Convincing my mom that I would be fine being apart from her for a day was hard work. She was not ready let me go, not with a person I barely knew.
I had not been away from home since I dropped out of school to heal. When my mom could find no help for me, she believed it was best I went back home with her from Ibadan. Though moving back home had not really done much, it was better than being alone. That was several weeks after the incident, before my first suicide attempt. I most probably would have died if there was no one to nurse my wounds, yell at me and cry with me.
I had decided to tell my mom a day to the party, when I had convinced myself, though not completely, that nothing bad would happen. I needed to be convinced first before trying to convince my mother of the same. She knew how to talk me out of anything.
“I am not letting you stay at God-knows-where all night, Ifeoluwa,” my mom had said sharply. She only called me by that name when she was in a mood to argue with me.
“You will have to, ” I muttered.
“I don’t have to,” she snapped, clearly hearing my muttering. “You are not going anywhere.”
“Mom, you know I am twenty-six,” don’t don’t you?” I asked.
“And you know what almost happened the last time you were out of the house, late?” she countered.
Yes, I did remember. When I was finally enrolled in UNILAG, going for my part-time lectures from home, I had been held up on my way home one day. The traffic had been insane. Night fell on me and the tremors had started in the bus. I must have made a scene because I was thrown out of the bus by frantic passengers. I don’t remember exactly what happened after the tremors started but I remember crying and screaming, holding my head. I must have looked mad.
Mom told me later that she had called my phone and a woman picked it, saying the owner was wailing out of control and might have gone mad. My mom asked for directions from the said woman, whom she likes to call an angel, and rushed down to where I was. Luckily, it had happened far away from my neighbourhood. Not like I could have cared otherwise, but mom certainly would have cared.
“That was a long time ago, ” I replied. “I have already decided to go. Allow me to try to go past my fears. At least, this once. Nothing will happen to me.”
She had reluctantly agreed. I could have listened to her, probably she had a premonition but I had been wrong. Something bad did happen.
To be continued…