January 8th of 2019 set in motion the direction of my new life. It was about 1:30 am EST when I received a call from my uncle in-law who was vacationing in Liberia with my husband Charles (his nephew). In an attempt to calm me before delivering the news, he said, "Don't be alarmed but Chucky had a mild stroke". My initial response was, "Chucky who?" Immediately I snapped out of it and told myself he would not be calling me that time of the morning to inform me about someone else. I said a prayer in my heart and knew he would be alright because he was alert, talking (though his speech was slurred), it was mild.
Though it was mild, one thing I've always heard was Liberia was not a place anyone wants to get sick in. The reality is their hospital system is synonymous to Russian Roulette; pull the trigger and hope death's bullet doesn't exit the chamber. Immediately the fight to have him evacuated to a neighboring country where he could be render proper care began. Though the fight was only four days, it felt like 3 weeks had past.
Friday morning, January 11, I just dropped my boys off at daycare. When I returned to the car, I saw a missed call from my uncle who had joined me in the fight. On three way with the medevac company, we received the good news that they were given the go ahead to pick Charles up from Liberia and have him flown to the states or even Brussels. The way we yelled and cried with excitement; our prayers had been answered.
Saturday morning, January 12, 3:00 am. I happened to roll over and see I had two very random missed calls. One was more odd than the other. I had a call from my brother in-law in North Dakota and another from my godmother/aunt from Staten Island (the more odd call). I returned my brother in-law's call with no response. I then called his fiance and received the same result. Later I called my godmother; she answered. "Are you okay?", she asked. I responded yes and asked her if everything was alright to which she responded, "Did you call me?". I told her yes and that I was returning her call. Later my little brother comes downstairs and asks me if I am "good". Perplexed I said yes and questioned why he had a broom and everyone was moving in haste that time of the morning. He simply said, "Its Saturday. We always clean up on Saturday."
An unsettling feeling took over but I refused to claim it. I called my uncle in-law in Liberia and he asked me if I had spoken to my dad. So I went and spoke with my dad. Saturday morning. January 12. 3:09 am. In my parents kitchen, my dad unable to look me in my eyes, I received the news. "Chucky didn't make it." That morning I wept for my boys. I wept bitterly. Somehow I felt like I failed them and him (Charles). I went running in the room to them and grabbed them and sobbed and question why he would leave me by myself. This was a journey we started together. It was not supposed to end this way. 2019 was our year where everything was supposed to come full circle. Everything we've prayed for, worked for and towards were supposed to come to fruition.
Just like that. My life was flipped; turned upside down. I don't know what tomorrow holds but my mantra I have for myself holds true. MY DESTINY IS MY PURPOSE AND MY PAST IS MY REFERENCE. What I do with my yesterday frames how I handle my tomorrow. On my journey of new discovery I cannot and will not forget Dr. Deacon Ambassador Charles Alexander Johnson. He was so many things to so many but to me he was my husband, friend, aggravation and most importantly the father to my boys. He won't physically be here for so many "firsts" that the boys will experience but we have a forever angel. One of God's very best.