I think the beginning of our parent-child misfortune began when I lost my husband in an accident.
Ren had just turned 11 years old.
My husband was working for a company that exported used industrial machines to foreign countries, and he was going to a certain developing country on a business trip.
There, he was lecturing the local staff on how to operate the machine, but the local staff, who were not familiar with the machine, made a mistake in operating it, and they were both involved in a landslide accident.
As soon as they were informed of the accident, they went to the area, but the bodies were not recovered due to the fear of a secondary disaster, and they were not able to bring the victims back to Japan.
While I was standing at the scene of the accident with the flowers handed over to me, I was surprised to see a haggard old man crying and clinging to my feet.
He was the father of one of the local staff members who had caused the accident. He, too, had lost his own son. How could I blame him?
My husband was a gentle and kind man who never stopped smiling.
Ren loved his father.
‘Dad, listen, listen! You know, today…”
The way he clung to his father because he wanted his attention was like a puppy dog.
On her days off, she and Renen doodled and laughed as they drew with water-based markers on her husband’s face, who slept pretty deeply
”Oh, you got me again… I’ll pay you back.”
And we both cackled and ran away as my husband chased after us with a scribbled face.
For summer crafts, the three of us made a model waterwheel and a water filtration system using plastic bottles together.
On my husband’s cell phone was a picture of Ren smiling with pride after winning a gold award for his craft.
It was pleasant, and I thought my happy days were going to continue like this.
We couldn’t blame anyone, Ren and I cried all night long in front of the empty coffin.
Many people came to pay their condolences and I’m sure they said many things to me, but I can only vaguely remember those days.
The shock of suddenly losing someone I cared about forever was too much for my head and heart to keep up with.
But after the funeral, the only thing that awaited me was the reality of the situation.
We had to deal with the procedures for workers’ compensation and death insurance, bank procedures, and miscellaneous tasks such as changing the title of the land and house. The social system, while functional, was not forgiving. There were deadlines for the necessary procedures. There was no time to be grief-stricken.
I was busy with the unfamiliar procedures for a month or so, even though it was necessary for me to raise my children as a single mother from now on.
This is how I was able to make money for the time being, but of course, I had to work in order to survive from now on.
As soon as the 49 days were over, I studied to get a qualification and started looking for a job.
With the help of many people, I managed to find a job. Every day I was overworked and desperate.
Looking back at it, I think that I was not able to be present for Ren emotionally.
How did I look like in Renen’s eyes at that time?
I must have made him feel very lonely.
Ren was good at listening and not too selfish.
It’s probably because he knew in his childish way that his mother was doing her best.
But he didn’t smile as much as he used to.
TN: Well that’s depressing.