Dear Future Me….

It’s my birthday (well it was on Saturday)!! Yaayyy!! Finally 29! You wouldn’t believe that now I am finally turning 29 all my friends have either turned 30 or are about to turn 30! So you can only understand my excitement!

I love birthdays! I always have. I think I love the idea of having all the people I love together in one room, eating, drinking, dancing and just enjoying life. Thinking about it, I would like my funeral to be one big party, with lots of food, drink and dancing. I would love for everyone to come in the colour purple or gold or both or wear African cloth. Just a burst of colour! I wouldn’t want flowers I would just like for everyone to donate to my favourite charities like Shelter, Plan UK and Men4Mentoring!

Anywhoo I digress…back to my birthday… I love them. Every year I try and celebrate. It just so happens that my husband is two days older than me so this time of the year is always very special to me/us. Although I love to celebrate and live life to the fullest from the 24th day through to the 26th day of the eighth month, I also take time out to reflect on the past year of my life and try and make some positive changes to improve my spiritual, physical and emotional wellbeing.

Last year I was terribly depressed on my birthday, I didn’t even want to get out of bed. I think I got up about 3pm in the afternoon. I was in a mood. I was disappointed. I was angry. I was resentful. I was not myself. I remember crying most of the day. Why? Well it’s a long story one that requires another blogpost, when the wounds of my past have fully healed. So this year I was dreading my birthday. I wasn’t looking forward to it at all. However this year I had to tell myself that I wasn’t going to let things or people affect my mood. I was not going to dwell on the things I could not control. The dark cloud called misery was not going to affect my life. Dwelling Dawn was leaving for good and Hopeful Holly was coming to stay. So after sieving through all my emotions and listening to ‘Dear Future Me’ by James Fortune and Fiya I sat down to pen a letter to my future self:

Dear Future Me,

Firstly well done for getting this far! At times I’m sure the road seemed rocky, at times I’m certain that you just wanted to give up! All I can say is well done for sticking through this complex, emotionally draining thing called life. You have made it to this day and you will make it to tomorrow and the next day by His Grace!

Now to the nitty gritty; Stop worrying about things that you cannot change. Your worrying will not make a positive impact to your situation instead it will only increase your anxiety and question your faith. Remember it will ALWAYS work out in the end. Trust in God and trust in you! You’ve made it up until this point haven’t you? Certain things will be out of your control….so simply let go and let God.

Focus on yourself, Isaiah, his brother and sister and Tolu. I guess I am trying to say in the most polite way ever is BE SELFISH! Always remember “I Before Others”! Stop going out of your way for people but instead go out of your way for yourself and your boys and little girl! What I have realised is that no matter how much you love people and make sacrifices for them, they will not always make the same sacrifices for you and that’s okay. Just remember do not break your back for people that cannot even bend backwards for you. Remember to say NO when you are not comfortable with something. Think about yourself first before you say yes. Saying ‘No’ does not mean you do not care! It just means that you cannot at that particular time.

I guess this leads me to my next point; do not dwell on the past or the past hurt that you have experienced in the hands of others. Life is too short. Think about it, did you ever imagine that you would be sat where you are currently reading a letter from a younger version of yourself? No. I didn’t think you did. So that illustrates that time moves forward. So should you. You have spent many years covering up the emotional scars of your past….embrace them and leave them where they should be…in the past. Don’t waste your precious short time on this Earth dwelling on things or people you cannot change.

Believe in yourself! You have so much potential, do not let the opinions of others (including family and friends) deter you from this mind-set. You have achieved so much in your life so far, think about how much more you could have achieved if you caught this revelation in your youth. Do not waste any more time! You can and you WILL! Whenever that procrastination spirit wants to get hold of you remember, “The secret to getting ahead is to get started”.

Live in every moment! I trust you will be able to do this because you love to have a good time. Life is about living. Go and see the world, Climb Mountains, run marathons! Live a life that’s worthy. Think of all the stories you’ll pass down to your grandchildren.

