This has been one of the worst weekends I’ve ever experienced. Late on Saturday night, I got a call that one of my closest friend’s husband had died in a tragic car accident. In that instant my friend had been made a widow at only 30.

She was on the verge of changing her whole life, moving to Zambia, giving up her job and starting afresh. And all that changed in a moment. A sad moment.

Her husband was also a great guy, so full of energy, and they were both so in love. They were like the perfect couple. They were a beautiful couple. It’s hit everyone so hard, and affecting me even harder than I could ever imagine.

I knew him, not that well, but his wife was becoming like my best friend (even at our age, we can still have best friends – more than one as well), so to have her go through this, is heartbreaking. My heart literally is breaking for her.

Also having lost two brothers, I feel for his sister, who is also a friend of mine. Losing someone so full of life really reminds you how tomorrow is not promised and how we need to be thankful for every moment we have and count our blessing. But it also means we can’t focus on planning for tomorrow but living for today.

It reminds me of this poem my friend – actually Mwango’s sister – sent me that says that life begins when you do. It’s about living in the moment and not putting of what can be done today for tomorrow.

We always have excuses; not enough money, waiting for a qualification, waiting for the right time, etc, but we need to just do it because we don’t know what tomorrow will bring.

As heartbreaking as this situation is, it also puts things in perspective, don’t sweat the small stuff. And remember to tell the people who matter, that they matter.

Right now, I’ve turned to the Bible for comfort in this moment of darkness and I know that one day, somehow, the light will shine through again. It’s not our job to question God, but sometimes you do want to understand why. I believe like all lives lost, Mwango had a purpose, a purpose we might not yet know, but his life touched too many people for him not to have a purpose. This is the Bible passage that I’m reading over and over again, and finding some comfort in it.

Isaiah 41:10, 13
Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness. . . . For I the LORD thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.

Today I’m being soft, allowing myself to feel all the pain, and be in the moment, as much as it hurts. Because I know when she comes back, she’ll need me and all her friends more than ever, as she begins to face a whole new life. But it’s hard. The pain is almost unbearable, it’s been a long time since I’ve allowed myself to feel pain. Usually I sweep hurt and pain under the carpet, refusing to feel, but when you do that, eventually it comes out and maybe that’s what’s happened to me.

I’ve dealt with my other friend losing her mum two weeks ago and now this happening to Manenga. It’s too much pain for my good friends to go through and as I’m quite empathetic my energy source is depleted – too much too soon. It’s something my therapist has said to me time and time again (yes I’m one of those black people that does believe that there’s nothing wrong with therapy), I feel too much and that if I’m not careful, I’ll deplete my energy source. I can’t deal with too much trauma too soon. Probably because of never properly dealing with my own personal hurt in the past.

I’m trying to be there for everyone but have perhaps not taken enough care of myself either, and takes like this when being alone doesn’t help. Could do with someone taking care of me for a bit. But then I feel selfish, I’m not the one who has lost, so why do I need a hug? I just need to get my strength back and be the rock for everyone.

Tomorrow I’ll try to be strong but for today I’m being soft. And praying.

RIP Mwango Katema