Mr Banji, One Year On
One thing about sorrow is the fact that it never goes away. Its something very dark that tugs at your heart everyday or moment of your life.
The past one year since Mr Banji left has been a roller coaster experience full of bitter sweet memories. Memories of dreams that never came to be, of time not fully spent.
When sorrow is too dark and deep, what you can do everyday is to obviously live in denial. By trying to be insanely over friendly, laugh at stupid dry jokes, incredibly unserious and worrying over nothing. I think I did this for the last five months and I increased by about 5kg. That’s my therapy.
Because I know, that anytime the memory attacks more deeply, it inches towards sickness…being bedridden for a week or more.
Even though I wanted to live out my denial today, my maternal uncle had broken my resolve when he called me this morning, reminding me its one year today. Not that I needed a reminder….the pain lives with me everyday. I shed my tears everyday. I don’t need to wait till its one year to be reminded.
This day, last year, it was the darkest Thursday in my life. A nightmare. I had walked in through the gate into his office, sat down and waited. I met the office open. When he didn’t show up, I began to cry. By now, people had gathered.
But that wasn’t even the first thing I did. After getting the call at 2am on the morning of June 1st, I sat down on the rug in my room in shock. My windows began to shake. It was as if someone was knocking my door. I heard some light sounds at the door. There was a fierce wind also knocking my window. Everywhere was dark. Calls from few close relatives flew in and out. I sat in the dark.
When the day broke, I didn’t have a bath. I has scores to settle somewhere.
So, I took a hurried walk to church. No one was there. I knelt at the altar and began to ask God questions. I began to pound my fist on the floor, wetting the ground with my tears, shouting….but the only sound I heard was my tear filled voice. Having to go through the same nightmare twice….I tell you, its a very bitter pill to swallow.
How I got through the last one year, I honestly cannot explain. But God has been kind. I walk with the realization that I am now under the direct care of the almighty. And that he hears me. And that he won’t look the other way if I am cheated or looked down upon or denied what belongs to me.
Today, I am sitting in my office typing this. Last year, I was already on my way to the police station to get a police to follow us to the scene of death and The National Hospital. Then, I was at Area 10 to get him white clothes for his dressing as required by the hospital.
Friday, I met with My Lord, The Honourable Justice………and he asked that the casket be changed to a more befitting one. He did more than that. We spoke about a lot of things….. I can never forget him.
Saturday, I was alone…..on the journey to take his body back home as requested by the family.
And I remembered that day when we came together to abuja for the first time. He brought me here. He dropped.me with my friend later in the evening after buying some edibles for me. He admonished me to eat before getting to my friends’ in case I wouldn’t want to eat there.
That Saturday, I had to take his lifeless body back. He has left me alone in abuja, alone among sharks…the sharks have tried, but they haven’t been able to swallow me.
When I close my eyes, I see him in my dreams. And I constantly fell ill. I had to beg God to make me stop seeing him.