Ayodele Weke: …And there was calm (Y! Superblogger)


He opened his eyes and with a smile he called out my name, I couldn’t stop the flow that cascaded down my eyes as we started talking and then ….. There was calm.                         

There was calm but it was such an uneasy calm, why are these steps so difficult today? Taking these steps three at a time in the past was like the flip of a coin then why does it suddenly require immense strength today? Why did it look like a strange place today, the family house I mean, I looked up, the door which seemed too far yet so near was closed today, it never used to be like that then, years ago when I would run up the stairs, barging in

“Mom I am hungry, I want my dinner”

“Go have your bath young lady, only then you can enter the kitchen” Would be the stern warning from mom.

That was the first thing I noticed when she called this afternoon, the sternness in that voice was gone and instead there was this chilling frailness, devoid of all strength, but that obviously did not keep the surprise out of my voice as I heard her apologize, “Am sorry I got the number from your friend”.

I could not say anything; I did not know what to say, but mum must have preferred the silence for she continued to talk.

“Your father is dying; the doctors said he has just a few more days to live. She paused to catch her breath, stifling a tear. I was wondering if you could see him before he………….

Mom was crying, my mother whom I had seen fight the toughest times, which had always been the pillar of the house was crying, still words failed me.

“Mom….” The line had gone dead already.”

I sat on the couch, my phone still in my hand. Why was I finding it so difficult to speak? I looked at the watch. I could still catch the last flight to Port Harcourt, where my parents stayed. I ran out of the house, hoping I would not miss the last chance to make up with my father.

Yes it had been almost ten years since I had walked out of the house, walked out to satisfy my ego, walked because I knew I was wrong and didn’t want to admit it, the ego never died and I never went back.

What had my parents gone through in those years? I was in the same country with them, yet my ego never let me even call them once.

I do not know if it was out of shame realizing my father was right or out of….. Well…… the same ego.

I never even knew when I got to Port Harcourt or when and how I actually got to my house.

Now standing at the stairs my legs seems to be reluctant to climb, reluctant because I didn’t know how to face them, because I was ashamed of what I had done over the years.

But this was the last chance I might have to make up, make up for all the blunders. I reached the door and lifted my hand to knock, but the door opened and the doctor walked out.

Mom just nodded as the doctor walked down the stairs. Her eyes were moist, moist with tears she was holding back. She looked at me and I couldn’t look back, looking down I asked “how is dad, would he see me?”

Mom took a long breath, and walked in, I followed her.

Everything in the house was exactly the same as it was years ago when I had stormed out of the house. Walking into my parent’s room, I looked at dad lying on the bed and then looked up at mom.

“You know your dad was always right about you” said mother looking at dad.

“He told me the day you walked out that you would not come back, I didn’t believe him but he was right.”

I tried to speak but my throat was choked, words just did not come out.

“Today when I told him you might come, you know what he said?”

I looked at her and then at dad, “he said you will be late as always but am glad that he was wrong………

Gently I sat down by his bed being careful not to hurt him as he looked so frail and pale; I lifted up his hand and held it up in mine.

He opened his eyes and with a smile he called out my name, I couldn’t stop the flow that cascaded down my eyes as we started talking and then ….. There was calm.


Ayodele Weke is a journalist who advocates against sexual related injustice. A writer and presenter with Roundhouse Radio London. She blogs at www.ayunscripted.com and tweets at @ayoweke.


Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.

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