Sarah O'Connor

Writer – Playwright – Cannot Save You From The Robot Apocalypse

Another prompt, oh my! Well it is a daily challenge so it isn’t that shocking. Today’s theme is Candle so that’s just what I wrote about.

My dad doesn’t like candles. He has this fear of fire and worried that we would forget to blow out the candle and then our house would burn down, or that even if we did blow out the candle it would still be too hot and burn the house down anyways. It was almost five years ago when my sister and I lamented this to our mom, about how we’d go to Bath & Body Works in the mall and smell so many good scents that we wanted to bring home.

There were two particular candles we found at Chapters that we were obsessing over. I think my sister was eyeing a pumpkin fall scented one and the one I liked was maple vanilla. We told our mom this and she, not always being subtle with out Christmas gifts, managed to convince our dad that the house would not burn down and bought them for us for that Christmas.

I don’t fully remember that day at the mall but I know it wasn’t a good one. Not because anything bad happened, not because anyone was unhappy or pissed at someone else, but because my mom was sick. Looking back now it was probably about a month before she died and she had been in pain for a long time. We used to all go shopping together, well not my dad so much but my sister, her, and I. It was something we’d do on PA Days and random weekends, something I miss now. She hadn’t been to the mall for a long time so my dad brought us all down, my sister and I went our way and our parents went there’s. We found her later, after the candles, at the food court with my dad and she was crying. She could hardly walk with all the pain she was in, could hardly move. My dad managed to bring out a smile in her but I remember feeling sick inside, being forced to acknowledge how sick she was. How my mom couldn’t enjoy shopping anymore, could hardly walk, was constantly in pain.

She went into the hospital on December 17th and never came out. We tried to keep Christmas normal, brought all her gifts to her in her hospital bed but our dad had no idea where she’d put our gifts for us in the house. She’d rolled her eyes jokingly at that and had told my sister and I where to find it. But her voice was so faint, and she could hardly keep her eyes open. We found some of the presents but we couldn’t find them all. On January 4th she died.

My sister and I found the candles in a black bag after Christmas, the same one she must have put them in after she bought them at the mall. The pumpkin spice one and maple vanilla, in their boxes, exactly what each of us had wanted.

My mom was always so good at remembering the little details, of remembering the things that people liked and forgot about so she could surprise them later. Even something as small as candles she made sure to get my sister and I and made sure our dad was okay with it. She cared so deeply for people, and I miss her everyday.

Whenever we go up north we visit all the old churches, some of them have candles to light for prayers and loved ones and every year we light one for her.

(Inktober Prompt List found here. Image found here.)

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