One important lesson that life has taught me in the past four years is that you never know what is around the corner. I was in a place I never imagined I would ever be. I was on the ledge of depression and didn’t even realize it. I was still writing and encouraging others but I was dying inside and literally thought I’d be dead within six months. After losing my first wife Ann to breast cancer, I literally didn’t know what to do with my life. I went from being focused and purpose-driven to being heartbroken and pain-driven. My pain made it hard for me to live. I tell people all the time, I did not lose a wife I couldn’t stand, I lost a wife I’d give my last breath to. I lost my best friend. Even though I have an incredible supportive family I could not talk to them about what I was going through. Not because they were not unloving and unavailable, but because God had other plans. My therapy was thousands of miles away.
SIX MORE MONTHS
After Ann passed I figured I’d go to Africa before I died. I received invitations but turned them all down to care for my sick wife. I never told anyone, but I started having health problems. I’ve always been perfectly healthy up to that point. Anyway, I want to tell you how God works. For weeks after Ann’s service, I could not get myself together. People were contacting me via social media telling me how my words were blessing them. Some even said they were preparing to take their own lives when one of my tweets came through. I was sincerely humbled by how God was using me but I was like, “God, I’m dying over here.”
I’m not condoning throwing in the towel but I now understand how hurt and pain can make that seem like a good decision. I then understood what people meant when they said they were about to lose their mind. Life can land some pretty hard and unexpected haymakers at times.
Well, after deciding to go to Africa I reached out to Kudzie and asked her about taking me to meet a well-known pastor there. For some reason, her picture popped into my mind. Before that day we had never spoken on the phone and have only spoken by way of social media two years prior about her joining my email list and Ann and I going to Africa. It’s very common for me to speak to people who join my email list. I didn’t even remember her name at that time. I was just going to pay her to be my guide once I landed. I laugh about it now because God had a plan the whole time. God began to speak to me about Kudzie and I was HIGHLY offended. I was telling Him how he had to be wrong. Yes, imagine that.
Kudzie had no idea Ann passed until I told her. We began to discuss Africa little more and that was that. After I downloaded WhatsApp she began to call me when it was time to eat because I was not really eating, drinking, or sleeping. God told her to help me with my grief but that’s all she intended to do. That was perfectly okay with me because I NEVER EVER EVER intended to speak to another woman again on a romantic level, so we were both on the same page. As a matter of fact, she intended to block me once she knew I was ok. I will never let her live that down.
DID SHE JUST HANG UP ON ME?
At this point, therapy was in session. Kudzie was over seven thousand miles away and six hours ahead of me, but she called faithfully to make sure I ate. I was having many problems but the only ones she knew of was the lack of eating, drinking and sleeping. She would call me and remind me to eat and ask what I planned to eat. She would also let me get out things I needed to get out about losing Ann. She was a listening ear as well as guiding compass. I didn’t understand it at all. Out of all the people I knew personally, I felt most comfortable sharing my personal life with a person I never met.
Getting me to eat was not always an easy task. One evening we were on the phone and she told me it was time to eat dinner. I told her I would eat later; knowing I probably was not going to. After a quick back and forth she hit me with something I never saw coming. She told me she was going to hand up the phone and I couldn’t call her back again until I ate. She also wanted me to take a picture of what I cooked and send it to her as proof that I ate. I sincerely thought she was playing until she hung up. I was shocked she hung up but honored by her care for a stranger, especially since she was going to block me. Oh yeah, I’m never letting that one go. Anyway, that’s when I began eating every meal.
Drinking and sleeping went pretty much the same way. She once told me she needed me to start drinking water. Before Ann’s death I would drink water all the time. The next day I went to the store and purchased a large bottle of water because I knew she was going to ask me about it. I drank some so I could try to get it by her. Well, she called and eventually asked about the water. I held the water bottle up to show her that I drank some but she was like, “No, how many fluid ounces did you drink?” In my mind, I was like, “this woman ain’t playing no games.” She was really on me about eating, drinking, and sleeping but that’s what I needed at that time.
We are about to release my new book entitled “HusbandRules WifeyActs”, which is my farewell tribute to my first wife Ann. Earlier that year Ann wanted me to write a book about love and marriage. I started woeking on it the first day she was put on a ventilator and stopped writing the day she passed. Not only is this book going to bless marriages and relationships, but it will also strengthen family bonds. It is filled with wisdom for relationships as well as my healing journey and the messages Ann left for me in the event of her death.
Kudzie has been the therapy I never knew I needed. I have never needed anyone in my entire life as much as I needed her. Of course I’ve had things go wrong before, but this was the first time life ever hit me with an uppercut so powerful. Kudzie picked me up and willed me to live, and she did all that from seven thousand miles away.
As a matter of fact, I had to trick her into allowing me to even send her anything. I wanted to know what she needed and send it to her. I didn’t care if it was money or something else. I just wanted to show my gratitude for how she was helping me. She absolutely refused to accept anything from me until God revealed who I was to her. Remember, she was planning to block me.
I was once asked what I would have done if she had blocked me. Truthfully speaking, I would have purchased a ticket and flew over seven thousand miles to where she was. At the time I didn’t know where she lived but I did know where she worked. I would have shown up in person at her job, flowers in hand, and asked her on a date. She would have known who I was and that I was harmless so the whole stalker thing would not have been an issue. You’re probably wondering where we are now in life so I’ll give you a hint. Beyoncé said it best, “if you like it, then you shoulda put a ring on it!” Kudzie, you are my therapy!