Cash Machine

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic
And I thought, what a hardworking cash machine.

Submitted: May 21, 2016

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Submitted: May 21, 2016



My first memory was two faces. 

One was closer to me, and one was further. I called the first face Aunt Em, because Em was her name and she refused to be called mom. At first she refused to be called Aunt too, but I was pretty stubborn. I called the second face Mom, because it was how she demanded to be called, at least by me, and so I did.

The next month, Aunt Em disappeared.

I asked Mom why. She said Aunt Em wasn’t very nice. I said no, she was. She fed me. She cooked for me. She cleaned around the house. She came when I asked her to help me with my homework. Well, she wasn’t too much help, but I appreciated the company. Unlike Mom who barely cooked, barely spoken to me, and barely helped me with anything. I told Mom everything including the last sentence, and she went absolutely furious and shouted at me with words that I didn’t understand, but I cried nonetheless. Then she sent me to my room and my pillow was stained with the trail of tears.

The next day, another person came. This time, her name was May.

Aunt May was a very nice person too. She did all the good things that Aunt Em did. After a month, Aunt May still stayed too. I thought that Aunt May was going to stay forever.

She didn’t. She went away the next month.

Even though so, I didn’t quite learn the lesson. I still got attached to the aunts, no matter how much the silent departure killed me almost every month. I wondered why they never stay. I asked one of my aunts, but they didn’t give me answers. I kept wondering and wondering, but I couldn’t comprehend it"at least until when I got older and Mom began to shout at me more.

Once when mom was incredibly upset, she yelled at me, yelled that I loved the aunts better than her, even though she was Mom, and even though she paid for all the aunts to accompany me. I wasn’t quite sure why Mom seemed to be very attached to the word ‘mom’, but I didn’t ask. But the latter part made me wonder, and I asked the aunts whether it was true, and the aunts confirmed it to be true. I asked the aunts whether they loved me or not, without the money. They said yes.

Then it was okay, I smiled and told the aunts. Some of them cried when I did. I wasn’t sure why, but I hugged them and told them it was going to be okay. Some did stop crying, some cried even more. I wasn’t sure why I said the same lines over and over, but I did.

Then one of my aunts told me that all the money used to take care of me was given to them by mom for them to manage. I nodded in understanding. So that was the role that Mom had in my life. I wasn’t sure before, because she rarely did anything around the house. Maybe cooked once or twice, but that was it. That time I thought, oh, she was like the cash machine that my teacher once explained to me. My aunt at that time"Aunt Eli, I think? Explained to me that she worked for me so I can go to school and eat and drink and live in this beautiful house. And I thought, what a hardworking cash machine. Maybe that was why she shouted so much. She needed release from all the stress she got from overworking. I was determined in treating Mom better from then on, tried to not get on her nerves.

Then I told mom about how it was okay to vent to me, because she worked really hard and I appreciated that. She looked surprised, but when I spoke a bit more"I am not sure what I spoke of back then, but then her expression turned to something that I never saw before.

She cried.

I panicked.

And then she shouted at me, “I am your Mom! I raised you all this time, and you only thought of me as a cash machine?!”

But I didn’t understand what the word Mom means. I thought it was just a name. Sure, it was strange that my friends also had someone named ‘mom’ in their lives, but I didn’t pay attention to that all that much. I also didn’t understand what the word ‘raise’ means. I thought it was what my aunts were doing to me all this time. I was apparently wrong.

So I said sorry and I was again sent to my room.

And I cried again.

© Copyright 2018 Cathair Cathmore. All rights reserved.

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