It was at about 1am on monday night, when i was humbled by the news of the death of Hauwa Liman at the hands of insurgents. I had just finished a phone call convo when i hopped into twitter to check out my timeline (unsure if that was a great call; but i guess it is since it brought me back to reality).
Prior to her death, i had seen tweets denoting that she’d be killed if the demands of the insurgents were not met. Thinking back now i realise that i had done so little to prevent her death. All i did as at that time was just “retweet”. Neither did i remember to pray for her in any of my five obligatory prayers, nor did i dedicate any portion of the night to pray for her.
As i got the hint of the news, i swooned into a moment of despair which manifested in many ways. At first, i checked out if her news was trending and lo and behold it was.
In a bid to try not to lose the crux of my sanity, i kept on scrolling down my timeline; hoping that it was all a farce. That it was a joke. That it did not happen. Unfortunately for me, i was living a life filled with animosities not the kind of life that we see in movies-where things go our way most a times.
For some obscene reason, i tried to even research on google or youtube if i could see as little as a video of how they did it(it’s weird and barbaric, i know); but all these i did just for my own sanity which was on the brink of falling into an abyss!
I wanted to know how they did it. Even more i wanted to see the look on her face. Or her killer’s. Did she scream out in fear? In essence, i wanted to have a feel of her pain.
What boggled me the more was the mere fact that she was not the only one that had died that way(in the hands of insurgents alone).
Amidst that, there were other incidences that occurred concurrently in less than 24 hours. I was devastated. I imagined myself in all instances; but for some reason, i felt Hauwa Liman’s loss more. Maybe because i am a potential health worker in the making.
At that point i knew i couldn’t sleep; i had to do something. I can’t just keep doing nothing. I wanted to grieve for her loss. I wanted to mourn. More so i wanted to mourn for this country that has been thrown into a turbulent wave that has lasted for almost 10years!!!
I knew if i hadn’t dealt with these emotions personally, i’d be carrying along the baggage of depression waged by incredulity.
I had to do something. I can’t just keep doing nothing but just retweeting; which i feel is a common trait among us all tweeps.
I finally reached a conclusion that i was going to mourn. Not just for Hauwa Liman-for Leah Sharibu, for Saifura, for the chibok girls, the dapchi girls for the likes of all others that have been affected by these insurgents.
You see, the trend among us youths these days is to simply “ignore” depressing news that add to the pile of issues we need to sort out; both internally and externally. What we fail to understand is the simple fact that dealing with our emotions is a great way to heal. Acknowledging them. For each time we try to just simply “ignore”, our brain doesn’t. In essence, simply trying to shrug off these issues that plague us-does more harm to us than good.
I made a retreat that i was going to mourn for 3days where i reconnect with myself and God; get in touch with my feelings, be at peace with myself for having done nothing, initially but most importantly pray for our great country; Nigeria. What i did during the course of these 3days is something that needs not to be told.
In the course of these 3 days, i had an opportunity to dine with 2 of my friends late at night where we had a conversation about this said insurgency. Both narrating their experiences and how they were affected by it all. I was humbled even more. Shroudded by a sense of gratitude of how despite my troubles, i had never gone through a tip of the iceberg of what they had been through. At some point they had even given up. I left that conversation circle; a changed person i strongly believe. At that point i made peace with myself-i came to the conclusion that what God has in store for them(those affected by insurgents) will be a reward that others who weren’t plagued by it; will wish we had heard as little as the laughter of those that committed such atrocities.
It was truly an eye opening experience, i did not contribute much to the whole conversation-i had nothing to contribute. But i did learn a lot from it(which would be explored in another post).
A lot has been said, but what is the way forward? How do you or i prevent this from happening when we are not soldiers. We are not healthworkers and can’t go to the warfront to help. Or better yet, we are too scared to go there. Despite being frail over this whole issue of insurgency. There are peculiar things we can do as individuals.
Most of us, believe in an Almighty diety, and we worship him in our respective place of worship. We pray to Him when we are distressed about issues that concerns us; a solution is provided therein. so why can’t we do the same now? Why do we limit ourselves to just tweets on twitter denoting prayers that most of us don’t even say “Amen” to? Pray. Pray. Pray.
Give charity. No amount is ever too small what matters is the intention and the cause. As youths, we like to hide under the veil of; “i am not earning, so i can’t give out charity”. But a person that truly has the heart of giving will always give out as little as he has.
Lastly, if you know anyone around you that has been affected by this insurgency, in one way or the other-then please, reach out to them. Listen. It would make you value every moment of your life.