Hello my doves.
So, I’ve been prompted time and again to write about a topic that I really refuse to acknowledge. I’m not sure how many draft posts I can type up before I accidentally hit publish rather than “Save As Draft”. But I suppose I’ve had one too many lemons over the past few years so the bitterness I hold towards this subject is more than justified.
“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
Morbid right? I never said it would be a happy post though. But since you’re all here, let’s keep reading shall we?
P.s. I hope you all are doing okay.
An amazing friend and blogger, Barbs, put it so well when she mentioned how we’re, maybe not all but most of us are, at a stage of life when death makes everything so real and that we can finally fathom the pain that comes with losing a loved one, be it a parent, a sibling, a friend…generally someone we have known and interacted, and who left a piece of them behind with every interaction (https://barbaraabwoga.wordpress.com/2016/06/28/so-long-farewell/).
When we were younger, we had halos of naivety and were protected by an air of innocence; so when someone passed, we were shielded from the realness of it by so many different things, but our brains did the most work in making sure we were “oblivious”.
Sometimes, it’s easier to blame the illness, the driver, the situation, the events that led up to it. We get caught up in trying to put the blame on something because why else would the good Lord just decide to take something away when it was a source of joy and hope to so many people?
You see, that is how I’ve always felt about someone’s passing. Blame it on whatever the cause was and hope to move on. Well, that was until my own brother passed and I had nothing to blame it on really. I couldn’t say that it was a terminal illness, I couldn’t blame it on an accident, I couldn’t blame it on anything except pure coincidence and that it was simply his time.
I have relived the moment over and over and over and maybe I just did not grieve or did I?
Maybe I just felt a tonne of guilt for not doing enough when I had the time to.
Maybe I just realized that death really was as final as they say.
I think I was numb.
I only felt like breaking down because it was “expected” of me. In truth, my emotions were completely shut off. I was a zombie. My body could not process anything, even the simple task of shutting itself off to sleep, I was more than afraid of that. No eating? Check. Relying on outside interactions to keep my blood flowing and heart beating? Check. Finding a routine to stick to? Check. Deciding not to focus on the situation at hand? Check.
I was literally in a dark room, and I wasn’t about to be bothered to find my way out from the pitch darkness. Because if I came to, I would see only sadness, only tears, only so many other people whose lives were touched by your hands, your words, your presence, your hope, your vision. I would only see despair….pity. So like an elephant in a room, I ignored it.
I remember sending the texts to people in my contacts. Looking back now, and reading through that specific message, I see how detached it was. It was short, and straight to the point. It was specific enough for anyone who read it to know what had happened without having to answer to “those questions”. I sent it to specific people, because I knew that the message would be passed on to the rest.
I remember being in disbelief for so long because I wasn’t able to understand just how someone I happened to be so sure of seeing at the dinner table each and every night, someone whose music I would hear each time I opened my windows and he was home, someone who shared an unexplainable bond with me; I just could not for the life of me figure out that I wouldn’t see them anymore, in this life.
I remember the anger at my brother and at God. Why? There was so much more that he had to do before death was even a plan. The anger was at my brother. Why did you just not say that thing you wanted to say to me but said you’ll tell me the coming week? Why would you not let me tell you that I love you at least one more time? Why would you not get to see your next birthday, you didn’t want us to celebrate you? The anger was at my Maker.. Why could You just not wait until after I had one last glance at him? Why did it have to be at that specific moment? Why was there no warning that You were going to call him back?
I had so many questions, and so much more to say.
But I learnt something through death,
Although it comes unannounced, in most instances, and although it wreaks havoc on our emotions and plays on our very ingrained ability to form regrets, it heals too.
Although it brings up so many questions, we can never forget that there is a purpose behind everything. Only God knows of His plan…it’s not ours to alter.
In death I have learnt to live and say things if and when they come to mind. I refuse to wait for the “what ifs” in this unpredictable life. I have found myself being liberal with my openness towards a number of people and things.
Death has a way of creeping in and tearing open scars that you would think had scabbed over but with every new soul that is returned to sender, you’re brought back a few steps. You learn something about humility and once again desire to fulfil whatever you think is your destiny, while you still have the chance to.
In death I have learnt to cherish the people who I believe matter or who hold me dear. I have learnt that sending a few messages filled with love and good vibes never hurt anyone. I have grown in death….actually no, I have grown in life.
It matters not how much time you spend with someone, but what is most important is how you left a mark on their lives and what type of mark you left.
Death always brings me to the point of questioning myself: If I died today, what kind of impact will people say I had on their lives? Was I just another human being that came through their lives and left it the same or did I make them change the way they think? Did I make them smile once in a while? Did I add some form of value to their lives?
We’re constantly stuck in a cycle of keeping up with time that has already passed. Stuck on wishing that we did this better, or we said this and that to someone whilst they were still around. Maybe it’s time to break this unforgiving cycle and start something new.
I say more of switching up the life we live to accommodate the positive energy that just wants to pour into our lives. Coming up with new ways to live and love the life.
I’m not about to watch someone I know come to the end of their journey on earth without them knowing what they meant to my life; be it how proud of their achievements I am, or be it how thankful I am to have them just move with me as I move through these 365 days we call years.
It doesn’t matter who you are, where you’re from, what you do, or how you do it. What matters most, to me, is how people were touched by your hand.
What death has taught me?
Use the time now to patch up unnecessary grudges. Use the time you have now, to see and interact with the blessings(people) God grants you access to. It doesn’t matter whether you’ll meet them again in a few years or never see them again, all that matters is how much of an impact you can leave on their lives when you do talk to them or do something for them.
What death has taught me?
It’s not the end of everything. It’s a hint that you need to start/continue living.
My fallen soldiers are simply more than memories, they are the stars that light up the sky at night. They are the sun that shines ever so bright. They are the wind that blows each and every night. They are the smile and the feeling of warmth you feel once in every random while. They are those deep breathes that you take and wonder why you feel so calm all of a sudden. They are still living, just not alive.
J.Cole – Love Yourz
No such thing as a life that’s better than yours
For what’s money without happiness?
Or hard times without the people you love
Though I’m not sure what’s ’bout to happen next
I asked for strength from the Lord up above
Cause I’ve been strong so far
But I can feel my grip loosening
Quick, do something before you lose it for good
Get it back and use it for good
And touch the people how you did like before
I’m tired of living with demons cause they always inviting more
That’s it from my end of the globe.
From a cool corner of Nairobi,
With life, love, sun and positive vibes,
Let the memories keep us venturing into the unknown and inspire us to live and not just be alive.