Motherís Tears (by Cagla)
It was a beautiful shining day near the Michigan Lake. A car was slowly advancing. The woman who was sitting on the back was thoughtfully looking outside from the window. It was the beginning of the springtime. She remembered the first time she had come to this place. So many years had already passed since! At that time she didnít have any car, she had come here walking, with tears on her eyes and with a baby in her arms...
The car was approaching to the destination. The woman saw the little orphanage and some children who were playing outside.
One of them saw the car and cried to the others:
"Look! There is a car coming here!"
"Maybe Candy or Annie are coming to visit us", said a girl.
"No. That's not their car."
The car stopped in front of the Pony's Home and the curious children surrounded it. The chauffeur got out of the car and opened the back door. The woman got off the car. The children were gazing at her. She was in her 30s but was still a very beautiful blond lady with green eyes. Maybe she came to adopt one of them?
The lady looked tenderly at them and smiled.
"You all live here, don't you?" she asked.
"Yes", answered the little girl.
"Are you happy here? Do they take good care of you?"
"Of course we are", said the little girl. "Miss Pony and Sister Maria treat us like our mothers, even if sometimes they get angry and punish us..."
The woman smiled at her. She was happy to know that her daughter was taken good care of.
"But they aren't our mothers. They are much better", said a boy.
"Shut up..." the little girl tried to stop him.
"No", he answered. "My parents have abandoned me here as if I was an object."
Those words broke the woman's heart.
"Maybe... they thought it was better for you... Maybe, they didn't want you to suffer with them and wanted to give you a chance to be adopted by a better family", she said hesitantly.
"I'd rather suffer with them than be an orphan", he said angrily.
At that moment someone opened the orphanage's door. It was Sister Maria who had realized that the children stopped playing and wanted to know what they were doing.
She stopped when she saw the woman.
"Oh, good afternoon."
"Good afternoon", answered the woman. "I'd like to speak with the one who is responsible for this orphanage."
"Of course. Come in, please."
Thus, Sister Maria and the unexpected visitor entered the little orphanage in front of the curious looks of the children.
Sister Maria conducted her to Miss Pony's room who welcomed her warmly. Sister Maria brought three cups of tea and they began talking.
"How can I help you, Mrs...." began Miss Pony.
"Berington, Mary Berington. Well... I don't know how to begin... I... I came here to ask you about my daughter."
"To ask us about your daughter?" asked Miss Pony surprised.
"Yes... I left her 19 years ago in front of this orphanage... Her name was Candice."
"Candice?!" exclaimed Miss Pony and Sister Maria at the same time.
"Yes... I was in a very bad situation at that time... I couldn't take care of my baby... Then I thought it was better to leave her in an orphanage... I hadn't got any money... Candice's father had left me and my family didn't want to accept my baby because I wasn't married at that time. So I left her here... But I always felt myself guilty for that. I always wondered how does my daughter look like, if she's happy, if she has been adopted by some nice people... Believe me, I experienced so many things until now. Now I put my life in order but I can't leave in peace with this feeling of guilt. Please, tell me where can I find her... I want to meet her and beg her pardon. I don't know if she's adopted and maybe she hates me because I left her but..."
"She doesn't hate you", interrupted her Miss Pony. "Candy has always wanted to have a mother and I'm sure she'll be very happy to know that her mother was searching for her."
"Isn't she adopted?"
"Yes, she's adopted by a very rich man, Mr. Audrey, but he isn't married and he's in her brother's age."
"So she must have a beautiful life being a rich girl."
"You can ask that to herself", said Miss Pony smiling. "She lives in New York with her husband".
"Her husband? So she is married..."
"Yes. I will give you her address, I'm sure she'll be very happy to see you", said Sister Maria who hadn't spoken until now.
"I hope", said the woman.
They continued their conversation until the evening. The two hostesses encouraged Mary and talked about Candy's childhood.
They told her about her stupidities when she was a child, her willing to help other people, her joyfulness. Mary took the address and thanked them for everything they had done for her and her daughter. She was looking forward to meet Candy, especially after the long talk they had just finished. She went back to her car. It was getting dark and she had to return to the house she rented near that place. She would go to New York as soon as possible and talk with her daughter. How will she tell Candy that she was her mother? How will Candy react? She was afraid that Candy wouldn't want to see her face but Miss Pony and Sister Maria had encouraged her enough. She will speak to her daughter and even if Candy won't forgive her, she'll be happy to meet her.
Candy was still sleeping in her bed. It was an excellent day in New York. The sun's rays were passing through the window.
The birds were singing their song outside and announcing the beginning of the spring. Candy opened her eyes and looked around her. She got up and opened the window.
"Oh, what a beautiful day!" she thought. "Terry isn't here and I have to stay alone at home... How boring..."
