The Sudden-ness of loss

It so happened that I got a Whatsapp message some days ago, asking that I help create a group for my class members. Years ago, I was part of a class of entrepreneurs, that took the Certificate in Entrepreneurial Management course in Abuja, Nigeria, run by the Enterprise Development Centre of Pan-Atlantic University, Nigeria.

The class was a unique set, comprising of a few men, and a lot of women, all running their businesses in and around Abuja.

The class had the typical run in terms of temperaments and personalities, but there were two of my classmates that stood out, for their friendliness, and happy can-do attitude. These women also had strong husbands that stood as their pillars of support, and also their grounding stations, that kept them connected to earth in terms of dreams for their businesses, or so they told me.

I was happy to be given the task, as it had been more than two years since we all took the course. Many had lost touch, and it was a great opportunity to reach out and connect again.

But the occasion was sad: these two women had lost their husbands within a week. One of the men just slumped and died, no prior illness, no headaches, nothing. Both husbands were less than fifty years old, led happy busy lives, were generous to a fault, and loved their wives and three children to bits.

The news was crushing. As I carried out the task, I felt the tears streaming down my cheeks unchecked. I imagined how my world would fall apart if I lost my husband at the prime of his life and I felt shattered.

The group helped in coordinating visits to the women and its been active since inception, but what I learnt is:

  • Reach out to all your friends regularly. Fight the depression and reach out. You never know what they are going through.
  • Forgive past hurts: life is too short to dwell on stuff like that.
  • Do not joke about your health. Take the time and money to do regular check ups. Do not allow self-medication to go too far. Rest and exercise are very vital for sound health.
  • Your career and business is important, but Family is the most important part of your life. Spend valuable time with your immediate/nuclear family because you do not know when Death will come knocking.
  • Life your life as if you are leaving behind the greatest legacy of all. Everyone at the wake-keep had nothing but great things to say about the late men.

As the women move past this, I pray that their families are able to move past this period, and grow. It is well....