January, 2019 was the year I lost my dad. After the burial, several traditional rituals are performed including, the cutting off of hair as a sign of mourning (although only my mum did this), the slaughtering of a white ram and sprinkling it’s dung on the grave, and the giving away some of his belongings first to his relatives, then his friends, and finally to anyone else who wants a specific item. I decided to do my own ritual: hold on to his bed-throw that I had gifted him a few years back, and to leave his contact information in my phone the way it had always been. But, this morning while filling in a rental form that required a contact’s phone number in case of an emergency, I looked in my phone-book for the number. My contact’s name starts with the letter “D”, so I entered D, and “dad” popped up at the top. Well, a pause! thoughts! emotions! questions! Is it time to erase my dad’s number from my phone, and if so, what difference would it make? Then I did something strange. I decided to call his number knowing too well that there would be no ring or sound on the other side. Surprisingly, his phone rang three times before an automated voice said that the phone number was not available. Immediately, I called my mum to ask who it was she had given dad’s phone to, and whether his number was disabled before his phone was given away. “Angela, I was mourning,” moaned my mum, taken aback by such a random question. “I do not remember whom I gave your dad’s phone to,” she stated matter-of-factly. Realizing her sad tone, I quickly changed the subject of our conversation to a more cheerful one. A part of me wants to remove my dad’s mobile number from my phone, because I know that I will never use it to reach him again, but another part of me feels the guilt of doing so. It’s as if I am finally parting ways with him or forgetting him. So, I leave it the way it is.
Published by Msdedeng
At 41, I am still figuring out life: my place in society, my career path, a family of my own, any many others things. Heck, I am still trying to make friends in California; a place I moved to 3 years ago. I am currently in a Community College to make up for the many years I missed school while in Africa (Uganda). I intend to transfer to university next year and double major in History and English. I lead a very ordinary life; a normal day is spent doing school assignments, hiking, or reading. My favorite thing to do is walk! Short walks or long walks it does not matter. Walking allows me to think about things - anything! My love of walking comes from where I grew up, a small village in northeastern Uganda. It is still one of the most remotest areas I will ever know, and couldn't even start comparing what life is like there to say a place like California. Walking was all I did while growing up! I walked for miles to school, to church, to the shops, to the borehole to fetch water, and to the market. It was quite an adventure unlike any other - so you now understand my love for walking. View more posts