This is something I didn’t think I would write about this soon. Not because it’s irrelevant in any way because believe me, it is not. It's just that sometimes life just happens and we kind of drift from our own bodies and start to look back on ourselves as second or third parties, for lack of a better expression. During lunch last Sunday, I posed a question to my family… “Hey guys, do you think that there are things that people who are out of our family circle would say about any of us and we’d be utterly in shock of how so differently they get to experience us?” I didn’t ask this because I didn’t already know the answer, I did. I just wanted my family to know that I love them and I’m so grateful for all of them though I didn’t say it directly. This came from the fact that my parents are always "dissing" each other (lovingly of course) and honestly, if you have met these two hilarious individuals, you’d know this is quite sweet and endearing. “Mummy, okyaliyo noolya?” (Translated: Mummy, are you still eating?”) Dad asked in a sarcastic way after everyone had cleared their Sunday buffet plates. All of us burst out laughing because we knew exactly what he really meant. Mum explained that they are always poking fun at each other but dad definitely does it more.😂😂 There is a time he took mum to a restaurant on Dewinton Road called The Orchid and when he narrated the story, he called it La Orchid(with a French accent to make it sound boujee) dead! I guess you're catching my drift. Long story short, we all agreed in that moment (Sunday lunch), that Dad’s love language is teasing. We then started to wonder if anyone out of his immediate family(us) knows this about him.
I related this to an episode in Marlon (an American Sitcom TV Series) where he( Marlon the head of the family) decided to go with a funeral theme to celebrate his 40th Birthday. Later in the episode, he got so mad because his family was taking this theme lightly yet he really wanted to hear what kind of eulogies they would give in his honor if the day of his passing came. Why am I taking you this route? Well, one of my fears and deep regrets has been to lose a loved one and have them leave this life without knowing how much they meant to me or how greatly they impacted my life. I am also very afraid of sitting at a funeral service and listening to people eulogize someone I deeply love and not know of some of the great things that they did while they were still here. Let’s face it, death is inevitable…. we all dread it but it’s inevitable. However, as painful as the death of a loved one is, what’s more painful is them passing when you still had a lot to say or show them.
Sadly, this has happened to me twice. The first time was with my biological dad. It’s like I blinked and he was sick, the next moment was fine, the next he was sick again, the next he couldn’t put words together but managed to mumble how proud of me he was, the next was him not speaking at all and fighting for his life and the next was me getting that dreadful call. Honestly, I didn’t think there was a deeper pain than losing a parent but oh life! It’s like life wanted to prove to me that there was.
If at any point you have been in my inner circle, you know that my grandfather is the first love of my life. This March makes the 3rd anniversary since he went to be with the Lord. Bless his soul. I don’t want this to be a sad blog where I get you all in your feelings even though I know as I write this I am in mine. He gave the best hugs, he had the warmest embrace, even in my twenties he held my hand to cross the road, he taught me how to pray, love and laugh through life. He was just a huge bowl of love that man. He made my grandmother happy, yes that’s what I saw and felt.
Two weeks before he passed he came home and spent a few days. He was attending a workshop in Muyenga and when it was done, he was so eager to go back to his wife as always. He was so healthy and strong and the last time I saw him was the last morning we dropped him off to the workshop and then the next day he left so early for Fort Portal while I was still asleep.
I remember those few days he was home, I’d get back from work so tired and all I wanted was to fall on my bed and rest. I really thought I had more time with him. Anyway, before I drench my keyboard in tears, what happened happened and he was gone. I sat in the cathedral and heard people eulogize him and I wish he would hear all the great things people said about him. I had been in the room before when he got praised and he had such humility. It was almost mortifying for him to hear people speak so dearly of him and his accomplishments. When it was my turn, I made sure that everyone under the sound of my voice knew the kind of grandfather, father, husband, friend, teacher, and hero he was to me and his family. What I really wished though was for him to hear me say that and just hug me one more time. Sigh!
Anyway, I know this has not happened to just me. Not so long ago, I learnt that a friend lost his best friend and University roommate so abruptly as well. He told me that what killed him was the fact that his best friend kept asking to see him for about 4 months and for some reason life just could not allow them to meet and like me he had all these questions and regrets surrounding what more effort he could have made towards the end. The pain to this day for the both of us and many others who have lost people this way is unfathomable but there is HOPE, it does get better. And when dark days of regret and missing them creep up, we have decided to cling to the version of us that they hope we will be when we think of them. Victorious, Strong Conquerors.
The moral of this really is to look around you and see how very much loved you are even if it’s by one person who God has placed in your life that lifts your head up in times of trouble and makes you laugh till your stomach is tied up in a knot and just be grateful. Really grateful. Live in the moment. Don’t just stop there, tell them and more importantly, show them.
I am a very privileged and favored girl, by God. I have experienced great love from my immediate family, the Mugishas, my friends, strangers who hold doors for me while I get out or into buildings, to the ones who give me genuine compliments, the ones who push me to be great in uncomfortable ways, those who make me laugh and smile so hard, the heroes who pray for me, the Baguma clan, the Irumbas, my pastors, my colleagues and team mates who make it possible for me to thrive in my work environment and so many that I have not mentioned, thank you so so much. I am honored to be loved and served by you and I hope that my life reflects God’s love towards you. I don’t want to leave this earth without you knowing how deeply I appreciate you. May God keep you and meet you all at your points of need. I love you so so much and I am sorry that I don’t get to say it as often as I should.
In this moment, I want to light imaginary candles for the people we have lost. To Dad, I love you more than you could ever imagine, to Grandpa, my goal in life is to love like you did, and live a life so purposeful and intentional, to Bill, thank you for helping shape the life of one of friends, he misses you more than you’ll ever know and he is executing your set plans one at a time and kicking butt at it. To everyone reading this and has experienced this…. a candle for each of your lost ones. May their souls rest in eternal peace.
To the people who still have a lot of love around us, give people their flowers while they are still here. They deserve them and live in the moment, be present and stay aware of the blessings you have.