After that Albert had taken his responsibilities being the head of the family, almost three years ago, he had helped Candy to return to her old work in the hospital in Chicago. She had worked there almost two years. During that time, nothing had changed in her life while her friends Archie and Annie had got married. But one day Terry reappeared in her life and told her that Susanna had let him free. He said that he still loved her. Thus, they got married and moved to New York.
Candy found a job in a hospital there. Her friends came often to visit her. Two weeks ago Terry went on a tour for a month. She couldn't accompany him because of her work. But last week she had caught a cold and the doctor told her to stay at home until she would recover completely, he didn't want the patients to be sicker because of her. And now she was staying alone at home. That day she felt much better and she didn't want to spend such a beautiful day at home. She changed her clothes and prepared herself something to eat. Suddenly someone knocked at the door. She went to open it.
"I'm coming", she said, wondering who it could be.
She opened the door and saw a beautiful and well-dressed blond lady who got excited seeing the young freckled girl who opened the door.
"She's like the girl Miss Pony and Sister Maria described", thought Mary.
"Good morning", said Candy. "How can I help you?"
"Oh, good morning... I wanted to speak with Mrs. Grandchester."
"It's me. What can I do for you?"
The woman got even more excited. Her daughter whom she couldn't see 19 years was in front of her! But she had to calm down and keep control over her emotions.
"Oh, how thoughtless I am! Come in, please."
Candy invited her to the sitting room.
"Would you like to drink something?" she asked her unexpected visitor.
"No, thanks. I don't think I can drink something. I just want to talk to you."
"OK", said Candy curiously and sat down the armchair in front of the lady's one. "Yes, I'm listening to you."
"Well... I don't know how to begin..." began the excited woman. "Maybe I must tell you everything from the beginning... I was a farmer's daughter. When I was 15, I met a rich man and I fell in love with him. I thought that he was serious too, but later I understood that he was just playing with me..." said Mary sadly remembering those days.
"I'm very sad for you, but to be honest, I don't understand why you're telling me that..."
Mary preferred to continue her story.
"Some months later, when I told him that I was pregnant, he didn't want to accept that it was his baby. When my parents found it out they got very angry and sent me to my uncle in the city. So my baby was born there and nobody in our village knew it. My parents told me if I wanted to return home, I had to get rid of my baby."
"How could they say such a horrible thing?" said Candy imagining the situation. "What have you done, then?"
"I didn't want to separate with my baby. But I was in a very bad situation. My uncle couldn't help me, it was very difficult for him to take care of me and my baby with his little salary. I tried to find a job, but nobody wanted to hire someone with an illegitimate baby. I didn't want my baby suffer with me, everybody would treat her like a bastard and she would be miserable with me. So I had to obey my parents' will and I... I let her in front of an orphanage... Pony's Home... Her name was Candice."
Candy was shocked with Mary's last words. So she was her mother! Since she was a little girl, her biggest dream was to have a mother. Of course, Miss Pony and Sister Maria had always treated her like her two mothers. She always tried to hide her sadness for being an orphan. She wanted to be adopted by a good family, but she wasn't so lucky. She was a bit jealous of Terry who had a kind mother who loved him a lot. After their marriage, Eleanor accepted Candy as her daughter and she even allowed Candy to call her "mum". Candy was very happy for that. But she had always wondered who were her real parents. She wanted to know why they had left her in an orphanage. And now she knew who was her mother and the conditions that pushed her to leave her. Mary was waiting for her reaction. Candy didn't know what to say. Some tears appeared in her eyes.
"Why now? Why haven't you searched for me until now?" she said crying.
"Believe me, I always thought about you... My parents forbade me to see you... And I thought that you were adopted... I wanted to give you a chance to be adopted by a better family... I did it for your goodness", stammered Mary.
"You can't know how much I've suffered for being an orphan... If I were next to you, at least I'd have a mother and I wouldn't feel myself so lonely..."
"Please, forgive me... Believe me I too have suffered a lot... I wanted to see you a lot but I thought you were adopted and I didn't have the right to reappear in your life... I tried to begin a new life, praying to God for you everyday. I left the village and I began to work in town. Six years ago, I met a rich and kind man and we got married... I had two children and I tried to be happy with them... But some months ago we had an accident and I lost my husband and my children... I thought it was God's punishment to me for leaving you... You're the only person I have... I thought that you're grown-up enough to understand me and I just wanted to beg your pardon... Would you forgive me?"
Candy realized that the woman was crying silently saying those words. She understood that her mother had suffered a lot in her life and she had to give her a chance.
"I forgive you... mother", she said slowly.
Mary was very happy to hear these words. She approached Candy and embraced her strongly. They were both happy and would have enough time to meet each other and to keep back all that time they were separated.