Tuesday, July 9, 2013

In Loving Memory of Constance Akapo

In the middle of all the joy of being with my friends and family again, I received the news that one of my little Meerkats passed away sometime in the last two years.

His name was Constance Akapo.
He was about two or three years old when I first came to Ghana. He was Abla's son, the middle child between Gracious and Lucky. Worfa and Victoria explained his death simply by saying, "Sickness." Here, that usually means malaria, although it's really anybody's guess.
It'd be impossible to pick a favorite, but of my Meerkats, he was one of the most precious to me. He was quiet, almost shy, but could get wound up just like any little boy. He was the biggest fan of "This little piggy" of any little kid I've ever met. He would come up to me and announce, "Weeweewee...home" and plop down on my lap, content to stay there for as long as I was willing to repeat it, offering me one foot and then the other and then even his hands if it would keep the game going longer.
Ghana is not an easy place to grieve. I rarely have anything resembling privacy, and open displays of sadness are among the least accepted emotions. Sometimes I will catch sight of little boys about his age running up to me in the dim light and think they are him for a split second, and I feel the loss all over again. Finding out that another kid I love is gone has not gotten any easier with repition. Many Ghanaians seem to accept death as a matter of course, at least externally. I don't feel that calm acceptance on any level, inwardly least of all. I am angry that Constance will never get the chance to grow up, to learn and to experience life. I am sad that I've been cheated of the chance to see him again, that I didn't know that I was saying goodbye for the last time. My heart aches for Abla. And I'm struggling with the fact that I am forced to grieve alone. So, please, do something for me: take a moment for this little boy. I know you never met him, but he meant the world to me and I will never forget him. Since you cannot be here with me, please take a moment to be here for me.


  1. I am so, so sorry for your loss and also that you have to feel so alone in your grief. I am with you in spirit.

  2. God bless Constance for his bright light in a too short a life. Sure wish I could give you a hug Kitten.

  3. He will live in your heart. Love is being sent your way. A.Glo