It’s been real Juriee. It is real and always will be. I know you wouldn’t want us to cry, but we are home and we left you far, approximately 450km and 6 inches deep. Alone in solitude and darkness.
It hurts Juriee, it hurts. But we shall overcome because it’s been real.
Much as real hurts, when real is lost, because real is rare and you were the realest. We shall overcome and we shall carry on your smile.
You were a blessing Juriee, you really were. To your Mum, to your siblings, to your relatives, workmates and mostly to us. Strangers turned family, all because of you.
From that day of 21st Oct when you made you first cry, through your first baby steps as Birungi and through this life that has been…
Through all the joy you brought and the nicknames you carried.
From Bilharzia to when you found it’s vaccine with laughter and you became Haha L’antibiotik.
From Maffene to Muffin, *damn, the Broods muffins will miss you.
To JuliMuffn to Rasta, your life has been real, and what a life it’s been.
I know you fought Juriee, I know you fought to stay alive. I know you did, because you’re not the type to leave your friends, you never did and never would have. And I know now you never will.
But like the priest said, you were sent on earth to serve a purpose and you did, you really did. You served your purpose and have now been deployed somewhere else.
For the 25 years, 7 months, 2 weeks and 6 days you were here with us, you did.
From your lively smile, to your comforting words, to your warm embrace. From your selflessness to your dependability, you were real, for us. You were real.
• We won’t see the moon and stars together again.
• Your friends won’t walk you home again.
• You won’t lend me Cujo, the spy thriller novel.
• I won’t install 2016 Quickbooks for you.
• Gone are the long walks and the long talks.
• We won’t see your smile again, we won’t experience your wit again.
• We finally had to part ways, it hurts.
Juriee we left a part of you in Ntungamo, but the biggest part is with us, wherever all of us are.
We tried our best, we were there for you as you always was for us.
Till the byes, only that this time it was the sad good-byes.
It finally sank in Juriee, I always told you I was strong, but strong has thresholds.
The tears are flowing. And it’s confusing, I don’t know if it’s tears of sorrow fulfillment.
Sorrow because your Mum is devastated, you two, went through alot and it ended early.
Sorrow because your Sisters are hurting, you were a team, and now the MVP is gone. You were their light.
Juriee we are crying. We are sorry we can’t help it. We just can’t. But the gap you’ve left we shall fill, or die trying.
Fulfillment because you were a marvel. You were the angel among us mortals. We saw it, we sometimes told you, and you’d blush and close your eyes and smile. And say “Laba Amanya,” raise your hands in the air with the victory sign, or bow down.
For you it wasn’t Basiima Ogenze because it was so real that the appreciation had to be instant.
But it’s sorrow because we had plans, for the next day. For 2016.
Damn, 2016 was to be your year. Dear Lord, why?
You helped many, friends, people on the way, total strangers and all those in need. Charity as we know it, was because of you, from 40_40 to 5AsideLeague to those on the streets, all the others and more.
Events were lit because of the Juriee effect.
You never missed neither a Wedding meeting of your old girls nor a Baby, Bridal and all the other showers.
You were always there for everyone, how you made it, always, only God knows how. I nicknamed you the Maester of Time and Space.
Because you were always there.
For us and today I learnt for your family. You were like a Procrastination anti-virus.
I remember when I told you that, “Juriee, you know what? Time isn’t what the clock says, but what you make it, and what you make of time, is what you make the clock say. And you Juriee you are the testament.” You smiled and said, “hahaha really?” and smiled some more.
You linked the world, unknowingly but you did, because of your good deeds. It’s been a miracle, in times when miracles are rare.
I didn’t know anyone who had a bone to pick with you Rasta. Not a single soul.
I don’t know if it’s because of your carefree spirit or because of your realness. I’d never cleary understand.
We shall miss you Juriee, but we shall live for you. Trust me, we will. We are glad we have yet another guardian angel in you. And don’t you leave us, keep around us and help keep us together, for you.
Your Mum is now our Mum, and you are our Memory. We shall never forget you.
Rest in Peace Juliet Birungi Tumwesigye.
Rest in Power Rasta. It’s been Real.