An Amputee’s Prayer (2)

I have prayed for so many things. I have cried for a lot of things as well but not for my leg to grow back. That sound like a scene from a sci-fi movie.

I had imagined it though. I imagined what it would be like. Then I think, I wouldn’t really want it. All I had been through would be like a dream, like they never happened. But I prayed that my pelvis would join like the dry bones in Ezekiel.

I did pray for the strength, courage and the will to live this life. You need a lot of those as an amputee.

I asked to be able to bear the pain, to be stronger than it, and to smile through it.

I asked to never be hungry or lack anything good. That the Lord would bless me with all I need to sustain my new life. That I would never have any reason to cry again.

I asked Him to take care of my family, my love ones, that I wouldn’t have any reason to run because of them, as He knows that I can’t run. That whenever they need me but I can’t be there, He stands in my place.

I told Him, since He has taken my leg, He would have to be my legs and go all the places I wouldn’t be able to go. He would walk it for me and with me.

Sometimes, when I wonder how I’m able to bear it. I remember I had asked Him to give me the grace to.
A man once asked me after staring at me for a very uncomfortable several minutes.

“How do you endure it? I really can’t imagine, how you cope, with your daily activities, work, everything?”

I said, “You find new ways of doing old things. It seems uncomfortable or strange at first, and then it becomes you.”

“But what about the ones you can’t do, what about in the future?”

“I take it one day at a time. I leave the next day and the next step to Him. He handles them. He takes care of me today and prepares me for tomorrow. Whatever tomorrow brings, He is there to guide and walk me through it.

An Amputee’s Prayer (1)

What would an amputee pray about?
What would be their major prayer request?
A new leg?
That the limb or limbs would miraculously grow back? I don’t know what it was supposed to be. But I do know I have never asked for it before. Not ever.

My niece was reading the story of the Shunamite woman of 2Kings Chapter 4 to me few days ago. It was the story of the woman who took pity on Elisha the prophet and made a chamber for him in their house, so he could rest whenever he comes around. Elisha in turn asked what could be done for her for her generosity. So he prophesied to her that by the following season she would embrace a son.

And it was so.

Then the child died.

The woman took him to the prophet’s chamber and laid him on his bed. And then she went in search of the man of God. When she found him, she took hold of his feet and asked why he would give her a child and then take him away. The prophet sent his servant Gehazi to lay his staff on the child’s face, but the Shunamite woman refused. She would not leave unless the man of God came with her.

He did. He went in to the child, prayed to the Lord and did his prophet thing. The child sneezed seven times and opened his eyes.

Before that, there is the story of the poor widow and his two sons whom the man of God saved from her creditors. And after it, there is the account of dearth in Gil-gal and how the man of God made the poisonous pottage safe for the sons of the prophets. He also fed hundred men with twenty loaves of barley.

“There are no more miracles”, my niece said simply at the end of the chapter. They don’t exist anymore like in the Bible. I opened my eyes, looked at her and closed them again, hoping she would close the Bible and let it rest.

“They don’t happen anymore, even when you believe they would”

I sighed, I could feel my hope dissipating in the heat.

“I prayed for you”. I pray for you every day but it never happened”.

I opened my eyes again and stared at the ceiling. I watched as my hope that she would let go of the dearth and death of miracle ascended into it.

I didn’t have to ask what the prayer was. I knew it. And then I wondered why I never asked for it myself.

Maybe my faith is not strong enough. Maybe I don’t believe it is possible. Or I was just contented with walking unaided with my legs in my dreams.

I don’t know that too. But one thing is sure; I have to give the young lady an answer.

Fingers

Unequal though we seem
Uneven even – we are complements
Fashioned of the same fabric
Not a one is complete without the other
Lines, nails, veins, bones
Colour and texture
We are equals just vertically challenged

Look not on the index
As favoured than the thumb
The ring bearer as prettier than the third
The third as more endowed than the index
The pinky as more pampered than the rest
Or the four as superior to the thumb
One missing digit deforms the parents
We are complements
Fashioned of the same fabric
Just vertically challenged.

Cherophobia

It escapes in a hiss
Like the steam from a pressure pot
When I sigh it explodes with a pop
My limbs tremble
My joints are locked
I’m too tensed to sit still
I’m too still to move
I’m too ecstatic to rejoice
If fate sees my relief
Might bring me further ill
If I’m not glad
I’ll have no grief
I’m scared of being happy

Black And White

My eyes wouldn’t open. Maybe they were. I sensed someone behind me. “Bolu.” I think I said it out loud. Now I’m not very sure. I could hear voices, though they seem very far away. I couldn’t understand any of the words. They were getting closer. Louder. Someone was shouting in my ears. I wanted the noise to stop, I wanted to cover my ears, but my hands were not where they should be. They were bound together, at the wrists by some cold steel!  I opened my mouth to scream but a roar silenced me before I could.

 

“Why did you kill him?”

