4 Years Later

4 years ago on a day like this, I walked out of a Business Advocacy training session to find tons of missed calls from some of my family members. I was just about to go serve tea when I decided to check my phone. There was no doubt that something was terribly wrong. My old man who had been admitted at Aga Khan Hospital for the past 2 weeks had just passed on and while dad’s sister Aunty Jane refused to share that information on the phone, I was certain that he was gone. My aunt begged me to get in a cab and rush to meet her at the hospital.

I quickly informed the trainer of my emergency and got the first Uber I could get to the hospital. I vividly remember how confused the driver got when I started crying during the ride. He handed me a box of tissues and continued to drive. On getting to the hospital, I found some of my cousins and aunties hugging each other in tears near the benches at the hospital entrance.

Seeing the pain that my family members at the hospital were going through, made me terrified of my sisters’ and mum’s reaction to this news. As soon as I alighted from the cab my cousins Nyangi and Deedee rushed towards me and hugged me tightly. The pain that death causes wueh! “Where is mum?” I remember asking at some point amid tears. “She is at home with her sisters.” Aunty Jane gently responded. We cried in the hospital corridors. We hugged each other tightly desperately hoping to ease each other’s pain.

I remember going to the mortuary to see his corpse for the first time on that day. The memory of his smile even in death is still etched in my brain. I remember touching his face and thinking “Why dad? Why are they saying you are dead and I can see that you are still smiling?” I remember being so mad at God for taking away my hero. On our way back Aunty Hellen suggested that we pray the rosary. She is a very sweet and prayerful woman. And guess what yours truly did? I dozed off during the prayer because why pray to a God who watched my old man die? Why?

Through that difficult period, watching my mother, small brother, and two small sisters cry for dad is what broke my heart the most. I always asked them to share their pain with me because I don’t know…Being the firstborn one always wants to protect their siblings and even parents. Not forgetting how sad his siblings were. They had just lost their brother and I can only imagine the kind of grief they were going through. I mean, they grew up together.

4 years since he left and I still miss him dearly. His incessant jokes, kind heart, and patience. He was a lot of good things in one person. That man really made my mother and siblings very happy. Dad brought a special sense of security, warmth, and love to our home. He never got congratulate me on my very first significant promotion at work, see my sister Regina graduate, or even see my small sister Maryanne and brother Felix get to campus. He will never get to walk any of us down the aisle on our weddings, meet his grandkids or even see how mum has achieved most of his dreams and projects and that hurts me so bad, rest in peace papa.

I was so sure that I would write this without crying but this is too much. So how about I see y’all next week? Have a blessed week.

I’m not a child so I’m not gonna cry

Nikita Kering’