Series

YOLO — You Only Live Once

We got the call at 4am on a Wednesday morning. 

The call that had us all challenging our faith, questioning our own lives and the way we chose to live. We lost him, after everything we did, after all the doctors, all the calls, all the prayers, he’s gone… just like that. A 30-year-old, new husband and father was gone. Our brother was gone.

We all seem to take life for granted! We think time is always on our side until some event occurs that shakes our world apart. We plan out our lives and work extra hard to make our dreams come true but what happens when the dream you planned turns into a nightmare. When we lose the person, we planned our lives with or other loved ones that played a significant role in our lives, what happens then?

My father always used to tell me “A good name is far better than a million riches.” I finally understood it as we were burying our brother. He led by example, always helping others, always speaking only of the positive and never going against his family’s will. He touched everyone that came across his path by his gentle and caring manner. He was a remarkable man that had the drive to achieve anything he put his heart into. His funeral showed precisely that, as over 1000 people came to pay their respects, from his young friends to different successful business people in Ethiopia, Ministers, Priests and Bishops, and family from all over the world. We all gathered to celebrate the short life of a man who was destined for greatness.

That’s one of the things I love about the habesha culture. Our people all come together in times of need and it gives those mourning a sense of hope and comfort. I saw that when we buried my father and again this past week. People came from all over Ethiopia to pay their respects to the family, some knew our brother and some did not. They heard his story and wanted to support the family.

You’re probably wondering where the term YOLO fits into this post. Here it goes:

You Only Live Once- so make the most out of the time you are given here. Losing someone reminds us of how short life really is. Do good in the world, and good things will happen to you. Make a positive change and help other people. Remind the people you love that you are here for them and tell them you love them every chance you get.

All we have is right now, yesterday passed already, and tomorrow is not granted. Right now is what we are given. Embrace your “right now” and enjoy every minute of it. Live a fulfilled life, one where happiness outweighs the sorrow, where your heart is clean, and love is evident. 

We are all placed on earth for a purpose, find yours and follow your dreams. Live by example and always show pure love to those that are in need of it. We are all going to leave this world; it’s just a matter of time for all of us. So let’s leave a legacy that we can be proud of.

In the words of my favorite man- Bini:
“Live life to the fullest, live in the moment, appreciate what you have and stop worrying about what you want. Life is a roller coaster and as long as you stay on it, you will get to the end. Tell those that are close to you, how much you love them, every chance you get. Forgive those that have wronged you. Our time on this earth is limited so let’s make every moment we have count.” BT

In loving memory of Merid Gizaw!

Gone but never Forgotten!