Love Blossoming and Roaring 花咲かせ叫ぶ(おらぶ)愛

The day after my grandma's funeral (it was held on June 10, 2020; I attended virtually), I felt like calling my grandma's landline, knowing that she would not answer.

I just wanted to pretend to call her. Also, I knew that her landline would be canceled, so I wanted to call the number one last time. I listened to the same, usual ringing tone, thinking she would have answered the phone only a few days ago. 

Everyone, who called her, knew that you had to ring it for a while to give her enough time to get to the phone. So, it was my custom to listen to the ringing tone for some time. As I listened to it, I could vividly imagine her voice answering, "Hello?" 

Then, to my surprise, the ringing sound ceased, and a man's voice said, "Hello?" My first guess was my dad because he was there often. The day before grandma passed away, he was helping her doing some yard work. But, it did not sound like my dad, and the voice did not sound like any of my uncles, so I perplexedly asked, "Excuse me, but I don't recognize this voice. This is Akari. May I ask with whom I am speaking now?"

Then the man said, "It's me, your dad." 
"Oh, dad? Really? It didn't sound like you."
"You, too. You didn't sound like you. For a moment, I thought it was a "Me, Me" scam call." (In Japan, unfortunately, there have been incidents of young people calling older people, pretending to be their grandchildren by saying, "It's me, grandma, it's me," and asking for money.)

I jokingly told him, "This is your daughter, who passes gas around you without any hesitation." He laughed and said, "Now I know it's truly you!" (I am not sure if I like this way of verification, though :-D)

He said that he went to the grandma's house to take care of things like cooked rice, which she cooked but did not get to eat, and some laundry hanging outside. She had washed the work clothes he wore to help her the day before she died. 

I pictured him touching every item that his mother had touched only a few days ago. My heart got squeezed a little. The heart squeeze was probably also had to do with seeing myself in him dealing with the same thing someday. 

My maternal grandparents passed away when I was in my late teens. Due to lack of life experience, I don't think I was there for my mom the way I would now as a 38-year-old person. And I was too young to realistically imagine myself going through what she was going through in my near future. 

My dad and I spoke for about an hour. My dad and I usually talk once a week, but it was the longest we spoke. It was nice to talk about someone we dearly loved. 

At the end of the phone talk, painfully recognizing that people we dearly love will not exist forever, I felt the strong urge, so I followed it and told him, "Dad, I want you to know that I love you so much, and I am grateful to be your daughter." 

I started to cry as I said the first few words, feeling overwhelmed by love toward him and from him. When emotions surpass our words, tears come up. My grandma birthed my wonderful father and raised him. Then he met my wonderful mother, and they birthed me. 

As I hang up the phone, I felt theirs and my ancestors' love blossoming and roaring in my bloodstream. 

"Live! Live! Live! Love! Love! Love!" cheered and implored souls who have come and gone.

"Yes! Yes! Yes!" I cried back to their call.

Other posts about grandma:

(The photo of the phone above was taken by Alex Andrews. The photo of grandma below was taken by me.)

You can listen to this article's podcast episode at the following link. The episode number is #3.

(She was cleaning green onions.)


















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