A young girl loses her mother to lung cancer.

As I sat in the all too familiar family room at the funeral home I looked around at the people who actually thought they were my family. My aunt and uncle were leaning against the wall talking to some cousin who I had never even met before. I hope my mom is watching from heaven, I thought to myself. I scanned the room trying to find a familiar face, a face of someone who had actually been there with my mom and I during the past year. Where had all these people been when I needed help taking mom to chemo, or mom needed a shoulder to cry on besides her 27 year old daughter? It is almost disgusting to watch all of these people talk and attempt to reminisce about my mother when in fact not one of them even truly knew her.

Out of the fifteen or so people only five really knew what my mother had battled the past year. Kat, Heather, Mimi, Von, Mark, and Emily might not have the same last name as my mother and myself but they had been with us through the good and bad. Even my father who had a horrible divorce with my mother when I was six years old had helped more than my mother’s only brother. Those five people had come to the hospice, visited me and my mother at home, listened to her fears of dying and leaving me alone, held my hand when I couldn’t hold back my tears any longer, those five were family, not these other people. 

I looked over at my best friend Kat. The last time we had been in this family room together was when my brother had passed away suddenly in gym class. Who would have ever thought that only twelve years later we would be here again for the death of my mother? Kat was talking to one of my many fake family members through gritted teeth. I am sure she was feeling the same amount of anger towards them as I was right now. Kat and I had been best friends since fourth grade and she had been there every day once my mother was diagnosed with stage three lung cancer. She remembers the many times over the past year I attempted to reach out to these fake family members and got nothing in return.

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