ARAMIDE: Remember Her Name

Karen Quiñones-Axalan
Posted June 25, 2020 from Philippines

The World Pulse community lost a dear sister who was a Featured Changemaker, Featured Storyteller, Ambassador, and so much more. 

When our sister Busayo announced the news to the Global Ambassadors, the group message was filled with shock, denial, heartbreak, and tears. It is the worse news mid-year of 2020, worse than COVID-19.

I wept when I heard the news, and I wept with World Pulse sisters who've met her and formed friendships with her. It must be empathy, but part of it was guilt. 

On June 17, 2020, I read Esther's First Post where she narrated her life's story. It was filled with trauma and abuse, but her tragic narrative changed when she met our beloved Aramide. She shares,

"However, a friend of mine who we both passed out from the same Secondary School introduced me to an empowerement programme at Bestspring Foundation, under the administration of Aunty Aramide Oikelome in year 2019, which brought about a major turning point in my life. I was trained on a skill acquisition programme which I benefited from and was gifted with a sum of money which enabled me to further develop my skills and create a source of income for myself. This also created an avenue for me to support my mum and make me financially independent."

This wasn't the first time I encountered a World Pulse sister who mentions Aramide. Here's another one, "Then I met Aramide oikelome who pulled me into her NGO, and she introduced me to this group, she keeps saying she sees a lots of virtues I don't even think I have" (Read her story here).

While I was commenting on Esther's post, a thought came to mind, " How is Aramide? I should send her a message of appreciation for helping these young women and for promoting World Pulse".

Imagine my shock when I received the news of her passing three days later. She never received the message I planned to send. I checked her latest World Pulse post, I sent love to it , but did not write an encouragement. I had to deal with the nagging guilty feelings for these past few days. It was all too late now. 

Oprah Winfrey said, "Turn your wounds into wisdom"

I'm wounded by Aramide's death just like the rest of our World Pulse sisters who knew her. For some of you who really knew her, your wounds are bigger, and I respect that. World Pulse is holding a space for you to share your grief.

One of the ways I deal with death is to see what the impact or legacy a person left in this world. I also believe in this Bible verse, "Unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds." (John 12:24).

Aramide remains alone in what she does when was alive, but now, like a kernel of wheat or a seed, she is planted, her tribe increases from now on. More women will be inspired by her work and will follow suit.

That is why I am so comforted when our dear Tech Genius Kirthi promptly created The Aramide Initiative. I signed up immediately because I want to be part of the seeds Aramide produced: ending gender-based violence, mentoring survivors, and caring for woman and girls.

As someone who is passionate about encouragement, Aramide's death also reminded me that I need to keep appreciating and encouraging our World Pulse sisters while they are alive. We can never underestimate the power of encouragement, and all the more we need to encourage one another in this trying times. All the more, we need to celebrate our World Pulse changemakers on their important work, to "listen" to our storytellers, and *to appreciate our encouragers.

Aramide, say her lovely name.

Aramide, remember her name.

It is my hope and my prayer that we will not forget the name Aramide. Instead, let it be a CALL TO ACTION to end gender-based violence, to help the survivors in any way we can, and to encourage women in every opportunity we have.

REST in POWER, our dear sister Aramide! You've been planted; thus you are now ready to multiply! Your legacy lives on. We miss you already.

*On appreciation of our encouragers, World Pulse will be having an Encourager Party on June 26, 3PM GMT. This has been a pre-planned activity before the announcement of Aramide's death. 

Comments 22

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Jun 25
Jun 25

Hello lovely Karen ,
Trust you are safe ?
My deepest condolences to you,her family and our worldpluse family, it hurts me to much to say goodnight to an amazing woman with a glorious smile Sister Aramide,
She will be greatly missed . Rest easy Queen ,Rest easy adorable Sister .,We love you so much . Rest in the Lord's bossom My queen .Thank you Lovable Karen , love you .

Hello, Chioma,

Yes, we are safe, dear. Thanks for asking.
Thank you for your comforting words. Yes, losing someone as dear and as powerful as Aramide is painful. A sister said we lost a pillar. But I hope we will be inspired by her life and her works to emulate her.

Thank you, Queen Chioma! Keep reigning!

Jun 25
Jun 25

You are welcome always.. It is well .

