Yesterday, I added one more year to my time alive. And as I like to do, I took some time away from everything and just thought about things. My life, my time here. Meaning. Purpose.
I particularly lingered on my relationships, the people I have lost. I thought about Laolu, my friend, my brother who was one of the first to wish me a happy birthday yesterday a year ago. It hurt – it still hurts to think of him in past tense – but then, is he truly gone?
I thought about my mother too. I wondered if, as she lay on the hospital bed and I lay in her arms sleeping, she worried about what life held for me. If she thought about what I would need to be whatever it was I was sent here to become – and if she was the best person for the job.
I know I wondered about that when I held my little girl for the first time.
A lot of my dead friends crossed my mind – but I kept thinking about Laolu and the influence he has over my life. This was a guy who I ran into at some random game center, who took interest in me and invited me to apply to the university he was in at the time (UNAD) because he saw I was struggling with gaining admission after LASU. He was so happy when I passed and my name showed up on the first admission list, and we traveled down to do my registration. We were roomies 90% of the time – he graduated before me but we lived together for about four years – four of the most important years I’ve lived so far. We saw each other through many things – heartbreak, failure, fear, doubt, trouble – you name it. It’s why I started to refer to him as a brother. He was that to me and more.
And after school, he didn’t stop. He kept prodding me about my writing. I remember when I started a particular series, he was so impressed he went onto his site, shared the story and called me ‘legend’. Typically for him, he didn’t mention it once. Not to me.
I found it via Google.
Yes. I thought about Laolu on my birthday, and I wondered how he is doing where he is. I thought about his wife and his son – my godson. I miss my friend, so much. But I’m always grateful I had someone like that to help me on this journey of life. I’m a year older – and like GT Bank once said in a text to me, ‘not only a year older but also a year better’.
Hug your loves, people. Time isn’t forever.