Finally always choose Joy. It’s the best armour against misery and the devil and your haters! Trust me it’s worked this far!

After writing my letter, I can now say I am E to the X CITED! To step into my last year of my twenties what has been the most emotional, most challenging, most revealing nine years of my life. However the nine years also gave me the greatest joys of all. They saw me from a Miss into a Mrs when I married Caramel Latte (yes I love a latte) man and obviously the nine years in which I achieved my biggest accomplishment of all…my big eyed, big smile, energetic, mini me! My Isaiah.

So yes… the storms have come but they’ve also gone…the sun is shining!! I cannot wait to shine into and in my 30s because I am on the path to being able to see clearly again.

Why don’t you give it a go! Write your own ‘Dear Future Me’ letter. What would like to tell an older version of yourself? What lessons have you learnt? Let’s start the #dearfuturemechallenge. Trust me it’ll be the most therapeutic thing you have ever done! I’ll leave you with a snippet of the song ‘Dear Future Me’.

As Always,

Be Happy, Be Bright, Be YOU!

Love Mabs xx

I Leaped

So obviously this whole posting on a regular basis is not working but hey…I will try to do better! And I will continue trying! So my sincere apologies for my lack of commitment…I promise I’ll get better… Well I did it! Did what? I hear you ask…I took the leap! I stepped outside of my comfort zone, for once I actually let go and let God! How? I hear you ask….well I finally made the decision to put myself and my family first.

As much as I had built lovely relationships with other members of staff as well as the students, I was however desperately un-happy. My old place of employment was not diverse at all, in terms of ratios it was probably 1:10 black minority ethnic members of staff to white Caucasian members of staff. This then meant that I had to deal with a lot of racial ignorance, sometimes racism from students, with little to nothing done about the abuse. I know what you are all thinking…why did you stay for that long? Well…I was comfortable-ish. The holidays were amazing, I was doing something I loved, and overall it was convenient. It took a comment from another member of staff to make me realise that I had to Get Out (with reference to the film )! The comment coupled with my monthly wage packet made me realise that my skill set was not aligned with the role therefore dawned on me that it was time to take my own advice and take the leap!

I made the decision to move on. However, I went into the application process with a defeatist mentality. Who would want to hire me? I don’t live in St. Albans, neither do I have blonde hair and blue eyes, I am a mother, I have a ‘foreign’ name and to top it all off I had been out of the project management sector for three years! However the little voice within me told me to let go and let God and so I did…kind off. After downloading the application pack and filling out all the basic aspects of it, False Evidence Appearing Real kicked in! After convincing myself that I was not competent enough to fill out the personal statement part of the application form, I asked my husband to do it for me…

‘No, do it yourself and I’ll just check over it’. My response, ‘You NEVER want to help me…blah blah blah’. His response ‘You need to have more faith in yourself Mabinty, stop putting yourself down’. My reply, ‘Whatever, you just don’t want to help me’.

So the Stubborn Susie within went ahead and filled out the application form without even telling him and sent it a day before deadline! When I sent the application form in, I had convinced myself that I wasn’t going to get shortlisted at all! Thursday May 25th rolled along, exactly a week after the application deadline. I remember being in the sports hall invigilating yet another exam… bear with me while I digress…

If you ever want to know what dying of boredom would feel like, invigilate an exam. Literally the most soul sucking experience EVER! Especially when you are made to do it time and time again!

Anywhoo back to my testimony…at that moment, as I contemplated my life, I had a conversation with God! Actually let me rephrase I was telling Him off paired with a lot of woe is me statements “Why doesn’t anything good ever happen for?” so on and so on. At the end of the exchange with God I simply said, “If this is for me then it will be for me”. In hindsight I believe God was laughing at me, He probably thought ‘look at this girl, if only she knew’. Then the email appeared in my inbox at 3pm…I looked for the ‘You have been unsuccessful on this occasion’ line but couldn’t find it! Instead I saw, ‘You have been successful’ then I panicked! Sugar Honey Ice Tea! I never expected to get shortlisted! So I spent the following week reading on everything and anything to do with faith and education!

