Thursday, June 28, 2012


I was recently reminded by a friend of this post of mine from 2006, which I wrote in commemoration of International Women's Day.

In it, I talked about how much I respected my sister and what I had learned (and was still learning) from her (see the last but one paragraph). Sigh. I miss her so much. I can hardly believe that she is gone and in a way that could have been prevented. I can't let myself be burnt out by anger (although I have been through that phase and it still re-surfaces).

Many people have said that time will heal the pain. Others have reminded me that God is the ultimate comforter, while some others have told me that it is important to talk about her and keep her memory alive as much as I'm comfortable with. I look forward to the pain lessening over time. I look forward to a time when I can think of her, things she said, her mannerisms and still smile through it.

People have told me that in time I might struggle to even remember what she looked like or her voice. Oh my goodness, I hope not!

There is so much to celebrate about her short-yet-purposeful life. She wasted no time on things that did not appeal to her or which she thought would add no value to her life. She was driven to make our bookshop a success and was diligent in documenting processes and transactions.

And when I think about it, the way she lived is really the best way to live. Our time on this earth is a finite resource (despite how it might seem right now) and you don't want to fritter it unduly. You don't want to waste precious hours in activities that you neither enjoy or which serve no purpose to your over-arching goals just for the sake of 'being nice.' It's not to say that you don't have fun or put yourself out for others sometimes, but keep your eye on what really matters - the big picture.

My sister had a vision statement for her life, which I came across this week. Again, I was struck by how determined she was to make the most of her life. I have no written vision statement for my life, although I do have some clear ideas of how I want to live this life of mine.

So now, although the loss of my sister is easily the most devastating experience of my life, it cannot have happened to no avail. This is a very painful reminder to me to live for what's important: God, serving Him, making time for family and friends, pursuing my interests, among others. I'm going to try to articulate this in the form of a vision statement for my life. I'm going to be more mindful of how I spend my time and especially not think that things will fall apart in the office if I don't spend all my hours working. So many thoughts have run through my mind over this last few weeks about what I should do more of or less of.

Most importantly - for now, I will allow myself all the time I need to grieve and not be too bothered by those who tell me not to cry or to "be strong" or "be strong for my parents." We all need to support each other now. And we all need time to heal.


GL said...

I feel you on this one. As the say, it is well.

Ore said...

Thanks, GL!!!

Anonymous said...

I agree completely that telling you HOW to grieve is one of the well-intentioned by unhelpful advice that we often get.
Take your time, let the process flow as and like it chooses to, and will.
when it is time, what will change, will change and what won't, won't. It is a very individual process, and only you and time will determine what comes out of the other side.
In the mean time, honor to the beautiful person that you know (using the tense deliberately) is a good way to be present in your experience.
God bless you Ore, and dear God, thank you for Ayoola.

Ore said...

Thank you, Anon!! I fully intend to honour her life in the best way I know how.

Anonymous said...

Hi Ore
Lovely post. Got me thinking as well. We are all here for a purpose and it is important to fulfil that destiny. I never met Ayoola but wow, she made an impact.Someone on facebook described her as "Pure" wow....It just goes to show how much an impact she made. It is not how long but how well, and from what i have seen, Ayoola lived well. Thanks for sharing this with us...and thanks for responding to my email.Take the time to grieve.. The Lord will comfort and heal you and yours.

Remain blessed
Abimbola Dare
Abimbola Dare

SongReach said...


your lil' sis? I am so, so sorry my dear. May God bind your wound and heal your heart and family. Hugs

Anonymous said...

Ore, am sorry for your loss. I never met Ayoola, but i feel like i have known her for a long time, reading through what people wrote about her. The lord is your strength. I pray nothing like this ever happens in your family again.

Grace said...

Please don't listen to the "be strong" people. How can you not grieve the loss of such an extraordinary person, sibling and friend?

The prospect of coming up with a vision statement for my life is a bit daunting. It's so much easier to just 'wait and see what happens.'

Ore said...

Thank you, Grace. I'd already decided to find my own path in mourning her. Even just last week I heard that it's sinful to mourn her and that it showed a lack of faith.

Keke said...

"...sinful to mourn her and that it showed a lack of faith"?? Really?!!

Not only insensitive but SO SO 100% clueless and worse than legally blonde (sorry, cant be politically correct).

Anyhow, I'm glad you ignored her - of that I am confident:-) In your time, in His grace, at your pace - God didnt call u to be superwoman; even Jesus wept. & in every day of your life, and so many loving ways, you, Mummy, Daddy, Seke jnr & Omono honor Ayoola. Hugs. xoxo. Okaima.

Ore said...

Thank you so much, Okaima!!!! I guess some people just don't know what to say and some others think they know how best you should mourn.

Your words mean so much. :)