DIARY OF A PORT HARCOURT HOUSEWIFE
Dear Diary Happy New Year. I sit and reminisce over 2018 and I am so grateful that my family and I crossed over into the New Year.
The year 2018 came with so much, I had too many struggles. From constantly being broke to having a health scare, to my near brush with infidelity, or the tragedy that struck my family at the end of the year. I’m just thankful I have crossed into a new year.
While I was busy battling with Chidi and the things he was doing to my mind, my cousin Odenyi fell ill. Odenyi is my 1st cousin from my mother’s side, she is Otele’s older sister.
I was often the 1st person that was called when any of my siblings or relatives had health challenges here in Port Harcourt. Being married to Doctor, they always felt Willie and I were miracle workers.
I do not complain neither does my husband, we are always ready to help in every way possible. Often times they get free treatment and free drugs, after all their in-law is a doctor with a big hospital.
We cannot begin to explain to them the challenges that come with running a hospital in a battered economy. I don’t even want to go into the many troubles of Nigeria, because if we go into that now I will surely go on and on and increase my grief.
Odenyi had been ill off and on. Willie had treated her gave her drugs, called her often to ensure she was taking her medication. He kept assuring us she would be fine but we should ensure she always took her medication.
He never told any of us what was precisely wrong with her, he said it was patient doctor confidentiality.
Her last visit to the hospital was early 2018, then she stopped coming. Willie kept asking me to call her or go check on her. He said he had called her severally and she kept assuring him she was fine.
One early Saturday morning in May I went to her house at Eagle Island. She looked rather pale and I told her so. She said she was fine that she didn’t get enough sleep the previous night. Her two kids all grown up are now in secondary school.
As usual her husband wasn’t home. He was rarely home, always out attending one meeting or the other. There was either a political meeting, a burial or a wedding. He always went alone, never with his wife.
“I think you should find a way to go run some thorough medical check up. I don’t like the way you’re looking”.
“Belema, don’t worry about me, I will be fine. God will heal me, I have a pastor praying for me, he said its an attack. He has been giving me assignments to pray and cancel the arrows.”
I rolled my eyes in exasperation!
“Odenyi, I’m sorry to say this but I think you shouldn’t rule out a medical intervention in your condition. You look very fragile and alarmingly pale. What is your husband saying about it? I thought I would meet at home since I came rather early.”
“He left home around 7 this morning. He got a call and left.”
“He’s always getting a call these days”, she said quietly.
Then she started talking like she was talking to herself.
“You pledge your whole life to someone and it plays out so differently than you imagined. It’s like an endless pit of destruction, you want to come out of it but you’re trapped, there’s no way out. This sickness was caused by my husband, Belema you people should ask him what he has put his hands into”.
To be continued…..
Story by Ibiwari Perrin-Oglafa