Interview day came, the sun was shining. I remember telling myself that the interview was a practice for the future roles I was going to apply for…then I walked in and committed a faux par immediately! I called the director Stuart instead of James and immediately thought that was it! The job was no longer mine! It’s funny because after that incident my nerves were gone! I decided to be myself! I left the interview content with my performance and for a practice went well.

I didn’t expect to hear from them until the following week! But two hours after the interview I got the call that I thought I would never get ‘We would like to offer you the role of Project Coordinator for the Church of England’s Foundation for Educational Leadership, we look forward to working with you’. At that moment in time I felt that God had truly come through for me. I did it! I faced my fears and took the leap from one fish bowl into another!

I have said all this to ultimately say; Apply for that job you’ve always wanted, move to that country you have always wanted to live in, start that business you have always wanted to start! Have faith in yourself but more importantly have faith in the God that you serve! I felt stuck in a job where I wasn’t growing, a job that I wasn’t happy in however I stayed stuck because I was scared and confused. Then I took a leap into the unknown, within the unknown is where I found happiness and clarity. Let go and let GOD!

As Always,

Be Bright, Be Happy, Be YOU!

Love Mabs x

Ten Years On The Pain Still Remains….

I still can’t believe it’s been ten years. I never really understood grief or kI still can’t believe it’s been ten years. I never really understood grief or knew what grief was until she left us. Aunty Hawa, was more than an aunt she was like my second mum. Yes, it’s a clichè phrase but God and family members know this to be true. She was down to earth, open and loving. Boy was she loving! Aunty Hawa was never short of gifts, words of affirmation and hugs. I love hugs and words of affirmation. ‘Mabinty, I’m proud of you’. ‘Well done for going to University, Mabinty’ she would coo so softly with that big wide amazing smile that will make even the most miserable person on earth smile too.

