Mom Mom,I still don’t know what happened to us on March 1st, 2021.That would have been Dads 89th birthday and now I remember this date with so much pain and a heavy heart (and forever will) as the day my life was turned upside down.

To the world you were one person, but to me you were the world; always in my corner cheering me on .

Mom Mom, you were a very strong woman, with your strong opinions but always humble and respectful of other peoples’ opinions and you taught me and my siblings all of this. In her high school years, my grandpa wrote her a letter, addressing her as “My dear son”. Mom Mom quickly corrected her father, who told her he knew exactly what he was writing and that he was not losing his mind. He told mom that she was a strong woman who could do whatever men could in school/career and to always remember that.

Another testament to her strength and hard work was finishing her undergraduate degree soon after the war, while taking care of her 3 children, at that time. Her “teacher”, like we referred to the renowned Professor Nzimiro, came to tell us that Mom had passed “very very well” and that we should be proud of her and work hard like she had in school.

Mom Mom’s love was divine; I don’t know how else to describe it.

I remember as a medical student many years ago, I was ill and had to be admitted to the hospital. She did not leave my bedside and before anybody knew what was happening, she had made up a sleeping area under my bed, yes under my bed! And I was a grown woman! Nobody could make her leave.

She still brought me jollof rice whenever she visited me at the university. I now don’t have her to bring the different Nigerian foodstuff for me on her visits to the US.

Mom mom was my confidante, my best friend, my doctor too – her doctoring was above my pay grade! Just a couple of days before she passed, she was telling me about how the scent leaf, tumeric and paw-paw leaf steam inhalation is good for the lungs.

Mom’s strong faith will forever guide me. She placed any concerns in God’s hands and had special devotions to the blessed Virgin Mary. She would tell me “she is a mother like me, so she will understand a mother’s prayers”. She taught us integrity, good work ethics and the value of a good name. She would say, “Don’t, because you have an itch, keep scratching and break your skin, causing bigger problems”

Her greatest joy was being a mom. She made all our friends feel happy and at home. One of my childhood friends, on hearing mom had passed, said “chai! I will miss auntie’s belly laugh”.

I thank God for what you have taught me through the years: love, kindness, patience, endurance (the times when you would say to me “Nnem mado uwa george”).

I know that no matter how much time passes, the pain and longing will never go away, The world is confusing and scary to me, even as an adult.
Your life was a blessing, your memory a treasure. You are loved beyond words and missed beyond measure.

Who will I be hanging out with at the East Brook Mall in Mansfield, Connecticut? Or dropping and picking up? Death has taken you to a beautiful place called heaven, but it has sure made my own life a living HELL!

My tears are of overwhelming grief, I can only place one foot in front of the other, empty and broken. I know that you and Dad will forever guide us, your “famous six”

Mom Mom, you taught me everything, except how to live without you. May “nwoke okpokpo anya” grant you eternal rest with Dad.
Tell Dad “anam a try kwa o”
Kachifo,

Ije