Exactly one year, one month ago, I wrote a blog post titled “Life is a Gift” (check it out) after recovering from my admission in the ICU with severe malaria — a tribulation that could’ve cost me my life. With the ordeals that have occurred recently — the Dusit D2 attack in Nairobi, Kenya, and the Ethiopian airline crash, just days ago, that claimed all 157 lives in the airplane — I thought it fitting to reiterate the fact that life indeed is a gift.
On January 15 (the same day, one year later, that I was admitted into the ICU), Nairobi suffered yet another Al-Shabaab (a Somali terrorist group) attack. This did come as a surprise to many, but it wouldn’t be false to say that it’s become some type of norm. We live in this reality, with all the security scans one has to go through before entering any mall, or restaurant, name it — we know and have come to terms with the reality that the Al-Shabaab do live among us and could be anywhere, any time, waiting to strike. And we know that they take innocent lives without second thought. Life is short, yes, and everyday, one way or another, be it through a sickness, a terrorist attack as such, or an accident, someone will die; however, you never realize this cold fact until it hits home.
I vividly remember quickly glancing over the alarming news article that talked of how there was yet another terrorist attack at home, Kenya, before I realized that this was one attack that I should actually care about. This wasn’t just ANY terrorist attack; this attack was at the Dusit D2 complex, where my mom’s office is located. I’ll spare you all the gory details — trust me, you don’t want to hear them. Though I can tell you that my mom was held hostage for 10 hours — those were the longest 10 hours of my life. And people did die. I’m just glad that my mom made it out fine, because believe me when I tell you that I don’t know what I would have done if not. Just thinking about this makes me tear up.
Just this week, furthermore, we received the sorrowful news that the Nairobi-bound Ethiopian Airlines flight crashed just six minutes after departure, claiming all 157 lives on board (32 of them being Kenyans). May their souls rest in peace. Shortly after, another flight of the same make (a Boeing 737) was also forced to make an emergency landing in New Jersey, after the cabin filled up with smoke. I’m supposed to fly back to school this Friday and this terrifies me — I’m already frightened enough of planes by themselves, thus, receiving such news does not make this any easier for me, or for anyone planning on traveling soon.
In brief, though, I would like to urge you all to realize how precious life is, and to never take it for granted. This is a nasty world — be happy merely for the fact that you’re alive. Appreciate your life. Make full use of time. Create more memories to treasure for your lifetime. And even when things don’t look so good, remember that, at least, you’re not dead.
I realize that this is my first blog post of the year. I hope you’re all having a great 2019 so far. I’ve been trudging, and barely made it, through the winter term — y’all know winter isn’t particularly the best season, in my opinion. However, you all have been a great support in encouraging me to write more blogs, so I’ve decided to schedule my priorities — I’ll be releasing a new blog post every other week, so make sure to look out for those. Click here to anonymously reach out to me about anything and everything, including any interesting topic ideas — I always try to observe these! Be sure to check out my other blogs too, and I wish you all a happy remainder of March!
Featured image: my mom (smiling away and appreciating life, despite all that happened, and ironically, handing a gift to someone. Life is a gift 😉 )
– Dashushka ♥