I remember the last time I spoke to her, actually I remember it well, it was a Saturday in March of 2007 I had been out the night before so stayed in Kingston that weekend. Aunty Hawa was back in hospital then, even from her sick bed she still wanted to check on me and tell me she loved me and that she was proud of me. She never once mentioned her illness or the severity of it, instead she kept the call positive, sweet and short. If only I knew that would be the last time I would hear her soft yet melodic voice; I would have begged her not to leave us, I would have told her how much we all needed her still, I would tell her how much of a blessing she had been to us and finally that my love for her was infinite, never ending and deep.
I was oblivious to the fact that Aunty Hawa was only given months…..I still can’t believe it’s been ten years.
I never really understood grief or knew what grief was until she left us. Aunty Hawa, was more than an aunt she was like my second mum. Yes, it’s a clichè phrase but God and family members know this to be true. She was down to Earth, open and loving. Boy was she loving! Aunty Hawa was never short of gifts, words of affirmation and hugs. I love hugs and words of affirmation. ‘Mabinty, I’m proud of you’. ‘Well done for going to University, Mabinty’ she would coo so softly with that big wide amazing smile that will make even the most miserable person on earth smile too.
I remember the last time I spoke to her, actually I remember it well, it was a Saturday in March of 2007 I had been out the night before so stayed in Kingston that weekend. Aunty Hawa was back in hospital then, even from her sick bed she still wanted to check on me and tell me she loved me and that she was proud of me. She never once mentioned her illness or the severity of it, instead she kept the call positive, sweet and short. If only I knew that would be the last time I would hear her soft yet melodic voice; I would have begged her not to leave us, I would have told her how much we all needed her still, I would tell her how much of a blessing she had been to us and finally that my love for her was infinite, never ending and deep.
I was oblivious to the fact that Aunty Hawa was only given months…..Thursday, May 24th 2007 hit me like a tonne of bricks. Even to this day as clear as my memory is in terms of my emotions and how I felt that sunny Thursday morning, everything else is hazey. Looking back now although the sun was shining and everyone around me was happy, to me it was completely darkness. I remember thinking about Moses and Ben and then casting my mind to oblivious six year old Becky, her children. Questions like, how will they cope with this tremendous loss? How can we support them? To bringing my thoughts back to whether aunty Hawa was truly gone.
I wish every day she was here to witness the amazing acomplishments of my cousins. She would be so proud of the amazing men they’ve become and the beautiful young lady that her only daughter has become. Aunty Hawa loved to spoil us with gifts, so I can only imagine how she would have spoilt her grandchildren.
Before aunty Hawa’s death I didn’t know what grief was, I had never experienced that gut wrenching pain that felt like it would never leave. I cried. I cried alot. Actually till this day I still cry. I’m actually crying now as I pen my thoughts down. That’s how I pretty much dealt with aunty Hawa’s death, through my tears. It’s funny because every single member of my family felt the same pain as I did, but we never really discussed it, we rarely shared our memories of her. In hindsight I believe it was because the pain was all too much for us to handle, the reality that we will never see her again was too big to come to terms with.
I wrote her letters after she died, telling her how much I loved her etc, just giving her the low down on my life and the lives of those she loved. I guess that was one way I tried to deal with her passing. For months I was unable to sleep, too afraid to incase I too would pass away during the night. Irrational. I know. But grief makes you think and believe irrational thoughts. I still struggle to sleep today, my fear and somewhat obsession with death is still prevalent today. Honestly I firmly believe it’s because I haven’t been able to grieve properly. I don’t know how to grieve. I’m still processing my pain and coming to terms with it. I guess there is no right or wrong way to deal with loss. I’m still on the journey.
I’m at peace with aunty Hawa’s death but ten years on the pain still remains and I think it always will.
I want to finish off with my favourite memory of her…
