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

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s