I was brought up in a military home, by an army dad and the best mother anyone could ever wish for. My dad was a really good soldier, one of the best amongst his coursemates. So you can say we lived a certain privileged life affording us anything possible. Despite all that, it was really tough. We lived in constant fear, the type of feeling everyone who has loved ones in the military experiences. In the year of 1993, our fears was taking to an even more worrisome level.
The Liberian 20+ years civil war had reached it's climax during the first years of the 90s. In April of 1993, some 7 days after one of my sisters was born, my dad was once again called upon to serve his nation. This was on that same 7th day which was my sister's naming ceremony (a celebrated event to give a name and mark the coming of a new child). He left before the end of the ceremony and didn't even say a proper goodbye.
Time became very slow. Days, weeks and months went by without a word from my dad. We would occasionally get signals and informations on how certain companies were ambushed and displaced by rebels killing an alarming number of soldiers. Neighbors will someimes get visited by commanding officers information families on the passing of their loved ones. Other times we would see the arrival of fallen heroes in coffins and other soldiers amputated by explosives during intense battles. Situations like this always frightned us. At some point, we learnt our dad was missing in action. It felt like the whole world had crushed down on us.
Exactly 3 years after he was deployed, a rather unfamiliar looking vehicle parked by the drive way. I can remember my sister, now 3years old, clinching onto my hands and pointing out, asking who that man was. I tried holding back my tears but I couldn't. His your father I replied.
That was perhaps one of the happiest day of my life, a memory I'll cherish for the rest of time.
What was the happiest day of your life?