It was Christmas 2006 (what would be aunty Hawa’s last Christmas) as family tradition went, aunty Hawa, Moses, Ben and Becky all came over to my family house for Christmas lunch. They always woke us up with presents and insults because we were all still asleep. After we opened presents, got dressed we would all help set up the table, prepare the last of the meals and we would all then ascend to the table as a family. During all of these activities my cousins Moses or Ben would walk around capturing us all on video. Once sat down, we would pray, then eat. As we ate, this year in particular, we decided to play games…chinese whispers is the one game I vivdly remember playing. Let’s just say it was so funny because it was a hot mess! Africans and Chinese whispers is funnier than funny. After Christmas lunch, the washing up and tidying up would be done and the children would descend downstairs whilst the adults stayed upstairs talking about grown stuff. ‘Mabinty, Mabinty, come upstairs please’. ‘Please can you put that song on’. ‘Which song aunty?’ ‘Vuli….dun..da..le…..’. I knew exactly what song she met because it was the new banger that every Sierra Leonean person loved! So I went over to the CD player and put it on Brenda Fassie, Vulindlea. The opening line boomed from our living room speakers…’Vuliiiiii’ and juat like that aunty Hawa jumped out of the chair she was sat on and began to dance, she danced for the whole five minutes constantly smiling and proclaiming her love for the song.
So that’s who my aunt was! Fun, loved life to the fullest and that’s how I choose to remember her even through my tears.
https://youtu.be/1RvfDkzUOosursday, May 24th 2007 hit me like a tonne of bricks. Even to this day as clear as my memory is in terms of my emotions and how I felt that sunny Thursday morning, everything else is hazey. Looking back now although the sun was shining and everyone around me was happy, to me it was completely darkness. I remember thinking about Moses and Ben and then casting my mind to oblivious six year old Becky, her children. Questions like, how will they cope with this tremendous loss? How can we support them? To bringing my thoughts back to whether aunty Hawa was truly gone.
I wish every day she was here to witness the amazing acomplishments of my cousins. She would be so proud of the amazing men they’ve become and the beautiful young lady that her only daughter has become. Aunty Hawa loved to spoil us with gifts, so I can only imagine how she would have spoilt her grandchildren.
Before aunty Hawa’s death I didn’t know what grief was, I had never experienced that gut wrenching pain that felt like it would never leave. I cried. I cried alot. Actually till this day I still cry. I’m actually crying now as I pen my thoughts down. That’s how I pretty much dealt with aunty Hawa’s death, through my tears. It’s funny because every single member of my family felt the same pain as I did, but we never really discussed it, we rarely shared our memories of her. In hindsight I believe it was because the pain was all too much for us to handle, the reality that we will never see her again was too big to come to terms with.
I wrote her letters after she died, telling her how much I loved her etc, just giving her the low down on my life and the lives of those she loved. I guess that was one way I tried to deal with her passing. For months I was unable to sleep, too afraid to incase I too would pass away during the night. Irrational. I know. But grief makes you think and believe irrational thoughts. I still struggle to sleep today, my fear and somewhat obsession with death is still prevalent today. Honestly I firmly believe it’s because I haven’t been able to grieve properly. I don’t know how to grieve. I’m still processing my pain and coming to terms with it. I guess there is no right or wrong way to deal with loss. I’m still on the journey.
I’m at peace with aunty Hawa’s death but ten years on the pain still remains and I think it always will.
I want to finish off with my favourite memory of her…
It was Christmas 2006 (what would be aunty Hawa’s last Christmas) as family tradition went, aunty Hawa, Moses, Ben and Becky all came over to my family house for Christmas lunch. They always woke us up with presents and insults because we were all still asleep. After we opened presents, got dressed we would all help set up the table, prepare the last of the meals and we would all then ascend to the table as a family. During all of these activities my cousins Moses or Ben would walk around capturing us all on video. Once sat down, we would pray, then eat. As we ate, this year in particular, we decided to play games…chinese whispers is the one game I vivdly remember playing. Let’s just say it was so funny because it was a hot mess! Africans and Chinese whispers is funnier than funny. After Christmas lunch, the washing up and tidying up would be done and the children would descend downstairs whilst the adults stayed upstairs talking about grown stuff. ‘Mabinty, Mabinty, come upstairs please’. ‘Please can you put that song on’. ‘Which song aunty?’ ‘Vuli….dun..da..le…..’. I knew exactly what song she met because it was the new banger that every Sierra Leonean person loved! So I went over to the CD player and put it on Brenda Fassie, Vulindlea. The opening line boomed from our living room speakers…’Vuliiiiii’ and juat like that aunty Hawa jumped out of the chair she was sat on and began to dance, she danced for the whole five minutes constantly smiling and proclaiming her love for the song.
So that’s who my aunt was! Fun, loved life to the fullest and that’s how I choose to remember her even through my tears.

