But She's Black

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Chapter 22

Liyah

1 week later

It was 8: 27 pm when I walked into the house from the diner

In the dark kitchen , my mama sat in the chair with her hand on the phone .

She looked at me like she was waiting for me

Mama - your here she said in a low hoarse voice

Me - wassup mama ? I asked as I took of my apron and walked into the kitchen .

I heated up the soup I made for her earlier and handed her a bowl that she denied

Me - mama you gotta eat if you wanna get better I stressed

Mama - I needa talk to you she said

Me - yes ma’am ? I asked

Mama - take a seat
I sat down in from of her and she grabbed my hands

Mama - Aaliyah baby … She trailed off

Me - yes ? I asked as my heart rate sped up to her tone .

It scared me

Mama - I’m not sick with the flu like I told you

Me - then what’s wrong ? I asked as I scratched my eyebrows .

Mama - …. I have cancer she said

Tears ran down my face

I forgot all about that letter I had opened almost 2 months ago

Me - Whatchu mean ?

Mama - I’m dying baby when she said that the whole kitchen fell into silence

Mama - I have only a month to live

Me - mama don’t say that I said crying as my throat burned

Me - treatment-

Mama - treatments won’t help . It’s too bad , I been going for treatment and in and out of the hospital for years .

Me - mama everything’s gonna be fine , your not gonna die

Mama - stop crying she said wiping my tears I’m here now .

Me - but what’s gonna happen to me and Layla ?

Mama - everything’s gonna be fine baby she said and leaned over her chair , her weak body pulling me into a hug .

Mama - I need you to be a big girl for mama , can you do that ? I nodded and rested my head on her shoulder


After a while I pulled away from her embrace

Me - come on , let’s get you in bed I said clearing my voice
She nodded and I helped her up and to her room .

I helped her take off her clothes and in bed besides Layla .

When I went to walk off she grabbed my hand

Mama - sleep with me , I wanna hold you Aaliyah
I nodded and climbed in bed in front of her .

She wrapped her arms around me and pulled my body to hers tightly

Mama - I love you she told me before we both fell asleep

I opened my eyes about 20 minutes later , I couldn’t sleep . My head was gone .

I just stayed up all night as her words replayed in my head

I already knew she had cancer but I didn’t want to believe it .

I thought the letter wasn’t real even tho all the signs were clear .

I guess hearing it out her mouth let me know it was real .

I couldn’t even cry anymore
What’s crying gonna do ?

Nothing but make my mama feel bad and wake up .

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