Mary knew that her sons were growing up, she knew that it wouldn’t be long until her eldest wasn’t even living in the same home and that, not long after (to her reckoning) her youngest would also ‘leave the nest.’ She both was and wasn’t looking forward to it.
She was looking forward to it because it meant that her sons had lived long enough to move out. It meant that they were able to support themselves and possibly a family of their own. It meant that she would no longer have to work as hard to hide the grief at the loss of her Bonded.
She wasn’t looking forward to it because it meant she would be alone more. Her sons might not visit very often or even call. Hadn’t her coworkers often complained at the lack of interaction with their grown and moved out children? It meant that the emptiness that was forever within her at the loss of Warren would no longer be partially covered up by the sound of Warren’s sons. It meant that the urge to end this existence sooner rather than later would also be stronger.
Mary was afraid to be by herself. She was very afraid.
What Mary didn’t take into account (what she so often forgot) was that her sons were aware of her feelings in this regard and were working to take steps to avoid the thing she feared most from happening.
“Terry, we can’t leave Mom like this, she will die if we leave her all alone.”
“I knot that, little brother, but I don’t know what else to do!”
Matt nodded an agreement with his elder brother, something that he’d thought as a child he’d never do. “She doesn’t want us to stay living with her once we’re married because she thinks that newlyweds need their own space, but doesn’t want us to invite her to live with us after the newlywed phase has passed.”
“Why is Mom so insular?”
“That’s a big word coming from you.” the younger of the two retorted on principle alone.
Neither of them really knew why their mother didn’t seem to have any friends. They didn’t even know why their parents had separated as there hadn’t been any kind of fighting that most other kids whose parents had divorced talked about.
Terry sighed and closed his eyes. He knew that his brother liked to pick at him, he liked to pick right back, but they needed to talk about this, not ignore it like they’d been doing most of their lives.
“Sorry,” Matt mumbled, “It’s just so much easier-”
“I know,” Terry interrupted, “but we need to have some kind of plan if we’re going to convince Mom not to finish closing herself off to the world.”
Matt hung his head, “I…I don’t know how we can do anything about it. She’s never really listened when we’ve tried to get her to have some kind of life for herself. She always replies that we are her life and that it’s more than enough for her.”
“She’ll die if we can’t help her, I don’t care if she’ll still wake up and eat and move about, inside, she’ll die.”
They didn’t know what to do, but they wouldn’t let the woman who brought them into this world and raised them to fade away. Now if only she would give them some kind of clue on how they could do it.
Inspired by Light and Shade Challenge.