It has been 3 weeks and 2 days since mom died, 3 weeks since my outburst in the church, and forever since this ache in my chest.
After mom’s funeral service at the church, aunt Agnes, mom’s only sibling that mattered showed up at the house. She didn’t think I could cope with staying alone, not just because of my raging emotions, but because I am still a minor.
It was obvious she was in pain too. Her eyes were swollen from crying too much and her lips would tremble every time she tried to speak. She was probably thinking of the right words and fighting hard to keep from crying. I finally knew what pain looked like. They were in her eyes and I wondered if I had that same look. Then she spoke, “Ada, you’ll be moving in with me. We’ll leave tomorrow morning.”
I simply stared on. I didn’t have words. I saw it coming anyway.
It hurt to have to leave the home I had lived in with mom. Now that she’s gone, it’s just a house that holds all my memories.
“Will you need help packing?” Aunt Agnes’s voice brought me back to earth. I shook my head, replied with a weak “no” and retired to my room.
3 weeks with her haven’t been bad. Her husband and Kelvin, my cousin, do their best to make me feel at home but it never works. It never will. Home is where mom is – mom is gone, home is gone too.
If there is one thing pain does, it is to drain you. All of you. It drains your strength, your will, your joy, your smile, your passion, your energy, and your abilities. It leaves you empty, completely void.
It has been five weeks after mom’s demise and I’ve lost so much weight, maybe 7 or 8 kg. My stomach still rejects everything I eat. This morning wasn’t an exception; I vomited every bit of the breakfast of scrambled eggs and fried plantains.
I feel numb. Empty.
“If you wan die, go drink sniper. No be my moto go kill you. Omo werey.”
I got drawn back to earth by the voice of an angry cab driver and I realise that I had strayed into the main road from the pedestrian sidewalk. It took me a couple of seconds to remember that I decided to take a walk to clear my head.
I didn’t stop; I kept walking until I got to a bridge that stretched above a mass of water. There, I stood like lost puppy and stared into the horizon, the point where the sky meets the sea.
It hit me like a bullet; the memory of mom and I singing along to a song in the animated movie, Moana. Suddenly, other memories began to flood my mind, I held tightly to the rim of the bridged and gasped at each picture of her and me, together. My arms were shaky and my knees buckled beneath me as pained tore through me over and over again.
Suddenly, it stopped. I felt calm. But just when I thought it was over, her face flashed through my mind again, this time, of the day she died.
I had walked into her hospital room and found her convulsing and bleeding from her mouth and nose. The blood, thick and black. I rushed out immediately to get the nurse and when I returned, her right hand was stretched out, like she was trying to reach out to me, but before I could take it, her hand fell on the bed and the life support machine connected to her gave a loud beep. I knew what it meant.
I continued staring at the sky, my mind sinking into nothingness, my body became numb and I lost is all – the will to exist. As though obeying my mind, my hand lost grip of the rim of the bridge and I fell – flying, falling, sinking diving into the blackness of the water.
Killing oneself is easier thought than done; my mind was ready for death but my body wasn’t. In the water, I was flung in different directions and like any other living thing, my survival instincts kicked in. In response, I began to struggle to get out of the hell I had subjected myself to. My arms and legs flailed uncontrollably, my head struggled to remain afloat and water seeped into me through my every pore.
The end was near. I could feel myself slipping away from consciousness. I could feel time stop, my life being drained and the darkness was slowly being replaced with white and time stopped.
Suddenly, a flash of light hit me and with a gasp, I woke up.