Ingrid L. Castillo Sept 9, 1933 – Nov 26, 2004

I took this photo of my mother the day she went into hospital one week before she died. It is the last photo of her alive. I have not shared this portrait of her, the look of knowing in her eyes and the hopelessness that I felt of being unable to help her, has kept this picture in a drawer.

Walking from the subway station to the office today I crossed a corner that I have crossed a thousand times. In mid stride I was struck with an overwhelming loss, I fought back tears as my mind sent me back to the small dimly lit hospital room where I held my mother’s hand until all the warmth had left it. Where I pulled a chair to the corner of the room stood on it and took one last photo of her. A loud honk from a car that was bearing down on me snapped me back to the present. I regained my composure as quickly as I had lost it and continued with my commute.

It has been six years since that night in the hospital room where I had to say good-bye. There is not a day that goes by that I don’t wish I could share with her. Mom, I found a brunch place with great bloody marys we can go this Sunday. Your grand-daughter said a full sentence today. Mom, don’t feed Sam turkey under the table, he is going to be a beggar kitty.

Every night before my daughter goes to sleep, we stop in front of a picture of Oma and say good night.

As it has been so eloquently stated in the past, the departed live on in the memories of the living.

I miss you mom, so much.


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