Mother – proposal
There was one man who pursued her. He was a part of the group of friends she hung out in Tokyo. With them, she went to Utagoe Kissa and had a picnic in the park. One day he told her he liked her and gave her a pearl necklace. I asked her why she didn’t marry him instead of my father, because he would never imagine a romantic gesture with jewelry. She said she wasn’t in love with him and if she had married him, my sister and I wouldn’t be in this world. I said I didn’t care if I wasn’t born if she could be with such a kind man who loved her and believed she deserved a pearl necklace.
After finishing school, my mother returned to her hometown and became a teacher of public kindergarten. The local government ran kindergartens, so she sometimes had to visit the town hall, where my father was working. She told my sister and me that she knew she was to marry him the moment they exchanged eye contact at the staircases. My sister looked excited about the romantic encounter of her parents, but I cringed, imagining that a princess taking a path to darkness lured by a soul-eating beast disguised as a prince.
I also imagined her in her other life in which she married the man in Tokyo. She’d be living in a mansion in the suburb, wearing expensive clothes with the pearl necklace. She’d be holding a hand of a small girl who wasn’t me.
My father proposed to her on the phone, drunk. He said let’s get married and she said alright.