Ben Kamara 20160201_222736

FB_IMG_1495579241071 new what grief was until she left us. Aunty Hawa, was more than an aunt she was like my second mum. Yes, it’s a clichè phrase but God and family members know this to be true. She was down to earth, open and loving. Boy was she loving! Aunty Hawa was never short of gifts, words of affirmation and hugs. I love hugs and words of affirmation. ‘Mabinty, I’m proud of you’. ‘Well done for going to University, Mabinty’ she would coo so softly with that big wide amazing smile that will make even the most miserable person on earth smile too.
I remember the last time I spoke to her, actually I remember it well, it was a Saturday in March of 2007 I had been out the night before so stayed in Kingston that weekend. Aunty Hawa was back in hospital then, even from her sick bed she still wanted to check on me and tell me she loved me and that she was proud of me. She never once mentioned her illness or the severity of it, instead she kept the call positive, sweet and short. If only I knew that would be the last time I would hear her soft yet melodic voice; I would have begged her not to leave us, I would have told her how much we all needed her still, I would tell her how much of a blessing she had been to us and finally that my love for her was infinite, never ending and deep.
I was oblivious to the fact that Aunty Hawa was only given months…..I still can’t believe it’s been ten years. 

I never really understood grief or knew what grief was until she left us. Aunty Hawa, was more than an aunt she was like my second mum. Yes, it’s a clichè phrase but God and family members know this to be true. She was down to Earth, open and loving. Boy was she loving! Aunty Hawa was never short of gifts, words of affirmation and hugs. I love hugs and words of affirmation. ‘Mabinty, I’m proud of you’. ‘Well done for going to University, Mabinty’ she would coo so softly with that big wide amazing smile that will make even the most miserable person on earth smile too.

