I woke up Saturday morning only to realize that my niece died on Friday night. My immediate elder lay in bed sobbing uncontrollably and that was the last thing I wanted waking up to on a Saturday morning- bad news. My 27 year old niece who had a 5 year old died. I looked out through the window to see the sun high up in the sky at 7:00am- a total discouraging sign that prevented me from hiking. Sluggishly, I lazed out of bed, skeptical of what to do and dressed up for a routine workout. The last thing I wanted to have was a bad day. so, I forcefully faked a smile from a heavy heart.
I had mixed feelings no doubt; the sun was up, the tears were pushing and I was confused. Contemplating what else I could do besides hiking, I picked up the skipping rope, but was only able to skip 80 times because all the memories I shared with her kept swirling in my head. I dropped the rope and decided to take a fast walk round the estate with no where in mind. I tightened my laces, changed my outfit and stepped out to an unknown destination.
I headed down the road, followed a man who was on a walk as well, left him half way, followed someone else, parted ways and I just kept going. I was blank, couldn’t think of anything, couldn’t hear anything and I just kept going. After a while, I checked my timer to realize I had walked for an hour twenty minutes and reached a place I never expected I would ever risk walking to on foot and I simply kept going. Fifteen minutes later, I was exhausted. All I wanted to do was sit somewhere, rest a while or simply teleport to the house, but that was far from reach. I was tired and weak.
Slowly, my pace reduced and I saw a rope extend from a tree in a bush not too far from where I stood. I stopped, went back to get a closer view and I saw a young girl- about 8 years old- dressed in poor dirty clothes sitting on a log of wood that was tied to the extended rope. On her thighs, she carefully placed a 6 months old baby- whom I assumed was her sibling. Gently, she was swinging and rocking the little baby. This instantly refueled me. I had no camera or phone to take pictures, but I thought about a lot. The excitement on the girl’s face despite the thorns in the bush, the inconvenience from the rough looking log, her dirty clothes, the insect bites, her background and poor upbringing; she created happiness for herself and her baby sister- regardless. I completed my 1hour 50 minutes walk with a smile on my face and a positive energy that radiated and placed smiles on the faces of my family members whom I later had a video call with.
Most times, life throws a lot of unexpected dark, bitter pills into our daily lives. We’re made to face challenges, get bad news and still live our best with memories- regardless. Happiness may be far from possible and even the mixed feelings may be indescribably troubling; creating a void that is so dark and clueless. We have the power to create our own happiness- regardless. Let something fuel you up so you can refuel someone else. If life throws pepper at you, make a pot of pepper soup with it. Create your own happiness- regardless!