I’ve seen death’s cold gaze fall on people around me more times than I would like to remember in my few years on this orb circling the sun. Each time it seems to leave us a bit colder…darker.

No matter how many times you read the words or hear them spoken though, I doubt anyone ever masters loss.

This time was different…it felt colder…darker than it ever has for me at times like this.

Was it because I felt so much hope in your words as we chatted about the months ahead of you and the journeys…the one you started with Charles not so long ago and the one you would start together once your baby was born.

Or was it because it felt unfair that you survived, made it this far…and we imagined years from now talking about yesterday and all that had gone before.

I can go on. I can talk about what would have been, about your dreams and how far you came, but I won’t. I will not go on because no matter how much I say here, it will do no justice to who you were and what you represented.

Many people would have seen you go on and never known the depth of your story. You lived, you loved, you were bruised but you forgave, you moved on, you fell yes…but you got up again, turned your face towards the sun and drew strength to carry on.

The road you travelled was rough, your story was short, but it was filled with love, it was beautiful and it will not end here. We will remember your big heart and your wide gracious smile. We will remember you in the life of your daughter. Poems will be written, songs will be sung. You were precious to us and we will remember.

Above all, we know that you have not left us for ever. You have only gone ahead of us to the place that has been promised because we believe.

This is our consolation, this is our hope. Until then we will wipe our tears and turn our face towards the sun. We will let its warmth take the edge off the cold. We will draw strength and carry on.

Asabe Raliat Nankat AdulugbaFB_IMG_1496961388386…we love you and we will never forget