Tuesday, 23 August 2016

WHEN A LOVED ONE DIES...



I lost my mum 12 years ago; it was a very painful experience for me. I was just a kid in Jss 3 when she died. I didn't really know what death meant before then. Whenever I heard someone had died, I just shrugged it off until death came knocking on our own door.

I remember seeing her in her coffin, lying lifeless but still beautiful; I would never forget that fateful day. I stared at her corpse with disbelieving eyes; I told myself that this was her twin and the real her would come back soon.

Even after they had lowered her into the ground, I dreamt of her waking up and coming home to us. It took me a while to really accept that she was truly gone and that she was never going to come back.

My world was empty without her; I was forced to grow up faster than I had planned. In fact, I had no plan at all. I didn't how to cope without her; there were a thousand and one things I wanted to say to her but I never had the chance.

Every day, I woke up with the hope that she had travelled and would return soon. I constantly expected her to walk through the door one day and say "Gotcha, It was all a setup. I'm home now." Of course, it never happened; stuff like that only happen in the movies. I grieved her in so many ways:

1. DENIAL: 

At first, I refused to accept that my mum was really gone. I kept telling myself that everyone else was lying; for all I knew, my mum had travelled and would be back soon with lots of goodies. 

I didn't believe that she could be taken away from me so soon and without even goodbye. “She is not dead,” I said to myself repeatedly in tears wishing I was right.

2. ANGER: 

After denying the truth for weeks, I became angry. I was angry at God for taking away my mum without a warning. I asked him a lot of questions, I called him names and even blamed him for so many bad things that were happening to me because my mum wasn't around.

I also blamed my mum for leaving I and my siblings without a mother; she didn't even tell us goodbye before she left. I was furious at myself for not having special powers that could undo events.





3. BARGAINING

When my anger yielded no response or action from God, I resorted to bargain. I started negotiating with God; I told him I'll worship him with my heart and soul if he brings back my mum. 

I promised to change my bad ways; I vowed I'll never sin again only if he could wake my mum up. I even pledged to become born again and getting involved in some activities in the church.

4. DEPRESSION: 

Even the bargain mixed with hot tears and catarrh didn't bring her back. I fell into a deep pit of depression; life without my mum was meaningless and directionless. 

I wasn't ready for the responsibility that was hastily given to me without a proper handover ceremony. I wondered why God was deaf to my plea; I thought he was a merciful God but why wasn't he portraying that mercy in my case?

For weeks, I remained depressed: I lost interest in a lot of activities. My large appetite too was gone. I had no one to show my assignments to after school, no one to share my teenage secrets with or to laugh at my humourless jokes. I was too sad to do anything.

5. ACCEPTANCE:

It took me several months before I reached this stage. I was worn out from crying every time I saw something that reminded me of her. 

Gradually, I found a reason to come out from my hibernation; I decided to make something out of myself. I knew my momma would be proud of me wherever she was if I grew to become a better person.

I felt so much peace with the knowledge that she had become one of God's angels and she was assigned to watch after all of us. I accepted her death in good faith. I was finally at peace with what had happened.

Losing a loved one could be more painful than a physical injury; the feeling cannot be measured. Everyone grieves differently but there is a tiny chance that you would experience at least 3 of the 5 stages of grief mentioned above.

Don't lock up the tears inside whenever you have the urge to cry; allow the tears to flow. Crying is a normal way for the body to release stress or pain.

Be careful not to become so depressed that you can't come out of it. Allow yourself to mourn the loss but don't get lost!

Learn to accept what has happened and find a reason to smile again. Your loved one is gone but his memory will forever remain in your heart. Pray for his soul and seek the face of God. Lastly, be strong; you too will overcome this trial.

My favourite Bible passages:

Jeremiah 29:11
1 Corinthians 10:13
Philippians 4:6-7
Psalm 34:18
John 14:27
Revelation 21:4

This post is dedicated to a close friend who recently lost someone dear.




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