My friend Stephanie Nwoko would have been 22 today. She died in the 2005 Sosoliso plane crash ten years ago, and I have written about her in the past. She was fiercely ambitious and passionate about succeeding. I also remember that she was so tall and light skin haha.
She did really funny,
and slightly weird things like walk with her eyes closed, so she could imagine how blindness felt. She said she wanted to be more empathetic towards the blind students in school.
She also refused to give out card board paper (A big sheet of colored paper we used for projects, assignments and presentations). Although it was the end of the term and we usually would get new supplies from home, she said she was saving hers for the next term, which she sadly never saw.
One time we had a fight because she used my bar of washing soap, and I think she either lost or finished it. I really needed a bar of soap to wash my clothes, and although I could have been kinder to her, I used her almost finished bar of bathing soap. It all worked out fine, don’t worry. We didn’t speak for a short while, but afterwards, everything was settled.
I remember Stephanie and her really tall, really beautiful mom checking out the class notice board trying to figure out a study schedule for Stephanie. This was on my first visiting day when I was crying like a baby because I hated boarding school and I was terribly homesick. Lol, priorities fam!
That must have gone really well because in the end of term exam, she came 2nd out of about 100+ kids.
I was wearing my favorite purple dress when I learnt that she had died in the plane crash and I was numb about the entire thing for a long while.
When I got back to school and saw pictures of her, her notebooks, and some of her things, if finally hit me that she was gone. Gone. And that was when I got really sad.
I wonder how life would have been if Stephanie were alive today. I wonder what kind of young lady she would have become. She probably would have been a high flyer, perhaps graduated from a really good school, and working or pursuing a higher degree.
More importantly, I wonder what kind of person she would have been. What would have come to mind when I thought about her. Would we still be friends? Probably, but how would our friendship have changed over time?
My female classmates from Loyola and I have a whatsapp group where we share banter, and all kinds of good stuff. I wonder how different that group would have been if she and the other two female classmates who died were still alive today.
It may seem insignificant to wonder how a whatsapp group would have turned out, but it’s the seemingly insignificant and mundane things that constitute life as we know it.
I cannot imagine the pain her family feels every April 24.
May the Lord grant them fortitude and may He give us all the grace to walk in the purpose that He has designed for our lives.
I wish you all the best in the upcoming week. It’s a busy one for me, with exams and papers and all that good stuff. Please keep me in your prayers, and I’ll try my best to post consistently.
Featured image from here.