She left without a goodbye…
This is a succinct, blow by blow account of the hard knock that life just dealt me. This is the hardest post I have ever written since my blogging journey began. But, just maybe, i’ll feel better after writing this. I hope so. The reality I never wanted but which I am facing right now. After living in denial for a week, it’s time to come out and pour all my pain here. Writing could be therapeutic. If I sound harsh, or bad, just know it is the aftermath of an equally harsh experience.
4th December, I buried my mother, under the loam soil, in a deep grave, situated towards the back of the house, where my former room was located, within the sprawling edifice of my father’s humble abode in the ancient city of Ibadan……, at the young age of 55.
I have never really written about my mom, but I am doing so today, writing about her in death. Believe me, this is hard for me to do.The pain has caged me in, blinded me, engulfed my heart, so much that I refused to cry.
It was on a Saturday(28th nov) at about some minutes to eight o’clock that my youngest brother called me to say she was laying still and not breathing. The dude was too calm about it, like he didn’t himself believe what he was saying or he didn’t want to assert it. So, his voice suggested that though she wasn’t breathing but she wasn’t gone. I told him to do mouth to mouth resuscitation. He said he did it but nothing happened. Probably, because his tone suggested she was just laying still and not dead, I believed she wasn’t dead too. Even though, I know what it means when the breathe has ceased. Our brain, mind, heart just refused to accept it.
So, we formed prayer chains all over, praying that her breath would return. We prayed till 12am. My brother remained by her bedside, in a different city, praying and believing she would wake. He prayed for like five hours according to him. I have never known this guy to be a prayer warrior but the praying giant in him awoke on this day. When he saw that nothing happened, he sent the two househelps with him out of the room and wept. After crying for like 2hours, he called them back inside. He still slept beside his mom till daybreak.
In the morning, our uncle joined him and they moved her to a private mortuary. She was made to sit while he sat beside her and her head rested on his shoulder. He helped to wheel her inside and watched as her clothe was torn in preparation for embalment. Dude said he lost it again at that point. But he hasn’t cried again since then.
That morning was sunday. She made preparations to be taken to church, she told my sister what she was going to eat, she thought she was going to live beyond the next day. She didn’t want to die. Yes, she had been sick for a while, struck by a certain strange ailment which was being managed by a doctor and physiotherapist who visited her at home every week, coupled with prayers.
There are different kind of mothers and having a great mother is a privilege. My own was too passionate about her kids. She always wanted them close. She never stopped sending me ‘eran didin’, perfume, ankara and things as ridiculous as colgate and facial treatment for pimples. Well, I recall a time she followed me to school in primary school when I reported a teacher who beat me. If you have a mother like mine, you’d know it’s a big deal or a mistake for you to report anyone to her. I pitied the teacher after all.
Wesley College had refused to release my result to me when I went to collect it on the account that I never returned a physics textbook I borrowed from the library. That was Tomi Ojuola, the library prefect’s fault anyway. I had all the textbooks and didn’t have to go borrow anyways. I had the big ‘okeke’. Story cut short, she went to holy bookshop to get another textbook, then proceeded to elekuro to collect my result. She told me all my teachers she met that were saying ‘are you Yetunde Olasiyan’s mother?’ especially Mr Alani.
When I moved to lagos and got an apartment, she and dad went with me to the new house. They helped me arrange the room and waited to meet the landlady. She took my neighbor’s number(an elderly lady) and told her to watch over me.
Many times when I was in Ogbomoso, she would drag my dad to come visit. Most times, they might not have planned it. Then they would appear unannounced. I remember a time when dad picked her from church on a Sunday and she said he should drive her to ogbomoso, that she needed to see us(just like that). Everyone around me, in school then, knew my parents. They came everytime.
I don’t want to write too much but i’d just want to lay emphasis on people and their predictable nature. Why do people wait until bad things happen before they show they care? Where have they been all my life? It was fun to disappoint all those who thought we were going to cry there. I didn’t shed a tear. It wasn’t still real to me. Even when I saw the coffin. So I caused a mild drama during the dust to dust. I knew what I was doing but they thought I was reacting in shock.
So all the uncles and aunties started offering words of advice, taking my mobile number etc. I was ‘yinmu-ing’ at them in my mind. Who needs them now? They should go and take care of their kids, abi? Why promise me you’ll be there, I should let you know when I come home, I should keep praying, you’ll be calling me’ and all other vain promises. Thank God my mom didn’t die when I was a kid in primary school. I would have been left with those jokers and their promises.
Funnily, the people that even matter have refused to be there. Some pretended not to know. They didn’t bother to appear or to call. And those that promised to be ‘everything’ haven’t remembered to check up on me after just a week. So what happens after a month? Who needs them anyways? Who wants to pick their calls and talk to them. Yes, I am MEAN.
Now that I have seen the reality, my tears now flow endlessly. My head continues to ache, I have sleepless nights. I see her when I close my eyes. Though I am still hoping she would appear to me. I want to see her one last time. She hasn’t even appeared in my dream. How can she go like that?
The sadness is thick, it makes you cry everywhere; on the road, in the car…now I am feeling the feeling, feeling what Femi Adesina, SA to the president on media felt when he lost his mother who was even more aged than mine. According to what he wrote in The sun newspaper when he was the MD, he said his tears were flowing like a river. He cried like a baby. Now I understand.
So I don’t know who will comfort Mr Bamiji. He is staying holed up in his room. His voice betrays the strong manliness he tries to portray. Probably he is the worst hit.
I am so psychologically down. Blogging under the Mabushi bridge, so early this morning. Life now holds little meaning. So the worst thing in life is for no one to hold your hand in bad times and say ‘i’ll go through this pain with you’ and to keep their promise.
N.B I am no longer accepting condolences. Don’t bother to send me one. I am trying to move on. Thanks in anticipation.
Have a very merry xmas and new year in advance. Xoxo