Everything in me went still. “Him who? I didn’t kill anybody.” I felt my lips open as I tried to speak louder. I tried to turn my neck to look at his face but it was stiff like my father’s old table fan. I couldn’t see him or anything else.

“Let me explain the situation to you,” he whispered fiercely into my ears, his hot breath fanned my throbbing neck. “You got up in the middle of the night on the 20th of November, 2015 and stabbed your husband ten times in the chest.”

My chest heaved and collided with my stomach. Is he talking to me? Where am I? There were different thoughts whirring round and round in my head. “I didn’t kill anybody.”

“You killed Adewale.”

“I don’t know who that is?”

“Was. He was your husband.”

“I am not married.” I screamed and mucus trickled into my mouth. A giant hand grabbed a handful of my hair and yanked my head backward.  I saw white, bright white light.

“Why did you kill him?” Panic clutched my chest, making it hard to breathe. Every breath I took scraped my side like a blunt razor.

“I didn’t kill–” His palm collided with my face and something horrible happened to me. I don’t know what it was but the humming started from my right cheek and its vibration spread all the way to my right ear and eyes. The voices were getting far away but the ringing in my ears kept echoing at the centre of my head. I heard someone weeping and then realised it was me.

My heart was racing. I tried to calm my breath. Where am I? How did I get here? I knew I was not the person they were talking about, but I had no idea who I was either. The memory was there somewhere; I just needed to find it. What was the last thing I remember?

My mind travelled back. I was sitting at my table, typing. I was having trouble with my heroine, so I closed the laptop and picked my pen and notepad instead. I lay on my bed and closed my eyes. Thinking.

I tried to hold on to the images but they were fading away, slipping out of my reach. I had to remember before I slipped into the darkness again, before the voices returned.

Something else was there, in the corner of my mind, out of my reach. A wish? Then I remembered. I had made a wish for my lead character. I wished I could feel her pain and betrayal. Her anger. I wished I could be there with her when she walked in on her husband and daughter. My heroine! I am my heroine!

My head started whirling, taking everything else in its mad gyration. Oh God, please not again, I can’t be in the story again. And then everything went still. I was being sucked into the darkness.

My eyes snapped open, to a bright light. I blinked. Before my eyes could adjust to the light I was yanked off the hard wood and thrown on the cold floor.

“Confess, now!”

My elbow landed hard on the floor and my lips broke open again when it collided with the cold steel on my wrist. My joints and muscles screamed in agony but I managed to ask just one question.

“May I have a pen?”

I knew what I had to do.

“You are ready to confess?”

I nodded.

“I knew you would, heartless woman”, he said.  A hand landed heavily on my left shoulder, pulled me off the floor and shoved me back in the chair. Then it slapped a notepad on the desk and placed a pen on it. It pulled my wrists roughly; I winced at the impact on my shoulders. And then I heard a clink and the cold steel broke loose. I wished I could see their faces. I knew there were two of them but my eyelids had formed a shade over my eyes.

I rolled the pen over and over between my thumb and index finger. How does this work? Do I need a wand or wave the pen around? I closed my eyes tightly. Nothing. How did I get myself into this? When did it start? My head was a mass of sticky cobwebs. I picked the pen and closed my eyes again. I saw a street, a very busy street; there was a restaurant and I was famished. I saw a signpost. It seemed familiar. I was walking home, but I had no idea where home was. One thing was clear, I had to make a wish and write something that would take me far from the madhouse. So, I did.

*******

The sun had just disappeared below the horizon when my feet touch the street inside my head. My cloth is bloody and ragged; my joints groan with every step and my feet are no longer mine, but all I can think of is the pen and paper. I would need a picture of my house or a five-star hotel for a hot bath; or maybe I could write in a vacation at the Presidential Villa, something rich and exciting this time… But the pen and paper first.

Where Do Our Dreams Go?

I had dreamt
Life would be all sweet and colourful
A little challenge here, a little grief there
They keep the journey real and meaningful
I had prepared to be strong
Rise above all hurdles
Ignore all hassles
Who knows what happened to that dream?
‘Cos it’s farther than it seems
So far I can’t catch a glimpse

I’ve never really been happy
Not as I dreamt
I’ve had more grief than joy
Not what I saw
I’ve not attained all I’d imagined
Not as I thought
All I desire is a life so simple
Maybe not as simple as it sounds
All I have is not as I dreamt
All I am is not as I thought
Now, I’m dreaming I might deserve
Nothing more than I am
Only I’ve got more than I deserve

Who knows what happened to my dreams?
I wonder where our dreams go

Horizon

I time travelled
I moment moved
Through freezing fog
Through stilled air

Where dreams blend with reality
Where souls battle in serenity
In the deep of the night
In the depth of despair

I crossed the seven hills
I crossed the seven seas
Where lost souls hover endlessly
Where cursed souls wail in peril

I saw where the earth
And the heaven unite
There my journey begins