THE DAY I DISCOVERED MYSELF.
I was properly trained; my primary school days were basically a show off of wealth. I attended a school with European concept and we learnt many foreign language and that alone added some flavor to my training which stood me a difference among my peers. Dad’s expectation for giving us such training was all that motivated me.
I finished my primary school life without repeating any class but I know I struggled through my dark brains to impress my motif. However , I found myself in a secondary school where everything within me were strange; a foreign weather, a rain forest areas whose topography is so bad like Aba roads, and a different igbo accent altogether. That foreign land gave me a round number to divide my other ways into a two indivisible whole;
I once out of over comfort of home grew very rough and brutal with thoughts, decisions and ideas. Although the genetic combinations which begot me has never seized from showing who dominated the other. Perhaps, dad has got me. I know my life was properly relegated against evil and coupled for good; I grew within the corridors of priests and Reverend sisters instructing me on what to do and what not to do, with their hard way of implementing their way of life into us; the little clergies. And here I am again, fully equipped to be trained in their jungle.
I was totally deceived with those luxury properties dad bought for me for school. Joy deceived me from letting reality tell me the truth. Those boarding house properties made me a little bachelor who was about to be settled by the parents.‘’Nna, e nwetere admission na common interance ahu ilere ule ha na church that day’’ he said as he threw the paper result at me. I felt happy because dad was happy with me and that is the only source that could earn me joy in life. Looking at the paper, I knew it was just a little alpha above failure, but dad was happy, that’s my joy. On the night I was to travel, I had to taste all the clothes sowed for me, to check whether it was bitter or soar on my body. ‘’Ha mara mma nnaa’’, mum said smiling; I looked at the joy of motherhood laid bare on her brow and smiled. It was all joy, nothing but joy. Dad brought me inside the school, he helped me off load my properties. We passed through so many scrutinies before I was certified a free man.
He left without letting me know he was leaving, ‘’Nnaa kam gaa hu brother ahu lere gi exam’’, he said and drove off. I knew he was going home, but Iwasn’t convinced. Probably he did that to deceive me from feeling alone; he felt I was a kid but I know I am an adult in mind. Truly, I felt alone, I began to search for a friend in those faces I saw within me. I came late so I got a bed at the top bunk. Before dusk, I had made one friend already, he was just under me. I am so sorry innocent, it wasn’t my fault, I can never chose to do such inhumane act; the faithful night I entered the boarding house my urinary gland never failed to show off its ability to disgrace me whenever I was unconscious. I tried my best not to drink water once its 6’oclock, yet I was powerless. That ugly habit in me which I saw natural in me was my early life enemy; I always wake up with tears, regret and a feeling of being inferior whenever my enemy visits me at night, – my day all through would be filled with disgrace and dehumanization from the perfecting clergies. Secretly and silently I would weep, weep and weep. I prayed too but it persisted. It made me loose friends who had the same zeal with me, it affected my cerebral cortex psychological and so my cognitive ability dropped to zero. But then innocent was still beside me. Many at times, I would raise my head which was automatically faced to the floor out of shame – I would look at innocent and say in my mind, I love you.
Those were the feelings in me but I lacked the appropriate word to utter them, and so I would bend my face to the floor again and move on. All that went off me were all rested on his innocent body.
At a point, dad wasn’t coming again to visit me on the special days for visiting. I would look through the window, admiring in sorrow, the beautiful cars that other parents drove in with to visit their children; I could see their smiles, the love and care they expressed to their long left children. With tears, I drew resort to my pillow and then, the stubborn tie in me began to grow weak and more emotional. I cried because it wasn’t the first time on a visiting day that dad couldn’t show up, rather
it grew out of time and was turning a habit. With pains and heartbreak it mastered me though. But then innocent was still there to share with me what his mother got for him. I never knew what dad was battling with, I felt he abandoned me, I felt out of his hard and authoritative way of life he would decide to pay me back my stubbornness by not visiting me; I couldn’t really figure out what was going on. But those unconscious behaviors trained me into becoming a man.
I now learnt how to go on my knees to pray for my dad’s success, I began to love dad more and more. Because my case turned normal to my colleagues, like I was abandoned in the school and had no provisions to support the poor meal dished out in the refectory, I began to beg around just to hold my life strong and pray for dad. When innocent noticed my new begging behavior, he frowned at it. Although he had little or nothing, he was able and eager to share with me the little he had, and so I lived with caution.
I grew in isolation thinking and talking to myself always; I would be walking on the road and talking to myself. Throwing hands in the air like am chasing away flies, -it just became part of me. I never allowed it to take part of me in my educational life, I tried hard to stitch the pains and move on. When I noticed that things remained that way for too long, I now made it part of me, I closed my heart, became a man and began to fight for myself; I felt a new person inside me.
Unconsciously, I became a man when I was a kid and It was there I discovered myself. There are many stories to go on, but I must stop here less you cry for me; I have long cried for myself and so no need to waste your precious water.
NB: Any imagery or understanding drawn out of this illusion is dearly associated to the reader.
written by: Paschal Emeka Ekwebelem