One of my childhood friends recently lost her mum. I knew her mum personally, she was a very nice person. Her smiles whenever she saw me and her coconut rice are forever imprinted in my heart.
My mum is doing a postgraduate course and had gone to school in another state, so it was just my dad and me. My mum kept calling and insisting on me going for the funeral with my dad. I told them it wasn’t a good idea as i had not seen this friend in 14 years and finally seeing her on her mum’s funeral will be too awkward.
I thought of what to say to her and couldn’t come up with anything.
I remembered my first year in college, my roommate lost her dad and her family didn’t know how to tell her. I had formed a phone based relationship with most members of her family, so I was ladened with the responsibility of telling her the bads news or convincing her to go home. I choosed the later, but when she got home and called me, I cried more than the bereaved. I had no words to comfort her, all I did was cry and draw all the attention to myself. I beat myself up mentally everytime I remember this.
My dad suggested I google what to say to her cus going was compulsory. You know google knows everything.
Read also: Dr Google has no licence to practice
Finally, I decided to suck it up and go. I dressed up and just as we were about to leave home, an emergency call came through- my dad was needed at the clinic.
I laid on my bed that night listening to the songs that played from the wake as the venue was a stone throw from my house. I could only sleep at about 3 am when it stopped.
The next day my mum was back from school and we were to go together, all three of us. Someone came visiting and then my dad went to drop him off and couldn’t come back home cus a small village was ambushed by their rivals and someone had been shot.
He was needed again at the clinic.
In the end, I didn’t attend the funeral, I didn’t see my friend, I still don’t know what I’d say when I see her.
* * *
Days after writing and scheduling this post, I met my friend’s aunty and got her phone number. After thinking of just shy of 1000 ways to start a conversation with her via WhatsApp, I settled for “Hello”. We got talking, I sent her screenshots of this post cus i still didnt have the right words and she said how seeing me after all this time would have been enough.
I learnt something- BEING THERE IS ENOUGH.