Hey… It’s me again. I guess I just can’t get over you. They say after all, a girl never forgets her first love. And they also say that a father is a daughter’s first love… So true.
Tomorrow, the 6th of April marks 16 years since we laid you to rest. I can’t believe it’s been that long, it feels like yesterday. The pain is still there, just as it was on that fateful day you left us. The space you occupied remains empty, till today. Sixteen years have gone by without anyone to call baba. Sixteen years have gone by, with not an ounce of fatherly love. Every Father’s Day has come and gone… But, orphans have no-one to call or visit.
Baba, it was my birthday on the 3rd. You were the only man who celebrated my birthday with me. Year after year, you never forgot. There was no Facebook to remind you yet you never forgot. There were no smartphones to aid your memory, you always remembered. Poor as we were, you would buy what you called ‘chifanzi’ a fancy cake. It was just a small piece of cake, but it didn’t matter for it came from a big heart. Baba, I missed you on my birthday. I miss you now. I miss you everyday.
Tatenda called me on my birthday. We spoke for hours. We talked about you too. We just mentioned some of your sayings and we had a good laugh. Memories never die, hey….
As I lay in my bed now, trying hard not to cry, because I know you never wanted to see me sad, but, baba I can’t help it. I know if you could, you would have stayed a bit longer. I know if you could, you would still be here with me. I’m sorry for the pain I caused you. I’m sorry for taking you for granted… It was naive of me to think I’d have you for eternity. I’m sorry, I never told you that I love you. I’m sorry I never hugged you when I grew up, African daughters never hugged their fathers. That was really archaic. If I knew better, I’d have given you a hug every single day.
Life hasn’t been easy since you left. It’s not really about wealth but, just your presence. Just knowing that I have a man to go to with my problems. Just to hear you tell me that I’m special and unique. Without a single touch, you always managed to comfort me. Your words always gave me strength. You always helped me up every time I fell. You never judged me, even though I disappointed you over and over again. You never stopped loving me. Baba… I will always love you too.
Let me stop now, my pillow is drenched with tears. If it’s possible, do pass on my greetings to mom, Patie and s’Mbai (sis Vimbai). You’re all dearly missed and loved.
May you continue to rest in peace.
Baba means Daddy