asked, “What would your grandma say to you right now?” The first thing that popped in my head surprised me. My answer was, “Stop crying now.” I could just hear Mama’s Liza’s voice say those words, “Stop crying now.” Those who knew her well would probably agree with me. I miss her more than my heart can handle, but I’m continuing on this never-ending journey where it hurts less. So for today, I will remember how it felt to be loved by her and appreciate the fact that even though she’s gone from this difficult world I can still count on her to guide me through it all.

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