I have had the privilege of meeting with a lot of people trying damn too hard to survive or conquer the situation they found themselves in. Loss of loved ones, accidents, extreme poverty, incurable ailments, terrorism attacks, and so on. How are they able to deal?
If life has not hit you with heart aches, tragedies, pains and loss, you are living in paradise. Is there really someone out there like that? Maybe. But I guess we all have experienced these pains and losses, one way or the other, the only difference is in the degree. But if you have not had your share of sorrow, well, I do not know if we should say you are lucky?
Yesterday, I met a young woman of 28 whose husband left her with a one year old son. The man passed on two weeks ago under mysterious circumstances, in the twinkle of an eye. She is so young, fresh and innocent that I keep wondering how she will cope. I could not help asking God the reason behind such loss. If you are not a Nigerian, you may not understand what awaits this young lady.
In a matter of days now, they will completely shave her beautiful hair, keep her indoors for weeks. She will start to wear nothing but black or white from hair to toe. She is in the process of completing her masters thesis in school, but she told me she cannot bear the stares and side comments and pity when people see her adorned in all black or white. I imagined it myself, as young as she is, mourning a husband after only two years of marriage.
She is mourning her loss right now, but I know that soon, she will come to understand this loss more indepth. When her in-laws will start fighting her over her husband’s property and money, when people will take advantage of her because they know her man is not there, when she will have to face her future and that of her son, alone, when the bed she used to share with her second half becomes too big for her, when she will seek him in the midst of her travails for comfort but will meet only emptiness.
I encounter such situations as this, and I marvel at the strenght and tenacity that people possess. How are they able to deal with these situations? What lulls them to sleep at night and what drives them to wake up and face a new day each day? What force propels them to keep living and not give up?
She has asked God why He did not take any of the mad men roaming the streets, the sick begging for death, why must it be her young husband? Countless number of people ask God similar questions too, God why me?
I do not know how to effectively console such people undergoing this feelings of dissillusionment and pains right now. But I can only tell you to continue being strong, to hang in there, not to give up because this too must pass in time. I have been through some trying moments myself and I can boldly say that time heals all wounds. But you must hang in there first till you conquer. No matter how tough the going gets, you must keep going because that is the only way to go. As they say, tough times do not last, tough people do.
It is in such trying moments that we should show such people love and care. I think that is what they need most from us actually. This widow does not need you as an in-law to rub pepper in her wounds, all she needs is love and care and assistance. It will not erase the pains but it will strenghten her to keep fighting till things get better.
So please, next time you encounter someone in pains, lend a helping hand. There must be something you can do to alleviate their suffering.