I remember the last time I spoke to her, actually I remember it well, it was a Saturday in March of 2007 I had been out the night before so stayed in Kingston that weekend. Aunty Hawa was back in hospital then, even from her sick bed she still wanted to check on me and tell me she loved me and that she was proud of me. She never once mentioned her illness or the severity of it, instead she kept the call positive, sweet and short. If only I knew that would be the last time I would hear her soft yet melodic voice; I would have begged her not to leave us, I would have told her how much we all needed her still, I would tell her how much of a blessing she had been to us and finally that my love for her was infinite, never ending and deep.
I was oblivious to the fact that Aunty Hawa was only given months…..Thursday, May 24th 2007 hit me like a tonne of bricks. Even to this day as clear as my memory is in terms of my emotions and how I felt that sunny Thursday morning, everything else is hazey. Looking back now although the sun was shining and everyone around me was happy, to me it was completely darkness. I remember thinking about Moses and Ben and then casting my mind to oblivious six year old Becky, her children. Questions like, how will they cope with this tremendous loss? How can we support them? To bringing my thoughts back to whether aunty Hawa was truly gone.
I wish every day she was here to witness the amazing acomplishments of my cousins. She would be so proud of the amazing men they’ve become and the beautiful young lady that her only daughter has become. Aunty Hawa loved to spoil us with gifts, so I can only imagine how she would have spoilt her grandchildren.
Before aunty Hawa’s death I didn’t know what grief was, I had never experienced that gut wrenching pain that felt like it would never leave. I cried. I cried alot. Actually till this day I still cry. I’m actually crying now as I pen my thoughts down. That’s how I pretty much dealt with aunty Hawa’s death, through my tears. It’s funny because every single member of my family felt the same pain as I did, but we never really discussed it, we rarely shared our memories of her. In hindsight I believe it was because the pain was all too much for us to handle, the reality that we will never see her again was too big to come to terms with.
I wrote her letters after she died, telling her how much I loved her etc, just giving her the low down on my life and the lives of those she loved. I guess that was one way I tried to deal with her passing. For months I was unable to sleep, too afraid to incase I too would pass away during the night. Irrational. I know. But grief makes you think and believe irrational thoughts. I still struggle to sleep today, my fear and somewhat obsession with death is still prevalent today. Honestly I firmly believe it’s because I haven’t been able to grieve properly. I don’t know how to grieve. I’m still processing my pain and coming to terms with it. I guess there is no right or wrong way to deal with loss. I’m still on the journey.
I’m at peace with aunty Hawa’s death but ten years on the pain still remains and I think it always will.
I want to finish off with my favourite memory of her…
It was Christmas 2006 (what would be aunty Hawa’s last Christmas) as family tradition went, aunty Hawa, Moses, Ben and Becky all came over to my family house for Christmas lunch. They always woke us up with presents and insults because we were all still asleep. After we opened presents, got dressed we would all help set up the table, prepare the last of the meals and we would all then ascend to the table as a family. During all of these activities my cousins Moses or Ben would walk around capturing us all on video. Once sat down, we would pray, then eat. As we ate, this year in particular, we decided to play games…chinese whispers is the one game I vivdly remember playing. Let’s just say it was so funny because it was a hot mess! Africans and Chinese whispers is funnier than funny. After Christmas lunch, the washing up and tidying up would be done and the children would descend downstairs whilst the adults stayed upstairs talking about grown stuff. ‘Mabinty, Mabinty, come upstairs please’. ‘Please can you put that song on’. ‘Which song aunty?’ ‘Vuli….dun..da..le…..’. I knew exactly what song she met because it was the new banger that every Sierra Leonean person loved! So I went over to the CD player and put it on Brenda Fassie, Vulindlea. The opening line boomed from our living room speakers…’Vuliiiiii’ and juat like that aunty Hawa jumped out of the chair she was sat on and began to dance, she danced for the whole five minutes constantly smiling and proclaiming her love for the song.
So that’s who my aunt was! Fun, loved life to the fullest and that’s how I choose to remember her even through my tears.
https://youtu.be/1RvfDkzUOosursday, May 24th 2007 hit me like a tonne of bricks. Even to this day as clear as my memory is in terms of my emotions and how I felt that sunny Thursday morning, everything else is hazey. Looking back now although the sun was shining and everyone around me was happy, to me it was completely darkness. I remember thinking about Moses and Ben and then casting my mind to oblivious six year old Becky, her children. Questions like, how will they cope with this tremendous loss? How can we support them? To bringing my thoughts back to whether aunty Hawa was truly gone.
I wish every day she was here to witness the amazing acomplishments of my cousins. She would be so proud of the amazing men they’ve become and the beautiful young lady that her only daughter has become. Aunty Hawa loved to spoil us with gifts, so I can only imagine how she would have spoilt her grandchildren.
Before aunty Hawa’s death I didn’t know what grief was, I had never experienced that gut wrenching pain that felt like it would never leave. I cried. I cried alot. Actually till this day I still cry. I’m actually crying now as I pen my thoughts down. That’s how I pretty much dealt with aunty Hawa’s death, through my tears. It’s funny because every single member of my family felt the same pain as I did, but we never really discussed it, we rarely shared our memories of her. In hindsight I believe it was because the pain was all too much for us to handle, the reality that we will never see her again was too big to come to terms with.
I wrote her letters after she died, telling her how much I loved her etc, just giving her the low down on my life and the lives of those she loved. I guess that was one way I tried to deal with her passing. For months I was unable to sleep, too afraid to incase I too would pass away during the night. Irrational. I know. But grief makes you think and believe irrational thoughts. I still struggle to sleep today, my fear and somewhat obsession with death is still prevalent today. Honestly I firmly believe it’s because I haven’t been able to grieve properly. I don’t know how to grieve. I’m still processing my pain and coming to terms with it. I guess there is no right or wrong way to deal with loss. I’m still on the journey.
I’m at peace with aunty Hawa’s death but ten years on the pain still remains and I think it always will.
I want to finish off with my favourite memory of her…
It was Christmas 2006 (what would be aunty Hawa’s last Christmas) as family tradition went, aunty Hawa, Moses, Ben and Becky all came over to my family house for Christmas lunch. They always woke us up with presents and insults because we were all still asleep. After we opened presents, got dressed we would all help set up the table, prepare the last of the meals and we would all then ascend to the table as a family. During all of these activities my cousins Moses or Ben would walk around capturing us all on video. Once sat down, we would pray, then eat. As we ate, this year in particular, we decided to play games…chinese whispers is the one game I vivdly remember playing. Let’s just say it was so funny because it was a hot mess! Africans and Chinese whispers is funnier than funny. After Christmas lunch, the washing up and tidying up would be done and the children would descend downstairs whilst the adults stayed upstairs talking about grown stuff. ‘Mabinty, Mabinty, come upstairs please’. ‘Please can you put that song on’. ‘Which song aunty?’ ‘Vuli….dun..da..le…..’. I knew exactly what song she met because it was the new banger that every Sierra Leonean person loved! So I went over to the CD player and put it on Brenda Fassie, Vulindlea. The opening line boomed from our living room speakers…’Vuliiiiii’ and juat like that aunty Hawa jumped out of the chair she was sat on and began to dance, she danced for the whole five minutes constantly smiling and proclaiming her love for the song.
So that’s who my aunt was! Fun, loved life to the fullest and that’s how I choose to remember her even through my tears.

 

Ben Kamara 20160201_222736

 

FB_IMG_1495579241071