I want to write the fictionalization of Sufjan Stevens’ latest album, Carrie & Lowell, but it seems like I have no capability to write them all. So, anyway, this story is a story that I wrote to answer Eva’s question on my Ask.fm account (It’s http://ask.fm/daniel_dian. Please ask me guys sometimes I can be so bored). And, accidentally it suits one of songs in Carrie & Lowell, that’s why I’m gonna put it there.
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‘Hey, Dad! Do you remember when you picked me up and put me on your shoulder? Then you always hold my hand? My memory was kinda fuzzy, but it seemed to me that you said, ‘I am so afraid, Little Hero.’ You always called me your little Hero despite my age. I am twenty five now, Dad. Do you remember when you just lay on your bed, but you still told some stories in spite of your stutter? I remembered that well, even though I didn’t know why you always lay on your bed. But, now I started to understand, Dad. I am a doctor now. When I started to learn your disease, my eyes always damped.’
I wiped my eyes. The tombstone in front of me was grey, but the rain and the sun had washed it out. The inscription said, ‘Here lies our father, our husband, and our hero.’ And your chosen words, when you were still able to talk, said, ‘Even if all my muscles stop moving, this muscle of my heart and my brain will never stop love my family.’
ALS was like an enigma to me when I was kid. My mom said that ALS is bad guy who stole Dad’s health. Dad’s condition kept getting worse. At first, he lost his legs, the he began to unable to talk, until finally he could not breathe. My Dad passed when I was still seventeen. Despite his condition, my Dad never ceased to support me. I could see his spirit from the movement of his eyeball, and he always cheered me up when I was down with his crooked smile.
It was also because of my Dad, I decided to study medicine. I didn’t want to other kids in the world suffered what I had suffered. It sounded really cliché, but there was no cliché when you do something because of love.
I picked the bucket up. The ALS Bucket Challenge meant a lot to me. Some people probably would not understand what it meant and the challenge would probably lost its essence. I didn’t mind. People needed to raise their awareness about ALS.
‘Now, Dad, more people know about your disease now. They donate their money for research. Isn’t it great, Dad?’
The bucket felt cold. As the water started pouring down, my heart stopped for a moment. The ice water dripped down from my head, gave me chilling sensation. I shivered, but it was okay. It was for my Dad.
I felt like there was hand touched my shoulder. I jerked my head. Nobody was behind me. My nape hair stood on end. Even if I didn’t want to believe it, I knew the culprit. I watched my Dad’s grave once again, as the earth absorbed the cold water. I smiled and whispered, ‘Are you thirsty, Dad? There’s no drink in heaven?’ as I turned back and walked toward home.