Posted in September 2015
‘Cause when the day comes
And I’ve counted all my sins
How many I’ll see, I want to be able to say
That I did more, more than pray
I did more than just spend my money
Just writing letters, than just going out marching
I did more than talking, saying the right thing
Wearing the right thing, time for an uprising
– Corinne Bailey Rae, Love’s on its way
A few days ago, I had to write an obituary. I also had to write a biography for my late aunt who was and is one of the kindest souls I’ve met. The biography part was a disaster by the way, seeing as a few pages could not really capture her person. I also left out vital information, so to speak, even though I’d like to blame this on pressure and grief.
But I didn’t forget her very essence. She was a professional and an example in her field. She was never complaining (and this threw me off balance). She was steadfast. She was also graceful, kind and cheerful. Always smiling, she left a bit of sparkle everywhere she went. She was a listener, she was our rock, our mother and the executive arm of the family. She knew how to hold it together, and would reach out no matter what anyone did wrong. She was the most understanding 56 year old woman I know, and the most tech- savvy too. She was so beautiful and very stylish.
Again that still doesn’t cover everything.
In any case, I set out to write my own obituary and biography so no one has to struggle with the details when I die. The reason? Life is fleeting! Everyday since she passed away, I’ve asked myself what people would write or say about me when I die, eventually.
I haven’t finished, and obviously can’t, someone else will have to finish it. But when the time comes, I know that the mistakes and struggles will not matter. No lousy ex-boyfriend will get a mention (Not all of them are lousy). My life won’t necessarily be defined by whether I had kids at 30 or whether I got enough likes on a filtered selfie. My biography will not be defined by the things I owned or the clothes I wore, not by the high and mighty people I know. I don’t think anyone would want to read of the nights I was bawling out or the days that were so uneventful that I didn’t even know the days’ dates.
I think that what will matter is whether I lived out my purpose. Whose life did I touch? How is/was my life an example? Who did my life inspire? Who will my death inspire? Did I do what I came here for? Then again, what do I know?
In the event that the tiny mundane details of my life matter, I intend to live a little more; you know just so there’s more to write. Like how I will finally get my eyebrows right and just maybe I’ll do a Vlog soon. There are already more than enough pictures
Maybe I’ll do a Single Girls’ Guide to surviving in Lagos? Or maybe I’ll just share my life more on this blog. Maybe I’ll take the posts down as quickly as I put them up.
I know that my epitaph should read “A planting of the Lord, for the display of His splendor, a rose that grew through concrete”. That will be apt, morbidly too. Because when you bury something, it’s really like planting.
Till then, I’ll just live.