Tumanjong Miranda
Jun 25
Jun 25

Dear Karen,
I relate with the hurt you are feeling. Thinking about the loss of a great heroine is so hard to fathom. I really don't know sis Aramide in person, but I've very sure she's a great person has impacted the lives of many women and young girls.
She will forever be missed and remembered.
RIP sister Aramide.

Hello, dear Miranda,

Thank you for your empathy. I don't know her much also, but when I asked new World Pulse sisters from Nigeria how they learn about this online community, her name comes up.

For young women to write about her means a lot. Thank you for the song tribute you made to honor her. You're amazing! Please stay safe.

Jun 26
Jun 26

Hello Karen,
It is really a sad story to hear that we have lost one of our dear Aramide as a member of this sisterhood. May her Beautiful soul rest in eternal peace.

Hello, Bakhita,

How are you? Yes, it is. Thank you for your empathy. I appreciate you. Please take care of yourself and stay safe always.

Sinyuy Geraldine
Jun 26
Jun 26

Dear Karen. What a passionate writer you are. Thank you so much for this tracing of how many lives Aramide impacted and brought to World Pulse. She is on fact a great loss to us all, but all is not lost as the people whose lives she impacted live on. Thank you so much for highlighting these aspects of Aramide's life. Please take heart, I know how it hurts to have not been able to reach her before she died. We can only wish her Adieu.

Hello, Geraldine,

Thank you for your kind words. We lost a magnificent warrior. Yes, the regret of not being able to reach out and it was too late troubled me. But thank you for saying that now she can receive my messages during our breakout session. You're such a great Encourager, sis. Keep it up! I appreciate you.

Sinyuy Geraldine
Jun 26
Jun 26

Yes dear. I trust she hears you. You should know that you are such an overwhelming encourager and sister too. You just make one to feel so much at home with your hearty encouraging comments. Under every story I see your name. We'll done, brave sister.

Jun 26
Jun 26

Thank you for honoring Aramide.

A farewell song for you Aramide... You were gone too soon. You will be remembered.

Thank you for sharing this lovely song, dear sis. I appreciate you.

Esther olulode
Jun 26
Jun 26

I can't still believe mom is gone, I love calling her( mummy) because she always there for me. Before the day she past out she call me severally to post my story on world pluse but not knowing she's not going to read my story here and she also promise me to meet on Wednesday that past.
My shock is that she called and we both still spoke a day she left not knowing mummy is saying good bye to me. But mom u wouldnt have leave me this way all by myself' where will I start from mom hmmmm?

Hello, darling Esther,

That is truly painful. You may have lost her physically, please know that because you obeyed her in joining World Pulse, you earned more mothers and sisters here. You're family has grown.

You are not alone, sis. You're part of a global family now. Hugs, dear
Your pain and grief are valid. We love you. God bless you.

Jill Langhus
Jun 27
Jun 27

Hello Lovely Kaye,

What a lovely tribute to our lovely Aramide. She didn't receive/read my last message to her, either, alerting her to that last, lovely post saying about how much she had changed her life, aka OMOT.:-( XX

Hello, Jill,

Oh, it's great to know you've reached out to her. I know she has already received the message she missed to read now.

Keep up the great work, Jill! Thank you so much.

Jill Langhus
Jun 29
Jun 29

Hello there:-)

You, too, Love!

You're welcome. XX

Regina Afanwi Young
Jun 27
Jun 27

Beloved Karen, that you so much for these kind words about our sister Aramide. Thank you so much for reminding us that even as we grief her legacy lives on. I am even more sadden because I never really had the opportunity to encounter our sister Aramide. What a kind hearted woman she was.
Karen dear our consolation should be that she is surely resting in the Lord. My thoughts are with her family and all our World Pulse sisters during this trial moment.
Rest in perfect peace Aramide.
Stay safe and be strong Karen dear

Hello, Regina,

The beauty of World Pulse is even when we don't know sister Aramide, we can always visit the posts she wrote so we can get to know her.

Thank you for your kindness always! Please stay safe.

Jun 29
Jun 29

Dear Karen,
It a sad news we lost one of our dearest and lovely sister, May her gentle soul rest in peace.

Hello, Bassie,

It's really sad. Thank you so much!

Elizabeth Ziro
Jul 12
Jul 12

REST in POWER sis Aramide